The Top 8 Entry-Level Computer Science Jobs Employers Want to Fill

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Every year, thousands of fresh college graduates grapple with a simple yet hugely important question, “Now what?” If you’re seriously considering earning a computer science degree, you’d like to have an idea what the answer to that question is before diving in.

The good news is that the computer and information technology industry has been solid as of late, which is part of why there are computer science jobs that cater to a variety of skills and backgrounds.1 As new devices come on the market and computers continue to evolve, tech companies across the globe are looking to hire graduates with a fully developed understanding of computer science under their belts.

If you’re curious about the entry-level computer science jobs that could await you after earning your degree, read on for a brief introduction to eight exciting options.

8 Entry-level jobs you can land with a computer science degree

We used real-time job analysis software to examine more than 146,000 job postings seeking candidates with a computer science degree and zero to two years of experience from the past year.2 Below you’ll find the eight most common careers, along with a breakdown of what to expect from each position including salary and job outlook information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

1. Software applications developers

Software applications developers analyze users’ needs and then design and develop software to meet those needs. In their work they’ll collaborate with a team of developers to design and enhance a software program or application. These programs can range from practical, like an inventory tracking system, to fun, like a mobile game. This role requires strong programming and collaborative skills as the team works together to build and troubleshoot all elements of the program they’re tasked with creating.

Median annual salary (2018): $103,6201

Projected employment growth (2016-2026): 31 percent1

Number of job postings: 44,3032

2. Computer user support specialists

Computer user support specialists, sometimes called tech support or IT specialists, are tasked with answering questions from users about computer equipment or software. It’s their job to identify and solve software or hardware application problems in-person, via phone or through email. They may also set up equipment, install programs and carry out minor repairs to hardware.

Median annual salary (2018): $50,9801

Projected employment growth (2016-2026): 11 percent1

Number of job postings: 9,7052

3. Web developers

Web developers design, build and maintain websites for clients and companies. Depending on the web development role, their work may focus on either the appearance and design of a website or the internal “back-end” code that ensures it works properly. They must work closely with the client or internal team to prioritize needs, develop content and identify solutions. 

Median annual salary (2018): $69,4301

Projected employment growth (2016-2026): 15 percent1

Number of job postings: 6,3302

4. Computer systems analysts

Computer systems analysts are responsible for merging business and IT initiatives. They analyze data processing problems to improve computer systems, enhance system compatibility and develop procedures and quality standards. They must also consult with business leaders to determine the role of the IT system.

Median annual salary (2018): $88,7401

Projected employment growth (2016-2026): 9 percent1

Number of job postings: 5,7882

5. Computer systems engineers

Computer systems engineers are tasked with creating solutions to complex applications problems, system administration issues or network concerns. They must connect and communicate with clients about system needs and collaborate with software developers to identify appropriate design solutions. They also provide advice on project costs, design concepts or design changes.

Median annual salary (2018): $90,2703

Projected employment growth (2016-2026): 7 percent3

Number of job postings: 5,0932

6. Software quality assurance (QA) engineers

Software QA engineers document software defects, track bugs and report deficiencies to software developers. They develop testing programs that address software scenarios, participate in product design reviews and provide input on program functions.

Median annual salary (2018): $90,2703

Projected employment growth (2016-2026): 7 percent3

Number of job postings: 4,3822

7. Information security analysts

Information security analysts spend their workdays planning, implementing, upgrading and monitoring security measures that are put in place to protect computer networks and information. This can include performing risk assessments, executing tests of data processing systems, documenting computer security policies and procedures, training users and encrypting data transmissions to conceal confidential information.

Median annual salary (2018): $98,3501

Projected employment growth (2016-2026): 28 percent1

Number of job postings: 4,2912

8. Business intelligence analysts

Business intelligence analysts work to produce financial and market intelligence by analyzing competitive market strategies through examination of related product, market or share trends. They’ll often collect business intelligence data from available industry reports, public information, field reports or purchased sources. Armed with this intel, these tech pros identify industry or geographic trends paired with business implications.

Median annual salary (2018): $90,2703

Projected employment growth (2016-2026): 7 percent3

Number of job postings: 4,2352

Is your future in computer science?

Now that you know a little more about the answer to the sometimes intimidating question of “Now what?” you should feel a little more confident about the road ahead. Earning a Computer Science degree can unlock an interesting array of tech professions. While not all on this list are heavy with coding and programming work, they can still provide an excellent starting point for a career.

But if you’re still unsure about the prospect of pursuing a bachelor’s degree, you’re not alone. Many budding tech pros are determined to teach themselves the coveted programming skills they’ll need to succeed. But is that a smart approach? Learn more about your options by visiting our article “Self-Taught or Not: Is a Computer Science Degree Worth It?

1Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, [accessed April, 2019] www.bls.gov/ooh/.
2Burning-Glass.com (analysis of 146,585 job postings seeking candidates with a computer science degree and 0-2 years of experience, April 01, 2018 – March 31, 2019).
3Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics, [accessed April, 2019] www.bls.gov/oes/. Salary data represents national, averaged earnings for the occupations listed and includes workers at all levels of education and experience. This data does not represent starting salaries and employment conditions in your area may vary.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article was originally published in December 2014. It has since been updated to include information relevant to 2019.

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Jess Scherman

Jess is a Content Specialist at Collegis Education. She researches and writes articles on behalf of Rasmussen College to help empower students to achieve their career dreams through higher education.

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