What Does a Software Engineer Do?

Software engineers are computer scientists who are responsible for developing and building computer programs or user applications for a variety of industries. They often work closely with project managers and software designers, creating functional programs that meet (and ideally exceed) customer needs. Although this field can seem daunting and mysterious at first, Devmountain can help you understand what a software engineer does.

Types of Software Engineers

First, there are different types of software engineers, and what they do is dependent on what type of software engineer they are. This is similar to how both podiatrists and optometrists are doctors, but their day-to-day duties and even specialized knowledge are different because they work with different parts of the human body.

Application Engineers

This facet of software engineering has the responsibility to design, build, and implement application software for clients. As customer-focused developers, they emphasize the interactive experience of end-users via front-end work (using JavaScript, HTML, and CSS to optimize user experience), or back-end work (using server-side programming languages like Python, Java, PHP, and Ruby to connect the user interface to a database, allowing for smooth storage and delivery of information to the user.)

System Engineers

In contrast, system engineers are the ones who construct the back-end frameworks (such as databases and company networks), which application developers then rely upon. They are responsible for the creation, implementation, maintenance, and following iterations of a company’s computer systems and are consulted for advice on the technical direction of a business. The job requires collaboration across multiple departments to ensure that the infrastructure will meet the needs of the entire organization.

Becoming A Software Engineer

Software engineers are highly specialized personnel who have committed a lot of time, money, and effort into being qualified in their field. While a bachelor’s or master’s degree may be required for some software engineering jobs, some companies care only for whether or not you have the skills needed to complete the work.

With that in mind, skills that can help you succeed as a software engineer include:

  • Analytical thinking
  • Great attention to detail
  • Interpersonal communication skills
  • Basic understanding of code review and testing
  • Proficiency in one or more programming languages
  • Problem-solving, exploratory mindset
  • Ability to work well with others
  • Never releasing mediocre work

Studying at a Coding Bootcamp

There are many ways to start a career in software engineering. Devmountain, for instance, is a coding bootcamp that teaches development and design skills for people who want to make a career change relatively quickly. Learn more about the 13-week, immersive courses today.

Recommended Readings

How to Become a Software Engineer: Seven Steps

How to Become a Freelance Web Developer

Programming Languages Every Programmer Should Know About