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What does a Software Engineer do?

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 4 min read

A software engineer is a professional who designs, develops, maintains, and evaluates software. They may also be involved in the testing and quality assurance of software.

Software Engineer job duties include:

  • Actively participate in the software development cycle including the development of high-quality and stable software based on customer, business, and technical requirements.
  • Engage with other software engineers, architects, and stakeholders to design and implement features for our products.
  • Write well-designed, testable, and efficient code based on software specifications.
  • Perform unit testing and integration testing of new features before release.
  • Investigate, troubleshoot, and debug software defects reported by customers or other teams.
  • Assist in the maintenance and support of existing products.
  • Keep abreast of latest technology trends and developments and share knowledge with team members.
  • Adhere to company coding standards and best practices.
  • Proactively identify areas for improvement in the software development process and make recommendations for change.

Software Engineer Job Requirements

Most software engineering jobs require at least a bachelor's degree in computer science, software engineering, or a related field. Many software engineers also have a master's degree or doctorate. Certification is not always required, but it can help demonstrate your skills and knowledge to potential employers. Experience is also important in this field, and many software engineers start out as entry-level programmers or developers before moving into management or lead positions.

Software Engineer Skills

  • Coding
  • Debugging
  • Design
  • Documentation
  • Problem solving
  • Testing
  • Version control
  • Algorithms
  • Data structures
  • Object-oriented programming
  • Systems analysis

Related: Top Software Engineer Skills: Definition and Examples

How to become a Software Engineer

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best way to become a software engineer may vary depending on your individual circumstances and goals. However, there are some general tips that can help you on your way to becoming a software engineer.

First, it is important to get a good education in computer science. This will give you the technical skills and knowledge necessary to be successful in the field. You can do this by earning a bachelor's degree in computer science from an accredited university. Alternatively, you can complete an online computer science program or take courses at a community college.

In addition to getting a good education, it is also important to gain experience working with software. This can be done through internships, part-time jobs, or even volunteering. By gaining experience, you will be able to learn about different software development processes and tools, which will be helpful when you eventually start working as a software engineer.

Finally, it is also important to stay up-to-date with new trends and technologies in the software engineering field. This can be done by reading industry publications, attending conferences, and networking with other professionals. By staying current with new developments, you will be better prepared to enter the workforce and succeed as a software engineer.

Related: Software Engineer Resume Example

Related: Software Engineer Interview Questions (With Example Answers)

Editorial staff

Photo of Brenna Goyette, Editor


Brenna Goyette

Expert Verified

Brenna is a certified professional resume writer, career expert, and the content manager of the ResumeCat team. She has a background in corporate recruiting and human resources and has been writing resumes for over 10 years. Brenna has experience in recruiting for tech, finance, and marketing roles and has a passion for helping people find their dream jobs. She creates expert resources to help job seekers write the best resumes and cover letters, land the job, and succeed in the workplace.

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