This Developer Role is Supposedly America’s Best Job

What are the best jobs in America, and how many of them are in tech? That’s a hard question to answer—after all, it hinges on your definition of a “best job”—but Glassdoor recently took a stab at it with it 50 Best Jobs for 2021.

As with many other “best of” lists, Glassdoor blended a number of metrics together, including median base salary, job satisfaction rating, and number of job openings. In a twist that probably won’t surprise you, many of the top jobs on the list were in tech, with Java developer in the number-one slot (median base salary: $90,830; job satisfaction: 4.2/5; job openings, 10,103).

Data scientist came in second, which isn’t shocking when you consider the sheer number of companies hungry for anyone who can analyze data for precious strategic insights. Enterprise architect came in fourth (with an eye-popping median base salary of $131,361), no doubt driven by huge companies’ need for technologists who can build out and manage extremely complicated tech stacks.

Here’s Glassdoor’s top 10 (and make sure to check out the full list to see how your own job did):

Your own mileage may vary, of course; depending on your company (or freelancing/contracting setup), you might make far more (or less) than Glassdoor’s numbers. Burning Glass, which collects and analyzes millions of job postings from across the country, places the median salary for Java-related jobs at $101,782 per year, with high demand over the past 12 months. 

A variety of jobs demand Java skills, according to Burning Glass’s analysis. Some 41 percent of software developer/engineer job postings ask for some level of Java experience; for web developers, it’s 28 percent. Considering the ubiquity of Java within many company tech stacks, perhaps this comes as no surprise.  

If you’re learning Java, it also pays to keep an eye on Kotlin, which Google has been pushing as a Java replacement of sorts for mobile app development (particularly Android-related). For those interested, Google has a learning course, Android Basics in Kotlin, that serves as an introduction. There’s also Kotlin Bootcamp for ProgrammersAndroid Kotlin Fundamentals, and, for those with a bit more experience, Advanced Android in Kotlin.