Being a fresher trying to bag an entry-level role in the software industry can be an uphill task. With the ever-evolving technologies and norms in the IT industry, aspiring developers are never certain as to what exactly the companies are looking for.
The scope for a career as a software developer is unparalleled as the world becomes more and more reliant on software. This is evident by the fact that investors can blindly invest in the stocks of tech corporations like Infosys , TCS, and Wipro. They know it's only going one direction - Up.
However, the competition is equally fierce. Budding developers need to stand out in order to get hired by the top tech companies. They need to perfectly fit the employers' requirements.
But, what qualities do these freshers need to crack job interviews?
What traits do companies look for while hiring for developer/engineer roles?
Here are a few crucial ones-
Now, let's understand each of them one-by-one.
By basic coding skills, we mean that the companies want to know the Whys instead of the Whats.
They need to see if you're applying the right logic to problems. They want to get an insight into your thought process during coding interviews.
That's why most of the top companies today ask basic questions related to Data structures and algorithms in interviews.
Having a good hold on DSA means you can think of innovative solutions and help in building new features with ease.
A good number of coders think that they don't need communication skills to sail their boats and that couldn't be further away from the truth.
A good developer needs to be able to explain things to non-technical stakeholders.
In the professional world, communication is not about using big jargon words and complex sentences. It's about how you can explain complex situations in a simplified manner.
One of the traits found in good developers is that they are good listeners. They need to ask the right questions to the right people and collaborate with them to provide solutions. As they are often building the end product, they need to connect with analysts, marketers, designers, and business heads on a regular basis.
So, effective communication is a must.
Ready to Debug
Average programmers often fear bug fixing as it's a complex process. But companies want someone who is not afraid to go right into the code and find those annoying bugs.
A way companies can know that you're comfortable with testing is by asking you to write sample test cases. You should be capable of writing Unit tests and the framework for testing before you actually start writing the code. This way you can prevent bugs beforehand.
Oftentimes in entry-level roles, developers are asked to read and work on the existing code rather than writing new code.
During construct week projects at Masai, students get involved in peer programming as they have to read and understand the code written by their team members in the process of building a website.
Software development is all about solving problems. So, a developer must have the ability to take the problems head-on and pull off different cards from their arsenal to solve them.
Plus, they should also be able to think critically about their own code and not just call it a day once they are done writing it. They should be skeptical and test their solution on different parameters before sending it forward.
Critical thinking skills include-
• Breaking down big goals into simpler ones
• The ability to examine their code from a different perspective
Adhere to deadlines
It sounds like a simple requirement but in actuality, it's a rare trait. A developer should be able to pick up a project and see it through from beginning to end within the deadline. It's upon the individuals what process they're following, what resources they're using, where they're getting their ideas from, etc. but they should be able to ship the project on time.
Many programmers lack this incentive as they either overspend time on a certain part of the project or they skip a few things entirely.
Companies look at the candidate's portfolio to assess this quality. How many successful projects they have listed on their GitHub profile and were these projects shipped on time or not - these are a few basic parameters upon which a candidate can be tested.
Well versed with browser tools
As we know that a website's appearance may change across different browsers, a developer needs to use browser tools to maintain consistency.
They allow developers to customize web pages according to the browser's feel and theme.
Also, developers should be able to use responsive design techniques in order to adjust the site layout for different devices such as computers or mobile phones.
Adaptability to different tech stacks
Innovation is an ongoing process. We see new technologies and tools being released every year to provide better features and efficiency.
If that's not the case, companies decide to build certain projects on a different tech stack than what they have been using for previous projects.
In such situations, developers are expected to quickly adapt to the new tech stack and work on the project.
For example, you've learned MERN stack but the company you have applied for uses MEAN stack. In that scenario, they wouldn't want you to take months and months to get proficient on the MEAN stack.
The quicker you can adapt the better your chances of success in the software industry.
Employers assess this quality during interviews by checking how strong your fundamentals are when it comes to programming. Having stronger basics goes a long way in adapting to newer technologies.
Here are some other ways you can increase your adaptability quotient -
• Have a stronghold on Data structures & Algorithms
• Focus on imaginative learning - Understand the logic behind the concepts
Balanced in Pragmatism and Perfectionism
Companies want developers who can be both pragmatic as well as perfectionists depending upon the situation. They should be able to provide refined and inventive solutions which require time, as well as quick off the mark, dirty hacks that can be achieved in a matter of hours.
Case in point, building a minimum viable product would need a developer to start thinking from the outset and deliver work at pace.
While one would need to have attention to detail in order to release a new feature for the end-user.
This is one of the staple questions that is guaranteed to be asked in every job interview ever. A software developer role is no different.
Projects happen in teams. Every team member contributes with their specializations to take the project live. It goes without saying that a developer needs to connect well with other members, both on a personal and a professional level to bring the best out of each other.
Teamwork includes - the ability to distribute tasks, social awareness, respecting each other's deadlines, having constructive discussions about each other for improvement, and the ability to handle disputes.
Your project's success would be directly proportional to the team working skills you have.
If you can demonstrate any of your past projects where you have worked in a team setup, that would be a huge plus for the employers to hire you.
Let's be honest - No company would want a lazy, demotivated employee and especially in an important role of a developer. Proactiveness is a sign of strong passion and drive. Someone who is proactive is ready to take up newer challenges.
While working for the company, they're also focused on their growth and that leads them to work with twice the enthusiasm. These are the people who demand tasks rather than falling behind in the scheme of things, and why wouldn't employers like that?
Proactive people also tend to rank higher on the responsibility quotient as they don't shy away from taking initiative and kickstarting things.
Therefore, if you like being proactive and take new challenges at work, you must demonstrate this quality in your interviews.
Here are two ways you can do that -
• By adding a past experience in your resume that exudes you're proactive.
• By putting in the effort to solve a question in the interview that you haven't come across before.
So, these were the 10 qualities you need to have if you want to build a scalable career as a Software Developer.
Students at Masai get equipped with all these industry-relevant skills and tools and bag placements in top companies such as Ola, Swiggy, ShareChat, Dream11, Freshworks, etc. at high-end packages.
Most of these students come from non-tech backgrounds and come out as full-stack developers in 7 months.
They start studying at zero upfront fee and pay only once they get a job worth INR 5 LPA or more.
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