Coding or management? Jocelyn Harper on Advancing Your Software Development Career

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Every software engineer reaches a milestone in their career: do I want to continue coding or manage the people who code?

In business jargon, this is the emblematic division between the individual contributor and the management channel. It was once seen as a kind of inevitability that in order to advance one’s career one had to fight for coveted managerial positions. Helped by a historic shortage of software talent, companies have invested over the past decade to ensure clearer leads. No one takes advantage when a talented software developer pushes his way into a management role they don’t want, all to earn a pay and stature that isn’t bestowed on modest coders.

Some companies do it better than others, but most companies go to great lengths to encourage employees to take leadership positions for the sake of managing people, not side benefits. Now, vaulted titles like a senior software engineer can come with plush offers and benefits, and those with advice, wisdom, and communication skills to share will find themselves as evangelists, speakers, and others. authors.

One of these speakers is Jocelyne harper, the charismatic and connected software developer who is an idealized example of what coding bootcamps can do. Formerly the office manager of a construction company in Rehoboth, she turned a childhood hobby with code into a career in software with the help of a 12 week course. After leading several high-level corporate tech teams (including painful experiences), she launched a podcast and, as early as next month, an ebook under her brand. GitCute which offers advice on how junior software developers can plan to advance their careers.

Pre-order his book

Guide to the seniority of the software engineer»Reflects a seismic economic trend. Before a major industry consolidation, more than 23,000 people graduated from coding bootcamps in 2017 alone, out of concern for diversity. The professional model has taken its breath away to match the 65,000 computer science graduates that US universities pump out each year. Collectively, they are still lagging behind the torrential 22% growth in software developer roles that the U.S. economy will experience between 2019 and 2029, according to the. US Bureau of Labor Statistics. It’s five or six times faster than other types of roles.

Harper’s Book is therefore a self-help book for the tens of thousands of new professionals in a rapidly growing and changing type of career. It’s a book she said she wished she had a few years ago. On the timeless IC-versus-management fork, she advises new developers to do an early introspection. She has chosen the path of individual contributors, although she softens some of them as she gains more experience.

“As you go up in rank you always end up doing part of the interviewing and part of the management,” Harper told me in an interview on Club house, the audio platform only. (Although officially unofficial, Harper and I agreed that we would post a recap of our conversation.) “CIs just have a lot less paperwork.”

The book offers her advice on topics ranging from technical interviews to networking and salary negotiations.

“With a career in software, you have to decide why you are doing it,” Harper said. As one of the most competitive and coveted types of jobs in the world, negotiating compensation and benefits has become as complex as many managerial positions. Many are in technical positions for their love of code. Other engineers, Harper said, especially people who “grew up in poverty” and support family members, make these careers to maximize money. “If so, get the job done, get your money back and go home. “

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