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Why work as a software engineer?

16/03/18 Laura Preston - DipRM Manager, Contract & Interim

For anybody wanting to challenge themselves and forge a career at the cutting edge of technology, working in software and digital is the perfect place to start. With the country’s technology sector growing at twice the rate of the rest of the UK’s economy, and employing more than 1.5 million employees, the industry pulls in billions of pounds in investment: more than £13.8bn over the past five years. UK tech is growing and evolving- and impacting every sector from eCommerce to gaming as it goes.

A large portion of this success is down to the work of software engineers who are responsible for the development, operation and maintenance of the software that we use both in business and in our everyday lives. These engineers write and generate code (C, C#, C++, JAVA etc) for almost every bit of software we use today. For people wanting to challenge themselves and apply their coding skills to new opportunities, working as a software engineer can seem like the dream job- but this surprisingly diverse sector would perhaps suit more people than you’d think. Exciting, interesting and collaborative, working in software engineering offers people the chance to learn, test their creative skills, and work at the cutting edge of digital. 

 Here’s why you should be considering it.

 It’s in demand

If you’re a software engineer, you’ll never be out of a job. Everybody needs developers, and the demand for talented coders is growing exponentially all over the world as businesses try to build new software platforms, develop their existing ones and create exciting products to appeal to consumers in today’s digital marketplace.

In addition, large corporations- such as Hewlett-Packard- are turning to software as previous lines of business, like building PCs, fall by the wayside. All of these companies need software engineers, and given that many top CEOs say that recruiting for tech talent is one of the biggest challenges they face in the workplace, and with companies investing millions of pounds into attracting top talent, it’s a career that will always see you in work.

 It pays well

If you’re in demand, then you’re going to be paid a competitive wage- and for people working in software engineering, that’s exactly the case. Though the average developer can expect to make around £38,000 a year, this number increases exponentially the more experience that you accrue, with Principal Software Engineers, Senior Analysts and Senior Software Architects all earning above £70,000 a year. This is a sector that rewards hard work: with a huge number of different paths to follow, and areas to diversify in, with a bit of hard work you can rapidly climb the engineering career ladder, and earn a healthy salary as a result.

 You can be creative- and analytical

Some might think that working as a software developer means that you have to work with complicated datasets, be skilled at analytics, and apply logic to the problems you have to solve. That’s true, but it also offers surprising scope for you to be creative, too: given that your job is create new functionality from scratch, you have to be able to think creatively in order to solve problems, create software to the right design, and even use code in unconventional ways to get the solution that you want. It’s a commonly-held conception that coding is akin to a foreign language, and given that it’s such a flexible tool to work with, you’ll be able to challenge yourself both creatively and analytically.

 You’re always learning

Software engineering is an incredibly diverse sector to work in, and it’s always changing as the technology used to create new platforms develops. Though some skills- like knowing SQL, XML, Perl and HTML- are essential if you want to do well as a developer, you’ll also be working with brand new technology. As a Research Software Engineer, for instance, you are the person that researchers will work with to test their hypotheses and come up with new ways of coding, new insights into things like Big Data, and new technologies that could revolutionise your line of work- that others will have to learn a few years down the line.

 You can choose your own career path

Gone are the days of limited options and pre-determined careers: when you work in software engineering, you can diversify and specialise in myriad different areas. From Senior Software Test Engineers, who collect data to support the software team, to Software Development Engineers, who improve existing software and create new ones, to Algorithm design, creating mathematical processes - there’s a lot of choice in what you do. Further up the ladder, senior-level software engineers can choose whether to continue into a management-based role or specialise in a technical subject area that can become very complex and very well paid, such as Automation, Cloud Development or Embedded Systems. With the right training, you can even go into an IT consultancy role and start your own business, or enter the world of research and teaching.

Today, the only thing that’s holding you back is your imagination.

 Choose your future at Redline.

At Redline, we work hard to ensure that we match the brightest talent from around the tech industry to the best jobs in the market. Find out more about what we do here. We are currently recruiting for candidates with C++, C# and Java skills; browse our full range of Software Engineering jobs here.

For more information on Redline’s current contract software engineer jobs, and software jobs please contact Laura Preston, Manager, Contract & Interim, on 01582 878823 or email