Which Soft Skills are the must for you as a developer?

Jul 01, 2022
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The time when developers were simply expected to possess technical and software development skills has long since passed. The cornerstones of developer activity continue to be producing the appropriate code and creating and running tests. The demands placed on developers change as the software industry gets more linked with business. 

Being a part of IT business means you are engaging with your coworkers because you are probably going to be a team player and a member of a leader team. You will converse with various stakeholders as well as your coworkers (designers, QA engineers, project managers, and executives). Having soft skills and improving them constantly are essential components of your toolkit as a software developer.

What are these Soft Skills for Developers? What are the ways to improve them? Let’s jump below. 

Soft skills are.. 

…an integral part of your professional improvement as a developer. Being more specific, Oxford dictionary describes soft skills as personal attributes that enable someone to interact effectively and harmoniously with other people. Let’s look up on some stats: 

What skills are most important for a manager at work to possess, if any?


Digits research shows that for hiring manager the Top 5 Soft Skills are: 

  • Leadership 
  • Communication
  • Teamwork
  • Empathy
  • Problem solving

In the same research we have some stats about what we actually learn as an employees: 

  • Networking
  • Time management
  • Problem solving
  • Communication
  • Teamwork  

Which different types of soft skills do we most want to learn most?

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As you know, the working life of a developer necessitates a variety of soft skills. The most crucial ones that can help you become a better software engineer are down below: 

1. Communication

Communication is a common culprit on most lists of soft skills. However, communication is essential while developing software. Remember that communication happens both ways. You must have good listening skills. It will be all the difference if you listen to your coworkers, clients, or users. You have an unfair advantage over people who just talk when you listen. You get to study stuff, extend your horizons, and broaden your views. It also aids in task and requirement ranking.


Communication Skills Improvement Tips

Remember, that communication includes both oral written skills. 

  • For oral communication improvement you can record yourself responding to typical interview questions, or any kind of questions, no matter work related or not. Additionally, you can request for honest feedback from your colleagues and friends, especially from those who are really good at oral communication. 
  • You can use services like Preply for communication between people from all over the world. Platforms like this one not only teach you how to lead a talk politely and grammatically correct but also can turn off “shy” boundaries which can also affect communication. 
  • To improve your written communication it will be good to post as much as possible. It can also be non-related to work: you can chat on Discord, or start a blog where you can answer your followers' questions. 
  • Try to work in open-source projects, you must converse with people to complete these and it requires strong written communication skills. 

2. Problem-solving 

Problem-solving abilities enable software engineers to locate and correct technical faults when troubleshooting their products to ensure appropriate operation. Software engineers frequently assess their work and come up with beneficial solutions. For instance, if the program behaves differently than planned, developers may examine the code to identify the root cause and install a program to improve the functionality of the product.


Problem-solving Skills Improvement Tips

  • Make problem-solving a part of your life. Whether it is a work issue or you just need to renovate your apartment, ask yourself: What would a great software engineer do in this situation?
  •  Search for the right answers. The ability to google some solutions to a challenging subject or surfing on programming-related websites such as GitHub, StackOverflow etc. It’s like a rule - we search online first and if we don't find the accurate answer we consult a knowledgeable person. 
  • Be open to assistance. Becoming able to solicit assistance and take criticism of all kinds is a necessary component of being a skilled software developer. To assist you find the best answer to some difficulties, you might need a second opinion or fresh eyes. It makes sense to see problem-solving skill development as more of a group endeavor than a personal journey.
  • Apply knowledge from previous experience to new issues. Your abilities increase the more you try to use imagination to solve difficulties. Long term, that will aid you in identifying the proper answers more quickly and naturally applying them to a variety of issues.

3. Teamwork 

Software engineers can collaborate effectively with their coworkers to complete assignments if they work as a team. A software engineer or user interface (UI) designer, for example, can be needed for software design and testing. Colleagues may also have various work styles. Software engineers that embrace collaboration can form supportive relationships with their bosses and coworkers at work and can pick up tips from their peers.

On a project everyone is a part of the same team working toward the same objective. People will be more helpful to you if you are nice to them.


Teamwork skills Improvement Tips

  •  Understand the goals of the team. Everyone on the team needs to be aware of the same objective in order for everyone to work together successfully. Make sure you comprehend and agree with the shared goal.
  • Know your own specific responsibilities as well as the roles and responsibilities of each team member.
  • Be enthusiastic, be a team player and encourage your teammates. Maintain an upbeat mood throughout a project, especially when deadlines are approaching and the team's stress levels rise, give good feedback, approach collaboration with a supportive perspective, share credit, and so on.
  • Listen intently to suggestions and criticism. Being an attentive listener is crucial for preventing misunderstandings and making sure that everyone on the team feels valued. Pay attention to the verbal and nonverbal cues that your teammates are giving you. Give them your undivided attention, and if you want more information, ask questions.

4. Time management 

Software engineers must efficiently manage their time because clients could set deadlines for submitting the finished product. Making a calendar for the entire development process, where developers set aside days for accomplishing their duties, and holding one another accountable for completing projects on time are examples of time management.


Time Management Skills Improvement Tips

  • You must have a clear grasp of how long each task will take you to accomplish in order to prioritize your duties effectively. You'll be able to finish your critical duties more quickly if you get good at setting priorities among your obligations. 
  • Avoid Multitasking. If you want to become more adept at managing your time, you must learn how to give the task at hand your full focus. Only if you can maintain persistent focus and effort will your productivity increase.
  • Avoid Distractions. Putting your phone away or turning off the notifications, having an office even if you work from home, and asking family members or coworkers to refrain from bothering you with non-work-related issues are all excellent strategies to minimize distractions.
  • Use Time Management Apps. Modern Technology world offers you a bunch of great time management apps - TrelloClickUpNotionAsana etc. You can pick up the best fit for your work schedule or for the whole team. 

5. Leadership

For software developers who are interested in becoming managers or managing a team on a project, leadership is a crucial soft skill. As a leader, you might be in charge of duties like:

  • guiding newly recruited team members
  • settling disputes at work
  • making difficult decisions
  • giving team members duties to do
  • evaluating each team member's performance

Leadership Improvement Tips

  • Honest, open communication is a key. Actively communicating with your team and being transparent can increase trust and boost morale.
  • Encourage personal and professional growth. Don’t give up on learning something new in your expertise area, even if you already know so much more. There is always something new you should learn and practice. 
  • Teach instead of giving orders. Instead of just telling people what they need to do, a good leader knows how to demonstrate it.
  • Pass Leadership courses: there are tons of educational platforms where you can find something close to you: Leadership and Management for developersLeadership Development for Engineers Specialization etc. 

6. Creativity

Software engineers utilize innovative techniques to construct technology that appeals to people and satisfies clients when they create software. It's crucial for software developers to consider novel approaches to the development process since creativity can assist technology stand out from rivals.


Creativity Improvement Tips

  • Take breaks. Switch between thinking in terms of the big picture and the details as necessary. 
  • Coding to lead to a solution. We are all aware that there is no one right technique to handle a code issue. Each of them has a varied length and execution time, can handle various exceptions, and can approach the issue in a different way.
  • Learn from other developers. View the projects that other developers are working on in online forums like the Codecademy Forums and Stack Overflow. To extrapolate from someone else's solutions, try to identify someone who is developing a project similar to yours. Alternatively, you may ask a senior engineer directly for a few rounds of code reviews. Their advice can suggest fresh directions for you to take or problem areas you hadn't thought of.

Why should you practice Soft Skills? 

Even when you think that you are already competent in team management, advanced in communication and guru in leadership - don’t stop on this level. Mastering your existing soft skills with a strong technical background makes you a top developer among others on a service market. 

☝️ Having Soft skills will help you get hired. 

Employers and interviewers are considering more than simply your technical abilities. They are assessing your "cultural fit" as well.

☝️ Your career will advance and you'll achieve your goals more quickly if you have soft skills.

Take a look at the individuals who go on to become senior developers, managers, or executives. 

Combination of soft and hard skills gives you such advantages as working effectively and keeping your Work-Life balance, which is possible with Devler.io. They all tend to share one trait in that they have worked hard to develop these crucial non-technical talents.

The soft skills listed in this article all work best together. And the end result is a developer with a lot of promise who is well-rounded. Let this list serve as a reminder of the qualities you should have as a developer and the benefits of spending time on quality soft skills training. 

If you're a self-organized, experienced developer and fluent in English you have a chance to improve and show your skills on Devler.io - text us on Telegram and explore the opportunities to be a successful software engineer.

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