How to answer: Why are you interested in software engineering?

Motivated software engineer

As a software developer the best way to answer “Why are you interested in software engineering?” is, to be genuine, and passionate, show you are keen on the industry and avoid generic uninspired answers. Let your future employer know you are somebody who loves the job and is passionate about the industry you are entering.  There are so many routes into software engineering that people find it difficult to give an answer they think will come off well. People who have always been technical-minded may deem they may come across as lacking certain soft skills, while those who are switching … Read more

Can you learn coding without a laptop? 5 ways to code without a laptop

Coding on a tablet

Unfortunately, it is not possible to properly learn coding without a laptop. More than 50% of developers get advice online at least once a day for their code, so without a laptop learning can be very difficult. You can pick up basic syntax and concepts without a computer but the only way to get proficient at programming is to practice.  The old adage that practice makes perfect describes coding well. You can read about it all you want but unless you are putting rubber to the road, or fingers to the keyboard it’s unlikely you’ll ever get good enough to … Read more

Do programmers memorize code?

Women memorizing code

Programmers don’t memorize code, they become familiar with the code they use daily and refer to the official documentation for everything else. Around 90% of programmers use Google and 80% visit Stack Overflow if they get stuck on a problem when programming.  Being able to code with some fluency is an important part of progressing onto more mid and senior-level software development roles. To people with less experience, it can sometimes seem that experienced programmers learn the code by heart, but is this the case? Remembering all the code you use is impractical, doesn’t help you solve problems more effectively, … Read more

The Best Jobs For Burnt-out Programmers

Skelton on a laptop

Software engineering is a fantastic career but can leave a lot of programmers feeling stressed and burnout. The day-to-day of a programmer varies a lot depending on the company and industry you are in. However, there are always times when there can be too much and that leaves a lot of developers struggling to keep afloat. The best jobs for burnt-out developers include a move into consultancy, management, technical sales, or even just a move to a better software engineering role. More than 75% of workers have experienced burnout and it’s impossible to sustain long-term. Things have to improve otherwise … Read more

Autistic Programmers: Autism in Software Development

two software developers

There are a lot of stereotypes regarding autistic programmers and the prevalence of autism in the industry is often overstated in pop culture. Shows like Mr. Robot popularised the lone hacker who is on the spectrum while The Big Bang Theory brought autistic tendencies into the spotlight.  In reality, only 3.7% of programmers have autism or an autism spectrum disorder like Aspergers. However, autism has a global prevalence of 1% which means software developers are nearly four times more likely to have autism than the general population. So the stereotypes are overstated but there is some truth to the observation.  … Read more

Do software engineers work from home?

Man working from home

Most software engineers do work from home, with 86% now working remotely all of the time. The number of software engineers working remotely has skyrocketed since the pandemic and at least two-thirds of developers want it to stay this way going forward. The work-from-home culture is here to stay and is thriving throughout the development community.  The tech industry was an early adopter of work-from-home. Many employees would do it at least once or twice a week and 19% worked remotely all of the time. However, the pandemic propelled this even further and more people became used to working remotely … Read more

The average typing speed for programmers

software developer typing

The average typing speed for programmers ranges from 40 to 70 words per minute with a 92% accuracy rate depending on their skill level. The ability to type fast helps with productivity and can make writing a lot of code much easier. Accuracy must remain high as speed increases otherwise you become a less efficient programmer.  Typing fast means the amount of code you write increases which can be beneficial for large projects that require a lot of components to be built. However, typing especially fast is not a required skill to be a successful software engineer. There are plenty … Read more

Why are programmers so rude? 3 key reasons

Angry man

There is a stereotype perpetuated in the media that programmers are rude and not pleasant to work with. However, most programmers are great to work with and are not bad people or unpleasant. Generally, programmers can be rude because of their detail-focused personality types, the stress on the job, and strict attention to detail. Also, around 4% of software engineers have autism spectrum disorder which could be why people perceive them as rude.  Challenging the status quo and existing ways of working is part of being a good software engineer but it can make for an unpleasant teammate if done … Read more

Software Developer: Where do you see yourself in 5 years? 

Interviewers shaking hands

As a software developer the best way to answer “Where do you see yourself in five years?” is, to be honest, optimistic, show you are keen to improve yourself and avoid generic cookie-cutter answers. Let your potential employer know you are someone who works to improve their skills and is willing to learn. Software engineering changes so rapidly that it can be difficult to know where you want to be so far in the future. Technologies launch and evolve all the time, with different sub-niches of tech frequently opening up. Plotting your career can be hard at the best of … Read more

How often do software engineers use Stack Overflow?

Female software engineer

Around 30% of software engineers use Stack Overflow every single day with another quarter visiting the site multiple times per day. It is the world’s most popular collaboration platform for developers and serves more than 100 million people a month. 98% of software engineers use Stack Overflow in some capacity every month.  The platform is the de facto home of software development. If you have a question, the likelihood is that it’s already been answered on Stack Overflow. There are more than 22 million questions on the platform and a whopping 84 million comments.  Stack Overflow is essential viewing for … Read more

How often do software engineers work overtime?

Man working late

Putting in extra hours at the office is commonplace in most industries, software development is no different.  A quarter of software engineers work overtime at least one or two days a week, with another 26.7% working overtime one or two days a month. The exact amount of overtime you may work will depend largely on the company you work at.  It’s assumed that software engineers work long hours and spend a lot of their free time catching up with a heavy workload. However, this isn’t representative of the whole field and overtime frequency varies a lot depending on where you … Read more

Why do software engineers get fired? 6 common causes

Woman with head in hands

Software engineers typically get fired for subpar performance, bad teamwork, or poor culture fit within their team or organization. As a developer, being laid off doesn’t happen often, especially with a job shortage of nearly 1 million people in IT, but around a third of all workers report being fired at least once. The tech industry is crying out for developers so the chance of being fired isn’t that high. However, software engineers are not immune from losing their job and it can happen to anyone.  We covered how frequently developers get promoted in a previous article but are now … Read more

How often do software engineers get promoted?

Software engineer levels

Software engineers typically get promoted every two to three years but the timescale is dependent on their skill level. 50% of developers have been coding for less than a decade which means the industry is incredibly young and there are a lot of opportunities to progress into senior positions.  Tech is incredibly fast-paced and things change all the time. New technologies and approaches emerge which enable software engineers to advance faster than people in other professions. Several different factors can affect the speed of promotions and it’s not as clear cut as throwing out a catchall figure. But let’s explore … Read more

How often do software engineers get raises?

Clock next to coins

As a software engineer, you should be getting a raise at least once a year. There is a shortage of 1.4 million workers in computer science-related jobs which puts you firmly in the driving seat at the negotiating table for raises. Software development is also set to grow 22 percent by 2029 so the demand for good developers is only going to grow. Part of the reason software engineers make so much is because their skill set is so in demand at the moment. There are not enough people entering the industry to fill the world’s growing technology demands. It … Read more

Do software developers work long hours?

Man working late

Software developers tend to work longer hours than average, with 25% of developers working overtime every week. You can expect to work up to 50 hours per week as a software engineer but the amount will vary depending on the field you work in and the company you are at.  Working hours in the tech industry vary a lot. You have companies like Netflix that don’t even track the hours of their employees and then on the other hand gaming companies that work their developers to the bone.  Different companies have different policies and work cultures so it’s important to … Read more

Is software engineering considered an engineering discipline?

engineering tower

Software engineering is considered an engineering discipline that encourages the design, development, maintenance, testing, and evaluation of computer software. However, its status as an engineering discipline is contested and varies from country to country, and it is not a protected job title in most places.  Despite its detractors, software engineering has many of the hallmarks of an engineering discipline and the industry is flourishing. There are 1.8 million software developers in the U.S. and the field is growing incredibly fast. We’ve spoken before about software engineering not being a profession and how it aligns nicely as more of a trade … Read more

Eyecare for software engineers: How to keep your eyes healthy


Eyecare is incredibly important for software engineers because of the large amounts of time they spend in front of a computer monitor every day. Keeping your eyes healthy is a great way to avoid joining the 164 million Americans who wear corrective lenses. Preventing deterioration of your eyesight is the best form of treatment in the long run. Poor eyesight is something that affects two-thirds of people, especially as they age. So taking time to prevent eye problems reaps benefits later in life. Those in tech spend a disproportionate amount of time in front of their laptops so can be … Read more

Is CSS necessary for web development? 7 key reasons

man on the compter

CSS is incredibly necessary because it improves user experience, website engagement, and has become a fundamental part of branding. CSS is absolutely essential for modern web development and 96.3% of websites use it for styling. It has become a core tenant in web development alongside HTML and JavaScript. Without CSS. Before the introduction of CSS web pages were dull and lifeless. The internet as we know it simply wouldn’t be the same without CSS.  If you plan on working as a front-end developer then a good level of CSS knowledge is going to be necessary to even land an entry-level … Read more

What do software engineers do in their free time?

Yoga class

Having a range of hobbies is key to good mental health so let’s explore what software engineers do in their free time. With a busy work schedule, it can be difficult to put time aside for the things you enjoy doing.  Making sure you get some downtime away from work commitments prevents burnout and makes you generally happier. People aren’t restricted to specific hobbies due to their occupation but some may lean towards other outlets than others. In their free time software engineers tend to:  Code personal projects Write  Play board games Read books Play video games Cook  Work out  … Read more

Are software engineers super smart? 6 reasons everyone thinks so

Software engineer by a blackboard

The media leads us to believe that all software engineers are smart, with the geeky stereotype dominating people’s perception of a programmer. But is this reflected in reality and are software engineers intelligent? Software engineers are smart, the average software developer sits in the top 25% on the IQ scale. Software engineers are also excellent problem solvers and are good at quickly learning technologies and concepts. The demands of the role require that most developers are at least somewhat intelligent. However, they are by no means all super intelligent like the media and some forums would have you believe. Like … Read more

Is software engineering a profession? 6 reasons it doesn’t make the cut

picture of a doctor

Software engineering does not have worldwide recognition as being a profession but is a fully licensed discipline in Texas, Australia, and large parts of Canada. Since 1993 there have been numerous groups trying to lobby for software engineering to be recognized as a profession but so far their efforts have not been realized.  Despite having some of the same characteristics, software engineering has not yet received widespread acceptance as a profession. There are several associated societies and professional associations but none have come together to define what software engineering would look like as a profession.  There is even an argument … Read more

Is software engineering a trade?

Box of tools

Software engineering is not considered a trade but has many hallmarks of a trade. It requires an advanced skill set that is predominantly learned in one or two years and then improved upon while on the job. However, there is no accreditation or governing body which is one reason why it isn’t seen as something people go to trade school for.  There are multiple routes into software engineering: a college degree, boot camps, and teaching yourself. Quicker routes into software engineering, like coding boot camps, mirror the shorter time frames that people spend at trade school. But the different ways … Read more

Why do software engineers wear glasses?

Software engineer glasses

Software engineers wear glasses because they look at computer screens all day from a relatively short distance which causes short-sightedness. 164 million adults wear glasses in the United States so it makes sense that software engineers, who look at screens all day, are among those who need them. Not all programmers use some sort of vision correction but extended periods of close work can make your eyes worse. Spending time away from a monitor isn’t an option for most software engineers, it’s part and parcel of the job. So let’s take a look at the specifics behind why software engineers … Read more

Why don’t software engineers unionize?

Spotify software engineer strike

Unions have been around since the 1800s and affected plenty of the country’s major industries, so as tech has expanded why don’t software engineers unionize?  Software engineers don’t unionize because they are satisfied with their working conditions and compensation, and are happy to work in unfavorable conditions in the hope of getting stock in a unicorn startup. They are also incredibly in demand so their skills and importance are recognized by employers. 10.8% of workers in the United States are members of a union and that figure rises to 26% in the UK. However, it’s virtually unheard of for software … Read more

Why do software engineers use Linux? 6 key reasons

Linux penguin

Linux is a free and open-source operating system that is used by software engineers across the globe. Developers can be picky with the tools they use but Linux has remained an industry favorite for decades.  Software engineers use Linx because it gives them greater control over the operating system, is highly secure, free, and is faster than other operating systems. Around 25% of software engineers worldwide use Linux, making it the second most used OS behind Windows. Let’s take a closer look at why Linux is so popular among software engineers and why after 30 years, it remains a firm … Read more

Why do software engineers need physics? 4 reasons it’s useful!

Man next to a chalkboard

It makes sense to understand whether physics is important in software engineering before pursuing a career in the industry. Plenty of would-be developers have no interest in physics and don’t want that to be a big part of their day-to-day life. Generally, software engineers don’t need physics at all. You won’t need to know any formulas or physics-specific knowledge to enjoy a successful career as a programmer. However, there are some transferable skills you can take from experience in the physics field. The only time you would need to know anything about physics as a software engineer is if you … Read more

Why do software engineers change jobs? Job hopping in tech

Software engineer looking at a computer

Software engineers change jobs for multiple reasons but generally stay at one company for significantly less than the national average. There is a shortage of software engineers which gives them the advantage when trying to switch roles.  The reason software engineers change jobs is that they are looking for more money, seeking better opportunities, and want a new challenge. Developers also change jobs because they want more recognition and a change of work culture.  Becoming a software engineer requires a specific skill set which means they are generally in high demand. They frequently have their pick of jobs as companies … Read more

Why are so many software engineers Indian? 5 key reasons

Indian software developer

It’s easy to understand why so many Indians are software engineers. The global software industry is worth more than $3 trillion and is set to grow by nearly 25% over the next five years. It’s a lucrative field that offers a varied and interesting career at the cutting edge of technology. There are so many Indian software engineers because their culture places a high value on STEM subjects at school, they speak fantastic English, have an incredibly youthful population, and are the center of the world’s software outsourcing efforts.  Software engineering is one of the fastest-growing fields in the world. … Read more

The best payment schedule for freelance development

Mastercard credit card

Freelancing can be a tough gig so it’s important you have an idea of the best payment schedule for freelance development. Clients can be notoriously unreliable when it comes to payment terms and may often expect extra work for free. Getting everything written in stone is your best bet to avoid any headaches.  The best payment schedule for freelance development is one that includes a significant portion of the money up-front. You should ask for at least 25% upfront and then segment the remaining amount into two smaller payments. Having clearly defined milestones for delivery is critical, regardless of your … Read more

Do software engineers travel? Exploring the world with your laptop

Laptop by a river

In this article, we will explore how often software engineers travel for work and also whether it is possible to travel and work at the same time. The idea of traveling a few times a month for work is appealing to a lot of people. Whereas others like the idea of spending their time in exotic locations and logging on to their laptop once work starts.  But is traveling as a software engineer something a lot of developers actually do?  Software engineers do travel but generally only once or twice a month. Around 16% of developers are remote so traveling … Read more

How long do software engineers stay at a job?

Man typing

As a software developer understanding how too long to stay at one job can make a major difference in your earning. Those who stay at one company for longer than two years end up earning 50% less over the span of their careers. Software engineers are paid a lot but you are leaving money on the table if you don’t job hop enough. Software engineers typically stay at one job for an average of two years before moving somewhere different. They spend less than half the amount of time at one company compared to the national average tenure of 4.2 … Read more

Why do software engineers make so much? 5 key reasons

Pile of money

Software engineers make a lot of money relative to other professions. The salary expectations of developers across America have increased significantly in the last decade. For those located in tech hubs, which have higher costs of living, the salaries paid to software engineers are even higher.  Software engineers make so much money because there is enormous demand for their skillset and not enough supply, the incredible value they bring to businesses and the general difficulty of the role. Good developers are hard to come by and the rise of technology has meant companies need more of them than ever. Technology … Read more

Understanding the software engineer age limit

Man at work

Having a rough idea of the age limit for software developers is important if you plan on making a career change later on in life. You don’t want to put in months and learn a new skill for it to be nearly impossible to get a job in the industry. Taking the time to upskill is ideally rewarded with a shiny new job at the end of it. However, some industries have a general age limit for entry, for example, a career in the military can’t be pursued after 35.  But is there an age limit on becoming a software … Read more

When do software engineers retire? Plus 5 reasons they retire early

hanging boots for retiring early

Understanding when software engineers retire is crucial before you embark on a career in the industry. The media would have us believe that retiring young as a software developer is a foregone conclusion. The story goes that you’ll create a billion-dollar start-up and be sipping margaritas on the beach before you are 35. However, the reality is incredibly different. Most software engineers retire between the ages of 45 and 65, with less than 1% of developers working later than 65. However, the numbers are misleading because many software engineers experience rapid career progression and move out of a pure development … Read more

Facebook dress code: A complete guide

Rack of dress shirts

Understanding the dress code at Facebook could make or break the first impression you leave on interviewers or colleagues. Coming to an interview dressed inappropriately is not recommended as it can leave a poor lasting impression.  There is no official Facebook dress code policy that employees are expected to follow. Instead, employees are given the autonomy to wear what they want as long as they dress appropriately. As long as you avoid anything too revealing or t-shirts with political ideology on them, you should be fine. The general dress code for software engineering is casual. It has been spurred on … Read more

Software engineer dress code: A complete guide

Man in a suit

The dress code for software engineers generally flys in the face of the decades-old corporate mantra of a shirt and tie. Knowing what to wear as a software engineer can be difficult because most of us were told we should always wear a shirt and tie to work. However, attitudes to dress codes have relaxed significantly over the past few decades.  Software engineers dress very casually. A t-shirt and jeans are common amongst most members of the tech team, with a few stretching to a casual open-button shirt. A shirt and tie is an incredibly rare sight in a dev … Read more

How to know if your internship will drug test candidates

Scientist doing tests

Understanding whether your internship will drug test candidates is a crucial piece of information that is often left out of the early recruitment process. It can be the difference between landing your dream summer job and missing out on a golden opportunity.  You can find out if your internship will drugs test by asking indirect questions during recruitment, using online resources, and speaking to previous employees. You should always avoid directly asking if they drug test as it comes across as suspicious and unprofessional which could hurt your chances of getting the job.  Texas has the highest drug screening rates … Read more

How to ask if a company drug tests

Scientists doing tests

Getting a new job is difficult enough without having to worry about whether company drug tests or not. Going through a rigorous interview process only to then be rejected due to your drug test results is demotivating.  You don’t want to directly ask a company if they drug test their employees. Their employees can raise red flags and imply you use drugs. Instead, you should get the information indirectly and use online resources to find the information. Understanding your local drug policy laws will also help you out a lot.  Less than 2% of companies in America require a pre-employer … Read more

Do web designers use templates? Improving your workflows with templates

IT desk setup

 Using templates as a web designer is frowned upon by many in the industry despite the practice remaining pretty widespread. People think templates are an inferior product and should be avoided. However, the use of templates should depend entirely on the needs of the customers. Professional web designers often use templates for projects that won’t require a lot of customization. Designers also use mockup templates to give clients an idea of what a finished product may look like. Templates are an easy way to convey the outcomes of a project to a client without spending hours on custom designs.  However, … Read more

Do web developers use templates? Getting the most out of templates

Man at work

When creating sites it’s easier than ever for a web developer to use templates instead of coding everything from scratch. There a plenty of benefits but in general the process saves a lot of time.  Usually, web developers don’t use templates when creating a website. They will either code it themselves or use a framework like Bootstrap or React to speed up development time. If a developer works with a template it is usually to cut costs or decrease the timescale of a project. Leaning on a template to deliver a client’s website is not always a bad thing. However, … Read more

Is software engineering a good career? 6 reasons you’ll love it

Woman enjoying her work

Before starting a job it’s good to know that what you are jumping into has good long-term prospects. A good career is not just about the pay and perks. It should also offer a good work-life balance and keep you balanced. Software engineering is a good career that offers higher than average pay, job security, fulfilling work, and good career progression. Demand for developers is set to grow by more than 20% over the next decade and the current jobs shortage means finding work is easy.  Developers are in short supply which means they are highly valued and in demand. … Read more

Is software engineering stressful?

A stressed man

The media has taken a shine to software engineering. They take every opportunity to glorify it in movies and TV shows. But we don’t often consider if software engineering is stressful and the impact a career has on developers.  Overall, Software engineering is not a stressful career. It provides a stable and well-paid career in an industry that is set to expand by 22% by 2030. Software engineering offers a varied and challenging workload in a field with a lot of jobs. It puts the workers in the driving seat of their careers. Software engineering is fun and perfect for … Read more

Quiz: Is software engineering for you? Plus 10 traits you’ll need to succeed

Women smiling

It’s important to know whether a career in software engineering is right for you.  You don’t want to invest a lot of time learning to code only to find out that programming is not a good fit for you. Overall, if you enjoy problem-solving, constant learning, and have an analytical mindset then software engineering is for you. With an average salary of $87,580, software engineering is perfect for those wanting a stable, well-paying career.  However, a career in software development is not always easy. There are downsides to the job that some people may dislike.  We’ve taken a look at … Read more

Moving from web development to software development: Is it difficult?

Woman in front of a projector

New web developers tend to be curious about how they can transition into more ‘serious’ software development later in their careers. One of the benefits of becoming a programmer is the diverse and varied career that awaits you. There are so many areas you can specialize in as a software engineer.  Transitioning from one area of development to another is fairly simple. You just need some experience, and a portfolio to back up your work. With the improvement of web technology, moving from web development to software development is simple. They are now the same thing. Web development is a … Read more

Do tech companies drug test software engineers? 4 reasons not to worry!

Tech companies drug test kit

Getting drug tested at work seems like a cliche from some 90s drama.  However, the number of employees testing positive in the workplace has risen to its highest rate since 2004. Testing rates of testing vary by industry so it’s understood that people want to know whether tech companies drug test. Unfortunately, if you fail a pre-employment drugs test at a tech company your chances of getting hired are next to none.  Most tech companies do not drug test. The national average for jobs requiring pre-employment drug tests is less than 1.5%. For tech companies, most of which are based … Read more

Can software engineers have tattoos? 4 crucial considerations!

Women with tattoos

The world has moved on from the clean-cut businessman in a suit from the 90s. Dress codes have been relaxed and in many workplaces having visible tattoos is not an issue. As companies modernize, employees have been given more leeway to wear what they want and look however they please.  But can software engineers have tattoos? Yes, software engineers can have tattoos and shouldn’t face any difficulty getting a job with one. Around 30% of software engineers in the U.S. have gone under the needle and don’t have any problems at work.  However, it isn’t as simple as that. It … Read more

Is software engineering fun? 7 reasons programming is awesome

Man at work

It is understandable to want a job you enjoy. Most of us will be working into retirement and it’s important to spend our working life doing something fulfilling and fun. Office jobs get a bad rap for being boring because you are behind a desk all day. But can you still enjoy the work you do from behind a desk?  Is development included in the list of dull jobs? Or is software engineering fun? Around two-thirds of developers are happy with their role and Software engineering jobs frequently make it into the top ten of job satisfaction surveys. Software engineering … Read more

Is software engineering boring? 6 reasons to get excited

bored software engineer

It makes sense to worry about the day-to-day of a career before you step into it. Would-be developers often ask whether a career in software engineering is boring.  You don’t want to invest a lot of time leveling up through HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.Then onto a framework like React, only to find out that long-term software engineering is dull.  Understanding what it’s like to be a programmer will help you make an informed decision that will benefit you long term. Overall, software engineering is not boring. It has a job satisfaction score of 4.2 and consistently ranks high in employee satisfaction surveys. Software … Read more

Is software engineering competitive? 5 tips to land your dream job

Competitive software engineering

It’s understandable to want to get an idea of how competitive software engineering is before starting your coding journey. That way you can prepare yourself for the job hunt at the end of it. Software engineering is all the rage at the moment. Popular culture has taken a particular shine on the industry and put it in the spotlight. Has this outside influence made software engineering more competitive by pushing more people into the industry? Overall, software engineering is competitive. But the opportunities in development are set to grow 24% by 2026, compared to the 7% national average. There is … Read more

Is Web Development Boring? 5 Reasons To Start Coding Today!

Bored web developer

Enjoying your work is incredibly important, especially as you are going to be doing it for the next 30+ years. It’s good to get an idea of what it’s like to be a programmer before you start learning to code so you can understand the pitfalls of the role.  You don’t want to spend time learning JavaScript only to find out that you would find a career in web development boring. Web development is not boring. The tasks and challenges you encounter daily are interesting and varied enough to make web development a fantastic career choice.  Let’s take a deeper look at why coding … Read more