Tech is red hot; there's no other way to put it. There's just not enough people who have learned to code to meet demand in the world of programming, and that's a situation that is expected to continue for at least a few years. That's great news for job seekers and those entering coding schools, as it means high salaries right out of the gate. If you want to get a taste of the possibilities, check out these top-paying jobs for tech workers with programming skill.
- Ruby on Rails Developer
Median salary: $108,000
Ruby on Rails and Python are easily the two most in-demand languages at present. Ruby is used for a wide range of things, but it's primarily used in web design and application creation. It's basically become vital to the modern internet as it underpins just about all sites that use responsive technology, meaning that they automatically detect and adapt to the device the end user is accessing them with. It's also very hot with the big e-commerce sites that have to handle lots of constantly changing data; Airbnb, Kickstarter and Groupon are some of the biggest names built with Ruby on Rails. You don't even need a dregree from a four-year coding school; demand is so high that you really just need to demonstrate your level of skill; take a training course, put together some projects and show them off through GitHub or a similar platform. Learn to code Ruby on Rails and you'll be in demand.
- Python Developer
Median salary: $103,000
Python is currently king in the world of "big data," aka advanced analytics. If you're interested in things like predicting how markets will move, or even how sports teams will perform, Python is the language to get into. That's not the only thing it's used for, of course; you'll find it at the "back end" of many websites and it's also widely used in mathematics and science applications. As with Ruby, you can get directly into this by training in it and then creating a profile of projects to show employers; no college degree required. Coding bootcamps can get you there.
- C++ Developer
Median salary: $101,000
C++ is mostly associated with working on big-budget games at industry-leading publishing houses like EA and Blizzard. That's certainly a direction that many people go with it, but it's also used in programming all different types of software. There's a particular emphasis on using it to create and update operating systems. Unlike the other programming jobs listed here, it's less likely that you'll be able to jump into a C++ job just by studying it; employers looking for C++ candidates are also generally looking for a four-year degree in computer science.
- Java Developer
Median salary: $99,900
Median salary: $99,500
- C# Developer
Median salary: $94,600
As C# primarily ties in with Microsoft's .NET framework, it's best for those specifically looking to develop Windows applications. It's good for a number of other purposes, though, and is commonly seen in use in web applications. Unlike C++, you won't need to get a college degree to begin working with this variation of the language.
Keep in mind that the numbers here are medians gathered from Dept. of Labor statistics and current listings at employment sites. Salaries can vary greatly with local cost of living, and the salaries listed here are going to be closer to what to expect in areas like San Francisco, San Jose and New York where the cost of living is considerably higher than average. There can be a difference of as much as $30-40,000 per year between areas with the highest cost of living and areas that are much more reasonable in terms of housing. Regardless of where you end up living, however, these jobs still pay better than just about anything else available!