Why Web Developers Are in Demand and How to Become One

By Robert Half July 10, 2017 at 4:00pm

Most experienced web developers are in a great position in this year’s job market.

Why are web developers in demand? With the proliferation of mobile devices, most consumers and companies have moved online, and web developers build and optimize websites.

They also take app ideas and create actual software. And it probably doesn’t hurt that there aren’t enough of them to go around.

It’s a career with a bright future: The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates web developers will see an increase of 27 percent in employment growth through 2024.

Web developer job description

Want to know what it takes to join this cadre of coders? Here’s a web developer job description:

  • Gather business requirements and develop specifications for web-based applications
  • Provide technical assistance to web administrators
  • Integrate websites with back-end systems, such as databases
  • Write test plans and test results

Here’s a broad list of web developer qualifications:

  • In-depth knowledge of internet protocols and applications in addition to a solid understanding of business strategy
  • Strong communication skills and the ability to work both individually and as part of a team
  • Well-versed in a variety of web technologies and tools, such as AJAX, ColdFusion, JavaScript, SOAP, HTML, LAMP and others
  • Bachelor’s degree in computer science or related field, plus several years of web-related experience. Work experience can sometimes be substituted for the educational requirement

This is an occupation that generally doesn’t require a certification in web development. Most companies are looking for developers who have produced software that is already on the market and working effectively.

Wanted: a web developer who codes for life

The requirements don’t stop there. A top web developer lives and breathes coding. They’ll often spend 60 hours a week coding at work, and 30 more coding on their own.

In addition, the best web developers contribute to the open source community, and have their own websites and JavaScript libraries. They also might tweet about their most recent frameworks for Ruby or JavaScript.

Soft skills also play an integral role in the work web developers do. These IT pros need to be able to work well with business users, founders (especially if they're at startups) and customers. Web developers who are outgoing and able to articulate what they do on a daily basis are highly prized and can command very high salaries.

Find out about a starting web developer salary and job description, as well as the starting compensation for 70 IT jobs in 150 North American cities:

 

This post has been updated to reflect more current information.

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