The great thing about becoming a developer is that once you’ve learnt coding skills, there are so many ways of applying them. It’s important to work out what kind of developer you want to be. This piece will help you find your developer niche. Let’s start by taking a deeper dive into the kinds of developers out there.
The Options: What Kind of Developer Should I Be?
There are a wide variety of different kinds of developers in high demand. Here are some of the alternatives:
Web Developers – the Creative
Of course we’ve all heard of web developers, but this developer field can be further subdivided into back-end, front-end and full stack web developers.
The front-end, or ‘client side’, is everything the user experiences, from the stunning layout to the cool buttons and graphics. The main purpose of the front-end is to deliver interactivity and to display content in an appealing way – ideally, you’re a pretty creative kind of developer if you want to follow this route. The back-end, on the other hand, does things like work out calculations, follow business logic, interact with the databases etc. Back-end developers need to get to grips with programming languages, databases and server architecture – you’re a logical, rational type. A full stack developer, however, is able to do both front-end and back-end web development.
The good news is that the demand for web developers is continuing to grow: the Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that the projected growth for this field is 15% from 2016 to 2026, much faster than the average for all occupations.
App Developer – the People Person
The average US annual salary for Android Developers is $97,986, according to Glassdoor. Because Android dominates the smartphone market – at 86% of the total market share, according to Gartner – and it’s a free and open operating system, it’s no surprise then that many developers want to start developing for the Android platform. There’s also high demand for app developers: according to an article in Forbes, the 13 top tech skills include Mobile Application Development.
What kind of developer do you need to be to become an app developer? Ideally, you would be someone who is meticulous, capable of absorbing a lot of information fast, a people person who can attend client meetings and a proficient coder in multiple programming languages, including Java, HTML5, Objective-C, C++, C#, Python and Swift.
Software Engineer – the Super Rational
As a software engineer, you’re creating software. So if you’re someone who wants to develop cool video game computer software or you want to make the software run faster on different computers or those that have different operating systems, you should think about software engineering. You’re basically using computer skills to solve problems with software and software is everywhere.
To become a software engineer, you need to be an analytical person capable of:
- Deductive and inductive reasoning
- Mathematical reasoning
- Original thinking
- An understanding of what people want from their computers
Besides the developer specialities we’ve mentioned, there are of course many other kinds of developers – such as cyber security specialists, data scientists, big data specialists, devops developers, etc. How then do you find your developer niche? In essence, it’s about getting to know yourself better.
Your Developer Niche: Getting to Know Yourself
To find your ideal career path, you need to understand both your strengths and your weaknesses, as well as your passions and your basic personality.
To work out your strengths and weaknesses, write down all the activities in which you participate every day. Studies have shown journalling is an excellent method for becoming more self-aware and reflective. Now rank each of these activities, from 1-5, in terms of competency and enjoyment. This will help you decide on your strengths and weaknesses.
In addition, try the following:
- Try something new. You won’t discover your ability to code, if you don’t try coding, for example. Think about enrolling on a free bootcamp prep via HyperionDev.
- Watch for signs of excitement, states Entrepreneur. When you do things you are good at, your excitement becomes more apparent – your pupils dilate, for example, or your speech is faster and more fluid.
- Ask others what you’re really good at. You may find yourself surprised. Sometimes we don’t perceive ourselves objectively.
And lastly, take a personality test to get a better sense of your natural proclivities or personality. Two popular tests include the Myers-Briggs, which divides people into sixteen personality types based on research by the famous psychologist Carl Jung, and the Keirsey Temperament Sorter, which separates people into various temperaments.
In closing, this piece has looked at finding your developer niche. The wonderful thing about coding is that there are so many career possibilities – and so many kinds of developers – from the super analytical to the very artistic. If you’re keen to change careers to coding, consider signing up for one of HyperionDev’s six-month, part-time online coding bootcamps in Full Stack Web Development, Mobile Development and Software Engineering.