12 votes

Junior Developer: The Title You Should (Almost) Never Accept

Tags: jobs

5 comments

  1. [2]
    Greg
    Link
    I'm not as well versed in "big corporate" as some people, but this seems to be predicated on Junior Developer being synonymous with Sub-par Developer as a title, which I don't really get. I'd just...

    I'm not as well versed in "big corporate" as some people, but this seems to be predicated on Junior Developer being synonymous with Sub-par Developer as a title, which I don't really get. I'd just read it as being their introductory dev job - a worry if it's a title they've had for 10 years at three companies, but perfectly normal for someone who only graduated a year ago.

    9 votes
    1. reese
      Link Parent
      Agreed, it's normal, but the author's onto something in that the jump from a junior-sounding title to a mid-level position can be challenging. Many companies host "early career" programs. For...

      Agreed, it's normal, but the author's onto something in that the jump from a junior-sounding title to a mid-level position can be challenging.

      Many companies host "early career" programs. For those graduating college relatively soon, no matter how old you are, I recommend trying to get into such programs over taking "junior" or "level 1 so and so" jobs. Early career programs are often rotational, meaning that a participant experiences multiple business units and types of programming, depending on the size of the company. This provides the participant flexibility, and eases the transition to a best-fit role. Participants can avoid a good deal of liability and on-call support. In addition to the fact that these roles tend to fast-track into mid-level positions, they also usually pay more and command prestige from the start.

      By entering a rotational program immediately out of college, finishing it, and then getting a different mid-level position at a different company, I bumped my salary about 40% in three years. I was also funneled into the kind of work and teams I was best suited for in corporate. So, if I could go back in time, I don't think I could really give myself better advice than what I was already doing. Before all that, when I was an intern, I knew some others who made off better than I did by simply switching to Google or Microsoft instead of staying at REDACTED.

      Unfortunately most people get stuck in low-level positions for a long time, generally when they lack leverage and management knows it.

      6 votes
  2. [2]
    krg
    Link
    Yup. I'm feelin' hard-up, so I'd most definitely take it! btw, anyone looking for a junior developer that's also old (relatively) and willing to work for peanuts?

    If you’re hard-up, take it.

    Yup. I'm feelin' hard-up, so I'd most definitely take it!

    btw, anyone looking for a junior developer that's also old (relatively) and willing to work for peanuts?

    3 votes
    1. smores
      Link Parent
      I don’t know if you live near or are willing to relocate to New York City, but The New York Times is always hiring. This is the application for more frontend and fullstack roles:...

      I don’t know if you live near or are willing to relocate to New York City, but The New York Times is always hiring. This is the application for more frontend and fullstack roles: https://nytimes.wd5.myworkdayjobs.com/en-US/Tech/job/New-York-NY/Frontend-Engineer--Various-Teams_REQ-003548-1, and this is for backend: https://nytimes.wd5.myworkdayjobs.com/en-US/Tech/job/Washington-DC/Backend-Software-Engineer_REQ-006519.

      As a general rule, we also hire full time remote employees (like myself), but most managers prefer associate (i.e. junior/“entry level”) engineers to be onsite.

      3 votes
  3. rkcr
    Link
    I agree with the author that job titles are largely meaningless and that it is bad if you apply the word "junior" to a non-junior job. But there is a special role that a junior dev position can...

    I agree with the author that job titles are largely meaningless and that it is bad if you apply the word "junior" to a non-junior job. But there is a special role that a junior dev position can play!

    • The interview can be designed for people just starting their careers.
    • Curriculums can be designed to ramp up junior devs.
    • Special mentors can be assigned to junior devs.
    • Less pressure/stress to perform optimally - the company knows you're still learning.

    For people just getting into the industry, well-designed junior roles can be fantastic, and I guess the author has just never worked for a company that did it well (if at all).

    1 vote