How to Get a Job as a Software Developer

Bill Rybinski
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Working as a software developer is one of the most promising IT jobs for a future career. Demand for software developers is expected to grow at a rate of 22 percent between 2012 and 2022 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Careers in software development also topped the U.S. News & World Report list of the 100 best jobs.

The first step you must take to get a job in software development is to complete the proper education and training. Most software developers have a bachelor's degree in computer science, software engineering or a similar field, and some employers prefer a master's degree for certain positions. Experience in software building and knowledge of the latest advances are a must. To increase your chances of getting a job after college, complete an internship at a software company prior to graduation.

There are a number of professional skills and qualities that make you more attractive to prospective employers. Have a creative problem-solving approach, the ability to work well with non-technical staff and excellent communication, interpersonal and project management skills. The ability to work under pressure and meet tight deadlines is also an asset to a software developer. Have a thorough knowledge of software, hardware and programming languages, and be familiar with the use of computer-aided software engineering tools.

Begin your software developer job search by browsing listings on tech-specific sites like and, and search general job listing sites like, and Before applying, make sure your online presence is professional; a potential employer is almost certain to search for your name or email address on Google as well as on social media platforms.

When you are invited to a job interview for a software developer position, dress in semi-casual attire. In this particular field, formal attire like a business suit makes you look like a rookie. Put together a strong portfolio to present to potential employers. This is often considered more important than your years of experience in software development. Include a stack of screenshots from previous projects that you completed while freelancing or during an internship.

You also have the option of starting your own business and doing contract work. Create a professional website with a list of your services, or use trusted freelancing sites, such as, and to find thousands of available software development contract jobs. You can also get involved on forum-based sites like Stack Exchange.

Completing the necessary training and applying yourself during your job search and interview makes it easier for you to get a job as a software developer. Although most IT jobs are in high demand, software developers fare especially well with an unemployment rate of just 2.9 percent in 2013, according to a report by Robert Half Technology.


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