Career and Survival Strategies for Software Developers

What does it really mean to have a career as a software developer today?
Course info
Rating
(1369)
Level
Beginner
Updated
Jan 10, 2013
Duration
3h 2m
Table of contents
Description
Course info
Rating
(1369)
Level
Beginner
Updated
Jan 10, 2013
Duration
3h 2m
Description

A software development career poses challenges that we don't often discuss: How do you keep up with rapidly changing technology? When, and how often should you change jobs? How do you evaluate a job offer? How and when should you move from programming into management, or into some other related career? How do you leverage those relatively high salaries into real financial security? Should you work for a large company? A startup? Or found your own company? This course will help you answer those questions and more, whether you are just learning programming or have been developing software for decades.

About the author
About the author

Dan Appleman is a well known author, software developer, and speaker. Currently the CTO of Full Circle Insights, he is the author of numerous books, ebooks, and online courses on various topics (technology and other). His latest book is "Advanced Apex Programming" - advancedapex.com Personal Website http://danappleman.com.

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Section Introduction Transcripts
Section Introduction Transcripts

On the Job
This course is about software development as a career. When you're talking about careers, you're talking about jobs, employment, income, and all the other mundane things that distract us from the fun parts of working with technology. In this module we'll look at employment. First will be a brief look at getting a job, as even the most entrepreneurial developers usually find themselves holding a regular job at least once during their career. Next, we'll look at the various types of companies you might end up working for as choice and size of company can have a huge impact on your career. And you'll find out about some of the tradeoffs involved in abandoning traditional employment for consulting or entrepreneurship. Finally, we'll explore some of the common myths about companies and how and why they do the things they do.

Evaluating a Job Offer
Every time you accept the job offer, your career takes a turn. Each job impacts what you learn, what you accomplish, who you meet, and what you earn. At any given time, you have a limited number of offers to choose from. So to a certain degree our careers are out of our control, subject to the options available to us. But within those limits, we do have choices and there is always the choice to start looking again. Evaluating which opportunity to take is or should be more than just a matter of choosing the one with the highest salary. In many ways, that is the least important criteria.

You and Your Money
It may seem a bit odd to include a module on personal finance in a course about software development careers, but then again, what makes the difference between a career and a hobby is exactly that, the financial component. Money may or may not be a high priority for you, but most software developers share at least this common goal, to be able to make a living, possibly support a family, and at some point after a long career whether in software development or something else, to be able to retire, and if not retire, at least be working because you want to work, not because you have to. If you are well into your career, you'll hopefully know most of what I'm going to cover, though there may be a few surprises. If you are new in your career, you may be like most new software developers, having graduated college into an almost shockingly high-paying job, well prepared to handle the money thanks to the course in money management that were required as part of your curriculum. But wait, your school didn't have that course? That's okay, most don't. Fortunately, that subject was covered in high school. Oh right, they didn't go beyond how to open a checking account, if that. See what I mean? So consider this your lightning guide to everything a software developer must know about personal finance.