3 Great Career Paths for Coders
Part 3: Get a Great Job by Learning to Code
For many coders, the digital-nomad life (see Part 2: Make Money Online by Learning To Code) is a bit too much of an adventure. Many (or, arguably, most) coders prefer to settle into more comfortable, high-paying positions at tech companies like Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Apple, or one of thousands of other tech companies in America (and around the world). Development and engineering jobs at web and software companies tend to offer salaries that are among the highest for any profession in the country, with perks that often verge on the unbelievable.
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that in 2012, the mean annual wage for software developers was $99,530, and $68,670 for web developers, with faster-than-average job growth for both. While these are certainly respectable salaries by any standard, the numbers presented by the BLS merely represent the national averages. For competitive people who expect excellence of themselves, who work hard and push themselves ever onward and upward… the sky’s the limit. Elite coders often earn more than doctors and lawyers, with high six-figure salaries, comfortable working environments, and career satisfaction that surpasses nearly all other professions in this country. No wonder US News & World Report) ranks “Software Developer” as #3 and “Web Developer” as #11 in their list of 100 Best Jobs of 2015.
At the higher end of the talent pool, talented coders compete for ultra-comfortable jobs at booming, world-class companies like Facebook and Google (median salaries of $135,000 and $133,000 after 5 years, respectively), but the perks they get are truly the stuff of the average office worker’s dreams. Check out this video of Google’s California Headquarters to get an idea of what it’s like to work at Google: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8sOtjBDPQdU
When you’re earning $133,000 per year, Google’s free gourmet in-office buffet is just gravy. That one convenience alone would save you thousands of dollars per year, so you could save even more of that hefty salary.
Google’s gourmet buffet (photo from: http://www.businessinsider.com/22-amazing-dishes-at-the-googleplex-2014-10#for-some-more-beautiful-vegetarian-options-visit-cloud-4)
Beyond utilitarian perks like free food, tech companies tend to have fun offices that inspire coders to relax, enjoy, and be creative. Just a quick glance at photos of Twitter’s game room and Adobe’s rock climbing wall can give you an idea of what it’s like to work at these companies.
Considering all of these amazing perks and benefits, it’s no surprise that Facebook and Google took the #1 and #2 spots respectively in Business Insider’s list of the best companies to work for in 2015. People are happy with their jobs when they make lots of money and have cool, fun, friendly environments to work in.
If this kind of job sounds exciting to you, learning to read and write code is the first step in your path to a better career.
If, on the other hand, you want to transcend the working class entirely and join the ranks of the 1%, there are billions of dollars to be made by innovative coders who build their own companies and become coder-preneurs. If this sounds more like your cup of tea, check out Part 4 of this series: Make Millions (or Billions) by Learning To Code.