I don’t have anyone to ask for advise like this in real life so I ask for some help and different perspective. I am from India so it will be a bit more Indian centered but it probably will apply to anywhere.
Lately I’ve been thinking that soon there is going to be a lot of competition in the programming market. There are already a dozen of popular online code learning platforms, for example Whitehat Jr (literal scam), Vedantu, Toppr. And they are hugely popular in India. That means more coders, more competition and maybe less jobs in the future. Not to mention Indian has a population of 1.4 billion people. The majority are still under 30’s.
So I keep wondering. Is it even worth it? Just to clarify I love programming, I love solving problems and making games, apps, extensions. It makes me feel like I have a lot of freedom and I can play around and almost make anything with it; if I try hard enough that is. My dream is to work in some programming related field. My family is an average middle class family, my parents try to provide whatever best education possible, that’s why I am grateful to be in a pretty expensive school. So of course I have to be a bit realistic and think about the future, because I would need a good paying job to actually financially support my parents and kid if I ever have one later in life.
I still have 3 years of school and 4 years of college left, I understand its too early to choose your career path since in that time the market can change, a lot. Its just really demotivating. I don’t feel like changing my dream but this keeps bugging me a lot since it the only thing I genuinely enjoy.
There is competition, but that means you need to make yourself worth the notice of possible employers. If you are able to get a study title related to programming that’s better, but if you aren’t, you still have 7 years to learn, make experience, build projects, contribute to open source, and create an awesome portfolio (a computer science degree would be a positive in there too). If you are interested in web dev, follow the freeCodeCamp curriculum, if you aren’t the fCC YouTube channel offers tutorials on a lot of other stuff.
just do it man!
who cares about the job? if youre thinking about this now im sure you could provide your family and you will get a great job! u better use your time to live your best when you are young. and programming is damn cool any time.
Honestly, this is nothing new. In 1995, when internet technology was very much in its infancy, folks were already worried about “developer saturation”. When would we hit the point of more coders supplied vs demand?
Never really happened. Tech has evolved and grown, and it is now a massive umbrella. There are so many different ways to specialize and to create niches, and month to month the lay of the land shifts significantly.
If you are willing to continue learning and evolving with newer tech, you will always bee in demand. Currently, learning web3, including smart contracts and block chain development is the buzz - seeing the tends and preparing for them will keep you busy and valued.
Check out the freecodecamp news feed and YouTube channel, get an overview of the articles and broadcasts and try to get a sense of the shape of the future, both for tech and for your place in it. The freecodecamp YouTube is excellent, well stocked with powerful knowledge. I was notified this morning about a python beginner to advanced smart-contact video, and it was great! Got me thinking and feeling empowered.
This is not a “developer-saturated” field. There are a lot of devs, yes, which simply means a little more work to stand out. If you plan to do the minimum to get the job, you might be facing a lot of competition. If you take the initiative to learn all you can and be a “top 5% coder” then there is way less competition and much more opportunity.
There will be more competition, but the number of competitors you might be thinking about will be quite different from the number of true competitors. Sure, a crazy number of people will learn how to build web pages and simple web apps for free (as well as learn basic data science and cybersecurity), but many, if not most, will likely not get a job in a programming-related field unless companies dramatically lower their hiring standards.
It is still really f*#!ing hard to get a good entry-level job as a software engineer, web developer, etc. There are a lot of bad developer jobs out there where devs work on boring projects with outdated tech using a fraction of the skills they possess. Jobs where quantity over quality is the norm and shortcuts are taken as often as is necessary to bring in money now.
Those who are committed to building a solid career will spend up to 1 - 2 years beyond their basic programming education working on projects, networking, and building up a nice resume and portfolio. They’ll continually check in at sites like HackerRank and LeetCode and complete coding challenges. Their mindset will be “I will be so good at this that employers will find it hard to ignore me.” Surely, with how easy it is to learn programming online, there will be more of these people around, but there won’t be enough of them to saturate the market.
There are lots of jobs out there. There are more people now who have exposure to the tech that those jobs require; however, there are still very few people who are qualified enough for most of those jobs.
All that being said, a year or two of work experience at a bad developer job is still better than zero work experience, so it might be worth your while to take one of those jobs initially if you find yourself struggling to get a more ideal job.
I worked a bad developer job for a year and a half, and then got a good software engineering job immediately after that. YMMV.
For reference: Prior to getting a job, I started off at edX and freeCodeCamp and continued learning using online resources after getting the fCC full-stack certification (legacy now). The price of my education as a software developer was/is the cost of an internet connection.