Before starting your job search, there are some preliminary
Stereotypes to the contrary, all programmers are
alike. Knowing what kind of programmer you are is crucial to finding the right kind of job. While you can probably do many different kinds of programming tasks, they won’t all
If you’re not sure what you like or dislike, ask yourself some questions:
Are you a systems programmer or an application developer? Systems programmers work on the code that keeps computer systems running: frameworks, tools, compilers, drivers, servers, and so on. Other programmers are their primary audience, and there’s little interaction with nonprogrammers. Application developers, on the other hand, work on the pieces that those nonprogrammers use to do their own work, and there’s often more interaction with nontechnical people.
Do you like coding
Are you a good debugger?
If you think finding problems in your own code is bad enough, imagine what it’s like to fix problems with someone else’s code. It requires strong analytical and problem-solving skills. Finding and fixing
Do you like testing? Testing - also referred to as quality assurance, or QA for short - is often maligned by inexperienced programmers, but those who’ve been around the block once or twice value independent testing. Skilled testers are hard to find, and programming skills are usually required to write tools and automated test cases.
Are you an architect or a coder?
Every coding job includes some kind of design aspect, but certain jobs lean more one way than the other. If you enjoy the designing more than the coding, a position as a software architect might be more appealing. That said, architecture
Does management interest you?
Some coders have a long-term goal of becoming a manager, but others shiver at the very thought. If management is your goal, however, you’ll need to develop leadership skills and
Do you want to work for a big company?
There are advantages and disadvantages to working at big companies. For example, a large company usually offers more job stability and some kind of career
Do you want to work for a small company?
The pay may be less, but getting in on the ground floor at a new company can ensure future advancement (and possibly substantial remuneration) as the company grows and succeeds. The downside, of course, is that most new
Do you want long-term or short-term projects? Some programmers crave change, spending a few months at most on each project. If you like short-term projects and don’t mind traveling, a gig with a consulting company might make more sense than a more conventional corporate job.
It’s important to realize that there are no universal answers to these questions, no right or wrong way to answer them. The more