When it comes to the basic knowledge that a programmer should possess when graduating from his professional career and almost immediately starting his/her journey in the software industry, a great diversity of opinions usually arises due to the fact that the Information Technology (IT) field is very broad and evolves very quickly.
It is important to note that programmers should possess, apart from the basic knowledge involved in coding, the ability to learn new technologies, as well as being able to use any tool that could be useful in their daily tasks, complementing it with some main qualities that would help them to start their professional careers in a better way.
Mentioning the above, here we have a list of some of those main qualities and skills that we believe could be a good base for a programmer starting his professional path.
These are the basis to become a software developer, for this reason it is important to choose the correct languages to start developing, it is recommended to take only a couple of them and pick one as the main language and the other one as a secondary language to have a point of comparison between the two, it is not necessary to cover all existing languages.
It’s important to have knowledge of the most used data structures such as arrays, lists, maps, etc. As well as the main algorithms (ordering, search, etc.), since the most used libraries are based on this point.
A positive attitude usually brings good results, a programmer who cares about the success of his project and tries to give the best of himself to the team every day is well valued by the people around him.
When programmers utilize effective communication their development skills are increased, a developer who is able to clearly understand different situations will be able to constantly propose effective solutions.
Data is the source of information for every system, so it is important for developers to understand how to access them in the different ways that currently exist in order to subsequently exploit them. It is recommended that programmers have a notion of relational and non-relational databases.
Understanding how information is stored and versioned is crucial for any developer, since this controls the written code and can be accessed at different stages of the development cycle, which is why it is important to be familiar with the main systems that perform these tasks, such as GIT.
Currently the internet hosts many resources of information and platforms to learn almost any subject imaginable, usually a programmer can rely on all the tools that are around him to fulfill tasks that were assigned to him, self-learning has become very common in recent times as well as obtaining information through the internet, a programmer should have the ability to find and understand the information that he needs by his own and be able to fulfill his objectives.
Offering help to people that need it is a great skill for a developer to have, as well as sharing their knowledge with others, not only to their team or organization but also to the software community in general.
It’s important to establish the correct development environment as this is the fundamental tool for writing code, for this reason it is always good that the developer has the ability to explore and choose the appropriate development environment according to what is being done.
Writing code can be compared to writing a letter, anyone who can read it in the language in which it is written could understand its content, in order to be able to write a good letter, certain guidelines are established as good practices that can be followed, the same happens with code, there are several rules that a programmer can follow to achieve this goal.
For the different problems that a programmer may face, it is always good to have deep knowledge of design patterns as they are a reusable way to solve a common problem.
Referring to the tests that should be performed on the written code, it is important to mention that there are different types of tests such as unit tests, integral tests, regression, etc. A good programmer should be able to understand the scope of the project and what kind of tests it might require in advance.
I want to thank my friend and software developer Alfredo Meza as we both co-produced this piece together.
Did you know ArkusNexus has a program that specializes in developing the technical qualities of our developers? Learn about our Mind Teams program here.