Careers in Software Development

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Looking for an entry level job or internship in software development? Here's an overview of how to approach the search and a list of companies that might have entry level and internship opportunities that will interest you.

See companies with software development careers or search the latest software development jobs and internships.

One of the things I enjoy doing most every morning is nursing a warm hot chocolate while checking my e-mail to see if anything exciting has arrived overnight. This daily ritual is possible thanks to the tireless effort of software developers (and my barista). Software is how we interact with computers, and programmers are the magic makers who write the software. While we mostly think of software in relation to computers, software developers write the code that runs our video games, cars, airplanes, cell phones, televisions, and nearly every moderately advanced piece of electronics that we interact with.

Software Development Career Guide Overview

  1. What a Software Developer Does
  2. A Typical Day for a Software Developer
  3. Salary and Career Progression for a Software Developer
  4. Best Locations for Software Development
  5. Pro/Con: Being a Software Developer
  6. What You Need to Know for a Career in Software Development
  7. Software Development Resources
  8. Careers Related to Software Development
  9. Companies with Jobs and Internships in Software Development

What a Software Developer Does

A programmer develops code (software instructions) for hardware. In doing so, they solve problems, or create new ideas by writing, testing, debugging, and maintaining the detailed instructions that computers need to work. Commonly coders also design the graphical user interface, which helps users navigate through the software. For the background on how this amazingly complex group of jobs evolved, check out this geeky infographic of its history.

Popular Languages

Here are some of the software languages that are worth knowing. If you master any one of these, you will open yourself up to numerous entry level job or internship opportunities.

A Typical Day for a Programmer

While the work for an individual software developer may look pretty similar from day to day, daily activities vary widely from developer to developer. Some work from home, others work in cubes. Some have a stand up desk, and others work in an open office setting. The common theme is that most programmers spend a large part of their days in front of a glowing screen (usually a big one). Hours can range from 9 to 5 to total time flexibility. The work can vary widely too. Some developer spend most of their days building new code to create new functionality, while others may spend their days identifying and fixing bugs. Programmers also obviously spend time communicating with project managers, product developers, and others in the company who help determine the direction the software takes.

Salary and Career Progression for a Coder

How comfortable is this comfortable living you’ve heard about? What does the programmer gig pay? A lot. Software engineers are in extremely high demand, and the market just keeps getting hotter. While many salary sites report pay ranges from $29,000-$83,000 with a median expected salary of $54,000 per year for an entry level hacker, it’s not unheard for top grads to get offers in the low to mid six figures.

There’s plenty of room for growth in Software Development, as many engineers eventually move into management at some point. Even a non-manager software developer can see a salary well into low six-figures. Additionally, many developers end up starting their own companies or becoming early employees at startups, and because the demand for them is so high, bigger companies often end up acqi-hiring the companies at a going rate of $1 million per engineer (in cash and stock). That usually requires some sort of vesting schedule, but it can pay off big for a developer who takes a little risk.

Other Names for Software Developers

Best Locations for Software Developers

I believe Homer Simpson once said, “The Internet? Is that thing still around?” My guess is, you know the answer- YES! and because of that, job opportunities for developers are widespread. Being in the right place makes a difference too. Hot spots for software developers are currently:

Pro/Con: Being a Hacker

Pros
Cons

What You Need to Know for a Career in Software Development

One of the cool things about programming is that while you need an education, it can be one that you develop on your own. If you prove you know a language, you’ll be hard pressed to find a company that will turn you away. So the most important thing is to have a working knowledge of a group of programming languages that matches up with what the market is looking for. Check out this infographic on the evolution of programming languages, to get better versed. In addition you’ll probably need to be able to work with database systems like Orcale and Sybase. Many programmers are able to develop these skills by toying around with things at a young age, so you have no excuse. Codecademy and W3Schools are great places to start, but the best resources really depend on what language you’re trying to learn. If you’d rather a traditional educational program, typically companies will look for B.S. degree in Computer Science, Information Systems, or Mathematics. So suit up with one of those!

Software Development Resources

If software development still sounds like your cup of tea, here are a few things you should do to get started.

Required Reading

Top books for hackers.

Key Folks to Follow on Twitter

Blogs and Websites

Networking Opportunities

Careers Related to Software Development


Companies with Entry Level Jobs and Internships in Software Development

inDinero Logo

inDinero - inDinero is a San Francisco, CA based company that will "take care of your accounting, file your corporate tax returns, and manage your payroll.”

See the complete inDinero profile




Gameloft Logo

Gameloft - Gameloft is a New York, NY based company that allows its “fans to play games anywhere, anytime, and on any digital platform.”

See the complete Gameloft profile


Job TitleLocation
Game Design InternNew York, NY
3D ArtistNew York, NY
Research AnalystNew York, NY
AnimatorNew Orleans, LA
Programming InternNew York, NY
See all 40 job postings



RealMassive Logo

RealMassive - RealMassive is an Austin, TX based startup that has developed the “first-ever source of real-time commercial real estate information.”

See the complete RealMassive profile



Whalerock Industries Logo

Whalerock Industries - Whalerock Industries, based in Santa Monica, CA, brings together the "best and brightest minds to create world-class content, spanning all mediums and screens.”

See the complete Whalerock Industries profile


Job TitleLocation
Internship-TV/FilmSanta Monica, CA
Internship-TV/FilmSanta Monica, CA
Internship-DigitalSanta Monica, CA
Project ManagerSanta Monica, CA
Internship-DigitalSanta Monica, CA
See all 14 job postings


Wanderful Media Logo

Wanderful Media - Wanderful Media, based in Los Gatos, CA, is aiming “to transform the $4 billion business of traditional advertising circulars through digital innovation."

See the complete Wanderful Media profile



Clever Logo

Clever - Clever is a San Francisco, CA whose software syncs "with your school’s student information system to provide an amazing experience for teachers and students.”

See the complete Clever profile



nrelate Logo

nrelate - nrelate is an NYC based company that "helps Publishers give their readers an easy way to find more great content from within their site or from around the web."

See the complete nrelate profile




xAd Logo

xAd - xAd is a New York, NY based company that allows advertisers to pinpoint “target audiences at pivotal moments during the consumer’s decision-making journey.”

See the complete xAd profile



Quicken Loans Logo

Quicken Loans - Quicken Loans is based in Detroit, MI and has made a name for itself in the mortgage business as the “#1 online retail lender.”

See the complete Quicken Loans profile



Groundspeak Logo

Groundspeak - Groundspeak is a Seattle, WA based company that aims “to make everyone an explorer and to put an adventure in every location.”

See the complete Groundspeak profile


Job TitleLocation
Marketing InternshipSeattle, WA
Communications SpecialistSeattle, WA
UX ManagerSeattle, WA
Product OwnerSeattle, WA
Art DirectorSeattle, WA
See all 5 job postings

Clover Logo

Clover - Clover is a Mountain View, CA based company that replaces the “cash register, payment terminal, receipt printer, and barcode scanner with an all-in-one solution.”

See the complete Clover profile



Institute For The Future Logo

Institute for the Future - Institute For The Future is a Palo Alto, CA based “independent, non-profit research organization" that helps "all kinds of organizations make the futures they want.”

See the complete Institute for the Future profile



Motion Math Logo

Motion Math - Motion Math is a San Francisco, CA based company that creates “awesomely fun, rigorously educational learning games."

See the complete Motion Math profile


Job TitleLocation
Mold Maker IIColorado Springs, CO
Restaurant ManagementBarboursville, WV
TellerOdessa, TX
Experienced Software DeveloperBoulder, CO
Mechanical Engineer II, R&DCamas, WA
See all 1,695 job postings


Rover Logo

Rover - Rover is a Seattle, WA based company that has built a “community for dog lovers to connect owners with sitters for home dog stays.”

See the complete Rover profile







Shapeways Logo

Shapeways - Shapeways is a New York, NY based company that has built “the world’s leading 3D Printing marketplace and community.”

See the complete Shapeways profile



Olo Logo

Olo - Olo is a New York, NY based company that makes it easy for restaurants to offer "reliable, fast, and secure digital ordering for restaurants."

See the complete Olo profile




Limeade Logo

Limeade - Limeade is a Bellevue, WA based company that is aiming to “measurably improve well-being in the world through happy, healthy, high-performing workforces.”

See the complete Limeade profile




FranConnect Logo

FranConnect - FranConnect is a Reston, VA based company that offers Franchise Management Systems to big name clients like Dairy Queen and The UPS Store.

See the complete FranConnect profile



Relias Learning Logo

Relias Learning - Relias Learning is based in Cary, NC and offers “online training to senior care, health and human services, corrections, and intellectual and developmental disabilities organizations.”

See the complete Relias Learning profile




Extole Logo

Extole - Extole is a San Francisco, CA based company that specializes in helping “brands acquire new customers at scale by rewarding existing customers.”

See the complete Extole profile


Job TitleLocation
Product DesignerSan Francisco, CA
Account Executive (SF)San Francisco, CA
Account ManagementSan Francisco, CA
Java Developer/ArchitectSan Francisco, CA
JavaScript & HTML/CSS DeveloperSan Francisco, CA
See all 9 job postings


AllTrails Logo

AllTrails - AllTrails is a San Francisco, CA based startup that provides outdoor enthusiast "with the information and tools to discover top destinations near them.”

See the complete AllTrails profile


No current job openings.

Shoutz Logo

Shoutz - Shoutz is an Austin, TX based “technology company dedicated to making lotteries more convenient, engaging and rewarding.”

See the complete Shoutz profile


No current job openings.


Gumroad Logo

Gumroad - Gumroad is a San Francisco, CA, and they “help millions of creators earn their livings in an interesting, authentic way.”

See the complete Gumroad profile


Job TitleLocation
Product Design InternSan Francisco, CA
Data ScientistNew York, NY
Product DesignerNew York, NY
Growth InternSan Francisco, CA
Engineering InternSan Francisco, CA
See all 13 job postings



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