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Software Developer

SOFTWARE DEVELOPER APPRENTICESHIP

A Software Developer Apprenticeship is a great place to begin a rewarding career in this exciting industry. You'll learn the underlying skills required to succeed in the role, and begin a career in software development.

Software developers are the constructors of much of the digital world. They work at the forefront of the digital industry – adapting and evolving to the ever-changing technologies and devices that constantly flood the market.

Good developers are always in demand, thanks to the relentless digital appetites of today’s businesses. Decent salaries, career progression and fresh opportunities can be expected.

A JOB IN SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT

Software developers design, build, test and maintain software systems. Whether working on websites, applications, games or productivity software, you’ll help create it all from the ground up.

Whatever the brief – from putting together creative animations, building e-commerce capability, or solving problematic puzzles by interpreting lines of code – a job in software development requires a conceptual mind and a keen eye.

Away from the screen, software developers also need good communication skills for a schedule full of client briefings and project planning meetings.

A TYPICAL DAY AS A SOFTWARE ENGINEER

  • Writing code in various programming or scripting languages.

  • Coding and testing software.

  • Creating products within design, time and cost constraints.

  • Troubleshooting and fixing bugs.

  • Analysing complex systems requirements.

  • Monitoring performance.

  • Building and maintaining databases

  • Writing and preparing technical design documentation.

  • Balancing user needs with software requirements.

  • Collaborating with teams across a company.

  • Interpreting briefs and discussing requirements with clients.

  • Attending progress meetings with developers, designers and managers.

SOFTWARE DEVELOPER CAREER

PROSPECTS AND SALARY

START OF CAREER

Step 1. Software developer apprentice | £7215-£15,000

Salaries for software developer apprentices will vary, depending on the employer and the age of apprentice. But it will be above the applicable minimum wage (see Apprentice Minimum Wage).

Step 2. Junior-level | £19,000-£25,000

Qualified apprentices usually become junior software developers. At this stage, you can typically expect to get a salary between £19,000-£25,000.

Step 3. Mid-level | £25,000-£35,000

After 2-5 years gaining good experience, you’ll be able to go for a mid-level software developer position. Expect to earn up to £35,000.

Step 4. Lead developers | £35,000-£50,000

Work your way up to lead software developer, and a salary of £35,000-£50,000 is possible.

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What kind of job can I get with a Software Developer Apprenticeship?

The increase in demand for digital solutions combined with a significant skills shortage in the tech sector, means that completing a Software Developer Apprenticeship is a great route for ample employment opportunities. Take a look at some of jobs this apprenticeship could lead to...

Games Developer

Want to take your love of gaming and turn it into a career? Game Developers design, program, and test games – combining an interest in games with skills in maths, computers and creative arts.

Game developers can choose from a broad range of areas to specialise in, from programming console, computer, and mobile video games. You could work for a large gaming company, freelance or smaller game development studios. Whichever area you choose to work in, you’ll have to show commitment, determination and progress – it can be competitive and demanding work, successful game developers are those who spend a lot of their free time developing.

What can you earn as a Games Developer? Typical starting salaries are around £19,000 to £25,000. Once you have a few years' experience, you may earn a salary of £35,000 to £50,000. In a senior position, such as team leader or technical director, your salary can range from £55,000 to in excess of £75,000.

Web Developer

Web Developers are the men and women behind the internet curtain. They are responsible for designing, coding and modifying websites as well as creating reliable web applications and services. They can deal mainly with back end functionality, front end interface and visual design – or a mix of the two known as “full-stack development”.

High-performance and user-friendly design are at the heart of being a good web developer as well as a strong understanding of different coding languages and web functions. As a Web Developer you could work for an agency or freelance on a variety of different client projects.

What can you earn as a Web Developer? Salaries for junior or entry-level web developers can range from £19,000 to £25,000. Mid-level and senior web developers usually earn between £25,000 and £35,000. Lead developers typically earn between £35,000 and £60,000, potentially rising to £75,000 in London.

Applications Developer

Applications Developers write apps for particular operating systems, such as Windows or Android, or different platforms, including computers and mobile devices. As an Applications Developer, your job will be to understand software requirements of a client or company and create programming code to develop applications for specific business needs.

There is a huge variety in the types of applications you could work on from unique mobile applications that are built for a specific purpose for a large company or web applications development such as online forms, shopping carts, word processors, spreadsheets, video and photo editing.

What can you earn as an Applications Developer? Graduate salaries for applications developers start at around £20,000. Once established, you can expect to earn £34,000 to £40,000. As a senior applications developer, your salary will be in the region of £45,000 to £70,000.

What qualities are employers looking for in Software Developer job candidates?

Having a Software Developer Apprenticeship qualification is the first step to securing your ideal role in the software industry, but what else do you need to make it in the tech world? Here are some important qualities you can develop that will help you land that dream job...

Above all, Software Developers need to have the technical skills to be able to produce clean, logical and high-quality code. They should have a strong grasp of the technical foundations of development as well as the willingness to build on their technical skills.

Great Software Developers are curious and passionate about what they do and constantly work to refine their practises. Many love development so much that they even code in their spare time. They are also curious learners, keen to learn a new toolset or programming language to make their work better.

Software Developers must be focused as they can often be self-directed, so being good at managing your own work is vital. As a Software Developer, you also need to be focused on the requirements and goals of the client and final users. Your job is to try to focus on their needs and build features that are useful to them.

A good Software Developer exhausts all resources in search of a solution. They are not afraid to ask a team member, team leader or research resolutions elsewhere. Often you will have to find workarounds and use your initiative to solve programming problems, so developing a resourceful nature and attitude goes a long way in this line of work.

Not everyone, including potential clients, understand what effort goes into coding and developing a product. They might not understand the extent of their requirements, therefore it’s up to you to remain patient and explain your work to non-technical people. As a Software Developer, programming can be stressful, you’ll also have to deal with glitches and code not performing the way you expected. It’s important that you remain patient, clear-headed and persevere to find solutions.

LEVEL 4 SOFTWARE DEVELOPER APPRENTICESHIP QUALIFICATION

Everything you need to know about this apprenticeship...

By completing this level 4 software developer apprenticeship, apprentices will achieve industry-recognised qualifications, demonstrating the skills and abilities required to work in the industry.

  • City & Guilds Level 4 Software Developer Apprenticeship
  • City & Guilds Level 4 Diploma in Software Development Methodologies (Exam)
  • Microsoft Technical Associate HTML5 Application Development (98-375) (Exam)

Individual employers will set the selection criteria, but this might include:

  • GCSEs
  • A-levels
  • Level 3 apprenticeship or other relevant qualification
  • Relevant experience of HTML, CSS, JavaScript,
  • An aptitude test with a focus on functional maths

The duration of this software developer apprenticeship is typically 12 months, with a 3-month window for the end point assessment.

In the first twelve months of the programme, apprentices will develop their web development skills in the workplace and build a portfolio of evidence demonstrating their capabilities. Support will also be available from an assessor, who will visit apprentices at work every 10 weeks, and check progress every 5 weeks electronically.

Apprentices will receive week-long blocks of full-time training for 8 weeks across the year. This will take place at the escalla Academy in Crewe. Training topics include:

  • Personal Development
  • Dynamic Websites using HTML5, CSS, JavaScript, PHP & MySQL
  • Agile and Waterfall methodologies.

After completing 12-months of training and development, apprentices will submit their portfolio of work experience – along with a reference from their employer. This begins the end point assessment (EPA) stage. The EPA consists of a synoptic project and an assessor interview, which will determine the overall grade of the qualification (Pass | Merit | Distinction).

For employers: £18,000 with full and partial government funding available. Levy payments accepted.

For apprentices: Funding is provided by the government and employer, apprentices do not pay to do an apprenticeship.

  • Funding Band 12 (£18,000).
  • Apprentices under 19 years of age on the day of signup will receive 100% funding.
  • Levy payments are accepted towards this web developer apprenticeship.

 

 

This level 4 software development apprenticeship will provide you with the following technical competencies:

  • Logic: write good quality code (logic) with sound syntax in at least one language.
  • User interface: develop effective user interfaces for at least one channel.
  • Data: effectively link code to a database/data sets.
  • Test: test code and analyse results to correct errors, using either V-model manual testing and/or using unit testing.
  • Problem solving: apply structured techniques to problem solving, debug code and understand the structure of programs to identify and resolve issues.
  • Design: create simple data models and software designs to effectively communicate understanding of the program, following best practices and standards.
  • Analysis: understand and create basic analysis artefacts, such as user cases and/or user stories.
  • Deployment: understand and utilise skills to build, manage and deploy code into enterprise environments.
  • Development lifecycle: operate at all stages of the software development lifecycle, with increasing breadth and depth over time with initial focus on build and test.
  • Apply good practice approaches according to the relevant paradigm (for example object oriented, event driven or procedural).
  • Interpret and follow software designs and functional/technical specifications to company-defined ‘coding standards’ or industry good practice; testing frameworks and methodologies.
  • Respond to the business environment and issues related to software development.
  • Operate effectively in your business, and customer/industry environments.
  • Apply maths required to be a software developer (e.g. algorithms, logic and data structures).

After completing this apprenticeship, successful software developer apprentices will develop the following technical knowledge and understanding:

  • Understand and operate at all stages of the software development life-cycle.
  • Understand the comparisons between agile and waterfall software development methodologies.
  • Understand how teams work effectively to produce software, and contribute appropriately.
  • Understand and apply software design approaches and patterns and interpret and implement a given design, compliant with security and maintainability requirements.
  • Understand and respond to the business environment and business issues related to software development.
  • Understand and apply the maths required to be a software developer (e.g. algorithms, logic and data structures).

Apprentices will also develop the following underpinning skills, attitudes and behaviours:

  • Logical and creative thinking skills.
  • Analytical and problem-solving skills.
  • Independent working.
  • Initiative.
  • Organisational skills.
  • Ability to work with a range of internal and external people.
  • Effective communication in a variety of situations.
  • Can maintain a productive, professional and secure working environment.

Register your interest

If you would like to apply for this apprenticeship, please contact us.

t: 01270 500 102
e: apprenticeships@escalla.co.uk

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