In computer science, a platform is a piece of architecture or a framework through which software and hardware can be run from. Within a software company, there are often specialists who are fully aware of how computer platforms function and are able to fulfill a variety of different functions within the company. Some platform managers fulfill the role of computer architect, who is a type of computer software engineer, while other platform managers are responsible for fully understanding the needs of the customers when constructing computer architecture.
The computer platform is another term for the operating system, which is the overall program responsible for running all other programs on a given computer. The operating system has the ability to analyze all input that comes into the computer and is able to send output to all output devices and store data on the hardware. For instance, when a computer user types on the keyboard with a word processor running, pressing the “r” key tells the operating system to read the scripts found in the word processing software. The script will tell the operating system to send a message to both the monitor and the portion of the storage device responsible for storing the data indicating that you typed the letter “r.” The monitor is told to create an image of an “r” on your monitor. Platform managers are responsible for the development of platforms such as this for a large variety of devices, from computer to cell phones to video game consoles.
Platform managers are responsible for overseeing the development of the platform that is used by those working for the computer company and/or the platform of customers who do business with the computer company. Some platform managers focus on improving the overall performance of computer systems, while other platform managers focus on developing platforms upon which computer programs will run. All of this development must be done with the company budget and customer needs kept in mind, according to Education-Portal. At Yahoo!, the platform manager acts as a liaison between the platform development team and Yahoo!’s customers. These managers are responsible for answering customer questions and also explaining customer concerns to the project development team so that the platforms can be developed to better serve customers.
Computer science and computer engineering degrees are available for those who are interested in pursuing a career as a platform manager, according to Education-Portal. In addition to this educational background, platform managers need interpersonal skills in order to communicate effectively with staff and might also need to engage in customer service.
The computer software engineer industry is growing rapidly. Between 2008 and 2018, the need for computer software engineers is expected to grow by 32 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. New software continues to be developed as software engineers upgrade software and develop new uses for computer software.
In 2008, the median earnings for computer software engineers were $92,430, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The highest 10 percent earned more than $135,780, while the lowest 10 percent earned less than $57,810.
2016 Salary Information for Computer Programmers
Computer programmers earned a median annual salary of $79,840 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, computer programmers earned a 25th percentile salary of $61,100, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $103,690, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 294,900 people were employed in the U.S. as computer programmers.