Every developer needs to start somewhere, job-wise. These days, the most exciting prospects exist in areas such as the cloud and data analytics; and given the business world’s reliance on delivering services through the browser and crunching customer information, those sub-industries seem unlikely to cool down anytime soon. Here’s a quick breakdown of where to start your job hunt if you’re just out of school and seeking your first (or second) developer gig:
If you ever wanted to plunge into one of the most dynamic parts of the tech industry, head for the cloud. The average job as a cloud-platform developer or administrator requires at least some knowledge of several programming languages, including Python, Ruby on Rails, and Perl. Those who go for the administration side of things can increase their career power by earning certifications such as CCSK, CompTIA Cloud Essentials, and Google Certified Deployment Specialist.
Working for a massive enterprise might sound boring for those tech pros with a startup mentality, but corporate life does have its benefits, including the chance to work with some gargantuan systems. Enterprise architects (EAs) must not only boast software engineering and development experience, but also the “soft skills” necessary to effectively communicate with stakeholders throughout an organization. Before the junior developer can aspire to become an EA, he or she must gain working familiarity with Oracle platforms, IBM DB2, and Microsoft’s SQL Server—the technologies that support many corporate databases. (They’d also be well-served to learn about the automation software that’s taking over many database-related functions.) Once they get a firm sense and a lot of experience in how databases work, they can aspire to larger roles architecting enterprise infrastructure.
While the massive size of the iOS and Android app stores makes it hard for any individual app to make an impression—at least not without a bit of luck and a ton of hard work—developers with the right combination of skills can always find work building software for smartphones and tablets. If you’re interested in iOS, learn Objective-C and Swift; if Android tickles your fancy, know Java. It remains to be seen whether Microsoft’s Windows 10 will end up widely adopted as a mobile OS.