When it comes to staying ahead of the game, it may not be a technical skill that sets you apart from the pack, experts say. At Progress Exchange 2013 in Boston, leaders shared their insight on what app development skills developers will need in order to stay relevant.
John Goodson, chief product officer, said developers need to think about how their applications are going to be used. "I think that these days the key for application developers is not as much on the technical skills as it is on the innovative skills, to think about how their applications are actually going to be used," he said. "Many times what we see is that business people tend to do innovation, but what we are seeing now is some of the technologists are doing innovation in the mobile space."
Jesse Davis, senior director of DataDirect research and development, shared a similar thought, highlighting the importance of continuing one's education. "One of the big skills is to always keep learning, be able to develop new skills," he said. "One of the things we've [Progress Software] noticed is everything is changing rapidly and for developers to stay relevant, they have to be able to not just get down into the code, but they have to be able to look up and look around and see how things are changing, and adapt."
That ability to change and adapt is something Colleen Smith, vice president for SaaS, also noted. "What they need to understand is in the old rules lots of times what they would do is try to build everything in and try to get as many features and functions as humanly possible into the application," she said. "It was about, 'Let's make sure the product is robust and it's all-inclusive.' In the SaaS and cloud world it's not necessarily about all inclusive; sometimes it's about different services, or sometimes it's about the ability to be able to offer those services to the customer in the way they want to use them."
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