If you are looking to start a Software Engineering career in Nigeria, here are the steps you need to take:
As IT and Software Development continues to permeate every facet of society, jobs in Software Engineering are growing at an explosive rate Worldwide. While Considering a Career as a Software engineer in Nigeria might seem tough, it is quickly becoming one of the most viable careers a young person can pursue.
Before you start this career path, however; Here is what you need to know about becoming a software engineer and the steps you need to take to get there:
What is Software Engineering?
Software Engineering is the branch of computer science dealing with the thorough study of engineering consisting of the design, development, testing, and maintenance of software. This usually involves the analysis of the needs of users and then designing a product that will satisfy these needs with software.
Who is A Software Engineer?
Simply, A Software Engineer is a person that develops the programs and applications that run our computers, laptops, and other digital devices. A software engineer can specialize in many different areas, but these are the Top 10 IT Jobs in Nigeria:
- Back-end Engineer
- Front-end Engineer
- Application Development
- Game Development
- Database Administration
- Full Stack Software Engineer
- Software Developer
- Software Engineering
- Technology Management
- QA Engineer (Quality Assurance Engineer)
While these specializations can vary from company to company, everyone agrees that a software engineer creates programs and solutions to solve a variety of problems.
What is Software Development?
Software Development is a steady operation that involves a couple of processes, it is the sum of the total steps involved in the creation of software programs, embodying all the stages involved in the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC)
Software Programming is the act of actually writing the code, which is the set of instructions needed for the computer program to function and perform its tasks properly.
The Skills of a Software Developer
People who work as software developers are problem solvers. They can take in a complex problem, and break it down into manageable pieces, with an understanding of both the big picture and the technical aspects of their designs. Software engineers utilize a variety of specialized computer languages and tools to build the programs and applications they design. While programming languages such as Python or C++ may be familiar to them, they also must be able to work with tools like Java, Visual Basic, or C#. Software engineers must be able to perform multiple tests and reviews of their work during the design process, getting feedback from their superiors and colleagues. They must be able to adjust their designs accordingly. Eventually, their goal is to create software that is secure, stable, and efficient solutions that can stand the test of time.
The career path to becoming a Software Engineer
You may think to yourself: “Is becoming a Software Engineer the right path for me?”
It is a great career choice if you love solving big problems, working with technology, and enjoying the idea of creating lasting solutions. Not only do Software Engineers get to create new programs and applications, but they also get to see them used in our digital world.
The path to becoming a Software Engineer varies, but most careers start small — very small. Most Software Engineers begin by working on a particular application or programming language. They take responsibility for this product and learn more about other applications and languages as they gain experience. Over time, they gain the leadership skills necessary to manage teams of programmers. Most software engineers will spend some time working as programmers before they qualify to be software engineers.
At first glance, the programs and applications created by software engineers may seem confusing and very complex, but they are the result of hard work, careful planning, and constant testing. Imagine an app that predicts the best places to travel or an intelligent device that helps people with disabilities live independently — these are just two of the many uses of software engineering. The impact of this line of work is truly incredible and software engineers play an important role in our digital world.
Qualifications for becoming a Software Developer in Nigeria.
To be a successful Software Engineer in Nigeria, you need to be able to work independently, have great leadership skills, and be able to creatively solve complex problems. Most important, you need to have a passion for technology and computers. Ideally, having a background in computer science or software engineering is desirable, but it is possible to transition into this career from various other fields. For example, photographers or graphic designers may be interested in transitioning to software engineering as they share many of the same skills, like a strong focus on design and testing.
As you’re starting a career as an IT specialist in Nigeria and other countries, remember that it takes time to develop the necessary skills. It is common for engineers to start as programmers and work their way up to software engineers as they gain experience and lead others. While engineers design and build new applications, programmers create and test applications from instructions provided by software engineers. While this may seem like a step back, it’s a valuable way to gain experience and learn from mistakes.
Skills and Programming languages for Software Engineers in Nigeria
As a software engineer, you will be responsible for designing, creating, testing, and maintaining software applications. Most apps are designed to solve problems or provide people with an advantage. For example, a business may use an app to streamline its sales process or to reach new customers in different countries. Individuals may use apps to translate documents or teach languages automatically — thus providing translation tools that previously didn’t exist.
As a Software Engineer, you will need:
Python: This language is popular for general-purpose programming. It’s used for web applications, scripting, and automation.
C# (Pronounced C Sharp): This Microsoft language is close to Java and is useful for creating desktop and web applications.
C++: This powerful programming language is used for games, 3D modeling and graphic designs, high-performance websites, applications, and more.
SQL: This language is used to build databases and query data.
How to become a Software Engineer in Nigeria
The first step to beginning a career as a Software Engineer in Nigeria is to choose the exact type of role you want to have. Because tech and software have a lot of sectors, and a lot of programming languages, so it is impossible to learn them all. That means firstly, Focus is the first step to take.
The next step is to gain knowledge of all the beginner principles, or all the techniques needed to venture into your desired field. If you want to learn some skills with little to no industry experience, then you can always look up free design and code classes along with free training available online, then consume such material vehemently. And while actual, focused training is still required, free courses are the way to go at first.
Then you get into an accredited school or facility to get all the skills you need, or you get on sites like this one for instance Delon Academy, offering rich tech courses for Front End Training in Nigeria, Back End Training in Nigeria, etc. for beginners and experts alike.
You should also definitely connect with the tech communities on social media, there are always people you can learn from and those sharing opportunities for newbies in tech.
The Best Approach to Developing a Software
Agile Methodology: This approach to developing software focuses on the organization becoming self-configuring and able to adapt to change. Projects are broken into phases, aimed to deliver functionality to the customer in short development cycles. The Agile Manifesto was created during the 2001 meeting where the concepts behind Agile were formed.
Forming a Team: Although some engineers work independently or with only a few others, it’s common for software engineers to work on development teams. These teams include analysts and programmers who work together to design and build new applications. It’s often best for teams to include individuals with different skills so that everyone can contribute their abilities to the group.
Setting Objectives: Whether working independently or as part of a team, engineers must have clear objectives for their work. It’s also good to set goals that encourage collaboration between engineers and other team members. Objectives can include meeting a schedule, reducing a cost, or increasing a product’s quality.
Generating Ideas: Engineers need to be able to form and express ideas about the task at hand. They should also be able to visualize and conceptualize software programs in their minds. Coinciding with developing objectives and setting goals, being able to generate ideas is an important skill that engineers use throughout their work.
Communicating: Although communication occurs internally on a team, engineers must also be able to communicate with customers, vendors, and other external groups. Engineers must be able to explain technical concepts in a way that’s understood by non-technical individuals. It’s also important to receive feedback on designs and specifications from groups outside of the engineering team.
Analyzing: Engineers must be able to thoroughly analyze a problem before proposing a solution. This analysis includes identifying problems, requirements, assumptions, and objectives. Also, analyzing includes reviewing other solutions to this problem and determining if there are any weaknesses in those solutions.
Creating models: Engineers must be able to construct models of systems in their minds. These systems include both the software they’re developing and the hardware that it runs on. Engineers must be able to determine how various components connect in these systems.
Testing: Once an engineer has a solution ready for implementation, he or she must test that solution. This testing includes both positive and negative tests. Positive tests prove that a system performs as designed. Negative tests prove that a system doesn’t perform incorrectly when subjected to stressful conditions. All tests produce feedback that engineers use to improve their designs.
Optimizing: Although engineers primarily focus on creating and designing, they also need to be able to optimize their designs after testing them. Optimization includes removing unnecessary components of a design while still maintaining the intended function of a software program. It also includes adjusting functions for better performance.
Testing and validation: Engineers must ensure that the software they develop meets requirements and specifications. They also must ensure that it doesn’t have any bugs or errors that would cause it to malfunction. Engineers test and validate all software before presenting it for approval to a client or the public.
Business acumen: Although engineers develop technical solutions to technical problems, they also need to understand the business environment in which they work. Engineers need to understand why a business needs a software program developed. They also need to understand how the software will meet the goals of a business.
Although most software engineers start with basic programming skills, good leaders always seek out engineers who also have the following skills:
Analysis skills: As previously mentioned, engineers must be able to thoroughly analyze a problem before proposing a solution. They must continue to analyze throughout the development process to continuously optimize their designs.
Utility analysis: Engineers also should be able to analyze the usefulness of a feature or product. This includes both software and hardware products. Although designers initially might be excited about creating a new product feature or developing a new product, engineers must carefully consider the costs associated with developing and manufacturing those products. Additionally, engineers must determine whether the features will provide value to the users and whether those users are willing to pay for the products.
Code complexity: Although engineers usually have excellent coding skills, good software engineers also should have a good understanding of how to create simpler codes. As software applications become more complex, it is increasingly important that engineers understand how to keep code complexity in check. Engineers must be able to remove unnecessary code while adding needed functionality.
Problem-solving: Most engineers are extremely skilled at problem-solving—a must-have ability, especially in software engineering. As technology advances and becomes more advanced, there are increasingly complicated problems that need to be solved. Although upfront planning and analysis can help engineers avoid some problems, they will always run into unforeseen challenges. Good engineers must be able to solve these problems and resolve issues.
Engineers also must be problem-solving leaders. They need to guide teams toward building the best solution possible.
Teamwork: As previously mentioned, Engineers must be great at working in teams. Although they have well-established self-confidence, Engineers need to let others take the lead on certain tasks. Even if they are extremely knowledgeable about a particular technology, engineers should let software designers, software developers, and hardware engineers take the reins on coding and hardware assembly while engineering manages the process and keeps the project on track.
Learning mindset: Engineers must have a learning mindset if they want to keep up with rapidly advancing technology. There will always be new products released or recent technologies developed so engineers need to be open to learning new skills and expanding their knowledge base. This is a competitive profession and although professionals might like to think that they know everything, engineers who are not eager to learn are often replaced because the technology space is very volatile, and a lot of things change quickly.
We hope with these tips and information shared; we have been able to equip you with some crucial tools needed for you to begin your software career. We look forward to seeing you excel in the technology space!
If you already have some expertise and would like to test yourself in the Labor market, You can check out some of the Best Software Jobs in Nigeria