Starting out as a Mobile App Developer

Written by: Emily on May 13, 2019
Tags: Guest Blogger, Inspiration, Meet the Members

Mobile Apps are everywhere, we see them on our home screens every day. Imagine waiting for the bus without killing time on your favourite mobile game or social media app!

Right?

It’s a pretty frightening prospect for some of us. Maybe you’re the kind of person who just doesn’t use mobile apps as most people might, but considers how they’re put together. How does this button produce that specific function?

If you’re the kind of person who thinks like this, you might just be the perfect future Mobile App Developer.

But…
Where do you start?

How do you become a Mobile App Developer?

Good job that I just so happen to work for Yozu, a Liverpool based Software Development company.

Depending on your age there are multiple pathways to becoming a Mobile App Developer. This article will cover some of the main ones:

School Learning

If you’re still in school (situated within the North-West) then you’re very lucky! The InnovateHer programme might be available at your school. If it’s not, give your teachers a nudge!
You may also be able to link in with a local code club

You’re at, or, heading to College

College is a fantastic place to grasp the fundamentals of Software and Application Development. The skills learned within most STEM-related courses are normally transferable to a University degree in Mobile Application Development.

However, you might be reading this because you’ve taken an unrelated course but decided that you’ve found your passion in App/Software Development. Don’t worry, you don’t need to hop in that time machine and to tell past you to alter your decisions. Altering timelines can cause some pretty bad outcomes remember!

If you find yourself in this situation try heading to one of the many InnovateHer workshops or events to help confirm if this is truly something you’re interested in.

If you are still set on becoming an App Developer, keep reading!
The next two options are the ones you really need to see.

Self-Teaching

Whilst School, College and University are fantastic places to become educated and hone your skills in a Mobile App Development related subject, they aren’t the only ways into the industry.

A number of developers at Yozu don’t have a University degree. What they do have is a very particular set of skills, skills that they have acquired over a long period of time. Our developers are passionate about creating rich mobile applications. The ones who don’t have a higher education in software development taught themselves through online courses and code bootcamps (I’ll talk about that in a moment).

There are a large number of free and paid courses online that’ll start you on your coding journey. We recommend trying Udemy’s online learning platform. Udemy offer a large library of Software/Mobile App Development courses spanning a wide range of languages including:

Remember though, these courses by themselves won’t turn you into a professional developer. Becoming a developer takes a lot of hard work and dedication. If you don’t truly love what you’re doing then stop, software development isn’t for you. That’s a little harsh, but maybe it would be best to pursue something else.

So, you completed a course in mobile app development. What happens next? If you’re the right kind of person then you’ll be eager to learn more, depending on your goals you can pretty much decide which skills you’d like to grasp next. You could take another course or develop something you’d like to see yourself. Developing apps looks great when applying for a new career. Take the time to build a portfolio and submit all your best applications there for employers to browse. Portfolios are vital to securing that job you yearn for! If you can attach it to your CV when applying for a development career then great, if you don’t, be prepared for it to be requested from the employer.

Code Bootcamps

They’re quickly becoming a more accessible way of avoiding a number of years studying in University and becoming a Junior Developer very quickly! Do they work though? Here are some facts to consider before enrolling.

A number of courses promise:

You may find the learning curve quite sharp in a coding bootcamp if you’ve previously had no experience in development. A little bit of self-teaching before you attend one can be a massive help. Teaching yourself following the completion of a bootcamp (and years afterwards) is also highly important. Developers who graduated from a computer science degree say that they are largely self-taught, according to the 2016 Stack Overflow Developer Survey. One of InnovateHer’s fellow members, Northcoders, offer a 12-week coding bootcamp. Find out more here.

Before you go running into the first bootcamp you can find, why not take a look at what a Mobile App Developer job spec looks like?

Well, where is the section on Universities?

There isn’t really a need for a large segment of this article to be dedicated to Universities. Our team come from all of the above pathways as well as Universities. If you’ve graduated in something unrelated to Mobile App Development then you can still get into the industry. Re-read the above on considering bootcamps, InnovateHer workshops, events and being self-taught.

To conclude. There are many, many ways to become a Mobile App Developer, your pathway depends on your age, your motivation and why you want to become one. However, I will leave you with a few things to ask yourself.

Find out more about Yozu here and follow them on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

By Steve Malone, Yozu

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