From Good to Great: Traits of a Successful Software Developer [Part 1]

From Good to Great: Traits of a Successful Software Developer [Part 1]

By the end of 2018, there were approximately 23 million software developers in the world according to Evans Data Corporation. By the end of 2019, this number is expected to grow to 26.4 million. In Europe alone, the number of professional developers is estimated to be around 5.7 million!

One of the factors that’s triggering this fast-growing talent pool is the need for new apps for gadgets such as smartphones and tablets. After all, the tech-driven world we live in is run by programmers and software developers.

The Key Question

With so many companies looking to expand their business and have their own apps, the recruitment industry is always on the lookout for good software developers. So the question here is: what makes a good software developer?

Is it their programming skills? Their communication skills? Or is it their ability to handle the pressure?

A study conducted by the University of Washington has addressed this question and produced the breakdown of the ideal attributes that distinguish good software developers from great ones. The study divides the attributes into two categories — Internal and External.

In this blog we will focus on the internal attributes:

what makes a good software developer

Personal Characteristics:

The first thing that needs to be taken into consideration when looking for great software developers is the kind of personality they have. They should possess the following intrinsic qualities:

1. Improving

Great software engineers are described as improving. This means they’re never satisfied with the status quo and are always looking to improve their skills, their products, and their environment. Because the software industry is constantly evolving and rapidly advancing each day, software engineers can never stop learning and attempting to improve themselves, lest they get left behind.

2. Passionate

Great software engineers are passionate about their work and do what they do for the love of their work and not just as a means to an end. The interest should be intrinsic and not just for extrinsic factors such as money.

3. Open-minded

Great developers are open-minded and willing to let new information change the way they think. They aren’t set in their ways and stick to one way of thinking without being open to new possibilities. They have to take the ever-changing factors that affect commercial success and user reactions with a grain of salt and try to incorporate that into their work.

4. Data-Driven

Great software developers are always trying to optimize their product and skills by evaluating their own work and actions as well as taking input from end users. They don’t rely on intuition; rather, they make the decisions based on facts and data. This helps remove any personal bias from their work.

Decision Making

Decision Making

When it comes to decision making, having a book about different programming scenarios is not enough. Great software engineers are required to make informed decisions based not on what should happen, but on what is likely to happen.

This means they need to have the ability to take factors such as probabilistic outcomes, decision alternatives, current context, environmental factors, and much more into account before they make any complex decisions. The required attributes for great decision-making skills for software developers include:

  1. Knowledge about the organization and the people
  2. Seeing the bigger picture
  3. Updating their mental models constantly
  4. Handling complexity with ease

A complex decision can’t be made unless you know the people you are working for, what the different stakeholders want, who are the right people for specific tasks, and what is the end-user expecting. Similarly, a great software developer doesn’t just take local trends and preferences but takes the global industry trends into account before making any decisions.

Get in touch with talent4gig to find & hire developers for your startup Switzerland. As the top tech recruiting platform in Switzerland our experts guarantee the highest quality of the skill verification services and developer assessment platforms for your company’s recruiting process. Contact us for more information.

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