5 tips to upskill as a software developer
Recent Gartner research found that 58% of the workforce will need to learn new skills to do their job successfully. Gartner also found that there are a high number of open positions for people with advanced development skills, but relatively few candidates per position. So, how can you continue to upskill as a software developer?

1 - Work on your communication skills
Having great writing and communication skills directly translates into programming capability. Joel Spolsky can elaborate on why this is:

"The difference between a tolerable programmer and a great programmer is not how many programming languages they know, and it's not whether they prefer Python or Java. It's whether they can communicate their ideas. By persuading other people, they get leverage. By writing clear comments and technical specs, they let other programmers understand their code, which means other programmers can use and work with their code instead of rewriting it. Absent this, their code is worthless."

2 - Keep it simple
Richard Kenneth said "Wherever possible, always choose the simpler programming language. More complex languages increase the cognitive load on your brain. Simpler languages do not necessarily give up anything in terms of power or expressiveness."

3 - Dedicate time to learning
Software skills and requirements are constantly evolving. It is important to assign some regular time in your schedule, even if it is just a couple of hours per month, to ensure you are learning new things and staying at the forefront of the industry. Whether it is a online master class, instructor-led coaching or mentoring programs, there are many ways to learn efficiently.

4 - Teach. Teaching teaches the teacher
Even if you’re a novice, you’re knowledgeable about something. Teaching teaches the teacher - training others is very beneficial for reinforcing your learning as well as improving those communication skills.

5 - Get to know AI (Artificial Intelligence)
As Google CEO Sundar Pichai recently said, "AI is probably the most important thing humanity has ever worked on. I think of it as something more profound than electricity or fire." AI applications are quickly moving into the mainstream, and as the market matures, it is creating demand for AI-skilled technologists. Jobs requiring AI skills have more than quadrupled since 2013, signifying increasing adoption of AI applications that drive industry growth.

Software development is evolving too fast to stand still. Taking the steps above and more, will enable you to be ready for the roles of tomorrow.

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