A well-crafted software engineer resume will set you apart from other applicants and showcase your talents, skills, and experiences. As a software engineer, having a great resume is essential for boosting your chances of landing a good job in the highly competitive job market.
"Computers themselves, and software yet to be developed, will revolutionize the way we learn."
Whether you are looking for entry-level software engineering jobs or want to advance your career, keep on reading to learn the best approach to building a resume for a software engineer.
1. Article's structure
This article provides a comprehensive guide to writing an effective software engineering resume. Below you will find tips on making a resume that increases the chances of getting a job interview.
The main points include:
- Composing education and work history parts;
- Describing your software engineer's skills and qualifications;
- Listing certificates and other achievements;
- Organizing an engaging software engineer's cover letter.
Every section is presented with a clear explanation and specific software engineer resume examples. At the end of the article, you will find cover letter examples for software engineers with various levels of expertise.
Following these steps will aid you in creating a resume for a software engineering position that stands out.
2. Use a resume builder
Are you looking for a way to create a professional software engineering resume without the hassle of building one from scratch? Look no further! Use resume templates by Resume Trick.
Pre-made software engineer resume templates have many benefits:
- You will save time because you do not have to worry about formatting, font size, and other design details.
- Using templates also allows you to ensure that your resume meets all the industry standards and is ATS compatible.
- You can customize the software engineering resume template to reflect your own unique style.
On the website, you can easily find the resume template for software engineers and begin crafting your perfect document. All you have to do is fill in your information in the suggested sections and you are done!
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3. Software engineer resume examples
Summary: Experienced software engineering professional specializing in developing applications and websites using cutting-edge technologies and best practices. Proven track record of successful projects with clients from various industries. Passionate about creating user-friendly and secure solutions.
- Developed full-stack web applications in React, NodeJS, and MongoDB for major auto manufacturers.
- Created a mobile app in Java for a banking company, ensuring security compliance and performance optimization.
- Implemented numerous bug fixes and updates for a variety of customer projects.
- Designed microservices architecture to improve the scalability and reliability of the existing system.
- Collaborated with remote teams on developing new features for the eCommerce platform.
- Frameworks/Libraries: React, AngularJS, jQuery, Bootstrap, Node.js.
- Cloud Platforms: Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Cloud Platform (GCP).
- Database Technologies: MongoDB, MySQL, PostgreSQL.
- Operating Systems: Windows 10/8/7, Linux/Unix.
- Design Patterns: MVC, RESTful APIs.
- Version Control: Git/GitHub.
- Master's Degree in Analytics | University of Chicago | 2021
- Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science | University of California - San Diego | 2019
Online Shopping Website | (2020)
- Integrated PayPal payment system for secure transactions.
- Implemented an advanced search feature for users to find products easily.
4. Provide contact information
Your software engineering resume has to begin with providing your contact details.
The top of your software engineer resume should state your full name, email, phone number, and current address, or the location you are planning to move to.
Be sure that your email address is professional (e.g. no funny names in the address) and that your number is the one you always have access to.
You may also share a link to your professional website or LinkedIn profile if you have one. This will allow the employer to better understand who you are as a software engineering professional.
It is crucial to provide accurate information on how to reach out to you to exclude the possibility of missing a life-changing call or email. Look at the sample software engineer resume to help you format this part of your resume correctly.
5. Organize the education section
When crafting a software engineer resume, one of the most important aspects is listing and organizing your education information.
Education is essential for any software engineer to demonstrate their technical knowledge, theoretical background, and overall software engineer qualifications.
"Software is a great combination between artistry and engineering."
To present your software engineering academic information most compellingly, list your highest degree first and work backward chronologically. Ensure to include all the institutions you studied at, the dates you attended, and any major or minor concentrations you had.
If applicable, mention the honors that you earned during your studies. These could include Dean’s List recognition or awards for specific projects or coursework.
You can also list any certificates or professional development programs you completed.
Finally, mention any extracurricular activities on your software engineer resume. This could have involvement with student organizations like hackathons or coding competitions.
Mentioning such activities will demonstrate an enthusiasm for software engineering and an ability to apply yourself outside the classroom.
Software engineer resume - sample education section:
Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science, University of California Berkeley, 2019-2023 Data Analytics minor; 3.70 GPA
Associate's Degree in Computer Networking, Santa Rosa Community College, 2017-2019
In case you have taken any courses outside of the standard degree program relevant to software engineering, make sure to include them as one of your resume's sections.
This could consist of classes in computer science, coding fundamentals, web development, or other applicable topics. Be sure to list the name of the course, the institution where it was taken, and the year it was completed.
In summary, this part of your software engineer's resume has to state an accurate account of your academic journey. Doing so will give potential employers a complete understanding of all areas of your expertise related to software engineering.
6. Present work experience
To further strengthen your software engineer resume, you have to support your theoretical knowledge with up-to-date information about your employment history.
This includes listing the exact names of companies you worked for, their locations, dates of employment, and a brief description of your job duties.
The profession is projected to grow by 25 percent from 2021 to 2031 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics).
Including relevant accomplishments to your software engineering resume you have gained with each employer can also be helpful. You should also include relevant volunteer experience if applicable.
Similarly to the previous section, organize your work history in reverse chronological order.
Software engineering resume - example of work history:
Software Engineer | XYZ Software Solutions | 2018 - Present
- Construct web applications with React to meet users' needs within a specified timeline.
- Implement a RESTful API using Node.js to support the frontend application.
- Optimize database design and queries for performance improvement.
- Collaborate closely with the QA team to identify and resolve bugs quickly.
Software Developer | ABC Technologies | 2014 - 2018
- Developed a web application using AngularJS that increased user engagement by 20%.
- Created an automated testing framework using Selenium WebDriver for faster testing cycles.
- Maintained code quality by following coding standards and best practices.
- Debugged various application issues reported by users and fixed them accordingly.
Remember that your software engineer resume should be tailored to the particular job you are applying for. This means you prioritize the skills and experiences most relevant for that particular position.
Consider highlighting key skills or responsibilities from each job and use language that will resonate with potential employers.
For example, do not simply list "managed team" as an accomplishment from a previous role. Instead, try saying something like “Led a team of five employees in developing new strategies for improved customer service” instead.
Suppose you have held multiple software engineering positions within one company. In that case, it is best to list them separately and provide details about each position.
To help you organize this section best, use a resume template for software engineer jobs.Write a software engineer resume
7. List software engineer's skills
When drafting your software engineering resume, you need to highlight both your hard and soft skills. This will express that you are a well-rounded professional, capable of excellently performing job-specific tasks as well as effectively communicating and collaborating with others.
The 2021 median annual pay was $120,730 per year (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics).
Include a mix of both types of skills on your resume, so hiring managers will have more information about you when making hiring decisions. Here are some examples:
Software engineer resume - examples of soft skills:
- Critical thinking;
- Interpersonal skills;
- Time management;
- Creative thinking;
Software engineer resume - examples of hard skills:
- Programming languages (e.g., Java, C++, Python);
- Operating systems (e.g., Linux, Unix, Windows);
- Database management (e.g., MySQL, Oracle);
- Algorithms and data structures;
- Object-oriented design (OOD);
- Systems analysis and design;
- Networking (e.g., TCP/IP protocols);
- Security (e.g., encryption algorithms).
These are just some examples of the wide range of software engineering skills you may have. Include in the software engineer resume those you are an expert in and feel confident that they will help you land the job.
8. Social media: pros and cons
A software engineer's resume may contain social media links such as LinkedIn, Tableau Public, or other networks with a professional presence. Such links can help establish your interest in the industry.
Almost 30% of software engineers are freelancers (Techjury).
It can show potential employers what the engineer is capable of. Additionally, these links can provide a platform for recruiters to learn more about the engineer and their work, allowing them to make better-informed decisions.
- Incorporating social media profiles can showcase your skills and experience.
- If a job requires knowledge of a certain technology, your Twitter account may demonstrate your familiarity with the technology.
- A link to your Github profile could illustrate the types of software engineering projects you have worked on in the past.
- Some people may feel uncomfortable linking their social media accounts to their professional resumes.
- It can be difficult to control how your profile is perceived by employers.
- If there is anything on your social media page that could be seen as unprofessional, it might be best to not include it in your resume.
Embedding social media on a software engineer's resume can be rewarding when employed judiciously. It provides hiring managers with valuable insight into your character and expertise.
However, it can also be viewed negatively if not done correctly. Hence, before sharing any links, consider all the pros and cons. Put only those social media profiles that will be beneficial for your job hunting.
9. Write a resume summary
An excellent resume summary for a software engineer should highlight your key knowledge and expertise in the profession. It should be short - 3-4 sentences - but make the recruiter want to read your application further.
"Mindset is everything: the software operates the hardware."
Use concise language and clearly explain your abilities in terms of how they can be applied to software engineering projects. It is also vital to demonstrate your knowledge of industry-specific software and technologies.
Software engineering resume summary example #1:
Experienced software engineer with 8+ years of experience developing applications for various clients. Proven track record of creating innovative solutions to complex problems while leading teams to successful product launches. Skilled at designing and developing new features and optimizing existing applications to maximize performance.
Software engineering resume summary example #2:
Using the right words to describe yourself can make a big difference in how your resume comes across to prospective employers.
Here are some suggestions of powerful words and phrases that you can use on your resume summary for a software engineer:
- Developed - Describe any projects you have created or been involved in. For example, "Developed a web-based application for managing customer orders."
- Optimized - Explain improvements or optimizations you have executed to existing applications or processes. For example, "Optimized database performance by 25% with minimal hardware changes."
- Streamlined - Share how you have made processes more efficient or effective. For example, "Streamlined the user onboarding process by developing an automated system."
- Implemented - Talk about new systems or technologies you have implemented. For example, "Implemented a cloud-based infrastructure for improved scalability and security."
- Debugged - Elaborate on any debugging tasks you have undertaken. For example, "Debugged a complex software issue in record time."
- Resolved - Note when you solved a problem successfully. For example, "Resolved an issue with customer billing system within 24 hours of receiving the ticket."
By the way, Resume Trick provides AI-powered resume objective generation. Try it out when you create your job application materials with the service!
10. Include additional information
Your software engineering resume is your space to show off. Feel free to share any facts about yourself that were not mentioned before but that you are confident will increase your chances of getting hired.
Top 5 states where software engineers go are California, Washington, Massachusetts, New York, and Texas. (CS careerline)
Consider adding the following sections as an opportunity to differentiate yourself while talking about your software engineer's qualifications.
By sharing your hobbies you unveil your personality and interests to hiring managers.
For example, a software engineer may have experience with coding competitions or be involved in the tech community. This could be a great way to showcase that they have the right mindset for the position.
Listing courses in a software engineer resume is highly beneficial as it can show your expertise in your field and that you are dedicated to self-improvement.
This could cover taking classes in computer science, web development, artificial intelligence, or data analysis.
Include it on your resume if you are proficient in a foreign language other than English.
This will indicate that you can communicate with a variety of people from different cultural backgrounds.
Incorporating your awards will show the success you have achieved and the recognition received for your work in the past. List any awards for coding or programming competitions as well.
This can be beneficial for a software engineer’s resume as it illustrates the noteworthy results of your previous projects.
Having an internship indicates that you have obtained experience in the field already. If you completed any internships while studying, provide details on them too.
Experience in programming or coding, working with web development frameworks, or building mobile applications will be beneficial to show your career development.
Having references provides recruiters with a way to obtain supplementary information about you from another person’s point of view. List at least two references on your software engineer’s resume who can write you a letter of recommendation.
These could be your previous professors, supervisors, or colleagues who can attest to your skills and abilities. Be sure to ask their permission first.
Completed certifications for software engineers will strengthen the sense that you have the necessary knowledge for the job.
For a software engineering role, include certificates related to programming languages or frameworks, such as being certified in Java or C++ programming.
Incorporating extra individual information into a software engineering resume can help differentiate you from other candidates and give employers an understanding of your qualifications and passion in this field.
For more ideas, use a resume template for software engineers!Build your software engineering resume now
11. Cover letter for software engineers
Crafting a compelling software engineer cover letter is a critical part of your job application. It is your chance to shine. Your supporting letter should be tailored to the specific software engineering position you are sending your resume to and highlight your relevant skills and experiences.
Here are some guidelines to help you get started:
- Start with a strong introduction. Introduce yourself, tell why you are applying for the software engineer job, and provide a brief overview of your credentials and experience.
- Focus on the details. Explain what makes you an excellent fit for the role and highlight any relevant experience, skills, and accomplishments that make you an ideal candidate.
- Show enthusiasm. Express your excitement about the opportunity and demonstrate why it matches your talents and interests.
- Close with a call to action. End your letter by asking the hiring manager to contact you to discuss the role further or to schedule an interview.
- Proofread thoroughly. Review your letter multiple times before sending it off, checking for spelling and grammar errors and typos.
To get a better understanding of what is expected from you, look at bad and good software engineer cover letter examples.
Bad cover letter for software engineer example:
Hi Hiring Manager,
I am expressing interest in the job of software engineering. I believe I am well-suited to this role and I would be an asset to your team.
I have some experience developing software applications, but my background lies mainly in web development. I am confident that my skills and experience make me an ideal candidate for this job.
I believe I possess the qualities outlined in the job description. If you are interested in learning more about my qualifications as a software engineer, please do not hesitate to contact me at your earliest convenience.
The above example is bad because it lacks the necessary details about the applicant's qualifications for a software engineering job.
The letter does not provide any specifics and looks like a generic sample that could be sent to anyone. Such supporting materials will not help in attaining a new role.
Good example of a software engineer's cover letter:
Dear [Hiring Manager],
I am writing to apply for the software engineer position at [Company Name]. With my experience in developing software products, I believe I have the software engineer qualifications you are looking for.
I have five years of experience as a software engineer. I am expert in developing, testing, and implementing software solutions. During my time at [Previous Company], I worked on multiple projects that involved designing and coding for several mobile applications. Additionally, I managed multiple teams of developers and provided technical guidance when needed.
I am a creative problem solver who enjoys working on challenging projects. I have excellent communication skills and can effectively collaborate with other departments, such as design and marketing teams. My coding skills are top-notch. I can code in multiple languages, including Java, C++, and Python.
I believe my skillset makes me an excellent addition to your team of software engineers. I would love to have the opportunity to discuss this role further with you. Please feel free to get in touch with me at any time if you would like to discuss my qualifications further.
Thank you in advance for your kind attention.
12. Cover letter for entry-level jobs
If you are a fresh graduate and looking for an entry-level software engineering jobs, you may not be confident enough in how to write a cover letter to present yourself best.
About 162,900 job openings are projected each year, on average, over the decade (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics).
An entry-level job application is different from an experienced candidate's profile. Its content highly depends on the amount of experience you have had throughout your college career.
To help you craft an effective cover letter for a software engineer resume with no experience, follow the provided tips:
- Show enthusiasm for the job and company. Demonstrate your knowledge of the organization by addressing its mission and values.
- Focus on transferable skills. Highlight any relevant technical or soft skills that you can bring from other experiences such as class projects, internships, or volunteer work.
- Quantify your achievements. Whenever possible, provide tangible evidence of success in previous roles such as awards or metrics that demonstrate your impact on the organization.
- Provide relevant examples. Share specific examples of when you applied your technical skills or successfully collaborated with others on a project.
- Make sure it is error-free. Review your cover letter multiple times to ensure there are no typos or grammatical mistakes before submitting it.
Cover letter sample for software engineer resume with no experience:
Dear [Hiring Manager],
I am writing to apply for the role of Software Engineer at [Company Name]. I am still in the process of obtaining my Bachelor's qualification in Computer Science. However, I believe that my academic background and technical skills make me an ideal candidate for this role.
I have a strong foundation in computer science fundamentals, including data structures, algorithms, software engineering, and web development. I also have hands-on experience with programming languages such as Java, C++, and HTML.
During my coursework, I have designed and implemented several projects from concept to completion. This included a full-stack website and an app for facial recognition.
In addition to my technical abilities, I am a highly motivated self-starter who can quickly learn new concepts and technologies. I am also a great team player who can work collaboratively to achieve organizational goals.
Overall, I am confident that my skill set and experience make me a good fit for the Software Engineer role at [Company Name]. I look forward to discussing this opportunity further with you.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
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13. Proofread your resume
Proofreading and spellchecking your resume and cover letter when applying for a software engineering job is important. That is because it shows that you are detail-oriented and organized in your work.
In addition, it showcases your professionalism and commitment.
Using proper grammar and words in the software engineer's resume is essential. Thanks to that, you will come across as a competent individual who can be trusted to handle complex software tasks.
It also conveys respect for the hiring manager and helps guarantee that the information in your documents is clear and easy to understand.
When hiring a software engineer, employers need the assurance that you can communicate effectively through written communication. Grammar and word choice reflect your skill level in this area, so you must demonstrate that you can write clearly and concisely.
Finally, a polished software engineer resume and cover letter for a software engineer give evidence that you take the time necessary to invest in yourself as an employee.
It demonstrates dedication to doing your best work on behalf of the company, as well as an eagerness to produce quality work products.
Companies want employees willing to put in the extra effort needed to produce excellent results, so proofreading your work is integral to showcasing yourself as the perfect candidate.
Writing a software engineering resume can be challenging. It is essential to know what employers look for in a resume and how to present information correctly.
Look at the sample software engineer resume and cover letter examples. Take advantage of using a software engineer resume template from the online resume builder to help you get the job done!
With these tips, anyone can create an impressive resume for a software engineer that will get the deserved attention in the job market.