Software Development

The programming languages most in demand in 2019

Here's what a few local bootcamps and coding pros are seeing as the hottest skills to learn.

Sisters Learning Code workshop in May 2019.

(Courtesy Philly Tech Sistas)

We just heard from technologist Ashley Turner that some of the best coding skills to be learning in 2019 are Python and JavaScript, plus AWS and cloud engineering as skills.

As the lead organizer for training group Philly Tech Sistas, she would know — and her answers echo other coding pros in Philly’s tech community.

Per a June report from Robert Half Technology, these are the top five skills employers are demanding now:

  • Cloud security/cybersecurity
  • Cloud architecture
  • Cloud computing
  • Windows administration/mobile development
  • Wireless network development/DevOps

In summer 2018, to get further context on what the developers of the future were learning at local bootcamps and digital education orgs, we reached out to a few local instructors who told us that Java, JavaScript, Ruby and Python — plus HTML and CSS to start — were some of the most-demanded skills. JavaScript was also noted to be “universally in demand.”

This year, a new group of local coding leaders told us overwhelmingly that Java, Python and JavaScript continue to dominate the ranks in what programming languages people are head over heels for, but a few newcomers have joined the roll call.

The Penn LPS Coding Bootcamp, a frontend and backend development course for future full-stack developers, teaches SQL, Java, Python and Javascript, according to the University of Pennsylvania’s Rita McGlone.

“The most in-demand computer languages in the Philly area are based on the number of job postings specifically listing these languages in the last 12 months,” McGlone explained, citing stats from Burning Glass Labor Insights: In the past year, there were 11,766 job openings in the Philadelphia market requiring knowledge of Java and 7,290 job openings requiring knowledge of JavaScript.


Rajvi Mehta, a data scientist at investment giant Vanguard and the head of Women in Data’s Philadelphia chapter, explained how her experience with coding has differed over the years while working in the city.

“In my experience at Vanguard and while networking with other organizations in Philadelphia, I believe that RStudio, Python, Tableau (not a programming language, but important tool for data viz) are on a rise,” she wrote in an email. “In terms of job roles, there is an increase in the need for data engineers.”

Lisa Huffman, digital strategy associate at the Exton-based Springhouse Education & Consulting Services, which features instructor-led, beginner-to-advanced training for professionals looking to advance their tech skills, gave insight to what programming languages students are fond of this year.

“Based on our student enrollments, JavaScript is the most popular among our web students,” she said. “Our SharePoint consultants are also training our corporate clients in JavaScript. We have witnessed less demand for C# and C++. In the digital design space, PHP is still in demand. And, if you are including professionals who work in analytics, then SQL is popular.”

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