Computer Software Engineers

Computer software engineers are highly skilled individuals that are able to create and design new software systems. This industry is expected to grow very quickly in the coming decades as demand for new and innovative software systems increase.

What to Expect

Computer software engineers are responsible for designing and creating new software systems. These engineers are capable of responding to an ever changing field. Computer software engineers must be able to change, grow, and evolve as needed according to the demands of employers, consumers, and the changing face of technology. They are well versed in computer science and are creative and innovative as well.

These engineers develop a wide range of software such as;

  • Various applications for the home and office computer use.
  • Computer games
  • Control systems for computer networks

Computer software engineers must be able to analyze and recognize the needs of the user and develop and design a software system in response to it. The process is usually detailed and involved so the engineer must be not only creative but logical and detail oriented as well.

There are two categories for these engineers with each category responsible for specific duties. The system engineer is responsible for overseeing a company’s usage of computer systems and networks. They monitor and maintain the computer systems making adjustments and recommendations as needed.

The application engineer employs the use of specialized programming languages in order to create and design new software. They also analyze the needs of users to determine how best to suit the software and computer system to it.

Computer software engineers work closely with computer programmers. Once the software is developed they will work in tandem with programmers in order convert the design in a language computers can understand.

Education, Training, and Certification

The minimum education requirement for most computer software engineers is a bachelor’s degree. Some companies, however, demand a master’s degree depending on the nature of the work and the expertise required. There are some positions that will accept a certification though most employers will require a bachelor’s at the very least.

Aptitude in mathematics is required along with a variety of courses on computer science, engineer, and development. Many universities do offer specialized computer courses that train and educate students on the ever evolving field of computer science. Generally, the more experience and training the more likely it is for an employer to hire a recent graduate.

Many companies do offer intensive training classes to supplement the formal education gained during university and undergraduate studies. These courses serve to further instruct the engineer on the nuances of that particular business’ computer needs.

Continued certification in new technologies and computer systems is recommended. Computer software engineers must be well versed and trained in all types of computer systems.

Employment Options

Computer software engineers can be found in nearly every field and industry today. Some fields include;

  • Insurance providers
  • Software publishers
  • Designers of computer systems
  • Financial institutions
  • Software manufacturers

Employment Outlook

The employment outlook for computer software engineers promises to be good. The field is expected to experience dramatic growth in the coming years as more and more companies and institutions are demanding specialized software systems.

The more experienced and educated an individual is the better their chances of being hired in a top tier company. This area is expected to experience new growth with concerns over cyber security is on the rise and as companies begin to demand new and innovative software design.

Projected Salary

The salary for computer software engineers depend on a number of factors. The company, industry, and how specialized the software all figure into the start salary. Wages on average can reach anywhere from $50,000 to $85,000 depending on the above stated factors.

The editors of McGraw-Hill and the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor  Statistics, The Big Book of Jobs, Occupational Outlook Handbook 2012-2013  ©2009 by the McGraw-Hill Companies, Material "Adapted"


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