Computer Programmer

Last Updated:
September 19, 2023

Job Description Overview

A computer programmer's job is to write code for software programs. They use programming languages, such as Java or Python, to create applications that can run on computers and mobile devices. Computer programmers work with software engineers to design software and then develop a plan to create the program. They write code that tells the computer what to do and test it to make sure it works properly. Programmers also fix any problems that arise and make updates when needed. They work in a variety of fields such as business, healthcare, education, and government agencies. A successful computer programmer must have excellent problem-solving skills and be able to work in a team. They must be detail-oriented, have good communication skills, and possess strong analytical abilities. Overall, a computer programmer job description requires an individual who is passionate about technology and enjoys working with computers.

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Job Duties and Responsibilities

  • A computer programmer writes and tests code for software applications.
  • They collaborate with designers, developers, and engineers to create new features and fix bugs.
  • Computer programmers use programming languages like Java, Python, or C++ to write code.
  • They analyze data, test software, and automate tasks to improve software quality.
  • Programmers regularly update their skills to keep up with new technologies and coding practices.
  • They may work on a variety of applications, including desktop, mobile, and web software.
  • Computer programmers work closely with project managers to ensure projects are completed on time and on budget.
  • Programmers must be detail-oriented and able to troubleshoot and debug software issues quickly.
  • They may also be responsible for writing technical documentation to help users understand how to use software applications.

Experience and Education Requirements

To become a computer programmer in the software engineering industry, you typically need a combination of education and experience. This might mean completing a bachelor's degree in computer science, software engineering or a related field. During your studies, you will learn programming languages such as Python, Java, or C++. You'll also learn how to design, develop and test software applications. 

Experience is equally important, and can come from internships, freelancing, or working on open-source projects. This will help you to build your skills and knowledge and demonstrate that you can write code effectively. Employers also typically look for good communication skills, problem-solving abilities, attention to detail, and an ability to work in a team. With the right combination of education and experience, a future as a computer programmer can be very successful!

Salary Range

Computer Programmer salary range varies depending on experience, skill level, and location. In the United States, according to Glassdoor, the national average salary for a Computer Programmer is around $76,526 per year. However, the range can go as low as $51,000 per year for entry-level positions and as high as $115,000 per year for senior positions. 

In other countries, the salary range can also differ. For instance, in Canada, the national average salary is around CAD 65,500 per year, according to payscale.com. In the United Kingdom, the average salary is around £31,344 per year, according to totaljobs.com. 

When it comes to the software engineering industry, the salary range for a Computer Programmer can significantly vary. This is because the industry is such a broad field, and the salary range can depend on the specific job, company size, and location. 

Sources: 

  • https://www.glassdoor.com/Salaries/computer-programmer-salary-SRCH_KO0,19.htm
  • https://www.payscale.com/research/CA/Job=Computer_Programmer/Salary
  • https://www.totaljobs.com/salary-checker/average-programmer-salary

Career Outlook

Computer programming is a field within the Software Engineering industry that has been growing steadily for years. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of computer and information technology occupations, including computer programmers, is projected to grow 11 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. This growth is due to the continued demand for new and innovative technology in various industries, including healthcare, finance, and manufacturing. With the rise of technology and the need for software, computer programmers will continue to be in high demand over the next five years. Therefore, pursuing a career in computer programming is a smart choice for those interested in technology and software development.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What is a computer programmer?

A: A computer programmer is a professional who writes computer programs and scripts to solve problems or perform tasks on computers or other devices.

Q: What skills do I need to be a computer programmer? 

A: Computer programming requires skills in logic, critical thinking, problem-solving, attention to detail, creativity, and communication. Knowledge of programming languages, operating systems, and software development tools is also necessary.

Q: What kinds of programs does a computer programmer create?

A: A computer programmer can create any type of program, including games, business applications, web applications, mobile apps, and operating systems. They can also work on software for embedded devices or other specialized systems.

Q: What is the work environment like for a computer programmer?

A: Many computer programmers work in offices or remotely, and the work can be both collaborative and individual. Long hours of sitting and staring at a computer screen are common, so it's important to take breaks and practice good ergonomics.

Q: What is the job outlook for computer programmers?

A: The job outlook for computer programmers is good, with a projected growth rate of 8% from 2019 to 2029. However, automation and outsourcing may affect the number of available jobs in the future. Continuous learning and staying updated on new technologies are important for job security.


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