During a job interview for a position as a software developer, the interviewer may ask why you want to be a software developer. Candidates often respond with answers that describe their desire for a collaborative career that offers continuous learning opportunities. Understanding how to answer this question effectively can help you leave a positive impression and show an employer you’re committed to obtaining the position. In this article, we explain how to answer “why do you want to be a software developer” and provide three example responses to help you prepare.
Why do employers ask “Why do you want to be a software developer?”
Employers ask candidates “why do you want to be a software developer” to learn about their interest in the field and determine whether they’re the right fit for the company. The software development industry is highly complex, so interviewers often aim to ensure that a potential candidate is committed to performing the challenging yet rewarding work. This question also helps interviewers focus on candidates who are genuinely interested in developing software rather than candidates who may simply be seeking a high salary.
How to answer “Why do you want to be a software developer?”
Here are three steps you can follow to answer “why do you want to be a software developer” effectively:
1. Focus on one reason
Before you attend your interview, think about the main reason you want to be a software developer. For example, you may want to be a software developer to participate in the exciting challenges the position can present. Alternatively, you may want to enter the field to access ongoing education, apply your analytical skills or collaborate with various technology-oriented professionals.
2. Give details about your background
As you’re answering this interview question, it’s important to provide details about your professional and personal background. Consider describing how you became interested in software development. You can also inform the interviewer how your background helps drive your current enthusiasm for the field. Explaining what motivated you to begin your career in software development can help an interviewer recognize your commitment to the field.
3. Highlight what you can offer
If you choose to share a personal story about why you became a software developer, consider focusing on how aspects of your background can help the company. For example, you can tell the interviewer that you’re excited about being a software developer because it gives you the opportunity to use the critical thinking skills that you developed through a personal experience.
While you may feel personal fulfilment when applying your critical thinking skills, this reason also benefits your target employer. This can show the interviewer that you’re intrinsically motivated to perform effectively at work and that a team can rely on you to deliver high-quality work independently.
Example answers for the question “Why do you want to be a software developer?”
Here are three example answers to the question “why do you want to be a software developer:”
Here’s how to answer this interview question if you’re currently switching careers:
“I want to be a software developer because designing computer programs lets me use my creative and problem-solving skills. Software development wasn’t my initial career path, but I’m glad I discovered it. In college, I originally studied communications. After obtaining my bachelor’s degree in communications, I accepted a job as an editor at a publishing firm. I was responsible for correcting grammatical and stylistic mistakes in clients’ work. While I was good at my job and worked hard, the position didn’t excite me, so I searched for something more fulfilling.
After sharing my lack of job satisfaction with a friend, he told me about his career as a software developer. It was something I had never considered, but his description of the field intrigued me. I learned more about the subject via online resources and began to teach myself basic concepts. Eventually, I earned a bachelor’s degree in computer science. I enjoyed the challenges that my education presented, and I’m very excited to work as a professional software developer and use the versatile skills that this career demands.”
Consider using this answer as an example if becoming a software developer is a long-term ambition for you:
“I’ve wanted to become a software developer for as long as I can remember. While I was growing up, both of my parents worked in technology-related fields. My father worked as a software engineer and my mother worked as an information technology analyst. They always encouraged me to enter science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields, and I’m very grateful I had that encouragement. In high school, I excelled in classes like calculus and physics, which reassured me that becoming a software developer was the right career choice for me.
After high school, I obtained a bachelor’s degree in computer science. While I originally intended to enter the workforce after my undergraduate years, I felt compelled to pursue additional education to contribute to the field of software development in the most productive way possible. I earned a master’s degree in computer science. Now I feel prepared and excited to begin a career that I’ve been planning for since I was a child.”
Here’s an example of a response from a candidate who began working after high school:
“I want to be a software developer because I’ve worked hard to develop skills that are relevant to this industry and because this type of work brings me personal satisfaction. I’ve gained a lot of practical experience since graduating high school. I’ve become intimately familiar with several coding languages, participated in coding challenges and worked on personal coding projects. I’m excited to begin a career as a software developer and learn more about this line of work from industry professionals.”