With the first website being created in the early 90s, Web development is still a fairly new industry. Although with the rapid evolution of technology, it is one which has skyrocketed in the last two decades.
Long gone are the days of simple HTML code to create basic web pages. Nowadays, Web Developers have to think about user experience, mobile-friendliness, functionality, navigation and coding integrity. This coupled with working with a Designer or potentially handling the design themselves means a Website Developer needs a mix of both technical and creative skills.
Our in-house development team work across Pertemps Network Group to create and maintain a high number of websites. Harriet Lawrie, one of our female Web Developers speaks about her role and what it's like being a part of an industry where less than 30% of members are female...
I am tasked with developing and maintaining websites across the Pertemps Network Group. Each day is different, some days I can be focused on one project such as building a website and other days I can be jumping in and out of smaller tasks such as doing bug-fixes and making design changes to sites.
I am a full-stack developer, so I develop sites from their design (often doing a bit design work myself) right down to developing the server side code and the maintaining databases they run on.
It is always a challenge meeting deadlines with bug-free code. Often I have to work with code from external agencies; all developers have a different approach to coding and tackle user requirements in different ways which can sometimes be difficult to work with. It is also important as a web developer to keep on top of the latest trends and predicting which technologies are worth investing time in, to keep ahead of the competition.
I enjoy the problem-solving side of web development, whenever I get asked for some unusual functionality or something I haven’t done before I jump on it! Sometimes half of the fun is researching how to do something, which can often lead to the discovery or development of new code snippets that can be rolled out to all of our websites.
There are many different ways to become a web developer. I have been making websites as a hobby since I was about 15 and then decided I wanted to become a web developer after my undergraduate degree. I then went on to complete a Masters degree in IT, although a degree is far from necessary.
The most important things that employers are looking for in developers are the right skills and experience with a good portfolio of work, which I believe it is entirely achievable being self-taught using free online resources. I personally recommend FreeCodeCamp as a place to start, it teaches all the basic skills required and at the same time, it builds a portfolio of work.
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