June 12, 2019

5 predictions on the growth of the software development industry

Whether you work in the field of software development or not, it's no surprise that the technology industry is booming. Tech is moving so quickly that even experts cannot accurately predict what is next. That's why we all love technology, right? However, the nature of tech may leave you wondering- what impact does this have on the skills I need to learn in order to work in the industry and bring new products to market?

Now more than ever, consumers are expecting more from various product technologies. The demand for more skilled programmers is continuing to rise, but not always in the areas most bootcamps or computer science degrees are aiming for. Software development goes far beyond web development. Yes, web development is very much in demand and will continue to be for years to come, but development skills and programmers are needed within other areas of the industry.

If you are thinking of entering the technology industry, a current bootcamp students or recent grad, or even an experienced technologist, you'll want to keep your eye on these 6 areas that I predict will shape technology in the near future.

1. Javascript rises above all

There is a strong chance that you've heard of Javascript before (unless you're living under a rock), and there is a good reason the language is so discussed. I won't go into an in-depth technical definition, but Javascript is important to learn and so in-demand because all modern browsers now have JavaScript interpreters built in. No other language has this tremendous advantage, and it's unlikely to change soon.

New frameworks/libraries such as ReactJS/AngularJs (Frontend) and NodeJs (Backend) are gaining huge popularity as they are both high-performing languages and contain core javascript principles for development. They certainly have their differences and this post is great starting point to make a comparison.

According to the recent 2016 StackOverflow Survey, Javascript is the clear winner among programming languages. As the Stack Overflow 2016 Developer Survey states: "JavaScript is the most commonly used programming language on earth. Even Back-End developers are more likely to use it than any other language."

Javascript popularity

When comparing programming languages based on job demand and average salaries, JavaScript is also at or near the top of the heap. It's tough to nail down the average salary of a JS developer when considering various factors that influence salaries, but Javascript continuously is seen in the top 5 in-demand and highest paying roles within the world of development.

Javascript shows no sign of slowly down, and as long as we continue to use technology products within a web browser, javascript will continue to be very important.

2. Demand is rising for skilled testers with an understanding of automation

Testing is highly critical when it comes to development, yet many teams and developers don't test enough - or for that matter, even understand testing. Applications break all the time, and minimising this risk is crucial to product success. In many cases, it can costs companies thousands, even potentially millions due to poor testing practices, or just not testing at all.

As products grow and the customers set higher expectations, companies are now hiring for more skilled testers and developers who can test.

"There will be a continued drive in the market toward skilled testers that can be dropped into small development teams and be effective quickly. In practical terms, this means people that have some programming ability, general technical knowledge, very developed testing skills, and probably the ability to teach testing to others," explains software tester Justin Rohrman of Excelon Development

If you're reading this and you're currently a bootcamp student or learning coding in some capacity, you need to learn testing. At Coder Factory Academy, testing in Ruby on Rails (e.g. RSpec) or in ReactJs/NodeJs (Jest/Mocha) is a pivotal habit that many graduate developers don't understand or use as part of their development process.

If you don't incorporate testing into your development, then you struggle to succeed as a developer.

3. We're seeing increased demand for DevOps professionals

In speaking with over 300 employers here in Australia, I've found that the number 1 skill they are looking for in developers and hiring positions right now for is DevOps. For those unfamiliar, DevOps is a hybrid role of development and operations. If you ask different people, you will get different answers (i.e. just like the technology community as whole), however they all agree that DevOps is a skill set that is crucial to the success of a modern development team.

Companies need DevOps due to one main factor - efficiency. Companies that incorporate DevOps practices get more done, plain and simple. There are many benefits that positively affect technical, cultural and business factors to achieve maximum speed, functionality, output, and quality.

Being a DevOps engineer isn't the "sexiest" role you will do, but DevOps is exciting because you are always working with and integrating new technologies and solving new challenges.

For more information about becoming a DevOps engineer and what the role endeavours, this quora post sums it up perfectly.

4. Demand is also increasing for VR developers

VR is going to be the next big thing in the digital world - some are even saying it will be bigger than the smartphone revolution. "The virtual reality space is taking off, and I believe the job opportunities are only going to grow in the next few years," says Nate Beatty, co-founder of IrisVR in New York City.

According to the Road to VR publication, the demand for developers with VR skills has gone up by approximately 37% year after year, with this number continuing to rise as companies such as Facebook, Apple, Walt Disney Company, General Dynamics, Samsung and many large and small players continue to increase their VR departments.

growth of VR

In addition to this, Coder Factory Academy partners Liminal VR based in Melbourne, are screaming for more VR Developers with the right skillset.

So how can you master the skills of becoming a VR Developer? You will need to master a 3D engine. Unity is a good starting point, as it uses programming language C# or javascript. This quora post is a great start to know what to learn.

5. More employers need developers with security training and experience

One of the primary problems that software encounters is security, and many organisations can't always combat the bad guys. In the past few years alone, we've seen big security breaches such as Heartbleed, the Target malware infection, Washington State Courts and even our everyday social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Google.

2017 is really the year of security, with Fintech, Healthware and cryptocurrency entering the API and app space quickly and with a big impact. The breaches in recent years are going to push boundaries and make security a priority in development teams through more rigorous security testing and implementation. Yet, there are many developers who don't have sufficient security training.

Many organisations small to large recognise security training is a necessity for secure and efficient teams, and they are implementing this into their onboarding and employee training programs.

So, if you're a recent grad or currently undertaking a bootcamp, how can you increase your skills in security? If you want to learn more about this career and potential salary, check out this great blog post "A Guide to the Best Online Cybersecurity Courses".

Regardless of your background, the biggest indicator of your success will be choosing the bootcamp that's best for you. Check out reviews and explore bootcamps like Coder Factory Academy on SwitchUp.

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