Side projects are becoming more common for software developers nowadays. Many works on side projects for fun. However, side projects are also beneficial for a developer’s career. Therefore, the goal of this post is to mention five benefits to side projects.
1. Keep up to Date with New Technologies
It is rare for you to have the opportunity to work with new technologies if you are developing software in a company. Most of the tools you use will be dated and some may be very old. This means that if all you do is work with outdated technologies then you are becoming outdated too.
To prevent yourself from becoming outdated, you can work on side projects that use the new tools and technologies. This is beneficial and necessary for your career because there will always be new technologies and frameworks coming out. In addition, you will likely find yourself working with technologies that you are not familiar with. Your side projects demonstrate that you are capable of learning on your own and a self-starter.
2. Teaches You to Take Action
Many people struggle with the problem of waiting for the perfect moment or idea to come before they take action. Unfortunately, that “perfect” moment or idea will never come. As a result, they never took any action at all.
With side projects, you can overcome this problem. It teaches you to have a good enough idea and then take action to implement it. By taking action, you have taken a giant leap forward towards success.
3. Practice and Experience
When you are working on your side projects, you are actually practicing your craft (developing software). With more time practicing, the more experience you will have. In addition, working on side projects shows that you have interest, motivation, and dedication in your field.
Success in software development is not always concrete, but the components that lead to success, for the most part, is well defined. Practice and dedication are core components that lead to success. If you want something, but do not take action, you will not move forward. If you are taking action, but do not care about it, you will not deliver the best results for your audience. By working on side projects, it gives you an opportunity to practice and figure out where your dedication lies (what you care about).
4. Helps Build Your Track Record and Portfolio
You have probably heard the phrase, “Seeing is believing”. It is not enough to say that you are a good software developer, you have to be able to show it. When you have side projects that you can showcase, others can see that you definitely have some experience. Your side projects also indicate that you are capable of building an application. You will be surprised that some developers cannot put together an application.
5. Your Side Projects Can Make Some Money
Your side projects can have the potential to make you some money. You can charge 99 cents for them in the app store. Make it free, but put some ads. Ask for donations to continue development of the project.
Your side projects are not going to make you rich. However, they can provide a small income stream with a potential to grow. Money should not be your primary motivation for working on side projects, but that does not mean you cannot use them as an opportunity to earn a little money.
I hope you found this post helpful. If you found this post helpful, share it with others so they can benefit too.