What is Software Engineering?
Software engineering focuses on building, designing, and testing different software technologies. It is fundamentally important in the computer technology sector since hardware equipment cannot run without software tools.
Software engineering applies engineering principles to develop, design, and implement software. It is an ever-expanding and growing field that demands professional training and certifications. After getting a software engineering degree (or relevant degrees), graduates can find work opportunities in IT, telecommunications, manufacturing, banking and financial services, logistics and supply chain, etc.
We’ll explore the career pathway of a software engineer in this article to help you understand the basics of this profession.
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How to Become a Software Engineer in India?
The first and foremost requirement of becoming a software engineer is the willingness and ability to learn and adopt new technologies. Software engineers constantly need to upskill and experiment with emerging technologies to stay relevant in the industry. Let’s discuss the software engineer career pathway in detail.
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1. Get a degree
Completing a formal education is the primary step to become a software engineer. However, students have a choice to select from non-traditional and traditional courses to gain a software engineering degree.
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Some options are:
This two-year degree is typically preferred by students who don’t want to invest in a long-term course. An associate degree will get you entry-level job roles in the industry. Students can practice majors in areas like software system engineering or software engineering technology. Usually, the course curriculum focuses on core principles of engineering, programming languages, modern approach to software development, and application of software technology, among other things.
Software engineering bachelor’s degree is for four years. Big companies often demand a bachelors degree in software engineering as the minimum requirement. The course curriculum includes computer science, maths, comprehensive programming, software testing, and software architecture. Students can also choose specialisation subjects like modelling and simulation, embedded systems, networking, geographic information systems, etc.
Coding boot camps range anywhere between 8-12 weeks. Entry-level professionals and fresh engineering graduates can opt for coding boot camps to get hands-on programming experience. Although a relatively new educational pathway to software engineering, boot camp certifications are rapidly gaining accreditation globally.
2. Apply for Internship
After completing a professional degree, you can apply for short-term internships to gain real-world job experience. For example, technology companies generally offer internships for 3rd-year engineering students. They may also provide training to students who’ve completed their masters’ in software engineering.
This three to six months of hands-on experience allows candidates to learn how to function well in fast-paced professional environments. In addition, they get to work on live industry projects and learn the ropes directly from experienced mentors.
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3. Pursue a Specialisation
Fundamentally speaking, there are two broad domains of specialisation within software engineering – software development and applications, each having unique sub-sections and practice areas. Many software engineers also specialise in a particular programming language and software tool.
Here are some unique areas to consider:
- Web development
- Mobile development
- Technical stacks (like ruby, python)
4. Build Projects
There is absolutely nothing like practical experience. You can try building projects using popular languages like Python, Ruby, Java, or any other language that interests you. By doing so, you will enhance your learning capabilities and master coding. It is always beneficial to add a few projects to your resume as they help you stand out from the crowd of qualified candidates.
5. Follow industry leaders
Another practical step to becoming a software engineer is by reading and understanding the code written by experienced developers/programmers. The more you read and follow industry leaders, the better you will understand the code logic. While GitHub is an excellent learning resource, you can also follow programming language communities to connect with peers and mentors.
6. Apply for job Interviews
Once you’ve attained the requisite degrees, it’s time to cast the net and look for employment opportunities. Create profiles on platforms like LinkedIn and Indeed to look out for job interviews related to your specialisation and skillset. Make sure to shortlist a few interview options and appear for all of them. Be clear on your career goals and direction. It’ll help you land the right roles. Prepare yourself for such interviews by conducting mock interviews with friends or family members. Once you ace your interview, there is no looking back.
7. Upskill to enhance your Knowledge
Thanks to rapid digitalisation, new technological advancements are fast entering the market. Thus, software engineers must upskill and master new technologies to stay relevant in the industry. Do your homework and research the popular tools, platforms, and frameworks and strive to take up a trending professional certification course such as upGrad’s Master of Science in Computer Science. Read books and industry journals and attend networking events to grow your network.
To get good jobs and a better pay scale, you need to understand science, technology, and software development. By keeping yourself updated, you can differentiate yourself from the rest. There are some online platforms like upGrad that provide you with various software engineering courses. This portal will help you with advanced programming solutions that test your skills.
Software Engineering in India
India has always been a hotbed for talented and skilled engineers, and thanks to the growing economy, software engineers now find job opportunities across all industry parallels – from healthcare and education to IT and defence wings. Thus, it is safe to say that in the coming years, the demand for software engineers will rise steadily.
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Growth of Software Engineering
Below is the list of some career opportunities in the year 2020-2021 that has lead to significant growth in Software Engineering:
- Business Information Analyst– A business information analyst helps companies to translate business needs into technical solutions. Information systems are planned and managed by software engineers. There has been a job growth of 19% in this sector.
- Web Developer– A web developer has a strong command over web applications and internet conventions. The engineer develops new website features and their advanced applications. There has been a significant increase of 20% in job opportunities in this field.
- Computer System Analysts– A computer system analyst with in-depth knowledge of software and hardware determines organisational resource utilisation. The increase in jobs in this field is 25%
- Information Security Analyst– An information security analyst works at the forefront of network security and computer software. They mainly work on security audits, security data of the company and risk assessment.
- Database Administrator– A database administrator has a technical speciality in installation, maintenance and structure. They manage company databases, modify them and perform database backups. There has been a 15% employment increase in this field.
If you aspire to enter this field and earn a six-figure salary, do check out upGrad’s online Master of Science in Computer Science course from Liverpool John Moores University. The 19-month program covers 500+ hours of the learning experience. In addition, students work on 30+ projects and assignments under six unique specialisations. Apart from the excellent learning support, upGrad offers students doubt resolution sessions and free 360-degree career guidance.
So, there you go – we’ve shown you a simple and attainable career pathway to becoming a software engineer in India. The key to excelling in this field is to upskill and reskill continually. The more feathers (certifications and skills) you add to your hat, the faster you can climb to managerial roles that pay exceptionally well.
We hope that this article helps you take the right step for your future!