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There’s no doubt that the world of software is booming – the demand for developers is growing exponentially every day, and there’s no telling how high the bar will eventually rise.
So, how exactly should you go about becoming a junior software developer?
Junior software developers are the next wave of the industry, taking the world by storm.
Whether you are looking to enter the world of programming or you want to learn more about the industry, becoming a junior developer can be a game-changer.
Who is a Junior Software Developer?
First things first, what is a junior software developer, anyway? Well, the term “junior” has different meanings to different people. Some people consider a junior developer as someone who’s just entering into the field and learning all they need to know to become a professional. In contrast, others believe that being a junior means you’re still a student.
Regardless, the term describes individuals with less experience than their senior counterparts.
In simple terms, a junior software developer is a person who has been trained to develop software – both back-end (server-side) and front-end (client-side) – but who has not yet passed a software certification test, such as those taken by Google, Microsoft and Apple.
How Much Scope Does this Field Have?
Software developers use coding languages to create computer applications and websites that perform specific tasks. These programs are used in everything from mobile apps to cloud-based services. The need for developers is growing at an exponential rate, and a lot of people are now working in the IT industry.
In order to cater to the growing demand for developers, many companies have launched coding schools, where students can gain hands-on experience and learn the various aspects of development. This, in turn, will help them build their skillset and increase their chances of landing a job.
The salary levels are highly competitive, and the starting salaries range from $25,000-$40,000, depending on their qualifications and experience. For example, if you have a computer science degree or a CS certificate, you can command a much higher salary than someone with just basic knowledge.
A recent study by Indeed shows that the median annual compensation for Junior developers is $53,960. Some Junior Developers may work as freelancers and charge a flat fee per project, while others may be employed by the likes of Apple or Microsoft and make more than $100,000 a year.
There are plenty of job listings online. While the most common ones are in web design, there are many other types of jobs that you can apply for.
How to Become a Junior Software Developer?
Many universities offer undergraduate degrees in computer science, which cover many basic computer science principles. For example, students can learn how to write code, build an operating system, and even create a website.
However, because computer science is such a broad discipline, most CS degree programs only teach you the fundamentals of the theory behind computer programming. They do not offer students much hands-on experience. If you want to become a junior developer, you must first earn your bachelor’s degree in a subject related to computer science.
Once you’ve completed your bachelor’s degree, you’ll need to find work experience or internships. Then, once you’ve gained some experience, you’ll need to seek a training program to become certified as a junior software developer.
Even if your school doesn’t offer any of those options, there are plenty of self-teaching resources. However, the absolute path to becoming a junior software developer is simply by taking the time to learn. Whether going through school or starting from scratch, you’ll be able to pick up the basics at no cost.
The only thing that will cost you money is your time, which can even be made back over many years. You may also want to check with your local tech support organization for help getting started. In addition, you should check out some of the resources below.
Benefits of Becoming a Junior Software Developer
1. Interactive Work Environment
There’s nothing quite like working on a team of professionals with different backgrounds who have their ideas but all contribute to making the final product better. There are few other places where you’ll be able to work on challenging problems with other professionals who are excited about what they’re doing.
As a developer, you’ll also benefit from working within a team of others who can help each other through the process. Being on a team will also give you exposure to new techniques and technologies, allowing you to improve your skills in other areas.
You might not have the same understanding of business as a senior developer who’s worked on projects for years. Still, there are a lot of opportunities in a business where you can help with decision-making processes and strategy-setting. As a junior developer, you’ll understand these issues better than most because you’ll be working in a different environment that gives you more insight into what goes on behind the scenes.
3. Potential Job Growth
If you’re looking to switch careers and become a developer, here’s a look at how much it pays: The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the number of software developers in the United States will grow by nearly 10 per cent between 2012 and 2022.
And the BLS projects that the job market for software developers will expand rapidly, with employers expecting a median annual wage growth rate of 13 per cent over the same period.
Where Can You Work As a Junior Software Developer?
Startups to Large Companies
At many companies, especially smaller ones, there are usually a lot of entry-level positions available. At these places, you can expect to be hired for any job requiring basic computer programming knowledge, including entry-level jobs like customer support representatives or administrative assistants. Once you’ve proven yourself, you could move on to higher-level positions, like system analysts, programmers, software engineers, or managers.
However, if you want to work at large companies, you may find it easier to land a position as an intern, a research assistant, or even a trainee. Some larger companies may have specific training programs that require candidates to have a certain amount of experience before they can work directly with their clients.
The freelancing industry is big, and thousands of companies want to hire developers. So, where do you begin looking for work as a freelance developer? For starters, try online job sites. Several popular ones are out there, including Upwork, Elance, and Odesk. You’ll find many freelance gigs on these websites, including smaller projects or companies that don’t require an entire team.