Technology is a crucial component of our daily lives and has provided us with so much more of the luxurious lifestyle that today we all enjoy. But do you know who works endlessly hard to deliver us these technological services? They are the unknown heroes called software developers. They operate computer programs and make your electronic devices function accordingly. Some develop applications for computers, tabloids, cellphones, while others develop the underlying systems that help run the devices or control networks.
The COVID-19 pandemic has placed greater emphasis on the need for skilled technology professionals to support organizations’ critical operations and strategic initiatives, but job seekers are facing increasing competition from a growing candidate pool for tech jobs.
TOP 10 highest paying software jobs in 2021
According to Robert Half Technology’s 2021 Salary Guide, critical technology roles are artificial intelligence (AI)/machine learning (ML) specialists, business intelligence analysts, cloud architects, cybersecurity and data privacy experts, data analytics and reporting professionals, data scientists, developers (database, full-stack, web, software, and mobile), engineers (cloud, data, DevOps, network security and software), help desk and user support professionals, and IT administrators (database, network, and systems).
1. DevOps Engineer
DevOps engineers are the bridge between coding and engineering. These professionals work across departments to help increase a company’s productivity by developing and improving various IT systems. DevOps engineers often need experience with coding languages, software engineering and security systems, and strong analytical, problem-solving, and collaboration skills.
2. Big data engineer
Businesses need individuals who can transform large amounts of raw data into actionable information for strategy-setting, decision making, and innovation — and pay well for people with these skills. These professionals typically create a company’s software and hardware architecture, and the systems people need to work with the data. Big data engineers usually have a degree in computer science and expertise in mathematics and databases.
3. Mobile applications developer
Just look at your phone or tablet applications, and it’s pretty easy to figure out why mobile applications developers are in demand. These IT pros need the expertise to develop applications for popular platforms, such as iOS and Android. They also must have experience coding with mobile frameworks and mobile development languages, and knowledge of web development languages.
4. Information systems security manager
Now more than ever, employers need skilled IT security professionals to help keep sensitive data and systems safe. Successful candidates for this hot job possess a technical background in systems and network security and have great interpersonal and leadership abilities. Analytical and problem-solving skills are key, as are excellent communication abilities. These IT pros also need to keep up with security trends and government regulations. Employers often request certifications such as the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) or CompTIA Security+.
5. Data architect
These tech professionals are responsible for the complicated processes essential to making strategic business decisions. They translate business requirements into database solutions and oversee data storage (data centers) and how the data is organized. Ensuring the security of those databases is part of the job as well.
6. Applications architect
These tech pros design the main parts of applications, including the user interface, middleware, and infrastructure. In addition to strong technical abilities, applications architects need to work well on teams — and sometimes manage them. Excellent communication and planning skills are required for this job. This is one of the highest-paying IT roles because just about every company wants to improve existing applications or create new ones.
7. Data security analyst
Data security analysts must thoroughly understand computer and network security, including firewall administration, encryption technologies, and network protocols. The job also requires excellent communication and problem-solving skills and knowledge of trends in security and government regulations. A professional certification, such as a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) designation, is beneficial for this role.
8. Database manager
Database managers maintain and support a firm’s database environment, helping companies use data more strategically to meet their business goals. Database managers are especially needed in large organizations that have high volumes of data to manage. These pros must possess strong leadership and strategic planning skills.
9. Senior web developer
These IT pros gather business requirements and develop specifications for web-based applications, making web properties look consistent and attractive. They also provide technical assistance to web admins and integrate front- and back-end systems. Senior web developers typically need experience developing on PHP and Ruby on Rails sites and working with a variety of content management systems. Front-end development experience is also valued. Senior web developers need several years of experience in managing web properties.
10. Systems engineer
Systems engineers maintain and support a company’s technical infrastructure, including system hardware and software. When a system fails, they’ll debug and reconfigure that system, if necessary. That makes knowledge of the development process critical to the job as well. Systems engineers must possess strong communication skills to translate technical information to non-technical users.
Why choose a Software Engineering career?
1. Median pay for software engineers is in the six-figure range.
If you take all of the occupations in the U.S. and place them in a huge line based on earnings, you’ll find that the median pay is somewhere around $51,960 per year, according to the BLS.
So, if you’re looking for a career track that can quickly take you into the six-figure range, a software engineering career is one to consider. With the right education and experience, you can earn even higher, like around $145,000 per year.
2. You Enjoy Teamwork.
Some career choices are fairly solitary because they require you to work all on your own. . Which makes this career path more appealing if you fall into the second category.
Of course, being an effective team player also requires that you have some of the soft skills necessary to work effectively in teams. They share that among these skills are being empathetic, having good listening skills, and being able to accept criticism.
You don’t necessarily have to start with all of these skills, either. You can always learn them as you go.
3. The field is incredibly broad.
Another reason a software engineering career is a great choice is that the field is so broad and encompasses a variety of roles related to both computer applications and systems. This enables you to work in the area or areas that interest you most.
For instance, some software engineers spend their day’s building or rebuilding computer information systems. Others use their talents to create web pages or enhance a company’s network security. It’s up to you which direction you want to take.
You can also work in almost any industry because they all use software to some extent. Want to put your skills to use by working in a healthcare facility? No problem. Or maybe your dream is to work for a nonprofit? Yes, you can do that, too.