Are you a detail-oriented person who likes to work on complex projects? If yes, then a career as a Software Engineer might be suitable for you!
A software engineer designs, build and maintain complex computer software systems. He is responsible for engineering software ranging from small-scale desktop programs and mobile apps to comprehensive global online platforms.
If you desire to pursue a career in this field, here is a simple guide that provides step-wise instructions to help you get there.
This blog will teach you how to become a software engineer in Australia, the job description, various degrees, courses, qualifications, essential skills, work-life, job prospects, and more.
1. Who Is A Software Engineer?
2. What Does A Software Engineer Do?
The software engineer's work encompasses all phases of the computing system and software development life cycle (SDLC). To make it easier to understand, we have divided the activities of a Software Engineer into three different phases:
Requirement Gathering Phase
In this phase, a Software Engineer researches and consults with end-users (customers), team members, and management to determine the development requirements of a system/app/program.
He offers crucial input at software development's prototyping and planning phases to ensure all the client's requirements are in line.
Software Development Phase
In this phase, a software development engineer applies computer science and engineering principles to design, build and test the end product before delivering it to the client.
Writes and maintains program codes that meet system requirements and adhere to best practices and industry standards.
Implements popular techniques, including structured analysis, sampling, and model building, to ensure an efficient, economical solution for their clients.
Develop programs to help find, recover, and store specific information, data, or documents.
Perform thorough testing of the programs and applications and fix errors to ensure it functions as per the user's requirements.
Offer advice to bring changes to the existing software.
Write and preserve technical specifications, operational procedures, and end-user documentation.
Software Testing And Release Phase
In this phase, he conducts the necessary tests to determine the efficiency of generated solutions. Also, he patches and performs regular updates to maintain the existing and newly-developed software for the long term.
Monitors the implementation, organizes validation tests, and assesses the system operation to ensure operational efficiency, functionality, and performance of generated solutions.
He performs maintenance tasks, including developing product-related enhancements, finding and eliminating bugs in the final product, and building it up through patches and updates.
Offer guidance in DevOps by formulating plans for its purchase and upgrade.
3. Qualifications Needed To Become A Software Engineer
A software engineer in Australia must have an undergraduate degree in software engineering or computer sciences.
Consider getting an undergraduate degree such as a Bachelor of Software Engineering or a Bachelor of Computer Science. The degree gives you comprehensive knowledge about programming, designing, and developing software to fulfil specific performance objectives via lectures, workshops, seminars, group discussions, presentations, and association work.
Certain schools also provide placement opportunities to candidates in reputed software companies that provide them with valuable practical experience. Alternatively, you can start working on some freelancing projects or join an internship program to get hands-on experience in developing software applications.
4. Skills Required To Become A Software Engineer In Australia
To qualify for an entry-level position in software engineering, you should have the following personal and technical software engineer requirements:
A deep understanding of the software development lifecycle process and principles of computer science and engineering
Knowledge of modern development tools to write software programs like Eclipse is required.
Should have a solid understanding of how to develop software, perform test cases and code reviews, and deploy software solutions through several environments
Capable of developing solutions and explaining their logic and reasoning to team members and team leaders
Good decision-making skills
Passion for computers and coding
Passion for computers
Ability to work as One Army (independently)
Good problem-solving, aptitude, and logical thinking skills
Strong interpersonal and collaborative skills to efficiently communicate with team members, and the customer
Should be detail-oriented, solution-oriented, and dedicated to the end game
A willingness to learn and stay updated with pertinent software apps, OS, and programming languages
Should possess perseverance and a high level of analytical and methodological skills that are necessary to work on a complex project
Should be a self-motivated, optimistic, and constant learner
5. Job opportunities For A Software Engineer
A software engineer's role requires a solid grasp and knowledge of computing systems, algorithm building, and technical architectures.
A potential software engineer with the above competencies and skills has a broad scope in Australia and abroad.
Common areas for employment include public and private sectors such as banks, educational organizations like schools and colleges, and financial institutions for the following job roles:
If not employed, a Software Engineer can even work independently as a consultant to build and repair software to the client's requirements, of the clients.
6. Steps To Become A Software Engineer In Australia
Software Engineer is a highly accessible career path for those naturally inclined to information technology.
When discussing how to become a software engineer in Australia, the key components are expertise in programming languages and qualifications to demonstrate your capabilities to employers.
The below step-by-step software engineer pathway guides you on how to make targeted efforts to pursue your dream career.
Step 1: Define Career Goals Clearly
Setting clear career goals is very important for long-term success. Decide whether you want to work as a freelance software engineer or in a tech company like Google, Reddit, etc.
Next, you need to figure out the type of role you wish to pursue as a software engineer. Once you get this clarity, you can develop adequate skills for that position.
Step 2: Get Qualified
Check the qualification you need to secure an entry-level position as a Software Engineer. Most Australian firm requires a candidate to complete a degree in computer science before they can hire you in their firm.
To complete either a Bachelor of Computer Science or a Bachelor of Software Engineering from a nationally recognized university.
Candidates who want to know how to become a software engineer without a degree should have complete certifications from reputed tech companies like Microsoft to gain competitive skills in this field.
Certifications are a great way to show employers that you possess the technical skills and are well-versed in relevant operating systems, programming languages, and software applications.
Step 3: Decide An Area Of Specialization
Software Engineering is a vast field that comprises numerous tools, technologies, platforms, OS, frameworks, and more. You can't be a Jack of all trades. You have to choose one field and attain mastery in it.
Understand the different job roles of a Software Engineer. Some of these are web development, mobile application development, DevOps, technical stack, etc., and pick one field that interests you.
Now put all your effort into gaining excellence in that field through certifications, training, workshops, and more. This way, getting specialized in one area increases your value and employability.
Step 4: Choose The Right Coding Language
You don't need to master all languages. Find a programming language that is highly demanded in the present and future and gain expertise.
Step 5: Secure An Internship
An internship is an excellent way to gain hands-on experience while studying or after completing a degree. This is where you learn to bring your theoretical knowledge into practice.
An internship offers you relevant industrial experience and constant guidance from experienced software engineers.
Also, look for coding boot camps, seminars, training workshops, hackathons, software engineer conferences and meetups in your city to boost your skills and resume.
Step 6: Apply For Positions
Ensure your CV highlights your qualifications, relevant skills, certifications, internship, work experience, and achievements. Build a fantastic portfolio website of the projects that shows you possess the necessary skills that an employer is looking for in a candidate for this role.
Step 7: Keep Growing
Information Technology and Software Development are ever-changing fields. You must constantly update yourself on recent products, business practices, and technologies to stay competitive. So, even after securing a job, you should continue learning by attending conferences, events, and seminars.
7. Types Of Education and Certification Programs For Software Engineers in Australia
Here are the top software engineering courses online that are an ideal way to build a solid theoretical and technical base to start in the software industry:
Diploma of Software Engineering
Graduate Certificate of Software Engineering
Bachelor of Software Engineering (Artificial Intelligence)
Bachelor of Software Engineering Honours
Bachelor of Software Engineering
Bachelor of Software engineering (Honours)
Master of Information Technology (Software Engineering)
Master of Software Engineering (Cloud Computing, Advanced) by Torrens University Australia
8. The Good And Bad Of Being A Software Engineer In Australia
Software Engineer is a vast and constantly evolving field that gives you endless opportunities to make an influential career. Different people can have different experiences and viewpoints about this career.
We have compiled a list of pros and cons to give you an unbiased gist of how it is to be a Software Engineer:
It is an ever-changing field where you see new developments and trends daily. Trends in operating systems, mobile and web apps, databases, web services, cyber security, big data, animations, gaming, analytics, image processing, machine learning, and more. Ideal for those who have the willingness to learn and stay constantly updated.
Supportive policies such as flexible and responsible work hours and the facility to work from home help professionals seek a work-life balance.
Working in an expert team from numerous backgrounds and locations to solve real-world problems gives a sense of fulfilment.
The jobs involve many things to explore and challenges to resolve in products or systems. You get the privilege to contribute to several domains such as healthcare, automotive, consumer electronics, and industrial and improve the operational efficiency in these areas.
A highly collaborative community where you get plenty of quality free resources online.
Overseas work opportunities that help you learn and stay updated on the technology and trends around the world
A high-paying job that includes bonuses, incentives, travel remuneration, and more.
It gives you umpteen learning opportunities to prepare you for a project manager role. You get ample work exposure in various areas such as software development, business requirement acquisition, design and implementation of modules, debugging, deployment, and mentoring the juniors. The more and quickly you learn, the better your chances of getting promoted.
Develops out-of-the-box thinking abilities to arrive at a solution.
A fascinating field where you get a great variety of work and new challenges to face at all times.
Flexible work hours and location give you complete control over your work.
Very competitive and dynamic industry. You have to learn a lot to sustain a place in the job. It sometimes gets very exhausting. It may also make you feel uncertain about your job.
The ability to work under strict deadlines and handle work pressure may get stressful at times. Situations when you can not resolve a bug in the program can create a lot of tension and anxiety.
The biggest challenge is learning new technologies to keep up with the market. Understanding them is challenging with many specialties in different programming languages, platforms, DevOps, design patterns, architecture, etc.
Unrealistic customer expectations
9. What Can You Earn As A Software Engineer?
The exact salary of a Software Engineer is determined based on the qualification, work experience, area of specialization, job role type, and recruitment location.
A typical software engineer in Australia earns between $90k and $130k.
The average software engineer salary in Australia for a front-end software developer engineer is approx. $76,943 per annum.
The median hourly software engineer salary in Australia is $60.17 per hour. The average software engineer salary in Sydney is $ 1,00,000 per annum.
Based on the software engineer's salary, the following are the three highest-paying cities for software e-engineers:
San Francisco, where the approx. compensation is $157,246
In New York, the approx. compensation is $135,127
In Seattle, the approx. compensation is $130,728
10. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Here are a few commonly asked questions about pursuing a Software Engineer career in Australia:
What Are The Working Conditions of a Software Engineer in Australia?
In the initial stages of a career, a software engineer doesn't need to travel. However, experienced engineers may have to travel regularly both within and outside their country to offer guidance and administer to other team members.
Software engineers are, in general, employed on a full-time basis. However, schedules could vary based on their duties and duration. A typical software engineer works 40 hours a week. As per the project demand, he may need additional shifts too. While working late at night is typical, they rarely have to work on weekends. This way, the job offers a work-life balance.
The nature of employment in this career is both contractual and permanent. A software engineer has to work in a team within the organization. They must interact with their superiors and communicate with global clients to get the requirements right.
The job does not require physical strength. What it takes is intelligence, dedication, and strong mental strength.
Most software engineers work in urban cities than in rural areas.
What Is The Demand For Software Engineers?
As businesses are getting computerized worldwide, the demand for software engineers will continue to increase for many years throughout the globe. According to industry experts, the opportunities for software engineers will keep growing faster than the national average.
Where Can I Get Free Software Engineering Courses?
Several training centres offer free software engineering courses to students all over the globe.
Following are the areas covered under the course:
Foundations of Software Engineering course
Laboratory in Software Engineering course
Software Engineering Concepts course
Program Analysis course
The free Software Engineering training course helps students get an overview of software engineering, software engineering concepts, and practical ways to implement them.
You can study this course via video tutorials for seven to ten minutes. Students can even download these courses at their convenience.
To learn more about free software engineering courses online, check out the below websites:
How To Become A Software Engineer at Google And Other Top Companies?
Following this four-step process, you can easily land a job at Google and other top companies in the world:
Step 1: Develop Excellent Coding Skills
This is the commonest prerequisite to becoming a Software Engineer. Though the coding interviews are generally tough at Google, several online resources will help you prepare for that.
Sites such as freeCodeCamp, Udemy, Pluralsight, and Codecademy offer video tutorials on Web development, Game development, and Mobile development to help you learn programming fundamentals.
You can also enrol in relevant certification programs to develop expert programming skills.
Step 2: Learn Algorithms And Data Structures
Try to learn what type of interview questions a firm mostly asks the candidates. Enhance your knowledge of those topics before you appear for the interview.
Companies like Google mostly ask questions about algorithms and data structures in their technical interviews.
Step 3: Work on Your Projects
Focussing on how to become a software engineer on Reddit, develop your portfolio of personal projects to demonstrate your technical skills effectively.
Several help forums and abundant online resources can help you resolve technical issues while working on the project.
Step 4: Get An Internship
Register on job networking sites like LinkedIn to start in the programming world. Simultaneously, attend interviews with top IT companies for software engineer jobs.
Also, register on websites like Meetup that offer in-person networking services.
Other things that you must try are:
Attend recruiting campus events and career fairs by universities
Referrals are, again, a great way to get a job in your friend's company
Keep applying online till you get the first job
Following these steps will improve your chances of getting the first interview call from Google, Reddit, and other top tech firms.
How to Become A Software Engineer Without a Degree?
Many candidates wonder whether they can become software engineers without a computer science degree. The answer is Yes. More than a degree, your skills and expertise are essential to get the initial break in this industry.
Relevant certifications, internships, and tech jobs can all help you master software engineering and programming principles and make you employable for the Software Engineer job.
You must show your expertise, high performance, and relevant job experience to enter the software industry without a degree. Certifications from nationally recognized institutions, a diverse project portfolio, and positive client comments will contribute to building trust.
Here are a few steps that can help you get your first job as a Software Engineer without a degree:
Gain knowledge about the software industry
Choose a programming language and get specialized in it.
Secure an internship or work on a real-world project on your own.
Build an impressive portfolio and a CV that highlights the skills and qualifications that the prospective employer will look for in a candidate
Develop networks by expanding your social network online and offline to ensure you get all job openings.
Practice more and more mock interviews to become more confident and increase the chances of success.
Software Engineer is a highly prestigious qualification and a rewarding career. Many people aspire to pursue this career in Australia and worldwide.
Accessible online learning platforms offering entry-level and advanced online software engineering courses make it easier to become a Software Engineer without any degree.
Whether you are a fresh high school graduate or an experienced professional wishing for a career change, the above information will help make you a Software Engineer.
Useful Links to Explore: