10 Tips on How to Improve your Software Development Skills

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First things first, what is a software developer, and what do they do? Well, they create computer software and applications. The people who create things such as Google, Microsoft, Facebook, etc. – at least that’s just one part of it.  

It’s 1990, and the words casino software developers are uttered amongst a group of friends, and everyone is confused at what was said. Fast forward to 2022, and those words are extremely common and encouraged! Now, if you are a software developer who is only just starting, keep reading because we have some tips that are going to help you with your career. 

Read

We understand that software developers, or devs as they are commonly known, are highly technical and see the world in, well, code. But this does not take away from the fact that they do multiple everyday things just like other folks do. One such thing is reading.

No matter where you are in your career, picking up a book on the type of development you are into or currently doing is vital for improving your skills. Maybe you find yourself in a slump and want to look out for something different; then, you can first read up on this new dev work you want to get into. Think about it; it’s both research and learning. It is also a fun time to be a dev since the software development space is evolving and becoming even more interesting. 

Have your work reviewed

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As scary as it may seem, it is important to have your work reviewed. Especially since you are the one writing code and creating new online spaces, whether websites or apps. But getting your work reviewed, especially your code, will help now and overall. What this does is give you a unique perspective on things. An outsider, if you will, will see things differently and offer their view giving you a whole new perspective. Of course, not all advice is great advice, but if you are speaking to people who are aware, chances are they will offer valuable feedback.  

Journal

We understand that this might not be the most conventional way to improve your skills, but we promise it will help. A lot of people choose not to journal, and that’s okay, but it does help, especially in this line of work. So how does it help? Well, it allows you to record your highs and lows, what you still want to do with your dev career, etc. You can also record everything you have learned to see how far you have come. 

Study original code

Have you worked on an exciting project? Chances are you have. So here you can go back to the drawing board and relook at the original code. What this does is show you how to solve complex problems with simple code. How would you know it’s complex? Well, any great project comes with a problem to solve, which leaves it up to the dev team to come up with the solution. This gives you the chance to experiment too! 

Have a side project/hustle

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To stay on top of your game and improve it, try having a side project or hustle. This can be anything freelance over and above your full-time job. After hours, either freelance for someone else or do some work for yourself. This is one of the best ways to stay in form, and the best part is you can choose the projects you want to work on.  

Learn a new programming language

We get that here you might be apprehensive, however, it does wonders for your career to learn a new programming language. What this does is help expand your knowledge, and that is essentially what you want. So go on, find a new programming language and learn it. There are also guides on the most in-demand programming languages, so keep an eye out for them. 

Find a mentor and be a mentor

A lot of what we learn in careers is taught by mentors. Sometimes we don’t realize it at the time that we are being mentored, but this offers a lot. Working alongside smart people, or rather, people with similar interests, is a wonderful thing. Latch onto someone (with their permission) and learn as much as you can. On the other end, become a mentor to someone who is just starting. Show them the ropes and give them some much-needed tips and tricks.  

Set goals

Depending on where you work, your company might only want solutions and the code to work but does not consider the process to get there. This is where goal setting comes in, especially if you are overwhelmed with work. You need to look at what works for the company you work for and what they are after. Here is where you set your goals. If the company wants efficiency over accuracy, then that will ultimately be your goal.  

Problem-solving

A software developer’s biggest challenge is solving problems, and this is done through code. The more problems you solve, the better you become at understanding how things work. And ultimately, it will make you a brilliant developer later.  

And finally, read and write code

Now, this is not your side hustle work; this is work and training for you. Take some time to write your code daily, and grade it too. As cliche as it may be, practice does make perfect.