As a Software Developer, How Can You Increase Your Earning Potential?

by HSG on Mar 18, 2014 in Articles from Software Fans

The earning potential of a software developer largely depends on their knowledge, their chosen area of expertise, experience and flexibility to relocate if necessary.  In the ever changing landscape of Information Technology, many argue that the way to make more money is to specialize in a technology that fewer people are using.  As an example, there are tons of Java programmers out there, but nowhere near enough in lesser known languages such as Perl or Python.  However, there are plenty of opportunities for folks who are willing to burn the midnight oil to gain skills in these niche disciplines.

 

Because the Information Technology Industry is a rapidly evolving entity, gunning for the "Next Big Thing" is constantly an arm’s length away.  For this reason, developers looking to get requisite knowledge to successfully compete can, for the most part, expect to resign their weekends for the LOVE of code and studying.   And, it’s fair to say that a stick-to-itiveness to teach yourself how to code can be more important than any degree when job prospecting.  Sam Nichols, a mobile developer at SmugMug, puts it this way: “Build a table, build a computer, build a water gun, build a beer bong, build things that will take a week and build things that need to be done in 40 minutes before the party. Making stuff is what this field is all about and getting experience building things, especially with others, especially when it breaks and fails along the way can help with perspective and resiliency.”

Software developers already skilled at writing code are readily able to translate that knowledge to web development. The fact that the information technology sector has shifted largely to web-based infrastructure and software application as system (SaaS) database and operating system capabilities, means that software developers have a wide variety of opportunity in the web development segment of the consulting and job market.

If you are a software developer seeking to increase your earning potential, gaining expertise in  Web development  enhances your ability to attract new opportunities. The more creative a software developer, the far better chance they will have at benefitting from current market demand for new technologies and software innovation. Customization is hot right now, and software developers involved in the creation of updates and unique features to SaaS can add extra value to their portfolio with very little time and effort involved.

 In order for software developers to stay abreast of their field, continuing education and is required to ensure that technical skills are up-to-date. Gaining knowledge in design of computer applications is one of the main objectives in the development and planning of software products.
Once adequate knowledge has been acquired, many software developers can use those insights to develop custom software for a client as a consultant.



Development of operating systems applications has become a key source of income for software developers in the past several years, as web-based systems replace hardware architecture with virtualization. Software developers working with a third party service providers offering networks a platform for operating infrastructure, have created a growing demand for software developers trained in virtual OS. This also extends to operating systems used in consumer electronics such as autos and mobile phones. Hence, working as part of a team with programmers and other IT specialists allows developers to extend their professional network.


Earning Opportunities for Software Developers
The popularity of peer-to-peer collaborative developer communities also opens doors to start-up projects underway. Design, development and programming of successful software often require a team. Software developers involved in multiple projects stand to earn more than those resigned to working exclusively in an organizational role unless contracted with a major corporation in a related sector. Developers new to the industry can benefit by doing both while they learn the tricks of the trade. Telecommuting is also an option, working on behalf of a company or project from a remote location.

In the United States, over 1 million professionals are employed as software developers. The industries reported to be employing software developers in the highest numbers: computer systems design and related services (32%); computer product manufacturing (9%); finance and insurance (8%); and software publishers (7%). Mid-career developers are generally also experienced as project managers, overseeing a team of IT specialists during the software development process. Projected labor market growth (22%) for software developers by 2022 is forecast to outpace other sectors due to the predicted demand for computer software.

 

Today, employers are mainly looking for passionate individuals that have self- drive and determination who possess specific skill-sets. Like in any other completive worthy trade, if you improve your skills and make yourself indispensible you will be in a position to command a higher salary and have more security.

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