Software Engineer: Duties and Differences with Software Developers – The software engineer profession has been the target of job seekers for the past few years. Moreover, now more and more companies in Indonesia are looking for a reliable software engineer to build digital applications or the like.
So, what is the job of a software engineer? And what is the difference between a software engineer and a software developer? Because there are still many people who think that the job of a software engineer is the same as a software developer.
Hmmm… For those of you who are curious about the software engineer profession, read this article to the end, OK!
- What Is A Software Engineer?
- Difference between Software Engineer and Software Developer
- Software Engineer Duties
- What Skills Should Software Engineers Master?
- 6 Ways to Become a Software Engineer
What Is A Software Engineer?
Software engineers are experts in charge of designing, developing, managing, testing, and evaluating computer software (software).
That way, you can create software or applications that are reliable and easy for users to use. Not only that, all the processes you carry out make the software or application created efficiently and effectively.
Well, in the process of creating the software or app itself, you must have some skills. Among them, you were mastering programming languages such as C++, Python, and Java, understanding the concepts of software testing, communication, and so on.
All of these skills will be useful no matter what category or field of software engineering you are in. Here’s the explanation.
- Operational Software Engineer: Focus on the operational level of the software. Starting from the budget, usability, features, dependency ( dependency), to security.
- Transitional Software Engineer: Focuses on testing the adaptability of software being moved from one platform to another.
- Maintenance Software Engineer: Focus on the functionality and maintenance of software in existing systems.
Difference between Software Engineer and Software Developer
The majority of laypeople are still confused about the difference between a software engineer and a software developer. In fact, these two professions have other duties and responsibilities. Well, here are the differences between software developer vs software engineer:
|Indicator||Software Engineer||Software Developer|
|Activity Type||Software engineers often work with teams.||Software developers focus on individual activities and do not involve many people.|
|Work process||Software engineers are involved in every software development process from start to finish.||Software developers are involved in a specific process of software development.|
|Work Style||Software engineers solve problems on a larger scale. So, you must be able to think critically, systematically, and solutely.||Software developers do the work of software engineers but on a limited scale. This allows software developers to carry out the creative process.|
|Career Path||Software engineer Principal software engineer Lead software development engineer||Software developer Software architect Developer|
|Tools Used||Software engineers use tools that function to develop software. Like Visual Studio and Eclipse.||Software developers use software to develop web, mobile, and desktop applications. Like Quixy and Linx.|
It can be likened to a software engineer like an architect while a software developer makes the building. Software engineers are in charge of designing, creating, and testing software. A software developer who will develop the software.
Software Engineer Duties
After knowing what a software engineer is, you also need to understand the duties of this profession. Then, what are the duties of a software engineer?
- Develop information systems by designing, developing, and installing software.
- Determine the feasibility of the operation by evaluating the problem and proposing a solution that will be carried out.
- Develop software according to user needs by studying work processes and data users.
- Identify problems in the software and perform system repairs.
- Protect the operating system by maintaining the confidentiality of information.
- Design and define system specifications, standards, and programming.
- Analyze software systems.
- Analyze and use new technology where relevant.
What Skills Should Software Engineers Master?
For a career in software engineering, you need to have special skills. Here are some of them.
1. Programming Language
A software expert must be proficient in programming languages. There are several programming languages that you should learn, namely:
- Java: Used to build applications on Android.
- Python: Used to build web and mobile-based applications.
- C: Used as a basis for learning other programming languages. Examples include C#, C++, and Java.
- PHP: Used to build dynamic websites.
- Kotlin: Used to develop Android-based applications.
It’s not just about the programming language. Other programming fundamentals, such as data structures and algorithms, are also a must.
2. Software Testing
Next, you need to have software testing and debugging skills. These two skills are included in software testing. So, what is software testing?
Software testing is a method to check and make sure the software is running properly. Its purpose is to identify problems and ensure software security and performance.
There are three things you should learn in software testing, namely:
- Unit Testing: Used to test the program unit and each coding written whether it works properly.
- Integration Testing: Testing that focuses on the construction and design of the software. Is the unity of the unit and the entire code written runs without errors.
- System Testing: Tests the entire software by checking its features, security, and usability across various systems.
These skills are needed in any software development project. So, you need to hone your software testing skills in order to become a reliable software engineer.
3. Object-Oriented Design (OOD)
Object-Oriented Design (OOD) is an approach used to create object-oriented software or applications. With this approach, the software created can be more easily understood, managed, and can be reused. Not only that, OOD makes it easy for programs to test and debug.
This skill is very important for those of you who are serious about a career as a software engineer. OOD skills can show whether you can actually translate a problem into an array of objects and their interactions. Through OOD too, a quality software engineer can be found because he is able to find patterns during program development.
Maybe that’s why many international companies like Facebook and Microsoft are testing the OOD skills of their job candidates. However, don’t worry. The longer you fly to build the program, the more mature your OOD skills will be.
In your daily life, you collaborate a lot with other teams. So, communication skills are key in building a relationship with the team. Not only verbal communication but also written.
But, don’t be overthinking. Here are some communication tips that can be applied as a software engineer:
- Be concise: You need to convey information briefly without losing the gist of the message. The trick is to first record the points you want to convey and understand the purpose of conveying the information.
- Information Sharing: You can try sharing work-related information with coworkers. For example, by writing notes when deploying, installing, or repairing parts of the program. This method can help improve verbal communication skills.
- Learn to Listen: Communication isn’t just about talking, it’s about listening too. So, you must be able to listen carefully to the information conveyed by other people. Especially when it deals with problems found in the program.
- Asking Questions: Asking questions is one way to make sure you’ve absorbed the information clearly. It also prevents you from doing or suggesting things differently than you should.
Not only communication, but you also have to be able to work in a team. A software engineer must understand how to compromise and accept criticism. You must also be able to motivate others. That way, they are encouraged to give their best performance.
In addition, teamwork can help you complete tasks on time. This happened because the whole team was able to communicate well so that coordination became smooth.
Therefore, teamwork is needed by software engineers. Without these skills, the relationship between team members cannot run well. As a result, project work can take longer.
6. Problem Solving
When working on a software project, it is necessary to identify and solve problems quickly. Therefore, a software engineer is required to have good problem-solving skills.
In the context of software engineering, problem-solving skills can mean:
- Create software that meets user needs.
- Communicate effectively with team members to delegate work.
- Find and fix bugs in the software.
- Meet strict deadlines for clients.
7. Attention to Detail
You are also required to have high accuracy and precision. This is because you must pay attention to detail in all tasks and projects. Starting from writing code, and testing, to documenting projects.
These skills help you to identify and recognize all things related to software projects. Because you have to be careful when creating and correcting the code and documents used.
Apart from that, you also need to analyze the code and use the control system to perform the tests. So, the software testing process can run smoothly and minimize the occurrence of errors.
6 Ways to Become a Software Engineer
If you already know the work of a software engineer, of course, you are curious about how to become a software engineer, right? Well, here are six ways to become a software engineer.
1. Mastering Computer Science and Programming Languages
As a software engineer, you must be able to create and implement software. So you need to master computer science and programming languages. The goal is to be able to develop software according to the needs of digital users.
The programming language skills that are usually mastered are Java, Python, C, to Kotlin. To master these skills, you can take online courses or bootcamps. Now there are many courses and bootcamps about computers and programming languages available. You can choose it according to the skills you want to develop.
2. Master Coding
The next way to become a software engineer is to master coding. Coding is the ability to change code written from one programming language to another.
With this capability, you can identify problems and solve them quickly. Because coding sharpens logical thinking and understands the problem well.
3. Software Testing
In addition, you must also be able to do software testing. The goal is to check for errors in the software. That way, you can minimize the loss of website or application users. The software testing tools that you can use are Testim, Kobiton, Testlio, Global App Testing, and Selenium.
4. Master Software Debugging
Debugging is the process of detecting and correcting errors in software. You must master software debugging skills to identify the cause of the software not running properly.
The debugging process that you have to do include:
- Identifying Errors – Identifying errors at an early stage can help minimize errors and waste time.
- Identifying Error Locations – The goal is to be able to fix bugs faster.
- Analyzing Errors – The goal is to understand the types of bugs and reduce the number of errors.
- Proving Analysis – The process of automating testing through a test framework.
- Covering Lateral Damage – Makes appropriate changes to correct other errors.
- Repair and Validation – Steps to check for all new errors, software changes, and check the running of the application.
5. Mastering the Database
Databases are used to support services, activities, and technical matters related to the software development process. By understanding how to use databases, you can design programs that are both functional and secure.
More precisely, you can speed up data identification, control data centrally, avoid data leaks, and so on. Therefore, at least you must understand how to save, create, delete, and insert databases.
6. Follow Professional Software Engineer Certification
As a software engineer, you must be able to show the best skills in order to compete with other applicants. By having this certification, the company can know that you master the skills as a software engineer. In addition, certification can also be used to strengthen the portfolio that you create.
You can start looking for professional certifications that are in high demand by employers. Later the certificate will be considered by recruiters to hire you as a software engineer.
Well, here are some professional certifications that you can choose from.
- AWS Certified Developer (Associate) from Amazon Web Services.
- Java Certification from Oracle University
- Professional Scrum Developer is given to Scrum.
7. Have High Curiosity
Working as a software engineer requires you to have a high curiosity. Because the world of technology is dynamic and growing. So, it is very important for you to always dig up the latest information and keep up with the trends.
High curiosity allows you to have a broad understanding of software development. Well, you can try listening to podcasts, reading articles, and following trends on social media. That way, your curiosity will be greater and your knowledge will be wider.
8. Multitasking Ability
Often you are required to be able to manage multiple projects within a certain deadline. This is what makes you have to be able to set priorities in managing projects. The goal is that all work can be completed on time according to its priorities.
Multitasking for software engineers also means involving several tasks in sequence. Moreover, in software development, there are various stages that must be done. So, you must be able to perform all these processes efficiently.
9. Build a Portfolio
Portfolios are an important asset for aspiring software engineers when looking for work. Because the portfolio will determine the recruiter’s first impression of the work you’ve done. Moreover, portfolios can also be a medium to show the results of projects that you have worked on previously.
The more work you put into your portfolio, the more likely recruiters are to be attracted. Make sure you also include a description of the project summary, tools used, roles, and other relevant information, yes.