One thing is for sure, developers can live very complex lives. While every developer is different, there are many things that people who work in the field have in common. There are also many different things that are important to them and that they care about. For example, many developers want to learn while working, maintain the work-life balance, and earn a good salary. The life of a developer is complex. Most developers just want to code!
Stack Overflow and a Developer’s Life
Stack Overflow is a top website and community for developers to learn, collaborate, and advance their careers. In fact, about every 8 seconds, a developer asks a question on the website.So every year Stack Overflow compiles a survey of developers which includes 56,033 coders in 173 countries. Since it is so detailed and encompassing the survey is the best data and insight we have about the lives of developers around the globe.
Developer Employment Status
Even though being a developer is a solid profession, developers are at many different stages of their careers. Luckily, the majority of professional developers currently have jobs. In fact, according to the Stack Overflow developer survey, 91% of developers said they are “gainfully employed.” This means that they are employed full-time, self-employed, or working steady freelance jobs. Only 1.8% reported that they are currently unemployed and 12.6% are students. This is a very high employment rate. In addition, only 15% of developers are actively looking for a job. However,78% of developers are still interested in hearing about new job opportunities. Developers are very willing to pursue new opportunities within the field.
Who’s looking for a New Job?
As you can see, there are a few developers who are actively looking for a new job and many who are interested in new job opportunities. Of the people looking for new jobs the highest percentage, 25.9%, are currently students. The second highest percentage, 20.1%, are analysts.In fact, according to the Stack Overflow survey in the United States, Students, Analysts, and Quality Assurance Developers are most likely to be actively looking for a new job. Designers, Executives, and Machine Learning Developers are the least likely to want to hear about new jobs from employers.
Job Priorities of Developers
One thing the Stack Overflow survey uncovered is that developers have many priorities when it comes to their jobs and work-life. Like most people, their top priority is their salary. 62.7% of people surveyed listed salary as their number one priority. But money isn’t necessarily what everyone cares about most. In fact, 37% of developers didn’t even include salary on their list of priorities in the survey. Otherings that are important to developers include company culture(41.8%), quality colleagues (39.9%), flexible work hours (37.1%), building something that's significant (35.9%), and building something that's innovative(31.2%). Some of the least mentioned priorities include industry(9.1%), company size(7.8%), and job title (7.3%). It is clear that developers look at their job as just one component of their life.They want a lot of things, but mainly they just want to code!
Developers Love to Learn
The annual survey also revealed that developers are people who love to continue learning and improving. It is clear that this makes them better at their jobs and keeps them in demand. The developer field is not an area where a person can stop learning and growing and continue to be successful. Developers also want to use their talents to create new and exciting things. 70.1% of developers report that they are very interested in building something new. 64.3% want to have control over product decisions and 44.1% want to improve an existing application. To the contrary, only 24.9% care about having their own office and 17.7% care about ending the workday at the same time every day. Clearly, once developers are situated in a job, they want to learn things and build. Developers feel rewarded by the work that they are doing and want to make sure their abilities, skills, and knowledge are maximized.
As we said before, money may not be the most important thing to developers, but it is still important. Developers are well paid no matter what their job, but still some positions have higher average salaries. Executive level positions like Vice President of Engineering or Chief Information Officer have the highest average salary at $150,314 while Engineering Managers average$143,122. The lowest paid position is the System Administrator which averages$79,684.Still not a bad salary when you consider the median household income in America across all jobs is $51,939.
A Developers’ Life
As you can see the life of a developer is very diverse and challenging. The annual Stack Overflow survey gives us a great overview of who developers are and what they care about. They care about many things but it is important to remember that every person and situation is different. However, it is still useful to look at the aggregate data and pick out the trends for this in-demand career.