5 Tips to Become a Recognized Software Developer
If you want to be truly recognized as a software developer, you should showcase your best qualities. Highlight what you're good at, but also share and help others out.
Join the DZone community and get the full member experience.Join For Free
Software developers are the unsung heroes of the industry. They toil tirelessly performing crucial digital duties behind the scenes, but are rarely acknowledged for their contributions to the success of the venture, at least publicly.
As with any field, however, there’s always the possibility of garnering some well-deserved acclaim—provided you do outstanding work and are willing to devote time to polishing your professional image.
With that in mind, here’s a handful of sensible software developer tips to help you climb to new heights in your chosen career.
1. Make Contributions to GitHub and StackOverflow
If you want to make waves in the sea of software developers flooding today’s job market, you’ve got to have a preeminent online presence. GitHub and StackOverflow may be where fledgling programmers go to cut their teeth, but they’re also where code-writing rockstars are born.
What’s great about these platforms is that they encourage free, open exchange between developers of all different skill levels, and specialties. You don’t have to know it all to become a respected member of one of these programming communities.
The entire point is to ask questions, trade ideas, receive constructive feedback on your pet projects, and make use of the endless resources you have at your disposal thanks to the input of all.
StackOverflow is especially useful for unraveling abstruse coding quandaries and strengthening your problem-solving skills. Savvy developers will take the principles they learn there and use them to build something special on GitHub.
2. Upgrade Your LinkedIn Profile
Let’s make something clear — your CV is where you highlight your experience, qualifications, and any attributes that might make you a good fit for the job you’re seeking. LinkedIn is where you display your colorful plumage in an effort to win the attention of employers and industry icons.
First and foremost, you’ll want to optimize your profile by including as many keywords as possible that are relevant to the position you’re seeking. If you’re a wizard with Python, go ahead and brag about it. If you have a burning passion for edge computing, don’t be shy about saying so. Recruiters on the hunt for a developer with a particular set of skills will be far more likely to come across your profile if it mentions those skills explicitly by name.
Visibility aside, your chief task is to portray yourself as someone that other people will actually want to work with. That means looking like you’ve got it together in your profile photo, drafting a brief yet punchy summary, and filling your “Experience” and “Skills and Endorsements” sections with your best work.
3. Share Your Knowledge With Other Developers
Nobody likes a miser.
Sharing is caring, it’s true. But just as importantly, it’s a great way to make a lasting impression on other programmers and get your name out there as a result.
One simple way to do this is to host conference-style webinars, which you can use to explore effective programming strategies, spark inspiration for future advancements, and go in-depth about the insights you’ve gained throughout your coding career. You might also take the time to create and post engaging, one-of-a-kind content on your personal website or blog for anyone to see and utilize.
If you really want to turn heads, you could even try packaging your proficiency in a more viral format on YouTube or TikTok. There are no rules when it comes to how you market yourself, and off-book is infinitely better than by-the-book if your goal is to get noticed.
Regardless of how you decide to do it, imparting a portion of your wisdom has two huge advantages. It spreads the wealth, so to speak, filling the web with exciting new ideas and elevating everyone’s game. It also gives the programming community at large a chance to see just how good you are at what you do.
4. Know How to Showcase Your Strengths on Your Resume
It’s no longer enough to just put down the one or two programming languages you’re most comfortable with within your credentials and hope for the best.
To pull ahead of the pack these days, you need to know how to do it all — at least well enough to get your foot in the door, at which point you can pursue a higher degree of mastery.
An impressive resume-cover letter combo is the key that will open that door. It’s therefore advisable to spend some time studying exceptional cover letter examples or planning a new and improved visual resume.
This is a golden opportunity to highlight the breadth of your expertise to prospective employers. You may feel like a fraud claiming a language you’re only barely competent in, but the point is to demonstrate that you’re familiar with all the major tools of the trade and are capable of continual learning. Just be sure to explain the “how” and “why” of your skillset instead of stopping at the “what.”
Software developers, like the projects they manage, are works in progress. Employers understand this and are constantly on the lookout for promising talent to mold and refine.
5. Build Something Small — but Useful — From the Ground Up
All great artists have their masterpieces, momentous works that stand the test of time and eventually become synonymous with their creators. Da Vinci had the Mona Lisa. Mozart had “The Marriage of Figaro.” Pauly Shore had “Biodome.” Why should programmers be any different?
Your pet project doesn’t have to be some revolutionary innovation that changes the landscape of coding forever. It just needs to be something you can point to and say with pride, “I did that.” And, ideally, it should be something that makes life a little easier for someone else.
It could be a novel app feature, a helpful program mod, or a trouble-saving browser extension no one else has thought of yet. What matters is having some sort of tangible proof of your ingenuity and utility as a developer.
It may take some time for you to get your creative juices flowing and come up with something of value to send out into the world, but you’ll no doubt consider it time well spent once you’ve had the satisfaction of adding it to your resume.
Who knows? If handled shrewdly, that something of value could kickstart a successful freelancing career or even help you cultivate a vision for your own software company.
Published at DZone with permission of . See the original article here.
Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.