Junior developers are being sought after by more and more companies.

Are you looking for top tips to become a junior developer?
Need help on how to add your tech skills to your CV and land your next developer job?
Or maybe you’re looking to break into a career in tech and don’t know where to start?

Look no further! We have our expert tech recruiters on hand! Senior Headhunter Joe, and Junior Headhunter Lewis (who was promoted from Business Partner Resourcer this month), who specialise in tech and developer recruiting, have broken down some of the most important skills that all junior developers need into six topics:

  1. Coding
  2. Analytical skills and algorithms
  3. Problem solving
  4. Attention to detail
  5. Organisation
  6. Teamwork

We highly recommend that you add these skills to your CV if you are applying for junior developer roles!

Here is some more information about why these six skills are so vital to the role, and tips on how you can develop these skills. Follow these steps and you’ll get your foot in the door as a junior developer in no time.


1. Junior developers need to know how to code 💻

Obvious but essential! Coding is a specialised skill used by a range of tech professionals, including computer programmers, software engineers and app developers. To be a developer, you must be able to write code from scratch and be confident in improving existing code. 

Ideally, you’ll write code in a few different languages (even if you tend to have a favourite).

Joe and Lewis’ comments:

We recommend practising coding using websites like LeetCode. It’s also great to show your projects on GitHub!

Don’t know which programming language to start learning first? They all have their pros and cons. And then there’s whether you want to specialise in frontend or backend development! There is no shortage of options either… Here are a few of the most popular programming languages to start with:

  • Java – One of the most popular languages currently! Many large enterprises use it, so it’s not a surprise that developer jobs list this as the preferred language.

  • JavaScript – A close second to Java in terms of businesses that prefer this language. It’s especially popular with startup companies. It’s mega useful to learn, given that many frameworks are based on it – such as React.js, Angular.js, Vue.js.

  • Golang (or Go) – A pretty new programming language, but it’s getting a reputation as the ‘exciting’ tech to use, given it was designed by Google.

  • Python – It’s an easy, fun programming language without strict syntax rules – pretty hot in the startup world of work too.

Do some thorough research into them before you pick your first programming language to learn! You will have to spend hours learning them – and they all have different interest levels and relevancy in the job market.


2. Analytical skills and algorithms 👩‍💻

Using logic and scientific methods to solve complex programming problems is critical in the coding world. Computer coding involves sequences, patterns and equations. You don’t need to be a maths expert, but having a basic knowledge can be beneficial to developing your logical thinking. 

Lewis’ comments: 

Some programmers find that completing maths or analysis courses actually helps them excel in coding. 

Joe’s comments:

Algorithms are great to learn if you want to manage different data streams. They’re also heavily used in AI applications, which is a rapidly growing industry!


3. Problem solving 🧠

Solving problems and errors in code are regular occurrences for a software developer. So it really helps if you enjoy problem-solving and can think outside the box. This is where you can use your creativity too!

Joe and Lewis’ comments:

When it comes to interviewing for a developer job, you’ll need to have examples of how you identified a problem and what work you did to solve it. Sounds simple enough, but I always recommend you have some great evidence in your examples. For instance, include how many projects this problem affected, or how much time you took to solve it. This will lend better credibility to your skills.

Got a coding problem? Google is your best friend. You will always come across problems you’ve not seen before, especially early in your career. A quick Google search will help you find solutions that you can learn from moving forward.


4. Attention to detail 🔎

Good coders are able to focus on minute details for long periods of time. It combines accuracy with patience. The smallest coding typo can break a program – so it’s good to constantly upskill your attention to detail. 

Joe and Lewis’ comments:

This is an often overlooked skill! It’s easy to add to your CV too. You could include it under a job description or unpaid experience, such as:

  • Used strong attention to detail to write thousands of lines of code.

Or include it under your additional skills section. For example:

Additional skills: teamwork, attention to detail, communication.

Or add it to your resume introduction:

A detail-oriented, ambitious person, looking for their first exciting role as a junior developer.

To improve your accuracy, practice bug fixing or try completing some coding challenges. 

If you’re in a role and want to improve your attention to detail, thoroughly document your process when you create a programme. You could include the steps you took and any errors you found and fixed. (This is helpful if you ever need to repeat the process for a similar programme.) Documenting your processes definitely helps develop stronger attention to detail.


5. Organisation 🗃️

Whether you’re the chief technology officer or joining a team of junior developers, you will be asked for estimates and be set project deadlines. Find a method that works for you to keep organised and plan your time wisely.

Joe and Lewis’ comments:

Take notes, and lots of them. You’re probably doing this already but it’s very important. Whether you’re using paper, audio recordings on your phone, or typing them up on your computer. It’s almost impossible to remember everything, so take notes for reference in the future.


6. Team work is key for junior developers 🤝

As a junior software developer, you’ll likely be working in a team. So it is essential you learn how to get along. Using your other soft skills, such as your attention to detail, will mean you are able to explain methods of suggestions in a clear, concise way. This will improve a team’s overall productivity.

Good communication skills will also help you learn and develop your knowledge, as you will be able to talk with other developers and make project work way easier. Good communication means good collaboration. 

Joe and Lewis’ comments: 

If you’re working as a junior developer, make sure you ask questions and communicate well. This will help build rapport as well as help you learn. You’ll most likely be working with senior developers and they’ll be very happy to help. Everyone started somewhere!


We hope these top tips for junior developers will help you land your first job in the tech industry. A big thank you to Joe and Lewis for helping to give their expert recruiting input on this blog. You can find them both on LinkedIn, where they regularly share upcoming available developer and software engineer jobs with our brilliant tech partners.

Want more RecruitmentJunky? Check out our blog on a recruiter’s perspective on diversity in tech.

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