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Software Development Jobs for People Without a Degree

If you find the idea of software development fascinating and want to work in the field without a degree, you're in luck! Several choices await those who take a different path into the software development world.

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Career Options for Software Development Without a Degree

When you hear 'software development,' you may think of expert programmers who are geniuses with several different computer languages. While software development in itself requires programming skills found in higher education, there are plenty of other aspects to software development and companies that create software. Read below to find a few positions that you might locate at a software development company.

Job Title Median Salary (2016)* Job Growth (2014-2024)*
Computer Support Specialist $52,160 12%
Customer Service Representative $32,300 10%
Wholesale and Manufacturing Sales Representative $60,530 7%
Buyer and Purchasing Agent $60,700 2%
Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerk $38,390 -8%

*Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Career Information for Software Development Without a Degree

Computer Support Specialist

Along with development, software will require maintenance, which is where support specialists come in. Computer support specialists are those who directly assist users with computer issues, and the process includes troubleshooting, setup, repair, and training. Sometimes referred to as 'help desk technicians,' these support specialists might be employed by software companies in order to ensure that a company's product is kept up to date for all users of the product. Education requirements are inconsistent, so you might be able to find a position as a support specialist with a minimum amount of postsecondary training.

Customer Service Representative

Software companies might also employ customer service representatives to handle other issues, such as product defects and returns. Customer service representatives are a direct link between a company and a user, providing a listening ear for customer issues. Representatives may take orders, process any complaints a customer might have, and if necessary, attach sales to a return or exchange already in progress. Customer service representatives usually have high school diplomas, and can train on the job to learn the specifics of their company's needs.

Wholesale and Manufacturing Sales Representative

Software needs to be sold to bigger companies, and as a wholesale representative, you can act as a seller of a program to government agencies, schools, or entire businesses. Price negotiation and sales contract preparation are just part of this position that will also involve marketing strategy and customer interaction. Sales representatives work both inside and outside of their organizations; inside reps will usually stay in their office, while outside reps establish meetings at other locations to pitch their company's product. Sales representatives can enter the field with a high school diploma and learn their craft on the job.

Buyer and Purchasing Agent

To supply a software company, buyers and purchasing agents can act as the critic of products brought into the company to use in development. Buyers do their best to find the best quality for the lowest price, and they will also have extensive knowledge of the field in which they deal. Buyers and agents can also arrange to meet with vendors when complaints arise, in order to solve any potential dispute between the two parties. Buyers are in charge of contract monitoring, ensuring that all terms of agreement are enforced. For some companies, a high school diploma is sufficient to start as a buyer or purchasing agent.

Bookkeeper, Accounting, and Auditing Clerk

A software development company will need a solid accounting department staffed by clerks with different tasks. Clerks of bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing might monitor the status of payroll, overdue bills, and bank deposits. Details of transactions will be kept in records, and auditing clerks may also act as editors of sorts for the rest of the department, ensuring that no errors are made. Accounts are tracked with income statements or balance sheets. A bit of postsecondary education might be needed, but in some cases, a high school diploma is all that is necessary to start work as a clerk.

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