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Software Developer

by Staff Reporter
If you can see yourself building software and applications which solve problems in various industries then a career as a Software Developer could be for you.

Career Overview

If you have a passion for solving real-world problems, and enjoy using computers and technology then this might be the right profession for you!

As a Software Developer, you would work to create software programmes that accomplish a task or set of tasks that would usually be manually done by a human.


Required School Subjects

You will need to have the following subjects at high school:

  • English Home Language, or first Additional Language
  • Mathematics – Maths Literacy does not qualify

Recommended subjects:

  • IT
  • Physical Science

Institution and APS

The following institutions are highly recommended:

TVET Colleges:

  • CTI college

University of Technology:

  • Cape Town University of Technology


  • Wits University which needs a minimum APS of 40
  • Stellenbosch which needs 700 admission points
  • University of Cape Town which needs a Faculty Point Score (FPS) of 660
  • Rhodes University which needs a minimum APS of 40
  • University of Pretoria which needs a minimum APS of 30

Required Qualification/s

  • Bachelor of Science in Computer Science, Informations Systems or a related field.
  • It is possible to become a Software Developer, if you have other certifications that have taught you the relevant software development skills. To gain these skills, you can look relevant courses at coding bootcamps, like Code Academy, or online courses provided by companies like Udemy.

Required Skills

You will need to show the following skills:

  • One or more of the following programming languages:
    • SQL
    • Oracle
    • C#
    • C++
    • Java
  • Problem-solving
  • Communication
  • Time Management

Where you can work

While there are many industries that utilise Software Developers, you will usually specialise in one of the following areas:

  • Real Estate
  • Finance
  • Health
  • E-Learning
  • Human Resources

Working Hours

Working hours are usually the normal 8 hour day, with a fair amount of flexibility. Each company will vary, but usually have core business hours, usually between 11am and 2pm, where you will have to be in the office for meetings.

However, as deadlines approach, or if bugs need to be fixed, you might need to work into the evenings or on weekends to finish on time.

Expected Salary

As with most industries, salary bands are created for each level of experience. This allows room for growth at each level until a promotion is required. The general salary bands are below below:

TVETUniversity DegreeHonours Degree
JuniorR13 000R15 000R20 000
IntermediateR22 000R25 000R28 000
SeniorR30 000R33 000R38 000

All salaries are dependant on the technologies that you are proficient in and the industry in which you work.

What to expect

What you can expect from the career:

  • Most independent Software Development firms tend to have a very relaxed working environment, with little to no dress code.
  • A team based environment that encourages collaboration.
  • The environment tends to be high pressure as there is often a disconnect between either the marketing or analysis teams and the developers themselves.
  • Communication is one of the most difficult and unexpected skills required in this industry, since you need to be able to understand requirements from non-technical people and translate them into a technical solution.
  • A lot of growth and knowledge can be expected in this rapidly changing field, which requires constant studying and learning to keep your skills up-to-date.

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