10 Qualities That Make For a Great Software Engineer

Software engineers are some of the most in-demand talents right now, as the average Silicon Valley developer probably gets about a dozen unsolicited recruiter messages every week. That’s because the world is filled with developers, and companies want the best ones. The only problem is that all developers aren’t created equal, and some are going to push your company far ahead of others. If you’re in the process of hiring great talent, here are some qualities you should consider when hiring a software engineer.

1. They can Write Clean Code

A big part of being a great software engineer is writing clean code. You want your developers to know that code should be clean and easy to follow for both you and them. That way, you can quickly add features and spot bugs, plus your code will be easy to maintain long-term. This is one of the most important qualities you can look for in a software engineer.

2. They are Good Communicators

A great software engineer should be able to communicate well when working with coworkers and clients. This can help make everyone aware of what’s going on with a project and can help clear up misunderstandings or questions. Communication is vital to any project’s success, and you want your developers to be great communicators.

3. They are a Software Craftsman

Software engineers should be craftspeople. They should take a lot of pride in their work and love to make something that is beautiful, high quality, and well designed. This doesn’t mean they have to be a big fan of the latest tech trends and techniques, but they should be able to work with many different software tools and languages and look for the best solution for your project.

4. They are Able to Balance Pragmatism and Perfectionism

A great software engineer needs to be able to balance the pragmatism of making incremental improvements with the perfectionism of always trying to make the best possible end result. It’s essential to have an end goal in mind and know what you want the final product to be. At the same time, you should also be open to making improvements on the fly and accepting new ideas. They should also be able to take a project from concept to completion efficiently and effectively.

5. They’re Don’t Mind Debugging and Bug Fixing Source

You can have all of the brilliant ideas in the world when creating a new piece of software, but if you can’t get the bugs out, then it doesn’t matter. Great software engineers are never afraid to spend time debugging and finding bugs. They should be able to understand what the problem is, find the root of the problem, and then fix the software, so it works exactly how you want it to.

6. They Don’t Make Excuses

A great software engineer should always look for ways to improve the product and environment around them. They should also be able to avoid making excuses for things that aren’t working. An engineer who always makes excuses and blames everything on others instead of taking responsibility for their own mistakes is definitely not a good fit for your team.

7. They Know When Not to Write Code

A great software engineer knows when not to write code. There are many different aspects that have to work together in order to create a great product, and a great software engineer knows which ones to focus on when. The engineer should know when it’s best to focus on improving the architecture, when to make sure the code is very clean, and when to focus on improving the flow of the application.


Great engineering is much more than just hard technical skills these days. The world has changed, and a lot of software work is not just about writing code but about strategy and planning, marketing, branding, design, project planning, project direction, and a whole lot more.

Technical Paradigm is an IT jobs staffing agency serving startups and large corporations. We use a strategic approach to your staffing needs, making sure you get the right kind of talent for your organization. If you’re looking for a great software engineer with the qualities that will take your organization to the next level, then feel free to contact us at Technical Paradigm. 

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