These days software engineers are spoiled for choice when it comes to career opportunities. There are so many technologies out there which need skilled professionals. And Hired’s 2019 State of Software Engineers report shows just how vibrant the picture is.

The report shows there’s a bit of misalignment when it comes to most engineers’ preferences and what the industry actually demands and needs. For example, there’s a massive uptick in demand for blockchain engineers. Demand for such roles grew by 517% over the past year.

On a distant second place we see Security engineers. Demand for those professionals rose by 132%. Demand also rises for Embedded engineers (76%), Data engineers (38%) and Backend engineers (33%). Finally, Machine learning engineers and Mobile engineers close out the chart with growth of demand of 27% and 15% respectively.

Now, if you’re a CIO or an analyst, this would seem about right probably. But what are the actual preferences of the software engineers?

Thanks, but no thanks

The report shows that 61% of engineers actually are most interested by machine learning and want to learn more about it. 19% say they want to learn more about User Experience. And only 12% say they want to learn more about Blockchain. Other things that interest engineers are Mobile, Hardware, AR/VR, Gaming and… Search.

As a result, salaries for Blockchain pros are among the top ranking in both hot tech hubs in the US and Europe. The lack of interest from engineers though is surprising. This means those who decide to venture into blockchain technologies will have quite the selection of offers to choose from.

Meanwhile, software engineers show that they are still hungry. One of the questions is what is their 10 year goal. The answers aren’t surprising: 36% say they want to continue building cool things. 23% want to become a tech leader (i.e. rise up the ranks). Also, 19% say they want to start their own company and 15% want to become a product leader. Only 8% want to be able to retire.

Eager to learn more

The report also confirms something we all know about software engineers – they are always eager to learn more. Bootcamps in particular seem to be quite beneficial. 76% of engineers who went to a bootcamp say it helped them in preparing for an engineering job.

Meanwhile, 57% of companies say they would hire a bootcamp graduate. 36% say they aren’t sure. Only 7% say they won’t and say lack of experience is their main concern. As a result, most engineers either rely on a college degree or self-teaching to get ready.

More freedom

What engineers really want from their employers is a bit more freedom. But this doesn’t mean to work less. They want a bit more interesting things in the day-to-day process.

For example, 48% say pair programming (two engineers working together on one computer) would increase their interest in the job. 40% say they won’t feel a change and only 14% say they won’t like that.

On the other hand, they don’t really like to collaborate with other groups like sales, marketing, HR, finance and so on. 47% say this happens “only when absolutely “necessary” and 19% reply it happens “all the time”. On the upside, 34% say it never happens to them.

When it comes to actual work, 63% say they prefer to get up early and finish work early than sleep in and work late. So much for the tale of the never-sleeping engineer. Also, 38% say their biggest pet peeve is unrealistic deadlines. So, think about that when you set up the next deadline.

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