6 Computer Science Skills You Didn’t Know You Already Had

When you think of computer science, maybe you picture people hunched over their computers, squinting their eyes at hundreds of lines of tedious code and complex algorithms. You’ve heard that it’s challenging and rigorous, and you’re worried that you don’t have what it takes to make it through all of the courses on programming languages and data structures.

But you can’t get over your fascination with technology—wanting to know how computers and networks work. You are excited at the thought of creating the newest software or application that could be used by millions of people or using technology to solve a business problem.

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But while computer science may seem challenging to some, others are naturally inclined to achieve success in the field. We analyzed more than 820,000 computer science job postings from the past year to identify the most desired soft skills for these positions.* Keep reading to hear from the pros about why these computer science skills are so important.

You should consider working in computer science if …

1. You’re an expert communicator

Do you enjoy telling stories to your group of friends? Do you find yourself constantly holding conversations with complete strangers? Communication skills are the top soft skill employers are seeking in computer science candidates. This may be surprising, but jobs in this field aren’t as solitary as they seem.

Programmers, IT specialists and other tech professionals are constantly communicating between teams, clients and companies. Both oral and written communication are essential to helping understand how to employ programs, assisting clients with software and documenting instructions.

“I had to learn to focus on not just doing the software engineering, but also writing technical comments so that other programmers can easily use my code,” says Alex Gendinik, Software Engineer and Founder of Problemio.

2. You always have a plan

From turning in assignments on time to always remembering to buy a gift for your mom’s birthday, you always have a plan to get things done punctually.  Being able to manage time and projects is another crucial computer science skill. Regardless of the position you hold, you can bet you’ll be working to meet strict deadlines and collaborating with others’ schedules.

“A goal is just a dream unless you’ve got a plan you’re following to reach it,” says Sean Vogt, Director of Operations at Greenview Data. “You’ll need a map to reach your goal.”  Vogt adds that being proactive and creating plans helps solve (and avoid) problems.

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