By 2021, it’s expected that there will be 1.1 million computing-related job openings. A master’s in software development can help aspiring software development professionals develop the skills needed to establish a career in this dynamic and exciting field. Whether you’re interested in video game development, UX design, development and operations, or network security, there are a multitude of exciting software development careers to pursue following the completion of a master’s in software development.

Two software developers at computer

Industries Hiring Master’s in Software Development Graduates

These days, computers and computer programs are nearly ubiquitous. This means that there is ample opportunity for software development careers in a variety of industries, including the following examples:

  • Retail
  • Healthcare
  • Research and development
  • Business and information technology
  • Government and defense

Popular Careers for Master’s in Software Development Graduates

Nearly every industry relies on software developers and specialists to help create the software they need to operate their businesses successfully. There are a number of positions available for those with graduate degrees in software development, and here are a few of the most popular. However, it’s vital to note that while a master’s degree in software development can help prepare a student for a career in software development, additional degrees, training or certifications may be required in order to achieve employment.

Applications Software Developer

An applications software developer creates applications, such as word processors, games, or commercial software, for computers and mobile devices. In 2016, the median annual wage for applications software developers was $100,080. The demand for applications and systems developers is projected to see a 24 percent increase between 2016 and 2026.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • Analytical skills
  • Communication skills
  • Creativity
  • Problem-solving

Data Scientist

The world of data science is growing quickly. Data scientists process and analyze data, and they are then responsible for presenting their findings in an easily digestible fashion. This field requires data analytics skills, as well as technical skills in computer science, development, and coding. Data scientists make an average salary of $130,500 per year.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • Analytical skills
  • Coding
  • End-to-end development
  • Math skills
  • Creativity

DevOps Engineer

DevOps–a compound for “development” and “operations”–is a field that effectively combines software development with software operations. Those who specialize in DevOps are comfortable with code testing and deployment, as well as automation. DevOps engineers often work in teams to deploy code more frequently for their organizations. According to GlassDoor, the national average salary for DevOps engineers is $138,378.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • Coding
  • Automated testing and delivery skills
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Analytical skills

Embedded Systems Engineer

Embedded systems engineers work on computers with a dedicated function within a larger system. In other words, these computers, called embedded systems, help solve a specific problem in real-time. Unlike general purpose computers, like laptops, which can be used for a variety of computing tasks, embedded systems computers are only designed to accomplish one very particular task. Embedded systems can be found in a wide array of digital devices, ranging from coffee machines and microwaves to airbags and even traffic lights. Embedded systems engineers work on both the hardware and software of the system and, as such, have experience in both computer science and electrical engineering. Embedded systems engineers earn an average salary of $77,050, according to PayScale.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • C or C++
  • Operating system knowledge
  • Basic electronic skills
  • Algorithm knowledge

Software Consultant

Software consultants are senior developers. They create the architecture that software engineers follow and take a higher-level, more holistic approach to a project than a developer or engineer would. In addition to development, software consultants provide expert advice and often work in a client-facing role, collaborating with the client to determine how to create the required software.

Software consultants make a median salary of $72,588, according to PayScale.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • Software development
  • Communication skills
  • Problem-solving
  • Leadership skills

Network Security Engineer

Software development careers, perhaps not surprisingly, also include security-related roles. Security engineers, also known as information security analysts, are responsible for keeping an organization’s networks and computer systems safe. This field is in increasingly high demand, as both computers and the technology used to breach secure systems are becoming more advanced. A software development degree makes for a good foundation on which to build a career in this industry. The national average salary for a network security engineer is $82,768.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • Coding
  • Operating system knowledge
  • Database knowledge
  • Analytical skills
  • Problem-solving

Systems Software Developer

Those working in systems software are responsible for developing the systems that run computers and other devices, as well as the systems that control networks. These developers work on operating systems, as well as the user interfaces that allow users to interact with computers, cell phones, cars, and other devices. In 2016, the median annual wage for systems software developers was $106,860. The demand for applications and systems developers is projected to increase 24 percent between 2016 and 2026.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • Analytical skills
  • Communication skills
  • Creativity
  • Problem-solving

UX Designer

A UX designer is responsible for ensuring a product is both easily understood and user-friendly. In other words, this kind of designer works on user experience, or UX. UX professionals create prototypes, design interfaces, and improve products based on feedback. According to PayScale, UX designers earn an average annual salary of $73,800.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • Interpersonal skills
  • Research skills
  • Programming
  • Analytical skills
  • Design skills

Video Game Developer

Video game developers often work together on the development team to create a game. This field requires both creativity and technical skills. A professional in this field can work on programming, testing, 3D modeling, and game design. Game developers make an average of $85,877 per year, according to Glassdoor.

Skills recommended to succeed:

  • Creativity
  • Problem-solving
  • Coding and programming
  • Teamwork and interpersonal communication

There are many potential career paths to explore as a graduate of a Master of Science in software development program. If these careers are of interest, consider checking out Maryville’s online Master of Science in Software Development.

Now that you’ve seen some possible software development careers, learn more about what software development really is.

Sources:

https://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/software-developers.htm

https://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Software_Consultant/Salary

http://creativeskillset.org/job_roles/4256_uxui_designer

http://work.chron.com/become-security-engineer-17451.html

http://www.glassdoor.ca/Salaries/network-security-engineer-salary-SRCH_KO0,25.htm?countryRedirect=true

http://www.glassdoor.ca/Salaries/game-developer-salary-SRCH_KO0,14.htm?countryRedirect=true