A software technical manager, also referred to as a software development manager, is an information technology professional who oversees and directs software application development and support. These professionals ensure software development is completed within financial budget guidelines, and meet required deadlines for their company and its clients.
Most employers require at least a bachelor's degree in an information technology discipline for this occupation. Because these professionals are hands-on managers, employers also require extensive software development experience, using the employer's software development platform and systems. Several years of management experience is also required.
Employment opportunities may increase for those who obtain the Project Management Professional (PMP) certification from the Project Management Institute. According to its website, PMI is "the world’s leading not-for-profit membership association for the project management profession." PMP certification is only administered by PMI. This credential is highly respected by employers and shows a technical manager's ability to successfully manage development projects.
Management responsibilities include hiring, training and motivating software development staff. Software developers often have skill sets using different technologies and platforms, and the software technical manager selects staff to take responsibility for areas of each project that match the staffs' skill sets. Along with overseeing and directing staff, software technical managers create and maintain financial budgets, and work with internal staff and clients to meet the expectations of the clients and the employer.
To ensure timely delivery of software projects, these hands-on professionals often take on some of the development responsibilities. This includes assisting staff with questions and concerns, and developing applications for each project. Software technical managers also compose or oversee the creation of training materials and test software, to ensure proper functioning and integrity.
Compensation for software technical managers can include a base salary, profit sharing and bonuses, based on completing software development projects on time and within budget. In December 2010, PayScale reported an average base salary ranging from $90,289 to $123,659 per year. Average profit sharing ranged from $2,983 to $9,989 per year, and average bonuses ranged from $5,006 to $14,986 per year. Along with compensation, 96 percent of these professionals received other benefits such as medical, dental and vision care, as well as retirement savings, tuition reimbursement and paid time off. The total compensation package ranged from $94,114 to $134,412 per year.