If you're interested in pursuing software development in California or other states, you'll be glad to know there are numerous job opportunities in this field once you complete your studies.

Software developers design computer programs and even engage in the development details as well.

As the world places more importance on web development and applications, you can expect increased job opportunities in various niches.

Some career opportunities include software engineer, web designer, web developer, information systems manager, etc.

Want to know in detail what career prospects do software developers have in the US? If so, read on!

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How To Become A Software Developer?

There are many training programs for software development that you can take to pursue your career in this growing field. Want to become a developer but don't know how and where to start?

Here's how you can start your journey of becoming a software developer in the US:

  • Earn A Bachelor Degree: If you want to be a developer, the first thing that you have to do is pursue a computer science degree, where you'll study programming and computers
  • Acquire Hands-On Experience: If you've computer science education but no practical experience, chances are it will affect your career prospects. This is because employers are drawn to candidates with hands-on experience. That's why most computer science students seek experience or an internship along with their classes to prep for a successful career
  • Earn An Advanced Master's Degree: Although it is not necessary, some businesses prefer software developers with advanced degrees

Furthermore, it's vital to know computer science fundamentals such as:

  • Common algorithms
  • Technical approaches
  • Standard languages
  • Big-O notation

It doesn't matter if your education comes from an apprenticeship, school, college, or university; what matters is that you refine your skills.

Keeping this in mind, having a computer science bachelor's degree is vital; however, a degree alone won't help snag a dream job.

Consider this: Many employers say while recruiting, they look at both education as well as experience.

So, for example, a software development graduate from a reputed college with no practical coding experience or engaging technical achievements is a less exciting candidate than someone with no professional degree but impressive coding skills.

Some Reputed Institutions For Software Development In New York City

If you intend to become a successful software developer, it's best to study from a top, renowned school, college or university.

New York City is full of established institutions that offer courses in software development, computer science, and IT. Regardless, software development education in the US is unparalleled.

Here are some prominent schools for software development:

  • Briarcliffe College
  • Canisius College
  • Clarkson University
  • Cornell University
  • Hofstra University
  • Iona College
  • Manhattan College
  • Marist College
  • SUNY Oswego
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Important Hard Skills

JavsScript, a computer language, in progress in a laptop placed on the table
if you want your software development career to boom, ensure you know most of the relevant programming languages. In other words, you must have the required hard skills to become a qualified software developer. Hard skills include know-how of Python, Java, SQL, JavaScript, and other crucial programming languages (Source: Unsplash)

Hard skills refer to teachable, practical competencies that employees should develop to qualify for a particular position. Some examples include Python, SQL, Java, etc.

Here are some critical hard skills essential for software developers to get a good job:

Java

Java, a programming language, makes software on several platforms without even recompilation. Moreover, it runs on almost every operating system, such as Windows and Mac OS.

Java employs syntax from C++ and C programming. It's a strong general-purpose computer language used to create mobile and desktop applications, embedded systems, big data processing, etc.

Javascript

This scripting computer language provides users to carry out complicated tasks. In addition to that, it's incorporated in web pages as well.

It allows you to animate images, update content, store variable, and operate multimedia. Additionally, it's one of the world's most widely used programming languages.

SQL

Also called "Structured Query Language," SQL updates, queries, deletes, inserts, and modifies data. To attain this, it employs various commands.

Professional software developers utilize SQL to control structured data. It's a domain-centric language explicitly designed to handle data kept in the relational database.

C++

Classified as a general-purpose, object-oriented computer language, C++ employs both high and low-level language.

Since all computers have C++, every software developer should know this programming language. It contains many C programs without shifting the source code-line.

Overall, it manipulates numbers, texts, and other tasks.

Python

Python is a high-level computer programming language containing structures, binding, typing, and semantics, connecting existing elements.

However, this language is simple to learn. Furthermore, it supports package and module use, allowing software engineers to employ it for different projects.

Important Soft Skills

A software developer in black t-shirt writing codes on his laptop
Besides having the necessary hard skills, you should also have soft skills to ensure a flourishing career in software development in New York City. Some of the soft skills include effective communication, multitasking, attention-to-details, etc. (Source: Unsplash)

Although hard skills such as knowledge of computer languages are essential, software developers should also consider soft skills to become eligible for a specific position.

Soft skills contain personality traits and individual preferences that show how a worker executes its tasks.

Nevertheless, here are some necessary soft skills every software developer should possess:

Communication

Software developers must communicate through phone, in-person meetings, or email. This is because they are responsible for:

  • Briefing a manager about the task's progress
  • Explaining products to clients
  • Engaging with other personnel to work effectively

Multitasking

This field may require developers to split focus over various components of the 'same' project. But, on the other hand, it can also be necessary to shift between projects when meeting team demands or deadlines.

Organization

Software developers should also demonstrate a specific organizational level to be able to handle several projects through different phases and monitor details.

Attention To Details

In software development careers, undivided attention plays a key role. The developers should fix bugs and coding problems as they emerge and monitor a heap of complicated details surrounding several ongoing projects.

Jobs In Software Development

A software engineer writing code on his MacBook Pro
Software development equips you with specialized IT skills that can be utilized in several career options. Some of the jobs in software development require both hard and soft skills, so it's better to learn both if you want a thriving career (Source: Unsplash)

A software development degree preps you with specialized information technology skills, which can be employed in multiple web and IT-based careers such as web developer, software engineer, etc.

Here are a few career options you can choose after graduation:

Software Engineer

Software engineers utilize mathematical and scientific principles to make computer programs and solve issues. As a result, it's one of the most sought-after jobs in software development.

As software engineers, you'll operate in a continuously changing environment because of technological advancements.

You'll maintain, create, improve, and audit systems to match specific needs advised by an architect or systems analyst.

Moreover, you will have to test both soft and hard software systems to identify and address system faults.

Your role as an engineer will also cover writing diagnostic software programs and writing and designing code for various software and operating systems to guarantee efficiency. If required, you'll also give guidance for future trends.

Job titles can vary from organization to organization. For example, you might be called system programmers, software developers, database engineers, or web developers instead of being called software engineers.

The computer language you'll use and work on may become your job titles like C# or Java developer.

Based on the organization you'll work for, you might have a defined work and role within the group of different IT specialists, including systems designers, system testers, and systems analysts.

But, overall, software engineers manage systems to run the organization efficiently. Here are a few responsibilities of software engineers:

  • Analyze user requirements
  • Test and write code
  • Design, research, and write software programs such as computer games and business applications, and operating systems as well
  • Assess the systems and software that make hardware and computers work
  • Develop current programs by analyzing and determining areas for alteration
  • Integrate current software products
  • Make technical specifications

Information Systems Manager

Information systems manager installs systems and computer networks in a company and handles its IT professional team.

Being a systems manager, you'll watch over the entire organization's computer systems. However, to become a successful systems manager, you'll require experience in areas like technical operations or support.

Apart from that, you'll have to supervise the staff of programmers, database administrators, and technicians as well.

The job titles of this position also vary from company to company, such as you may be called systems manager or functional manager.

Here are some responsibilities that the information systems manager will have to perform:

  • Research and set up new networks and systems
  • Apply technology and direct the functions of business and systems analysts, support specialists, and developer
  • Assess user requirements and system functions, guaranteeing that IT equipment meets the required needs
  • Organize the procurement of software and hardware
  • Schedule security backups and upgrades of software and hardware systems
  • Ensure the smooth operations of IT systems along with print services, email provision, and anti-virus software
  • Make sure the users comply with program licensing laws
  • Offer secure and safe access to systems and networks for virtual users
  • Protect data from external as well as internal attack
  • Provide users relevant advice and appropriate support
  • Manage emergencies involving complicated technical software and hardware problems
  • Train and mentor new IT staff
  • Keep abreast of the latest technology
  • Contribute to organizational policy concerning strategic planning and quality standards

Web Designer

A web designer combines technical know-how with creativity to make sites that meet client's needs.

Being a website designer, you'll devise, build, and code website pages, using non-technical and technical skills to create sites that meet customer's requirements.

Since you'll be involved in much of the graphical and technical aspects of web pages, you'll decide how the site looks and functions. The maintenance of the website also depends on the web designer.

Often the term "web designer" is employed interchangeably with "website designer," however, it's wrong!

Compared to web designing, web development is a specialist role, emphasizing the "back-end" development of the site and will include the making of complicated search operations.

The increasing role of technology such as tablets and smartphones has uplifted the role of web designers.

Nowadays, it's crucial to test a website on different devices and at various design phases before going live.

Nevertheless, here are some responsibilities that you'll have to perform :

  • Meet customers to understand their needs
  • Formulate detailed web specifications
  • Design page layouts, including text color and size
  • Design animations and graphics
  • Register website domain names
  • Organize web hosting
  • Present new and exciting design ideas
  • Execute coding using various software programs
  • SEO
  • Meet pertinent legal requirements like privacy, accessibility standards, etc
  • Design site's visual imagery
  • Proofread content. If needed, make changes
  • Edit content, re-design website pages, and debug code
  • Collaborate with other specialists such as graphic designers and website developers
  • Liaise with other agencies
  • Test the site to see if it's working properly
  • Hand over the finished website to the customer
  • Offer post-sales technical assistance
  • Train the customer's staff
  • Research new design trends

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