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Once you graduate from a TripleTen bootcamp, the abundance of software engineering roles will make you feel like a kid in a candy store! You can focus on the one that excites you the most, and find your place in a development team. But what if you’re inspired by all aspects of building software applications, and don’t want to stick to just one role? 

Then consider becoming a full-stack software developer. Versatile full-stack developers are incredibly high demand right now due to the fast-paced digital transformation across most industries. 

Keep reading to find out what the work of a full-stack software developer is, and why this role is one of the most sought-for in software engineering.

If you want to learn more about other professions, check out these articles:

What is full-stack software engineering?

“Full-stack” describes the ability to develop both client and server software. They are both front and back-end developers and can build applications from zero to launch. 

Full-stack software engineers can work on many parts of the application thanks to their comprehensive knowledge. It’s like having a double major – you can combine your specializations or work separately in each area. Many tech companies aim to hire full-stack specialists because it reduces redundancy, as specialists with a very narrow proficiency area are hard to replace. 

Full-stack developers often have more independent jobs, as their work depends less on team members. However, they still get to work in teams and follow the same routine as other software engineers.

What does a full-stack software engineer do?

As a FS SE, You will be able to design complicated technical solutions from zero to launch using your primary programming language if you have all of the expertise of a full-stack software engineer.

Let’s imagine a company that sells sustainable textile bags for food storage as an example. They want to create a website that will help them sell faster, automate shipments, and promote their mission. As a full-stack software engineer, you can execute that task pretty much by yourself, with some help from the designers and the marketing team. Let’s take a look at the process and your typical responsibilities.

First, the designers and the company representatives will give you a presentation on what the future website will look like. The designers will show you the screens, fonts, images, and functionality. You’ll be able to identify some useful information about the project at first glance:

  • How many web pages are there? This will reflect the structure of the website.
  • How long are they? This will affect the HTML layouts of the complexity of the styles.
  • Which services will you use to connect various functionality? For instance, contact forms, calendars, e-shop, newsletters, and so on.
  • How complex will the back end be? If the project has a shop, products, orders, and customers, all of them will be part of your databases.

A full-stack software engineer should be able to give an estimate on the duration of their work. 

If the project is more complex than a company website, they should use their communication and planning skills to discuss the responsibilities and expected outcomes with the team.

Ultimately, a full-stack engineer is like a foreman on a construction site: they should know all the technical parts of the process. That’s what makes this job exciting and top-demand in the industry.

A typical workday for a full-stack software engineer 

Working on a day-to-day basis at a tech company as a full-stack software engineer can be compared to full-cycle construction work. Let’s look at your typical day-to-day responsibilities.

  • Communication and requirements research is the first step in your daily responsibilities and will take up to 40% of your time. Before building a house, you want to make sure you have all the blueprints, permits, specifications, and materials. Sometimes you’ll read documentation, sometimes you’ll discuss the tasks with team members on calls and meetings.
  • Overviewing the architecture and back end - 20%. This is the foundation of the house and its communications. A full-stack software engineer will make sure these work correctly and function as a whole.
  • Building interfaces and front end - 20%. This is what your house will look like. Where will you put the door and windows? It’s up to you to get down to all the nitty-gritty, from the paint color to the plan. Unless you want to work with a designer. In that case, you will transform their contribution into code.
  • Testing - 15%. It’s always important to ensure the security of your construction and isolate the water supply from electricity.
  • IT Administration - 5%. How much will the technical implementation of the project cost? What do you need to connect it to electricity and fiber optics? Full-stack engineers should know how to deploy a project to a server and what’s needed to maintain it if the project grows.

If a full-stack software engineer works in a team, their responsibilities can vary, depending on the workload and the project backlog: at times, they are needed more on the front end, and at other times, they will be involved in the back-end team.

What do full-stack engineers also need to know?

Let’s take a quick look at the technical skills you’ll need to have if you want to become a qualified full-stack software engineer.

A programming language and frameworks. The main tools and frameworks needed to build software and web applications: HTML, CSS, JavaScript, React, AJAX, jQuery, Node.js, SQL, and counting. It really depends on you which tools to use in your work.

Design principles. Understanding user interfaces (UI) and user experiences (UX) is essential for a full-stack engineer as much as for a front-end developer. Full-stack engineers need to be able to look into design mockups in Figma or other programs and convert them into interactive interfaces that seamlessly work with connected services.

Version control using Git is also a must for any software engineer, including full-stack roles. It will help you make sure that the new development doesn’t create conflicts with the old code.

Typical responsibilities and pay of a full-stack software engineer, LinkedIn Jobs posting.

Outside of technical skills, full-stack software engineers must have incredible attention to detail, be organized, and know how technical products are created at every part of the lifecycle to achieve end-project goals. Being an excellent communicator is also a distinct advantage in this field, as quite often, full-stack software engineers are responsible for many parts of the product. 

Career development of a full-stack software engineer

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, approximately 162,900 new software development jobs will be created annually over the next decade. 

New software engineering graduates might expect to start on the lower end of the salary scale at around $87,000 per year. However, high-performing full-stack software engineers with experience can earn as much as $140,800. The median salary for a full-stack software engineer in the U.S. is about 17% higher than that of a software engineer with a narrow specialization.

As a full-stack software engineer, you might begin working on one project or predominantly with one skill discipline and progress to using many tools in multiple projects. As you build your career and experience, you can specialize or diversify, take a more senior role, or move to a larger company. You can even become a technical lead in your company.

Here is what your job will look like once you progress from a full-stack software engineer to a Technical Lead: you can notice all the responsibilities of a full-stack engineer plus leadership (from LinkedIn Jobs)

Learning full-stack engineering with TripleTen

To become a full-stack software engineer, start with the 10-month part-time online Software Engineering Bootcamp. This program doesn’t require any previous tech background and uses an interactive learning platform with a structure of learning sprints and project work, which consolidate learning and build experience. 

After graduation, you can apply to full-stack engineering jobs, as you will know the core basics of the whole process of application development with JavaScript.

Our alum graduate with six portfolio projects and comprehensive careers support, resulting in 87% finding a job in tech within six months.

Enroll in TripleTen’s Software Engineering Bootcamp and graduate as a full-stack software engineer!

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