What Does Working as a Software Engineer Entail?

Nowadays, software engineering is not only the backbone of high-tech development but also of optimizing everyday tasks. It never ceases to amaze, from the automation of manual systems to the development of advanced AI. Scholars in this scientific field can expect to work in prestigious companies, earn high salaries, advance, and enjoy various other benefits that improve their quality of life. As a result, it is not surprising that many people aspire to work as software engineers. 

Are you one of them? Then, consider what that means in practice for you.

What Are the Benefits of Working as a Software Engineer?

It is natural to want job security, whether starting or changing positions. In the software engineer's case, changing companies is rarely a shot in the dark since a handful of high-flying jobs exist in the IT industry. The demand for software engineers is currently high, and so are the revenues, even for newbies - which is especially important in times of uncertainty and economic fluctuations. 

It may be a common misconception that all a software engineer does is write codes. Actually, that couldn't be further from the truth. This vocation includes research, designing, testing, and monitoring tools and apps, designing and managing projects, training developers, communicating with clients, and many other diverse roles. And, as those roles become more demanding, the door opens to constant learning, and ultimate career progression.

If we had to find a total opposite to a software engineer's job, it would be a dead-end job promoting monotony and demotivation. As the use and development of software is an integral part of almost every industry, it is an incentive for broadening horizons and applying programming skills in new spheres. As a result, dynamics will immerse you in the flow of global innovations. 

Remote work and autonomy are modern-day luxuries, particularly in the IT industry. This opportunity broadens the range of (multinational) companies you can collaborate with as a freelancer or integral member. On the other hand, it allows you to travel, improving your quality of personal life quality.

How Difficult Is That Job?

The fact that formal education is optional makes it easier for anyone who wants to become a software engineer. You can now enter the world of codes with the help of numerous courses and other study resources. Still, you'll need more than just programming knowledge to stand out.

Tackling new problems in a constantly changing scientific and working climate can be challenging. But if you are ready to accept changes and adapt to any situation, you've got a headstart. To be an excellent and fast-paced software engineer, you need a diverse set of skills, most unrelated to programming languages and computer systems. For example, the average project requires clear communication, excellent research skills, and perseverance in the face of setbacks - all supported by logical thinking and problem-solving abilities. 

You will use and combine various skills daily, such as managing multiple projects, meeting deadlines, deciphering complex technical information, setting priorities, and taking the initiative. As you will work primarily in teams, including Agile Scrum teams, strong interpersonal skills and a sense of teamwork are also essential. 

As you can see, there is no universal answer to how difficult this job is. You will best conclude by introspection: do you possess these qualities, do you want to develop them, and do they sound like a part of the mindset that will bring you personal satisfaction? So be honest about it.

What Challenges Do Software Engineers Face?

Even though it positively impacts learning new skills and business dynamics, the rapid advancement of technology can be overwhelming. You must keep up with changes and quickly adapt to them to complete your task successfully. And that brings us to customer demand. It's not your only challenge to develop new products that follow trends. The need to distinguish your client from rivals through quality may add to the pressure. While poor communication and conflicting requirements aren't helping either, they are a daily reality for software engineers, whether you deliver a product or service or coordinate teams.

Integration of systems is another difficulty. The integration of numerous services into a single development project is frequently difficult because businesses use a variety of platforms, applications, and large databases. This is made more difficult by the frequent API changes that entail integration changes.

A lack of a well-established project infrastructure frequently prevents software development projects from being realized. A lack or misalignment of resources will halt your project's progress and have a negative impact on the bottom line, regardless of whether the problems are with networks, data storage structures, platforms, tools, or other setbacks. 

Have we mentioned the time limitation? Sometimes it takes work to determine an optimal time for a project or task, especially if the client and your team need to be on the same page regarding deadlines. Suppose we add that you will primarily work for several clients simultaneously, who may be in different time zones. In that case, time flows much faster in the developer's office than anywhere else. 

How does Lilly 021 team keep up? Fortune favors the bold!

What Are the Prospects for Those New to the Workforce?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the software engineer career is among the most secure and satisfactory in tech, with a formidable 22% growth outlook over the next ten years. Even without these numbers, it is obvious that machine learning, data science, and AI hold the key to the success of almost all industrial niches in the future. What does that mean for you, a newbie to the world of software engineering? The potential to contribute to software innovation, development, and maintenance is very high. The opportunities are endless, and working in this field gives you an unmatched opportunity to change the world.

Sure, there is stiff competition out there. Still, with dedication and a little luck, you could be part of a great team that provides top-notch digital solutions while maintaining an inspiring work environment - like the one here at Lilly 021!

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