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Software Engineering vs. Software Development: What’s the Difference?

Erika Magpili Erika Magpili March 5, 2021
Banner - Software Engineering Vs Software Development

The difference between a software developer and a software engineer is the same as the difference between big and large.” — Unknown

Knowing that there are differences between the two is one thing, but it can be tricky to distinguish precisely these contrasts. Here are some of the key differences between software engineering and software development to help mitigate your confusion.

Introduction to Software Engineering

Software Engineering is a detailed field of study that refers to applying engineering principles from design to software development. Software engineering development analyzes the user's needs to build an application using software programming languages.

For example: In today's market, mobile devices offer similar hardware and processing power. However, the user experience differs depending on the software. The purpose of software engineering development is to analyze and create software that satisfies every consumer's needs. Companies typically use these as a way to compete in the market. The better the user experience, the more customers they can pull in.

Software Engineer Duties and Responsibilities

The business environment relies heavily on software for many functions. A software engineer's role is to oversee the entire software engineering development cycle from designing, testing, and developing software to meet a business' specific needs. Given the role's breadth, software engineers should have the technical expertise and extensive knowledge in using open-source tools.

The typical software engineer’s duties and responsibilities include:

Best Practices for Software Engineers

why is software engineering important

Why is Software Engineering Important?

Software Engineering is an important part of business development. Engineers work to accommodate the ever-changing requirements and needs of the market.

Introduction to Software Development

Software Development is the driving force behind every creative program in software. It refers to the process which programmers follow to build computer programs such as photoshop, mobile apps, and web apps.

While software development refers to everything related to creating programs, its more specific version is Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC), which refers to a series of steps for building end-user products that meet the user's technical specifications and requirements.

Software Developers are responsible for the overall development of software. Developers work on specific project areas to create appropriate programming codes that help the software function smoothly.

Software Developers Duties and Responsibilities

The role of a Software Developer depends on the client's needs. A Software Developer is a mastermind behind computer programs. Their job is to analyze the user's demands and focus on creating, testing, and developing a complete functioning program to improve user experience.

With such a complex role, Software Developers must have a good balance of hard and soft skills. These professionals must possess excellent analytical abilities and precise technical knowledge required to enhance the software regularly.

The typical Software Developer’s duties and responsibilities include:

Best Practices for Software Developers

why is software development important


Application of software engineering principles for designing, development, maintenance, testing, and evaluation of computer software.

Builds software which runs across various types of computer.

Software Engineering is a team activity.

Software Development works primarily a solitary activity.

Software Engineering works on components with other engineers to build a system.

Writes a complete program.

Creates the tools to develop software

Works with readymade tools to build applications

Software Engineering solves issues on a much larger scale

Does everything that software engineers do but on a limited scale

Both software engineering and software development have a bright scope in the IT and business industry's future. The key difference between software engineering and software development lies in its responsibility. Software Engineering focuses solely on engineering, while software development creates a completely functional program.

Erika Magpili is a Content Marketing Analyst at Intelegencia. Outside of work, she loves to display her passion for art through dancing, makeup, and handcrafting.


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