Software developers have many specializations to choose from. Picking the right specialty has a significant impact on your career path, your career longevity, and the salary and benefits you can expect. For programmers who are interested in Web and business software development, learning Java and becoming a Java systems analyst can be a great career choice.
Java is Popular!
The Java programming language was released in 1995 and almost immediately was a success. It supported the object-oriented programming language, like its major competitor C++, but eliminated the use of pointers that often led to buggy code and program crashes. The built-in garbage collection let developers focus on business functionality rather than memory management, leading to rapid development of more reliable programs.
Java programs are compiled to bytecode that runs on any Java virtual machine, so the applications are automatically cross-platform compatible. This benefit means development shops don't need to maintain separate versions of source code to run on multiple operating systems.
Java Systems Analysts Learn Industries and Applications in Depth
Java systems analysts spend time understanding their end user or customer requirements and write specifications for applications that meet those needs. They often get to follow a project through its total lifecycle, beginning with the requirements, helping programmers create designs according to the spec, assisting with testing, and writing documentation and training materials.
Java Systems Analysts Have Lots of Opportunity
The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects a 25 percent increase in computer system analyst jobs by 2022, meaning lots of opportunities will exist for talented workers. As analysts become more experienced, they can move into project management and other senior information technology roles offering additional responsibility. Systems analysts can find jobs in companies that specialize in software and information systems, or in any business that develops its business systems in-house.
Compensation is Competitive
Because there is high demand for Java systems analysts, companies offer good compensation. Average salaries nationally are over $87,000 according to the BLS and range up to $130,000. One reason salaries are high is that positions often require overtime to meet tight project schedules.
Keeping Current is Mandatory
Getting a job as a Java systems analyst requires a solid computer science background. Because technology and business needs change frequently, keeping current in both is necessary. Systems analysts should take advantage of continuing education programs sponsored by their businesses, but should also be prepared to study independently.