Technology Careers

Career as a Senior Software Engineer
Day in the life as a Senior Software Engineer

Bill Williams
IT Specialty:
Software Engineering (Aircraft/Avionics systems)
Job Title:
Senior Software Engineer
BSCE, Computer Engineering

Q. How long have you had your degree and what college/university did you receive it from?
A. I completed my bachelor’s degree a few weeks ago.

Q. Do you have any certifications in addition to your degree?
A. If so, what are they in? MCSE

Q. Have the extra certifications you’ve received prepare you for your IT career?
A. Slightly

Q. How many years have you been in the IT field?
A. 10+

Q. What personality traits and skills do you possess that you feel help you in your specific IT field?
A. I am an engineer, we are very anal.

Q. What steps does someone go through to get a job in this field?
A. Experience means a lot in this field, but a degree is essential if you want to get the higher paying jobs. Pay your dues and have a passion for technology.

Q. What are ways to advance in your field (getting an advanced degree perhaps or obtaining a certain certificate, or just more years of experience)?
A. Show the right work ethic, stay current in your field, use initiative, and be willing to work long hours to get the job done on time.

Q. What is the most enjoyable thing about your job?
A. Making six figures, and being in a field that provides challenging work that is always evolving and changing.                

Q. What is the biggest challenge regarding your job?
A. politics

Q. What skills do you use at work?
A. My 133t h4xX0r skills. I write software application code, test code, scripts, etc. I have to be well versed in many different programming languages and methods.

Q. What percentage of your day do you spend working independently or in a group?
A. 70% alone, 30% in a team

Q. What is one thing you didn’t know about your field before getting into it that you wish you had known?
A. How political things can get

Q. If you were a person getting ready to choose an IT major for college, what advice/guidance would you give them to help them decide between all the fields? In other words, are there specific things about your personality or skills that work better for some IT specialties than others? (for example you may say “if you are more detailed you’d be better at…..(software engineering than database administration…not a true statement, just an example)” or “if you are more of a problem solver, you’d be more suited for…”)
A. I would tell them to be a Computer Science or Electrical Engineer major instead of majoring in IT. If they were hard set on going into IT, I would tell them to get into network security or forensics. IT can be over rated, and doesn't pay as well as pure engineering, unless you get into the obscure areas or network security. Avionics/Embedded design is what I do for the most part, and it isn't really IT - it is more Software Development/Programming than straight up IT. I had to learn IT skills to be able to administer network stuff for our simulations. A large aircraft avionics system in an aircraft like a 787, or A380 is like a really big Internet. They almost work the same, except airborne systems are built with much higher reliability and safety considerations.

Q. If you could give me one quote about why you feel Information Technology is “THE” field to be in what would it be?
A. Six figure incomes are hard to turn down.