Becoming a software developer has always been a good idea, with more and more people coming online and devices being an increasingly important part of our lives and activities. Now, with the insecurities of work and business being made all too clear by the global COVID-19 shutdown, it’s an even better idea. Becoming a software developer has many perks, pays incredibly well, and opens up a whole new world of career opportunities in some of the fastest-growing industries out there.
Here are a few great reasons why you should strongly consider becoming a software developer.
Software developer salaries are among the highest in the world
The incredibly high salaries of workers in the tech industry are by far the biggest attractions to people who want to get into software development. On average, a software developer makes R304,890 per year. Simply put, software developers get paid very handsomely for what they do: junior- and entry-level pay is on average higher than most other careers, and senior-level pay routinely dominates global salary rankings for highest-paying careers.
Software development has a relatively low barrier of entry
Programming is far more accessible to the average person than most other conventional careers. Law, medicine, accounting, engineering: these and the other usual go-to ‘big’ career choices require expensive degrees, years of study, and intensive exams or industry body registrations to accredit you as certified to actually work in that profession.
Anyone can learn to code, regardless of their age, previous coding experience, and career/educational background. Want to switch careers from something totally unrelated to programming? It’s been done many times before. With programming, you have a range of far more accessible education paths open to you, for example specialised mentor-led bootcamps and online courses. Plus, and the ability to write good code and being able to prove your experience in creating highly-functioning programs are far more valued by prospective employers than degrees.
Software developer skills are future-proof
COVID-19 and shutdown showed the importance of tech skills. As brick-and-mortar shops and traditional industries ground to a halt or were put on lockdown, the tech space thrived. Internet use and the popular of online and digital services skyrocketed. These new chatbots, websites, online stores, and new customer platforms need whole teams of trained professionals to keep them running smoothly. In short, the world relies on software developers more than ever, meaning their job security is about as good as it gets.
And it’s not just coronavirus: AI is a real threat to many industries’ job security.
One major element of being a developer in the next 10 or 20 years is that it is a fairly future-proof career in a world that is becoming increasingly automated. As computers and software rapidly advance, they can, and will, replace many current jobs in society – research estimates that 47% of total careers in the USA, which require human labour, are at high risk of being automated in the future. However, these machines and algorithms will always need to be developed and maintained, which will only add to the growing demand for developers.
Software developer skills are highly transferable
If you know how to solve problems logically and can quickly grasp the syntax and structure of a coding language, you can easily switch languages and tech stacks to meet the rapidly-changing tech industry. It’s not like law, where moving to a new law system would require extensive retraining and re-registration.
Plus, an understanding of software, and the high level of tech literacy that requires, is a beneficial tool for almost any career you find yourself in – especially with the increasing reliance that our society has on digital technologies and platforms.
Software development is a fast-growing industry
Even before COVID-19 forced hundreds of businesses to turn to online and digital services to keep their operation going, the tech industry was a growing force. To this day, the global demand for professional programmers far outstrips the supply, and with more and more businesses going online, that demand is only set to increase.
Software development allows remote work and better flexibility
Software developers are a part of an industry that has long been ahead of the curve in terms of modern work requirements and flexibility in the workplace. Most developer jobs include more generous allowances for working remote or at home. Plus, the global demand for talented software developers means that often their dev teams are spread across the world: meaning commuting to the office is simply impossible.
What this means for you is less time commuting, less office politics and micromanagement, and more freedom in approaching your work. This directly results in more time available to do the things you want to do – such as learning new programming skills, picking up a side hustle, exploring a new hobby, or spending time with your family – instead of being stuck in traffic or locked in the office until close of business.
Software development has better opportunity for international work
Having strong programming skills is a huge benefit in the world of work, as countries across the world are fighting to attract tech talent. In the past decade, programming and tech skills have rocketed to the top of international critical skills lists, to a point where knowing how to program well is in effect your passport to working – and living – wherever you want.
Are you thinking about becoming a software developer so that you can benefit from amazing salaries, fulfilling work, incredible career opportunities at home and overseas, and some of the best job security around? Our specialised 1-on-1 mentor-led coding bootcamps will help you to learn practical software development skills to become job-ready for your new career in tech in less than 6 months. Best of all, they can be taken online or part-time to suit your schedule, so that you can fit a tech future into your spare time.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published on 26 October 2017 and has been updated on 03 September 2020.