Computer software engineers are responsible for using mathematics and computer science in order to develop and test computer programming. They will have the primary responsibility of developing a number of different programs, which can include word processing applications and computer games, in addition to operating systems and network applications.
Computer engineering professionals will first analyze the needs of their clients, and then they will create a detailed set of algorithm instructions which can include programming, although this will usually be outsourced to computer programmers. Applications software engineers will often use raw codes such as Java, in order to create applications software, while system engineers will often help a corporation organize its operating systems.
Systems software will usually require a lot of tinkering in order to make sure that it can be utilized effectively by corporations, and engineers will frequently need to modify operating systems and programming in order to meet the needs of their clients.
These individuals will usually work in teams which can include marketing departments, manufacturing, engineering, designers, and artists, in order to work together to bring a software product to market.
System software engineers may work alone depending on the size of the business that their servicing, and they may have assistants underneath them in order to perform the more routine tasks of installing operating systems and other systems applications.
These individuals will frequently work 40 hours a week in clean and comfortable office environments, although they may experience repetitive motion strain and back discomfort. Most employers will require a bachelor’s degree and experience in computer programming, and four fifths of all software engineers had at least a bachelors degree.
In 2006, software engineers had about 850,000 jobs in America, with most working on applications, and about a third working on systems software. A minority of these individuals are freelance computer programmers. Job prospects overall are expected to be quite good and this field will be one of the fastest areas of growth in America over the next decade.
In 2006, the middle 50th percentile of these professionals made between $63,000 and $98,000, while computer systems engineers made more at between $68,000 and $105,000. In 2007, Robert Half Technology reported that software engineers made between $66,500 and $99,750 annually.