Web Developer Job Description, Salary, and Skills

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Are you interested in a job as a web developer? If you love web design and development, enjoy working independently, and are willing to work at home, your job prospects are rosy; the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that industry demand is anticipated to increase 27% by 2024.

A few other “pluses”- many entry-level jobs only require an Associate’s degree, most web developers enjoy the freedom and work / life balance of being self-employed, and the median salary for web developers was $31.79 an hour ($66,130 a year) in 2016.

Here's information about web development, including a job overview, education requirements, skills, and additional salary information. 

Web Developer Job Description

Web developers build and shape a visitor’s experience at a website. They do this through the creation of page layouts (headings and paragraphs), website styling (colors and fonts), and page features (animations and pictures).

Web developers work closely with project managers and designers to ensure the final product adheres to the predetermined budget, scope, and design. While a Bachelor’s Degree in computer science is not required for many positions, numerous years of hands-on experience coding both websites and web applications is strongly desired.

Along with strong technical skills, front-end web developers must have strong written and oral communication skills, a solid grasp of graphic design, and exceptional time management capabilities.

They must be able to troubleshoot issues quickly and to stay up-to-date on current and emerging technologies, standards, and trends.

Through the use of code, such as HTML or JavaScript, web developers bring a website or web application to life. Continued testing, maintenance, and updates are handled by the web developer throughout the lifecycle of the website.

 

Web developers work for a variety of employers in the government, non-profit, and corporate sectors. However, many also work independently on a contract basis or for web development firms. While many web developer jobs can be performed within a telecommuting setting, those who prefer a traditional workplace will find the most opportunities in the states of Washington, California, Oregon, Idaho, Minnesota, New York, Vermont, Massachusetts, and Maryland. The top-paying states for web developers in 2016 were Washington, the District of Columbia, California, New York, and Virginia.

Education and Training

Education requirements can vary anywhere from a high school degree to a bachelor's degree, and are dependent upon the job and employer requirements. However, a bachelor's degree is typically required for advancement to a project manager role or for back-end development positions. 

Web Developer Salaries

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, web developers earned an average salary of $66,130 in 2016.

The bottom 10% of web developers earned an average annual salary of $35,390, while the top 10% earned at least $119,550.

Web Developer Skills

Here's a list of front-end web developer skills for resumes, cover letters, job applications, and interviews.

Required skills will vary based on the job for which you're applying, so also review our list of skills listed by job and type of skill.

A - G

  • Actively Seek New Programming Knowledge
  • Build Products Using HTML/CSS/JS and Other Front-End Technologies
  • Code and Deploy Applications in a Cross-Platform, Cross-Browser Environment
  • Detail-Orientated
  • Document Project Build and Maintenance
  • Experience Building User Interfaces and Prototypes From Wireframes and Designs
  • Experience With Git and Github
  • Experience With Photoshop
  • Familiar With Development and Debugging Tools for Cross-Browser Issues
  • Familiar With Social Media and Third Party APIs
  • Flexibility
  • Follow and Implement Industry Accepted Best Practices and Tools

H - M

  • Handle Frequent Feedback
  • Keen Attention to Details
  • Knowledgeable of REST-Based APIs
  • Knowledgeable of Web Application Development Frameworks
  • Manage and Prioritize Multiple Projects

N - S

  • Proficient With Javascript
  • Seamlessly Switch Between Multiple Projects
  • Self-Starter Attitude
  • Solid Understanding of HTML5/CSS3, jQuery and Responsive Design
  • Solid Understanding of Object-Oriented Programming (OOP)
  • Strong Problem Solver

T - Z

  • Thrive in a Team Environment
  • Troubleshoot and Communicate Effectively
  • Update Current Websites to Meet Modern Web Standards
  • UI / UX
  • WordPress, Theming and Module Development Experience
  • Work Well Under Pressure
  • Write and Maintain Web Applications

Quick Facts: Web Developer (Occupational Outlook Handbook)

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