Difference Between Software Engineer and Software Developer
Published February 22,2023 by Sam

Difference Between Software Engineer and Software Developer

The person who applies the principles of software engineering for designing, developing, maintaining, testing, and evaluating of computer software is known as a Software engineer, and Software developer builds software that runs on different types of computers.

In this blog, let’s learn the difference between software engineer and software developer. And let's identify the areas where software engineer vs. software developer are used.

Software Engineer Vs Software Developer:

Listed below are some of the differences between a software engineer and a software developer engineer. 


Software Engineer

Software Developer


Software engineer degree and its advanced studies.

Proficiency in advanced information technology platforms. Specializations in computer programming.

What they do

Write and test codes.

Build software systems and products.

Execute the product designs by testing code.

Troubleshoot the issues during the development stage.

Nature of work

Team activity. Need to collaborate with different departments.

Solitary activity. No need to keep in the loop different departments while working.

Work process

Should handle complete work process.

Should handle only one of the development aspects of the work process.

Career designation

Software engineer.

Software developer /Architect.


Engineers need to multi-tasking. They are not creative but more systematic and planning.

Limited scale of responsibility and solitary. Developers should be creative and extemporary in finding solutions.


A software engineer creates tools that are used by a software developer.

Software developer uses the tools created by the engineer to make websites or other applications.

Programming languages

Python, Java, HTML, C#, etc.

Python, Java, HTML, C#, etc.

With whom they work with

Clients, software developers, and non- technical stakeholders.

Software engineers, software testers, and QA specialists.


What is a Software Engineer?

A software engineer creates solutions for complex computing and networking requirements. They need to do complex designs and their execution. He creates software as per the design and checks its working to make sure it is error-free.

As a software engineer, you will be assisting the company with

  • Designing and maintaining software
  • Checking the performance through testing
  • Optimizing for speed and scalability

Types of Software Engineers:

Software engineering is a vast subject. The nature of the job changes according to their functional area. This is the reason why a career in software engineering becomes very attractive. Some of the most popular software engineering roles available for software engineers are as follows:

1. Front-End Engineer:

A front-end engineer develops a user interface (UI). It includes the visual elements such as layouts and user-friendly aesthetics of the screen. Front-end engineers also fix the bugs that ensure an excellent visual effect of the UI.

2. Back-End Engineer:

Back-end engineer adds life to what front-end engineer has developed. They design and implement the integration of Data systems, caches, mail systems, etc using Application Programming Interfaces (API).

3. Full Stack Engineer: 

A software developer who can handle both front-end and back-end responsibilities is called a full-stack engineer. They will have both skill sets of creating and modeling the full functionalities of a website.

4. QA-Testing:

Companies employ QA test engineers to test the quality of their products. It should pass different tests that are manual or automated to make sure the product is 100% error-free before the product is delivered to the client.  

5. Dev-Ops Engineer:

DevOps engineering is a relatively new entrant. DevOps means integrating the development and operations departments. This integration helps to reduce costs and gives more efficient and foolproof administration to management. DevOps engineer builds, deploys, integrates, and administers back-end software and other distribution systems. It includes managing infrastructure, databases, servers, etc.

6. Security Engineer:

A software security engineer monitors security flaws in the systems and software. They are often termed as white-hat ethical hackers who help in finding any vulnerability where any hackers can intrude and leak the data.

7. Data Engineer: 

A data engineer handles data warehousing, database management, and data mining. They help the team of developers and test engineers with fool-proof data infrastructure to ensure the smooth functioning of the application.

8. Cloud Engineer:

Cloud Architect engineers play a major role in managing cloud-based operations. As the world is changing to the cloud, this stream of engineering becomes so lucrative that many software engineers now aspire to become cloud architects. The scope of a cloud architect is increasing day by day as most companies are now moving into cloud servers.

How to Become a Software Engineer?

The traditional way of becoming a software engineer is to enroll in a software programming degree. There are lots of institutes that provide degree programs. Here a student can learn about the basics of computer science and learn in-depth concepts regarding software engineering, data science, computer networks, programming languages, and a lot of other tools.

Today, pursuing a degree program is not mandatory. You can make use of coding boot camps or online classes to learn top programming languages.  

Skills Required for Software Engineer:

A software engineer should be familiar with various programming languages and platforms upon which they can start programming. Starting from computer games to network control systems, their responsibilities are varied and highly skill oriented. More than development, they are also entrusted with checking functionality and client management.

The difference between software engineer and software developer is the use of analytical skills. 

A software engineer should be good at analytical skills. The technology a software engineer uses is ever-evolving and is changing very fast. 

He should be a continuous learner, adapting himself to the change in technology.

Advantages of Software Engineering:

  • There is always a high demand for Software engineers as software engineering is always growing.
  • Technology is constantly evolving; hence there is always something new to learn; you may find more growth opportunities in Software engineering.
  • Software Engineering contributes to a higher pay scale hierarchy.
  • Software engineers have flexible work schedules, providing a certain amount of freedom.

Career Growth of Software Engineer:

You will have tremendous opportunities in your career if you choose to become a software engineer. Always try for new opportunities and knock on every door to expand your expertise.

Starting from a junior software engineer, you can become a senior programmer, Tech lead, Team manager, or Chief technology officer.

Software Engineer Salary: 

The average software engineer salary in India is 5 to 8 LPA. It will get changed according to the expertise, skill sets, and experience. 

What is Software Developer?

A software developer builds software or applications that you use daily on your mobile or desktop whether it's computer games you play or the programs you use in the office.

Engineering software development requires creative masterminds to do brainstorming that works well with the requirements of the clients. They write code from scratch. Some popular examples are Photoshop, and mobile or web applications like Instagram, Facebook, etc.

Types of Software Developer:

The software developer designs applications that help the end-user perform specific tasks or actions. Just like Software engineer opportunities, Software Developers also have plenty of options to choose from.

1. Web Developer:

A web developer works on creating a website. They may be front-end, back-end, or full-stack developers.

Their primary focus will be on layout and navigation and checking whether the website meets the requirements of the client.

2. Game Developer:

A game developer works on video games using creativity.

Their creative skills become important in articulating a fine interactive experience for users. They mostly develop games that can be installed on computers, mobiles, or games for specific operating systems.

3. Big Data Developer:

Big data developer works with big data which means calibrating with huge sets of data. Multinationals or big companies will have to handle large quantities of data that are customer-centric and are protected from data security. Thus, it becomes the responsibility of the developer to maintain and analyze the security of the data so that data security is maintained and strictly circulated within the four walls of the company.

4. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Developers:

CRMs are the software used to store customer data. It contains the details of the customer, and how they are important to the business. It also helps to execute some customer-related processes of an organization and helps the business to keep in touch with its customer base. In today’s business world, companies give very high importance to customer appeasement and CRM developers help them to fulfill this requirement.

5. Mobile Developer:

Mobile developers create applications specifically for mobile phones as mobile phone becomes handier and more reliable from the perspective of a customer.

How to Become a Software Developer?

Learning to code is the basics of becoming a software developer. The advantage here is that if you have the enthusiasm to learn, even formal education becomes irrelevant. Many professional developers are self-taught; they learn through patience and practice, taking inspiration from other developers. Many online, as well as offline classes, are available that teach the concepts of coding. The effectiveness of these classes depends on how smart you are in understanding the concepts.

Skills Required for Software Developer:

Software developers should have the best combination of hard and soft skills. They should be experts in coding and designing a program as they do most of their activities using coding. They also instruct the programmers on how to write the code for the program through a series of flowcharts.

Advantages of a Software Developer:

  • The demand for Software Develops is drastically increasing as we advance into digitalization.
  • As we are embracing Artificial Intelligence, a lot more opportunities for software developers are arising.
  • Software developers have high-paying salaries with a lot of added benefits.
  • Software developers get to work with different teams and clients making it an interactive work environment.

Career Growth of Software Developer:

Software developers are highly acknowledged and rewarded today because of the increasing use of technology in daily life.

Your journey as a software developer can be started as a Front-end developer, Back-end developer, or as a Full stack developer. Through this, you can become a web developer. You are expected to learn basic languages like HTML, Java Script, Python and SQL, etc.

The career growth of a software developer starts as a Junior developer, Full stack developer, Senior developer, Lead Architect, and Senior lead in software development. You will be heading a team of mid-level managers.

Software Developer Salary:

The average software developer salary in India is 6 to 10 LPA. It will get changed according to the expertise, skill sets, and experience.

Important Programming Languages:

Ruby, Java, C++, and C# are some of the languages you can start with. As a beginner, you can start with one or two programs. Once you become an expert, you can start learning more languages.

Enhancing your skill sets is very important here. A software engineer will never stop learning. You should keep practicing in these languages and update yourself with frequent updates happening with changed technologies.

Which one is right for me? software developer or software engineer

Once you understood software developer vs software engineer difference, you can choose which one is suitable for you, according to your skill sets and interests. Both demands different work environment, responsibilities, and team management. If you are a go-getter and feel good to mingle with clients and users, Programmer can be the best choice.

If you feel comfortable in a solitary job that is creative, and can be done even when you are at home, you can become a developer. The application you produce is the result of a set of instructions you give to the computer. It requires creative ideas and a mindset to visualize the changes you can bring to the product.


Software development plays an important role in today’s business to stay competitive. So is the scope of a developer and engineer. By understanding the difference between software engineering and software developer, you can choose which one is best for you. both have huge opportunities, especially after the pandemic which proved a blessing in disguise. Always be ready to sharpen your knowledge and skill sets. 


Which is better software engineer or a software developer?

Depends on your taste and skill sets. If you want to limit your role but be more creative, you can become a developer. If you want to work on a large scale and collaborate with more people and departments, you can choose to become a programmer.

Who gets paid more software engineer or developer?

Software engineers earn more though it’s a very slight margin. As a fresher, a software engineer can get anywhere between 6-10 LPA while a developer can get 5-8 LPA.

Is coding required for a software developer?

Yes, you should be a master in Java, Python, C++, and Scala.

Which language is best for a software engineer?

You should be good in Ruby, Java, C++, C#, SQL, Swift, HTML/CSS, Python, etc.


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