2 answers

What steps should I take to prepare for a career in Software Development?

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Job Corps- Informational Interview assignment
#software-development #computer-software

2 answers

Oliver’s Answer


Hi Yves - great question!

Here are three considerations that come to mind for preparing for a career in software development that you could consider:

  1. Decide which programming language(s) you would like to focus on - There are thousands out there and they come and go overtime! There are tracker sites like https://www.tiobe.com/tiobe-index/ (google other trackers for a general view) that track the popularity of programming languages. This can help you get an indication of which languages are popular and in demand within the job market, and so give you an idea of what potential employers may need/want today and tomorrow.
  2. Build your own stuff in your spare time! - After you know the programming language(s) you would like to focus on, learn as much as possible about them and build something (YouTube and Googling are a great starter), there is so much free content out there! To help you get your first job a huge step up would be to have actually learnt a programming language beyond the classroom and have built something that you could share and talk with a potential employer about. Having a small portfolio of 'apps' you have written is a great benefit and can make you stand out from the crowd during interviews. The apps don't need to be fancy either, just something simple, but shows you can apply what you have learnt!
  3. Be familiar with an agile mindset/methodology - Every company will have a set of processes and activities to follow in order to create and build applications. In technology particularly, the agile approach is an increasingly popular choice for software developers to be involved in and follow - I would recommend checking this out and being familiar with one of the agile methodologies (like SCRUM) and the agile mindset as it will help you in interviews and help jumping into working with your first team if they follow this!

Oliver recommends the following next steps:

  • Become familiar with the different programming languages and see what is popular and why
  • Find out more about agile methodologies like SCRUM used by many software developers
  • Try and get hands-on with a programming language and build a mini-portfolio of apps!
Adding to the above comment, for job interviews in software industry one should know data structure, algorithm and system design. https://leetcode.com/ provides a good content for preparation Shruti Jauhari
The three areas Oliver lists are spot on. Being able to speak the Agile/scrum language as well as share a git repo where hiring managers can see your projects will help elevate you in the list of candidates. Aimee Smith

Doug’s Answer


I would also add that the field changes rapidly so being passionate about learning and growing is critical. I would recommend reading "Cracking the Coding Interview" by Gayle Laakmann McDowell. The first three chapters provide great advice on how to prepare for interviews (the rest of the book has coding questions in various areas). I would also strongly recommend doing internships at more than one company if that is available to you (I have had many interns work for me over the years and those that worked at more than one company learned a great deal about what it is like and what they are interested in doing).