Skip to main content

Top 5 Skills for Software Engineers

Top 5 Skills for Software Engineers
Software engineers are responsible for developing, designing, testing, writing, modifying, and debugging software based off specific requirements. It can be a flexible position, with contracting and freelancing opportunities commonly available. Companies might bring you on short-term to solve an immediate issue or create a specific program. The average salary of a software engineer is around $72,000 per year.

Here are the five of the most important skills and requirements you will need to consider if you want to become a software engineer:

College Degree

First and foremost, software engineers generally need to hold a degree in software engineering, computer science, or another related field. Some jobs may only require certifications, but four-year degree will significantly boost your chances of obtaining a job as a software engineer. Getting a certification in a specific area -- on top of a bachelor’s degree -- could also further set you apart from other applicants.

Computer Programming

Understanding computer programming is, understandably, a prerequisite of the job, and will be the first step in starting your future as a software engineer. The requirements for computer programming can vary by title, and a job might require specific knowledge in one area such as software, applications, web, and more.

Logical and Structured Thinking

Dealing with software requires very structured thinking, since problems can arise from the smallest of errors. It can also require patience and thinking outside the box in order to solve problems with software.

Attention to Detail

Software engineers need to locate and identify even the smallest glitch in seemingly endless lines of coding in order to fix an issue. This requires an extreme attention to detail, since surfing through code to find something as simple as one number that might be off can be arduous. On the flip side, this good attention to detail extends to actually writing the code as well, since one wrong character can mess up the finished product.

Core Programming Language

It will be important to become familiar with programming languages and different operating systems, but software engineers need to be fluent in at least one. These languages can evolve and change over time, so be sure to keep up on the latest in the field. Currently, some of the popular programming languages include C++, C#, Java, Lisp, Python, and more.

Back to top