Software Developer Job Skills

When it comes to software developer job skills, coding is just one area of expertise. Successful software developers need to understand general programming language concepts and structure, database architecture, and network infrastructure. And then there are software developer competencies such as critical thinking, problem solving, and project management. 

A bachelor of applied science (BAS) degree in software development will teach the technical and critical thinking skills that companies are looking for.

Here are some areas of expertise that are in high demand.

Object-Oriented Programming

Object-oriented programming is a programming model rather than a programming language. OOP structures code elements as objects. These objects are assigned to classes. Software developers use object-oriented programming to structure their development process within different programming languages. For example:

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ACC’s BAS in Software Development teaches software developer job skills such as coding, database administration, network security, and more.

Java vs. Javascript

Java is a popular object-oriented programming language. Software developers use Java to build and manage enterprise-wide applications that manage vast amounts of data. Developers also use Java to build mobile apps and video games. Java’s versatility is one of the reasons why employers look for software developers who have Java experience. 

Although Javascript uses objects too, it’s primarily a coding language. Software developers use Javascript in website development to build front-end applications, i.e., what the user sees and interacts with. 

What Is Python?

Python is another popular OOP language. It is open-source; i.e., it’s not company-owned. Users don’t need to buy a license to use it.

Python programmers take an almost philosophical approach to coding. A Python program includes a lot of white space. Software developers must use a specific syntax or the code won’t compile. Some software developers appreciate these rules because that means there’s only one right way to program in Python.

There’s a huge community of programmers (Pythonistas) and libraries with thousands of objects to automate software development.

Python is an excellent programming skill for sysadmins, IT infrastructure, and desktop programming developers. 


Other software developer job skills include SQL, or structured query language. Software developers use SQL in database management. SQL is a powerful programming language that lets developers manage huge amounts of data. Without SQL, companies wouldn’t be able to efficiently access their data and gain insights from it. Industries such as finance, healthcare, and entertainment generate large amounts of data, which developers must properly store, access and keep secure. SQL is one of the primary tools for the job. That’s why employers look for developers with SQL skills

What about MySQL? MySQL is also a powerful relational database tool. It has a number of different features than SQL and works on different platforms. One of the main advantages of MySQL is that it is open source code. 

What is Oracle (and Why Is It in High Demand)?

Oracle is a proprietary SQL database management programming language. Many companies use Oracle, making this skillset one of the most in-demand software development competencies out there.

One of the biggest advantages of Oracle is that developers can scale it up or down more easily than its competitors, making it more efficient and more cost effective than SQL. 

Other Oracle features make it easier for users to share resources. The way that an Oracle database is set up means that any data failure would be local, and couldn’t impact the entire network. 

Database Administration

Virtually every company needs a database management software development team, which is why OOP and SQL are essential software developer job skills.

When developers learn SQL, MySQL, Oracle, or other relational database management programming language, they are well-prepared for a career as a database administrator (DBA).

What Is Database Administration?

Database administrators maintain and secure data that companies and other organizations need to conduct their business. Database administration is about much more than just storage. Users must be able to access the data and use it to support decision making, strategy setting, and goal definition.

DBAs choose the right software and hardware for their company’s specific needs. They have to understand the benefits and disadvantages of an OOP database application vs. a SQL programming language. They make sure that the data inside a database is accurate and secure while accessible to users. 

Different Types of Database Administrators

Database administrators have different job responsibilities. 

  • System administrators manage all of a company’s hardware and software. 
  • Database architects design databases. 
  • Data warehouse administrators upload and store data into data repositories, whether that is a server onsite or in the cloud. 

Database Administration and Cloud Computing. 

Cloud computing allows companies to access data over the Internet rather than store it onsite. Companies pay a subscription to a provider, which is responsible for storing, managing, and protecting the data assets. Depending on the service, software developers and database administrators can access the hardware and software they need from their desktops, without having any of that infrastructure onsite.

The advantages of cloud computing are many. 

  • Companies have access to software and back-end servers without having to buy or maintain their own infrastructure.
  • A subscription service is less expensive than building out a proprietary system. 
  • Cloud computing is more efficient for companies that have large databases to manage, such as health insurers or financial companies.
  • Database administrators no longer have to worry about the physical security of their data, although network security will always be a huge concern.

Network Security

Whether data is stored onsite, in a company’s own server farm, or in the cloud, network security is a database administrator’s most important job. They have to prevent data losses due to outside cyberattacks, data corruption due to tech failures, and user error.

A data breach can put a company’s business at stake, and it may also put customers’ lives and livelihoods at risk. The increase in the amount of data that is stored in databases also means that the stakes have gotten even higher.

DBAs protect their physical servers from breaches. Or, if they use cloud computing, they make sure that their company follows security best practices (strong passwords, spam filtering, and cybersecurity training).

Best practices also include:

  • Scheduled software updates and security patches
  • Regular penetration testing
  • System monitoring
  • Using firewalls
  • Employee training

DBAs work with cybersecurity specialists to ensure the safety of their company’s data.

Software Developer Job Skills: Demand and Wages

Software developer salaries vary based on the specific skills and job title, as well as years of experience. The market is strong. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that overall demand for software developers should grow 25% between 2021-2031.

What can software developers earn at the start of their careers? Here are some salaries for the Central Texas area.

ACC Software Developer BAS – Earn the Skills that Employers Want

A bachelor’s degree in software development can be a stepping stone to a rewarding career in tech. ACC’s BAS in Software Development is designed to let you build on your associate’s degree and work at your own pace in building these and other skills for a software developer job. Find out how you can get an affordable bachelor’s degree in this in-demand field. 

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