Software Engineer

Job Pressure
Academic Pressure
2-3 L
Early Salary
8-9 L
Mid Level Salary
15-17 L
Senior Salary

Software engineers are the builders of our digital world. They create everything from our computers’ operating systems to our internet browsers and the apps we have on our smartphones. All our high-tech devices would have no use at all if it weren't for brilliant coders writing the software that makes it work.

As such, software engineers are in high demand. Skilled coders are well paid and should rarely have trouble finding work. This is a highly flexible field that allows individuals to work as freelancers or private consultants. It also is diverse enough to accommodate those who work better by themselves or in a large group. The unemployment rate for this career is consistently below the national average.

Software engineers can work in applications or systems development. System software developers develop operating systems or computer interfaces. Application software developers usually make programs that are used on computers and via the Internet, like games and word processors.

What do they do?

Software developers are in charge of the entire development process for a software program. They begin by asking how the customer plans to use the software. They design the program and then give instructions to programmers, who write computer code and test it. If the program does not work as expected or people find it too difficult to use, software developers go back to the design process to fix the problems or improve the program. After the program is released to the customer, a developer may perform upgrades and maintenance.

Developers usually work closely with computer programmers. However, in some companies, developers write code themselves instead of giving instructions to computer programmers.

Developers who supervise a software project from the planning stages through implementation sometimes are called information technology (IT) project managers. These workers monitor the project’s progress to ensure that it meets deadlines, standards, and cost targets. IT project managers who plan and direct an organization’s IT department or IT policies are included in the profile on computer and information systems managers.

Modern languages used by applications software engineers include Java, C, C++, PHP, Objective-C, Perl, Java, C# and Python. Mobile App developers are specialized applications software engineers who create apps for smartphones and tablets.

Typical day in the life of a Software Engineer

  • Code and test software based upon software specifications and design
  • Analyze user needs and software requirements to determine feasibility of design within time and cost constraints
  • Troubleshoot and resolve issues in existing software
  • Analyze and study complex systems requirements
  • Prepare design documentation
  • Write and maintain technical documentation to describe program development, logic, coding, testing, changes, and corrections
  • Collaborate and communicate effectively with stakeholders throughout the organization
  • Support customer-witnessed testing

Pros about this career

  • Favorable job growth
  • High earnings
  • Opportunity to specialize in types of software
  • Job allows for a degree of creativity

Cons about this career

  • Bachelor's degree is the minimum education requirement
  • Experience in programming may be needed
  • May require long hours
  • Industry-specific knowledge may also be required

Skills needed

  • Good communication
  • Strong problem-solving and analytical
  • Interpersonal
  • Team work
  • Strong computer programming
  • Domain expert

How do I get there

You have to study physics, chemistry, math in Class 12 and sit for the various engineering entrance examinations. Then you can pursue BE/ BTech. Also, provided you are a science graduate, you can do MCA or MSc or MCM or MBA in Computer Application (computer science).

Universities and private tech schools offer a range of software engineer training courses and accredited degrees in system and application development