Software Engineers Are in High Demand

Imagine a futuristic world powered by the science of software engineering. With the touch of a button, a pet dog can be fed when its owner is out of town. One day, the television screen will not only be in HD, but will pop out entirely making a 3-D image. These amenities and more can be accomplished by the sweat and blood of a software engineer. A major in software engineering is the strongest path a young person can take, whether the individual wants to make a difference in the world or just wants a handsome paycheck.

As technology advances, so does human civilization. By becoming a software engineer, one can take part of this ongoing project. The use of software can be seen everywhere from our cell phones to our microwave ovens. Almost all aspects of our daily lives are affected by technology. The televisions we view, the iPods we listen to, and even the water dispensers on our refrigerators are all using some sort of software. Not only does the software make life easier, but the use of software can save lives. The software for the modern day Doppler radar has helped rescue thousands of lives by detecting tornadoes in advance. Working in this field of engineering will allow one to make a difference in lives now and in the future. As long as electronics exist, there will always be a place for a software engineer.

A major in software engineering not only leads to a meaningful profession, but a job that is in high demand and might offer a grand paycheck. According to Student Scholarships, it will be the second fastest growing profession in the years 2006 to 2015. There were over 337,600 jobs available in 2007, making software engineering the largest branch in any type of engineering. As other companies become more technological, the need for software engineers will continue to grow. Also, according to PayScale, the median starting salary is a whopping $63,979 with the median national salary being $68,080. When it comes to getting a job with a four-year degree, there is no better pay than that of a software engineer.

Living life to the fullest can definitely be fulfilled by being a software engineer. Whether it’s by impacting the world or by living a materially satisfying life, there is no doubt that software engineering is useful to both the society and to the individual who majors in such a field.

The Challenges of a Software Engineer

While it’s true that the engineer is also a programmer, and there are some design duties included in the core job functions, there are also some very fundamental, critical differences in the manner in which software engineers, programmers, and designers complete their work. Many engineers would also argue that there is a marked difference in the quality and performance of the products they produce as well.

Software engineer jobs take a more formal approach to the process of programming software. The manner in which engineers complete their work is much more similar to traditional engineering processes than it is to software programming or designing methods.

Software engineers are often involved in the most complex of design or programming activities. Though every day, run of the mill programs can be designed by less skilled folks, many programs can’t be trusted to just any old programmer.

For example, programs that control important processes – especially in circumstances where human lives may be lost if an error occurs in a program – are primarily the realm of highly skilled software engineers. After all, you don’t want the software that runs a key piece of medical equipment or that which drives the operating system of a nuclear submarine to fail.

This is perhaps the most challenging aspect of design engineer jobs with which incumbents must constantly contend. They are tasked with ensuring the smooth and efficient operations of incredibly complex and sometimes frightening processes with computer enhanced systems.

Design engineers are tasked not only with creating a software program that will serve the basic needs of a business, organization, or other client, but they must also foresee the potential pitfalls associated with the program as well. They must be able to grasp the technological concepts of the methods or practices with which the program is intended to interface and design the software appropriately for the highly technical, and often potentially dangerous, environment in which it will be used.

Although the average programmer or designer may be able to afford a few minor glitches, for those working in design engineer jobs, there is often no such thing as a minor glitch. Of the software fails, the consequences can be great. The pressure that design engineers face on a daily basis is tremendous for this very reason.

Software engineers also face some other unique challenges in the IT world. They must often complete a lot more paperwork than most IT professionals. Once again remaining true to the engineering trade, software engineers will draft designs, test them for quality, integrity and performance, and will frequently redesign them several times before moving from paper or prototypes to the real deal. In fact, many of those who work in software engineer jobs will spend as much as 70 – 80% of their time dealing with paperwork and only 20 – 30% actually writing code for the software itself.

Software Engineer Resume

Software Engineering is a highly complex and technical industry that is constantly evolving due to technological advances. The work of this involves the application of computer science and mathematics in the design and implementation in a variety of solutions. Even though the position is open to all graduates with technical competency and knowledge of various computer programming languages and applications, a degree in a computer related or business discipline like computer science, electrical or electronic engineering, mathematics and physics may be advantageous for the applicant. It is also important to enumerate a detailed job description as it will highlight your capabilities and experience to gain an edge with the numerous software engineers applying for the same position. Remember that you need to put yourself high on the market to get the attention of your future employer.

A software engineer is responsible for the development of a full life cycle application. The process starts by evaluating user requirements that will be included in the development of application. This involves researching, designing, evaluating, testing, fault finding and debugging of a new program. It can be a computer game, a business application, an operating system or advanced software to control a highly technical hardware and equipment. Alternatively, an engineer must also have the ability to integrate an existing software product to an old system by making incompatible platforms to work together. This is usually done by analyzing existing programs and identifying areas for modification. He is also in charge in maintaining systems by monitoring and correcting software defects. An engineer also teams up with technical authors in writing operational documentation, technical specifications and test plans.

Getting hired does not mean that a software engineer’s pursuit for job is over. He must continually update his technical knowledge and skills by attending in house or external training and courses, reading manuals, investigating new technologies and accessing application.

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