Demystifying Software Engineering: A Guide for Women in Tech

Software engineering remains a male-dominated field, but the need for engineers continues to grow as technology evolves. For women considering this career, here’s what you need to know.

What is software engineering?

In short, it’s using engineering principles to design, develop, and maintain software products and applications. This involves everything from requirements gathering to programming to testing and deployment.

Software engineers use specialized skills like coding and problem-solving to bring software projects to life. They collaborate cross-functionally and iterate based on user feedback.

Types of software engineering roles

There are various career paths under the software engineering umbrella. Common roles include:

Frontend engineers – Focus on user-facing design, UI, and UX. Know HTML, CSS, JavaScript.

Backend engineers – Work on server-side application logic and integration. Know languages like Java, Python.

Full-stack engineers – Handle both frontend and backend systems and components.

Security engineers – Apply security principles to build resilient systems and prevent cyberthreats.

DevOps engineers – Bridge the gap between dev and IT teams to optimize and automate deployments.

Each role leverages unique technical skills while providing opportunities to deliver impact.

Bright Future Ahead: Software Engineering Job Outlook for Women

If you’re considering software engineering, the job opportunities are expansive. Software engineering roles are expected to grow rapidly over the next decade.

Driven by rapid technology innovation and rising demand for software, engineering roles are expected to see massive growth worldwide in the coming years. In the US alone, software engineering hiring is projected to increase 26% over the next decade.

Tech hubs in countries like the US, Canada, UK, Germany, and Israel have substantial openings today. And location matters less for those open to remote work.

Hot fields like fintech, e-commerce, healthcare, and emerging technologies all need software engineering talent to keep advancing. And emerging technologies like AI and machine learning are creating new high-paying roles.

With the massive demand, women have incredible potential to shape the future of software. Diverse perspectives lead to better products that meet the needs of all users.

Why women belong in software engineering

The industry needs diversity of thought. Women provide invaluable perspective into how end users interact with software.

Female engineers are proven to excel at collaboration, critical thinking, communication, emotional intelligence, creativity, and problem-solving. All strengths are needed to develop great software.

Discrimination Still an Obstacle

While progress is being made, women in software engineering still face discrimination. In one survey, 34% of women said discrimination and gender bias are top barriers today. Pay inequality also persists, with female engineers making 89 cents to a man’s dollar in the same role. There is still work needed to improve corporate cultures and promote equality.

How to get started

  1. Try out programming through free online courses to see if you enjoy it. Many women come to coding later in life. It’s never too late to start!
  2. Consider a coding bootcamp. This skills-focused training can equip you with fundamentals in months rather than years.
  3. Pursue formal education. Relevant degree choices include computer science, software engineering, information systems, or computer engineering.
  4. Get experience through open-source projects, internships, or freelancing. Build up work samples and connections.
  5. Attend hackathons and workshops. These allow you to network, learn new skills, and work on projects.
  6. Don’t be intimidated to apply for roles you want, even if you don’t meet every requirement. Transferable skills from other fields have value.
  7. Find mentors who can advise you and amplify your voice. Having advocates provides confidence.

Dealing with Failure and Rejection

When learning to code or pursuing software engineering roles, expect failures and rejections. The key is building resilience to keep persevering through setbacks. Reflect on what you can learn from each experience. And remember – you are capable!

Opportunities for Work-Life Balance

Many software engineering positions offer schedule flexibility and remote work options suitable for moms. On-site childcare and extended parental leave policies are becoming more common as well. Though balancing family and career is still a challenge, the field offers many possibilities to make it work.

Career Growth Tips for Women

  • Take on visible projects to showcase your skills.
  • Speak up about your accomplishments and goals in reviews.
  • Seek leadership opportunities – manage interns or volunteers.
  • Attend industry events and conferences.
  • Get connected – join a community with other like-minded women in tech
  • Find a mentor who can advise and sponsor you.
  • Negotiate raises and promotions. Know your worth.
  • Build your personal brand on sites like GitHub and LinkedIn.

There are many paths to advancing as a female software engineer. You have to be your own advocate!

Resources to Connect with Women in Tech

Surround yourself with a community! Conferences, networks, and groups like these provide the encouragement, role models, and connections all women in tech need.

The software engineering field needs women. Bring your talent, drive, and unique viewpoint – the future needs you!


Halzak we are dedicated to building diverse and inclusive teams across the global Tech community and bridging the gender gap.

If you are a Women in Tech looking for support in a career move then don’t hesitate to get in touch with us to discuss this further

If you are an organisation looking to impact diversity within your team we are here to support you. From reviews of current hiring efforts to managing your hiring process contact us today to discuss further.

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