Top Software Developer Skills You Need to Have: How to Improve them


Software engineering applies standard engineering principles to understand customer requirements and design, develop, modify, test, debug, and maintain software. Software engineers possess solid mathematical, statistical, logical, and analytical skills along with a computer science/information science degree. 

Since computer science touches nearly every industry today, the demand for skilled software engineers is at an all-time high. If you, too, hope to enter and excel in this profession, you must acquire all the requisite skills that make a good software engineer. Furthermore, the technical industry evolves quickly, so you must continually update your knowledge base and skills.

Like any other profession, software engineers also possess a combination of technical and soft skills. Now, without further ado, let’s take a look at some in-demand software engineering skills. 

Top Programming Languages Software Engineers must know

Programming is a fundamental software engineering requirement. So, here are a few trending and high-paying programming languages that you should learn:

1. Python

Python is one of the most popular programming languages.  It is an open-source language that engineers use for general programming purposes. Python can automate memory systems, which means that engineers don’t have to keep manual tabs on the memory system. Moreover, it offers a dynamic feature set, which is portable across different operating systems. Apart from having an English-like syntax, Python also comes with a host of excellent libraries. 

2. Java

Java is another trending language that has stayed relevant for over two decades. Although it comes with a steep learning curve, Java enables software engineers a reliably stable, design-friendly, and safe programming language to build web applications smoothly.

3. SQL

SQL  stands for Structured Query Language. It has been in use for more than 30 years now. It is the most widespread language. It is a programming language used to communicate with relational databases. The core components of SQL are data manipulation language, data control language and data definition language. SQL helps in retrieving large data quickly and efficiently.

4. Ruby

Ruby was developed in 2011 as an object-oriented language. It allows developers to build robust and scalable programs. This open-source language utilizes automatic memory management to support multiple programming paradigms features. It is often paired with the Ruby on rails framework.

5. C++

C++ is an upgraded version of C programming, which was created to add object orientation to the C programming language. The major up-gradation happened in programming methodology, operator overloading, exception and error handling. It has the ability to do both; mid and high-level programming. 

Other relevant skills for software engineers 

1. Problem Solving and Mathematical Aptitude skills

Software development requires a basic understanding of algorithmic work, graph theories, solving complex problems, mathematical aptitude, and performing research in the field of technology. Without having this knowledge, it would be pretty difficult for you to bag a well-paying job. Software developers must take a structured and analytical thinking approach to craft innovative solutions to business problems. 

2. Coding skills

Coding is a crucial aspect of every software developer’s job description. Software developers may choose to master different languages or gain niche programming skills for specific use cases such as game development, mobile app development, full-stack development, etc. You must create software applications from scratch and hence, you need to be familiar with different operating systems as well. Hone your coding skills by working on unique projects, following the code of experienced developers, and participating in hackathons. 

3. Time management and organizational skills

As a software developer, time management skills are a must. You must learn how to prioritize different projects, software issues, and address them accordingly. An organized approach to work helps you and your team to meet deadlines without compromising on the product quality. Plus, the more efficiently you manage your time, the less stressed out you will feel. 

4. Attention to details

A software developer must pay attention to details and identify the scope for improvement in existing software. Even a small glitch or bug in a software application can put the system in a disarray. Thus, testing and debugging demand undivided attention and efficiency on the part of software developers.  

5. Understanding the market 

Software developers must have a fair understanding of the industry as a whole to understand where they fit and how they can solve the challenges of the employer organisation. Also, when you possess extensive market knowledge, you can easily identify areas of expansion by looking at customer/market trends and develop software products that will sell.

6. Teamwork

Software developers/engineers often work as a part of a team, especially during their initial years. So, it’s important to don a sporty attitude and work alongside your colleagues. Respect the ideas others bring to the table while also articulating what you have in your mind – this helps to develop a more comprehensive solution to any problem.

How to improve Software Engineering Skills?

  • Additional Training

It would be best if you considered advancing your technical skills through certification courses and online courses. 

  • Read books

Books are a staple when it comes to expanding your theoretical knowledge. If you’re a beginner, opt for beginner-level books on coding practices, software development, etc. However, if you have a few years of experience, feel free to experiment with books that teach advanced engineering concepts and approaches. 

  • Involve yourself with the Technical Community

Most programming languages and software frameworks come with active communities. Choose your preferred programming language and become a part of that community. It will help you engage and interact with peers and experienced coders who can help you solve a wide range of programming challenges. You can always reach out to the community if you face any problems while working on your projects. 

Wrapping Up

Software development promises a bright future scope in India. The pay is high and the career progression is quite fast. Companies of all shapes and sizes are hiring software developers as they transition to the digital domain. So, if you wish to capitalize on this opportunity, enrol in a professional training program and acquire the necessary skills.