Software developers need more than coding skills


A new analysis of the software developer job market has revealed that openings are expected to continue to grow at a rapid pace. However, it takes more than strong coding skills to get hired in today’s competitive marketplace, a reality reflected in the upcoming expansion of HackerRank’s Developer Skills Platform.

HackerRank, a tech staffing firm, recently announced plans to use $60 million in Series D funding to help it move beyond coding skills assessment, highlighting the premium that employers grant to more diverse skill sets.

The company, which was founded in 2012 and has 25% of Fortune 100 customers, plans to seek technical skills in emerging areas such as blockchain, cryptocurrency and machine learning. Additionally, plans are underway to assess skills outside of software development, including design, hardware and quality assurance, according to a press release.

The company said in its statement that the move will “better assess attributes increasingly valued by distributed teams.”

Soft skills are essential

In addition to requiring hard skills, employers are placing more emphasis on soft skills such as organization, time management and the ability to work effectively in teams. HackerRank’s plans to identify candidates with these in-demand skills align with what’s already happening in the marketplace.

“We screen for soft skills in our rigorous talent nurturing process,” said Christy Schumann, senior vice president of talent operations for Toptal, a technology talent company based in Wilmington, Delaware. The company specializes in placing independent software developers. “We rely on language and communication skills, professionalism and problem-solving abilities.”

This level of consideration, she said, makes the difference for Toptal’s customers, who range from enterprises to SMEs. “Not only are they able to work with top developers, but they’re paired with someone who can fit in well with existing teams and play a critical role in the success of any given project,” she said. .

Follow emerging trends

Schumann added that there are opportunities for software developers with skills in blockchain, React/React Native, Node.js, and Python. However, she says, the market is changing rapidly.

“The speed at which technology is growing – from the cloud to mobile apps – almost outstrips the supply of skilled workers who know how to handle it,” she said.

Another emerging trend is the move to code written by machine learning algorithms. Human coders will still be in demand, but the focus will shift from writing code from scratch to working side-by-side with AI. Vincent Granville, founder of the AI ​​company MLtechniques.com and co-founder of Data Science Centera community of Big Data practitioners owned by TechTarget, would employ developers if not for automation.

“I use rigs and don’t have to code anything,” Granville said. “When I click a button to design a cool feature, all it takes is one click: the code is automatically generated in the back-end by a piece of code writing code.”

Yet, software development remains essential for businesses. “There’s a real need for people who can put things into production mode,” Granville said. “And they can be trained to learn data science, especially as mathematical modeling becomes more and more automated. The reverse is less easy.”

Hot job market for developers

Plus, it’s currently a job seeker’s market for software developers with the right skills.

“With tech unemployment particularly low, employers around the world are offering more to secure the developer talent they need,” said Nick Kolakowski, editor at Dice, a New York-based tech-focused career marketplace. York.

This led to higher pay, Kolakowski continued. In a recent labor market analysis, Dice reported that median salaries for software developers ranged from $98,728 to $110,140 per year, making it one of the highest paying tech jobs. In addition to flexible work hours, employers offer extensive benefits such as childcare, good work-life balance, and work-from-home allowances.

This is going to continue to be a hot market for the foreseeable future. A US Bureau of Labor Statistics report published last year estimated a 22% growth rate for software developer jobs by the end of this decade; that’s 409,500 additional software developer jobs added to the market by 2030.

More and more talent is also entering the market. Schumann said Toptal is seeing a 60% increase in applications from freelance talent, suggesting a growing awareness of opportunities in software development.

While BLS And Dice analysis indicated that software developers will remain in high demand for the foreseeable future, Schumann’s statistic serves as a warning that the job market is becoming more competitive.

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