How to Start Your Career as a Web Developer

Praveen B. N.

a year ago

A web development career is up-and-coming, what with the sudden rush to the IT field. Almost all engineering majors are on the lookout to convert to IT, and web development may just be the most viable option there. But what exactly does a web developer do, and what do you do to become one?

Who is a Web Developer?

In layman's terms, a web developer is someone who creates websites. This means that they are responsible not only for peak website performance but also for providing a good user experience by making the website appealing to the average person. There are 3 types of developers here: front-end developers, back-end developers, and full-stack web developers. 

A front-end developer deals with the visuals of the website. An understanding of HTML and Java is required while also being able to think from a user’s perspective. Back-end developers create the structure of the website, write code, and verify this code. Full-stack developers do the job of both of these developers. They can create a complete website, i.e., they can do both front-end and back-end development of the website.

Web Development - Building the Right Skills

Identifying the career path you want to pursue is the next step in your journey. If you’re well versed in HTML, CSS, and Javascript, then front-end development might be your forte. On the other hand, Python, JavaScript, Java, PHP, and Ruby might be your friends if back-end development is your thing. You don’t have to know all of these languages, but the more, the better! Concentrate on the languages you think you have a better hold on.

If you’re a beginner and need to start coding from scratch, HTML and CSS are said to be the easiest languages to master. Programming fundamentals are a major requirement. The Internet, being an ever-resourceful teacher, will grant you all the certification courses required. With HTML and CSS, front-end web development might be a good fit for you! Aspiring web developers can also learn how to use React for professional UI development. Back-end developers will need to learn how to build servers and develop custom APIs.

Core concepts around data and managing databases are other technical skills required for web development.

Practice Makes a Man Perfect

Get your hands dirty! Once you’ve acquired the necessary coding languages, it’s time to put them into action. If you’re doing a certified course, it’s guaranteed that you'll have multiple projects to work on. But to get a better grip on web development, it is best to get projects to apply your skills, as nothing’s better than action-based learning. Use online communities for networking. This would help you get small projects to apply your skills to. 

Design principles may come in handy to a web developer, although it’s not completely their job to do so. Knowing basic design principles will help you know how to structure your website at its best. 

Building your Portfolio

Your portfolio needs to be visually appealing to the viewer. The more diverse, the better - show how versatile you can be. Website specifications that you excel at can be highlighted more prominently. Standing out in such a position would mean doing a little extra when compared to the others. Maybe show how you approached the problem. This will help people see your thought process, giving them a  good chance to evaluate your website better.  

Soft Skills - The Secret Formula

While most of the IT industry is well versed in tech, it’s the soft skills that’ll make one stand out. Good communication and problem solving skills would help your career prospects in the web development field. Working as a team is yet another skill to master as a web developer.  Your networking skills would also help you get offers from various companies. 

Constantly upskill yourself. The key to staying relevant in the IT industry is constant upskilling. Fads come and go, but it’s always best to stay ahead of them. Newer technologies and techniques may help you with time management, too. Time management is key, as submitting projects before deadlines would show your credibility and your willingness to work. Proper analytical skills are also required to create meetable deadlines instead of overestimating them. Overestimating timelines might lead to cutting down, which might lead to overall product issues. 

Staying in the Loop

Ultimately, the early bird gets the worm. Staying focused and keeping up with the web development industry will ensure your place in it. Learning is a lifelong process, and stepping out of your comfort zone from time to time will help you get the exposure you need. This will also help your overall understanding of web development. The IT industry is constantly evolving and running along with the tide, would make your journey as a web developer all the more exhilarating!