How to Become a Developer/Programmer Analyst

By Robert Half on May 18, 2022 at 6:30pm

The developer/programmer analyst role — also sometimes referred to simply as “programmer analyst” — requires both business and technical savvy. Because developers act as a bridge between business needs and technical builds, the demand for skilled programmers who are also adept at requirements analysis and client communication continues to grow.

If you’re interested in becoming a developer/programmer analyst, you need to have a solid understanding of software and applications programming. Your top responsibility will be providing recommendations for developing or modifying applications, code, programs or databases — using research and fact-finding — to ensure that products delivered to clients meet expectations. That means you also need to have a keen eye for catching any bugs lurking in the software.

More responsibilities for developer/programmer analysts

What else does a developer/programmer analyst typically do? Here’s an overview of job responsibilities that many employers will expect professionals in this role to handle:

  • Analyzing business application requirements for functional areas such as finance, manufacturing, marketing or human resources
  • Writing code and testing and debugging software applications
  • Architecting and designing IT solutions to solve business challenges
  • Documenting software specifications and training users

Technical skills and knowledge most employers seek

If you want to land a job as a developer/programmer analyst, you will likely need to bring these and other technical qualifications to the table:

  • Excellent programming abilities in common languages and frameworks, such as COBOL, Java, Python, C++, C#, SQL and .NET
  • Strong problem-solving and analytic abilities
  • The ability to understand applications from programming and business perspectives
  • Experience using Unified Modeling Language (UML)

Most employers look for developer/programmer analyst candidates to have a bachelor’s degree in computer science, information science or management information systems. Relevant job experience is also a plus, especially if you are just launching your career in this area.

Which IT certifications are most in-demand? Read this post to find out.

Soft skills can provide an edge

Candidates aren’t going to get their foot in the door for a developer/programmer analyst job if they lack strong coding and programming skills. However, skills on the softer side, such as excellent written and verbal communication abilities, are what often make developers worth their weight in gold to employers.

Developer/programmer analysts must bring both a technology and programming perspective and a business point of view to their work, and they must be able to communicate strategies and solutions with nontechnical team members. And in today’s remote and hybrid work environments where virtual collaboration reigns, soft skills are a must to help ensure projects keep moving forward and meet expectations.

To set a course for remote work success, be sure to review this checklist.

The developer/programmer analyst salary: What can you expect?

Highly skilled developer/programmer analysts can be hard to find in this competitive hiring market. And because their skills are so valued, many employers are prepared to offer compelling compensation to secure standout hires.

According to the latest Salary Guide from Robert Half, the average starting salary for a developer/programmer analyst job this year in the United States is $116,500. Refer to the guide to see projected salaries for developer/programmer analysts who have more skills and experience, and for those who are new to this career path and just starting to earn relevant skills.

Search for developer/programmer analyst jobs now on the Robert Half website. (Note that many potential opportunities will be listed as programmer analyst jobs, as that term is also widely used.)

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