The old saying goes, “Money doesn’t buy happiness,” and I firmly believe this applies to your career. Yet with demand for Software Developers at an all-time high we often see companies making big offers to lure top talent, sometimes 20-30% above what they are currently making.
From a software developer’s perspective, this can be incredibly tempting. But before you decide to take a new role, it’s important you look at the total package and not just compensation.
I recommend software developers evaluate the following 5 things when considering a new job:
1. Company Culture
You should know what kind of culture you’re most successful in, and don’t accept offers at companies where you know you won’t fit, no matter what they offer.
During an interview, ask: is the company a place where technology is valued and viewed as a crucial part of the organization? Ask what the latest major accomplishment was on the team and how it was celebrated. You may also want to find out if the company accommodates working from home or if being on-site and collaborating face-to-face is central to being successful in the role.
2. Technical Landscape
Being able to work with the latest technology is crucial to your career growth and development. Find out about the company’s technical landscape: is the company one that values technology and stays current with the latest releases?
If the company is running older technology, find out if there are plans for an upgrade in the near future. If there are, determine if your role will have input into the evaluation and purchase of the new products.
3. Training & Development
Keeping your skills up to date is crucial to maintaining a strong resume and marketability as a software developer. Does the company offer reimbursement for tuition or certifications? Companies with these perks show that they not only value the personal development of the employee, but also the success and future of their technology department.
A good mentor can help you develop technically, but they can also provide guidance during your transition to a new company.
Does the company have a formal mentorship program? If not, would you be working alongside a more senior developer who can help improve your skills? If the company does not provide reimbursement for tuition, a mentor can be the next best thing for your development.
We recently helped a large not-for-profit hire a software developer tasked with developing applications to manage food deliveries. Many candidates we interviewed were passionate about the organization's cause and thought this type of work would be fulfilling.
You should know what causes you care about, and consider roles in related industries. Doing something you’re passionate about can be more rewarding in the long run than a salary bump or an extra perk.