Software engineers work with businesses, government agencies (civilian or military), and non-profit organizations. A big area of employment is as technical support for various companies. They deal with computer installations, network issues, or new employee accounts. They can also work as programmers, security specialists, data processing managers, and database managers. Common areas for software engineers include air traffic control and banks, where reliability and security of information both in storage and during communication are vital.
Some software engineers work for themselves as freelancers, working on a contract basis for private industry, government agencies, or utility companies. They can work as analysts, software testers, and computer architects.
Software engineers can also work in academia, teaching computer science, software engineering, or electrical engineering, while at the same time performing research. This research can be in collaboration with various government agencies (eg. Elections Canada, Department of Finance Canada).
A degree in software engineering can also be used to get the professional engineer (P.Eng) or information systems professional (ISP) designation. As well, this degree can be used as a basis for further education in business, law, or medicine, where knowledge of software is a huge asset for most professions.