Although its creation dates back to 1995, Java holds its spot as one of the top programming languages used today. This means that Java developers are anything but short in demand. These developers work alongside software engineers, web developers, and other professionals, finding work in various industries to create programs and software for their clients.
The Java developer job description mainly includes playing an active role in the development life cycle of a software product through identifying, analyzing, and discussing various issues to reach a viable solution that meets the needs of the business. The field of Java development is ever-growing, with a 2019 search on Indeed.com showing over 64,000 jobs being posted in the U.S and other countries.
What is Java?
Ever wonder how web applications, websites, consoles, graphical user interfaces, and software work? All of these use a programming language called Java to run and execute various functions.
Created by James Gosling and Sun Microsystems, Java acts as a popular development tool that allows us to create and improve upon various processes. Java is an object-oriented programming language that runs itself on a multitude of platforms such as PCs, notebooks, smartphones, home appliances, and medical devices.
Java was developed based on the pre-existing languages of C and C++, which follows the WORA model (write once, and run anywhere), which means that the same code can be applied on different platforms without needing to be recompiled. It is known for its efficient and reliable processing speeds that make it suitable for software development, computer and console games, and other applications.
What is a Java Developer?
Java developers are proficient in the coding language of Java. They are skilled enough to develop and build new web applications, and analyze and improve upon pre-existing applications.
The job description of a Java developer includes all aspects of an application or program, from its creation, design, and development to its maintenance and improvement. Because some of the projects involving Java can be so large in scope and scale, the roles and responsibilities can vary significantly.
There are, however, some Java developer basic job duties that each type of developer must follow. For example, every Java developer must take part in the full software development life cycle, which is a series of steps used to create applications and software. This cycle involves the creation, testing, and application of the software or program.
According to Indeed.com, the average salary of an entry-level Java developer is $104,286, and $123,297 for senior-level developers.
What Type of Work is a Java Developer Involved in?
We use dozens of applications and programs that have been developed on Java without even knowing it. This is all thanks to Java developers. These developers perform a wide range of tasks. The overarching theme of their work is the design, implementation, and maintenance of software.
However, when working with larger programs or software, individuals may be focused or specialized for specific tasks. This can include writing and testing code, performing software analysis, and debugging previously written code to improve the user interface. Java developers also have to ensure that all designs comply with the specifications given to them.
Other tasks in the Java developer job description include:
- Identifying issues that are related and unrelated to production
- Turning requirements into stipulations
- Suggesting changes to build upon already existing code and application processes
- Researching and investigating alternative technologies that may improve the application
- Leading project management
When a company proposes a product that meets a business need, it is in the Java developer’s job description to provide the program architecture and see its creation through each phase of the development cycle. This involves meeting with project stakeholders, senior members, and other Java developers and identifying their vision. This will allow the application or program being created to align with business needs, team vision, and/or organizational dynamics.
One of the key requirements in a Java developer job description is being a team player. Java developers, no matter the project size, duration, or type, will constantly find themselves working in a team setting. The size of these teams can depend on the type of the project, ranging from those undertaken by small businesses to large corporations to government agencies.
Developers usually start from smaller projects to gain exposure and experience in the field, and will then climb the ranks to reach senior Java developer positions or other related designations. Typical roles for Java developers at both small and large companies include the following jobs.
The development lead is tasked with the duty of managing the development team. Their responsibilities include managing the technical part of any project. As they are tasked with leading the development team, they also require a basic knowledge of all the languages, platforms, and software being used to create the desired product.
Development leads must be good communicators as it is their job to represent and advocate for the developers. They must also take full responsibility for the technological side of the project.
IT project managers often have many responsibilities to uphold as they are in charge of the entire project. Project managers plan, organize, allocate resources, develop budgets, and execute the plans of the company that has hired them.
The projects they are in charge of can include network upgrades, application and software development, development of cloud services, and other IT-related responsibilities. Project managers always coordinate between other departments and tell developers what they need to do. They are also in charge of staff and other management-related tasks.
As architects who design buildings see their work transform from paper into its physical form, technical architects take the clients’ vision and requirements for their software and translate them into technical specifications so that Java developers or software engineers can develop the underlying codes for them.
Subject Matter Expert (SME)
As the name suggests, an SME specializes in a certain area of Java or the IT sector. He or she can prove resourceful should a difficulty in the creation process present itself. SMEs are usually experienced in their field and can, therefore, provide the expertise needed in completing a task.
Entry-level vs. Senior-level Java Developer Job Descriptions
Entry-level Java developers are those who are fresh out of college or have little experience in coding or Java language-related tasks.
Entry-level developers are expected to be able to complete Java developer basic job duties such as:
- Defining site objectives
- Creating multimedia applications
- Developing assistance tools to support users
- Maintaining internet and intranet applications
- Creating user information solutions through analysis of user requirements
A senior-level Java developer will be expected to take care of all the tasks listed above, plus additional training or qualification in software development, design, architecture, Java programming, Java beans, Java servlets, and project/team management.
Required Skills for Java Developers
Like any other job, there is an essential checklist of skills that companies require from a Java developer.
These skills include:
- A degree in an IT, Engineering, or Computer Science fields
- 1-2 years experience in software development
- Work experience in Java development
- Development of Java EE platforms
- Object-oriented analysis
- An understanding of the object-oriented programming language and its design
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Also Read: How To Accelerate Your Java Developer Career