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Summary Report for:
15-1133.00 - Software Developers, Systems Software

Research, design, develop, and test operating systems-level software, compilers, and network distribution software for medical, industrial, military, communications, aerospace, business, scientific, and general computing applications. Set operational specifications and formulate and analyze software requirements. May design embedded systems software. Apply principles and techniques of computer science, engineering, and mathematical analysis.

Sample of reported job titles: Developer, Infrastructure Engineer, Network Engineer, Publishing Systems Analyst, Senior Software Engineer, Software Architect, Software Developer, Software Engineer, Systems Coordinator, Systems Engineer

View report: Summary  Details  Custom

Tasks  |  Tools & Technology  |  Knowledge  |  Skills  |  Abilities  |  Work Activities  |  Work Context  |  Job Zone  |  Education  |  Credentials  |  Interests  |  Work Styles  |  Work Values  |  Related Occupations  |  Wages & Employment  |  Job Openings  |  Additional Information

Tasks

  • Modify existing software to correct errors, to adapt it to new hardware, or to upgrade interfaces and improve performance.
  • Develop or direct software system testing or validation procedures.
  • Direct software programming and development of documentation.
  • Consult with customers or other departments on project status, proposals, or technical issues, such as software system design or maintenance.
  • Analyze information to determine, recommend, and plan installation of a new system or modification of an existing system.
  • Consult with engineering staff to evaluate interface between hardware and software, develop specifications and performance requirements, or resolve customer problems.
  • Design or develop software systems, using scientific analysis and mathematical models to predict and measure outcome and consequences of design.
  • Prepare reports or correspondence concerning project specifications, activities, or status.
  • Confer with data processing or project managers to obtain information on limitations or capabilities for data processing projects.
  • Store, retrieve, and manipulate data for analysis of system capabilities and requirements.

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Tools & Technology

Tools used in this occupation:

Central processing unit CPU processors — Graphics processing unit GPU; Multi-core central processing unit CPU
Computer servers — Application servers
High end computer servers — Directory servers
Integrated circuit testers — In circuit emulators ICE; Logic analyzers
Mainframe computers

Technology used in this occupation:

Data base management system software — Computer Associates integrated data management system CA-IDMS; Distributed database management software; Microsoft SQL Server; MySQL software
Development environment software — C; Embedded systems development software; IBM Rational Rose XDE Developer D93; Microsoft Visual Basic
Object or component oriented development software — C++; Document Object Model DOM Scripting; Python; Simple API for XML SAX
Operating system software — Microsoft Windows; UNIX; VxWorks software; Win CE
Program testing software — Defect tracking software; Fault testing software; IBM Rational PurifyPlus; Unit testing software

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Knowledge

Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Engineering and Technology — Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Telecommunications — Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
Design — Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

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Skills

Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Complex Problem Solving — Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
Mathematics — Using mathematics to solve problems.
Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

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Abilities

Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.

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Work Activities

Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
Thinking Creatively — Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

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Work Context

Electronic Mail — How often do you use electronic mail in this job?
Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — How often does this job require working indoors in environmentally controlled conditions?
Spend Time Sitting — How much does this job require sitting?
Face-to-Face Discussions — How often do you have to have face-to-face discussions with individuals or teams in this job?
Work With Work Group or Team — How important is it to work with others in a group or team in this job?
Duration of Typical Work Week — Number of hours typically worked in one week.
Telephone — How often do you have telephone conversations in this job?
Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — How important is being very exact or highly accurate in performing this job?
Freedom to Make Decisions — How much decision making freedom, without supervision, does the job offer?
Structured versus Unstructured Work — To what extent is this job structured for the worker, rather than allowing the worker to determine tasks, priorities, and goals?

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Job Zone

Title Job Zone Four: Considerable Preparation Needed
Education Most of these occupations require a four-year bachelor's degree, but some do not.
Related Experience A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for these occupations. For example, an accountant must complete four years of college and work for several years in accounting to be considered qualified.
Job Training Employees in these occupations usually need several years of work-related experience, on-the-job training, and/or vocational training.
Job Zone Examples Many of these occupations involve coordinating, supervising, managing, or training others. Examples include accountants, sales managers, database administrators, teachers, chemists, environmental engineers, criminal investigators, and special agents.
SVP Range (7.0 to < 8.0)

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Education


Percentage of Respondents
Education Level Required
77   Bachelor's degree
17   Master's degree
  Associate's degree

This occupation may require a background in the following science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) educational disciplines:

Computer Science — Computer and Information Sciences, General; Computer Engineering, General; Computer Science; Information Science/Studies
Engineering — Computer Engineering Technologies/Technicians, Other; Computer Engineering, General

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Credentials

Find Training Find Certifications Find Licenses

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Interests

Interest code: ICR

Investigative — Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
Conventional — Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

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Work Styles

Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.

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Work Values

Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Working Conditions — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Recognition — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.

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Related Occupations

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15-1122.00 Information Security Analysts Bright Outlook
15-1131.00 Computer Programmers Bright Outlook
15-1132.00 Software Developers, Applications Bright Outlook
15-1134.00 Web Developers
15-1141.00 Database Administrators
15-1143.00 Computer Network Architects
15-1199.01 Software Quality Assurance Engineers and Testers Bright Outlook
15-1199.02 Computer Systems Engineers/Architects Bright Outlook
15-1199.05 Geographic Information Systems Technicians Bright Outlook   Green Occupation Green

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Wages & Employment Trends

Median wages (2013) $48.75 hourly, $101,410 annual
State wages Local Salary Info
 
Employment (2012) 405,000 employees
Projected growth (2012-2022) Faster than average (15% to 21%) Faster than average (15% to 21%)
Projected job openings (2012-2022) 134,700
State trends Employment Trends
 
Top industries (2012)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2013 wage data external site and 2012-2022 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

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Job Openings on the Web

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Sources of Additional Information

Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.

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