The demand for Ruby On Rails in Austin continues to grow as the popular platform gains more ground on the web, overtaking predecessors through its elegant framework and ease of use. Ruby on Rails has lowered the barriers of entry to programming for many developers, including displaced senior employees who retrained as developers to reenter the workplace.
In many ways, it feels like the groundswell of demand in RoR followed me from Silicon Valley where for years, the framework has been the de facto for ventures, as expected as being Lean or Agile. Powerful web applications, that formerly might have taken weeks or months to develop, can be produced in a matter of days. Rails’ popularity is a direct reflection of the raw productivity it delivers right out of the box. You can get a basic app up and running in a couple of hours. Businesses like it because it reduces the overall cost of new software projects.
Developers love it, as can be evidenced by the strong membership and participation in local groups like Austin on Rails, Austin.rb and Maker Square’s Ruby n00bies. Austin boasts over 25 active groups spanning a wide swath of the Austin Web and Tech community. The Women Who Code meetup has over 300 members. Topics of discussion at meetups range from Ruby On Rails, Software Development, Web Standards, Rich Internet Applications, Web Design, Agile Software, Programming, to other Open Source resources.
Ruby on Rails in Austin
A recent Salary Report indicates that a Ruby on Rails Developer in the Austin Metropolitan Area, as of January 2014, garners a salary of $78,574 after 4 Years and 4 Months of experience. Other sources indicate the average salary, including all levels of experience, reaches $83,000, and peaks out at $110,000.
More than 3,700 high-tech firms employ 91,000 people in Austin, drawing its work force from the 122,000 students in the area. Higher education, especially the renowned research centers at the University of Texas at Austin, propel the high-tech sector.
CareerBuilder’s major job outlook study reports that Texas will be home to three of the Top 5 metropolitan areas that will see the biggest jump in high-wage job growth through 2017. Austin takes the lead in projected high tech growth, which is projected to reach 9.4% in the next four years.
“The demand for Ruby on Rails solutions continues to grow,” shared CabForward’s Lance Vaughn with me, “and our own sales pipeline stays full, but the number of developers trained up in Ruby and Rails falls short of market demand. We often see projects being coded in other software languages simply because there are more developers available in that language when needed. That is one of the reasons we so strongly support the LoneStarRuby Foundation, to help train talent in the Ruby language and Rails framework to better meet the demand in the market place.”
Austin is a hotbed of mobile and traditional software development, startups and Rails shops. The Austin Business Journal Book of Lists ranks CabForward as one of the leading custom software development agencies in the metropolitan area, and Ruby on Rails is their primary development tool.
The demand for Ruby on Rails solutions in Austin continues to grow, but the number of developers trained up in Ruby and Rails falls short of market demand. We often see projects being coded in other software languages in Austin, simply because there are more developers available.
“The Foundation,” Vaughn continued, “has been the promoter of the annual LoneStarRuby Conference in the past. But, in 2014, we are focusing on promoting and elevating local Ruby events throughout Texas in order to attract folks who can’t travel to Austin to attend the annual conference. We feel this will give us the opportunity to introduce Ruby to budding talent that can help grow the pool of developers in coming years. We encourage promoters of local Ruby events to contact the Foundation for information on how we can help.”
Joining Austin in projected high tech growth over the next four years are San Antonio and Houston. Job growth by category through 2017 cites technology skills at double digit rates – Software developers: 11%, App developers: 10%, Network administrators: 9%, and Systems analysts: 8%. While San Antonio will see the greatest high-wage job growth (10%), the study notes that most of its gains will be in education, finance and insurance. Thus, the tech crowd will find their opportunities in Austin, which is projected to see robust growth in high-wage tech industries such as custom computer programming services, computer equipment manufacturing and engineering services.
It’s become clear, by its popularity, that Ruby is the most popular platform for web applications, and that demand is only going to continue to grow. Tens of thousands of Ruby on Rails applications are already live. People are using Rails in the tiniest part-time operations to the biggest companies.
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