Career Guidance for Full Stack Developers to grow into Product Architects
Software Developers working in Full Stack development often find their careers growth slow down after spending a couple of years. This article talks about giving a definite direction and trajectory to your career and avoid a career stalemate. While many posts and articles talk about up-skilling, taking up new online courses, this post comes with a definite road map for young developers who want to accelerate their career to a Product Architect. Please save the infographics at the end of this article as a reference to your own Career guidance for full stack developers to grow into a product architect.
Step 1 : Foundation in a set of Complementary and Suplimentary Technologies
A solid foundation in technology stacks is non-negotiable. If you are not good at coding and system design, you have very little hope of succeeding as a Product Architect. A Product Architect is expected to take decisions about the choice of the best option in Framework, Development Methodology , Time and Estimates. Unless one has hands-on experience of performing these activities as a developers, he/she does not stand a chance .
- 2+ years of experience developing end to end
- (front end and back end) web-based applications
- Experience with Angular, React.js or Vue.js
- Experience developing RESTful API’s
- Experience with Typescript
- Sound understanding of Spring boot micro-services architecture
- Deep experience of developing Server Side Applications using Node.js
- While this gives a list of the most popular frameworks, by no means this list is complete or guarantees success. To make things more tricky, by the time this article is published there could be a couple of new additions to this list while some of the ones mentioned may no longer be as relevant as it is now. A piece of advice for all Full Stack Developers out there, keep some time to study the developer events happening globally and the follow the trends coming out from there.
Step 2: Go beyond your core competency
Once you gain experience in your field, explore
complementary technology stacks. if you are a back end
developer, learn Database Management. If you are a Front
End Developer explore Server Side Technology Stacks. Do
not let your complacency box your ambitions.
Step 3: Join a network of Product Developers
Take advantage of the resources and connections you have at your disposal. Keeping an active presence in your industry can enable you to
discover job opportunities, maintain long-term professional relationships, and stay up-to-date on industry trends.
Choose your subscriptions to the forums like Ionic Forum, Google Developer New letters wisely and spend some time keeping you abreast of the recent developments.
Step 4: Be part of an Innovative Organisation
This step is often not in your hands. While Addy Digital can recommend some organisations where innovation is a way of life, but it’s not possible to switch before giving your best in making your organisation an innovative one. Here are some thing what you can do to change your organisation’s culture.
Demonstrate entrepreneurial spirit, work independently in fast paced development team
Build user-friendly features and applications
Contribute at all levels of development (front end, back end, cloud applications)
Maintain and enhance overall engineering standard
Step 5: Understand Overlap of Business & Technology
To improve your career, you need to be expert in Technology and develop an appreciation of Business. A technologically great product may not be a success unless it is built on a solid Business Plan. As a key member you should be aware of Business Challenges and be ready to adapt to change in Business needs
Step 6: Be curious about your application's industry
Find out the Business Problems that your application will solve in the target industry. Check how competitors are leveraging technology to solve those problems. Keep updated about the latest trends and news in the target industry.
Step 7: Determination to make the product a success
Success for a Product Developer does not come easy. It needs time, commitment, and motivation. Experiment with skills and ideas beyond your area of expertise frequently to push yourself out of your comfort zone. Sometimes you need to do the same thing differently a number of times till you succeed.
Step 8: Focus on User Experience
It can be beneficial as you grow and develop in your professional life to implement built in features to track User Experience. Make User Experience an integral part of product design.
Embed feedback mechanisms in the product so that you Users don’t need to take extra pain to report an issue.
Step 9: Develop a Product Mindset
A Product Mindset is different from a solution mindset. Unlike a solution a product does not have any boundaries. Use your imagination to expand the boundaries and the conditions under which your product may be used. A predictable product behaviour beyond its operating range is well appreciated by the users.
Step 10: Stay organised
While Documentation is a key requirement for any Software Development Project, when it comes to Product Development it assumes much higher significance. Every decision must be documented and stored for posterity. A product development takes over minimum 5 years and every iteration opens up the same set of questions/options. An organised Product Architect is always ready with his/her knowledge repository.