What Do Web Developers Do, and What Type of Education Do They Need?

The computer and information technology industry is growing fast. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the number of opportunities in the IT industry is expected to increase by 11% by 2029[1]. The median annual salary for IT positions is considerably higher than the median salary for all other occupations, making it an attractive field for many.

While some IT positions do require advanced education, such as a master’s degree, some jobs in the field do not. It’s possible to find work as a support specialist, ethical hacker, modeling and simulation artist, and web developer after earning a career certificate.

Let’s take a closer look at a web developer career, as it’s one of the fastest-growing occupations in the industry[2].

What is Website Development?

Website development is the process of building websites. Website development can be very complicated or simple, depending on the final goal of the website. For example, a website might be a text-based webpage or it might contain hundreds of pages with complex code.

Numerous coding languages are used to build websites, such as HTML, XML, JavaScript, and PHP. The code used and the features included on a website depend on its purpose. A site designed for e-commerce will have different development requirements than a site designed for information.

What Do Web Developers Do?

Web developers play many roles in the creation of a website. They might write the code needed to make the site run. They can design the website, choosing which fonts and colors to use and where to put images and videos.

Often, web developers are collaborators. They don’t do everything themselves. Some might focus on the front-end of a website, paying attention to design elements and how the finished site looks. Others might focus on the back-end, diving deep into the best type of code to use and how to write the code so the site loads quickly and looks good on multiple types of devices.

Along with working with each other, web developers often have to work directly with their clients. They might need to present clients with ideas and incorporate the client’s ideas and feedback into the site’s design and function.

Is Web Development a Good Career?

For the right person, a career in IT or web development can be a good option. If you’re looking at your options for a career certificate in IT, one thing you might ask is, is web development hard?

The answer is both yes and no. Web development, like any other career, can be challenging. You’re likely to encounter problems on the job, such as coding errors or a website that doesn’t look quite right. In a career certificate program, you’ll learn how to work around and solve problems that can come up during your day-to-day as a web developer.

From a pay and job security standpoint, web development is a promising career, as web developers are in demand. The median annual salary was $77,200 in May 2020[2]. The number of web developer positions is expected to increase by 8% by 2029.

Do You Need a Degree to be a Web Developer?

While some companies might prefer to hire people who have bachelor’s degrees, it’s often possible to get a job as a web developer, particularly an entry-level position, after earning a career certificate.

Being able to show a potential employer a portfolio of websites you’ve worked on can help you impress a potential employer, as can having certification in certain coding languages or Adobe software programs.

How to Get a Job as a Web Developer

Who hires web developers? Many companies, such as publishers, advertising agencies, and financial institutions, need web developers to create and ensure that their websites operate as they should. Some agencies offer website development to clients.

It’s also possible for a person to work for themselves as a web developer, taking on clients on a freelance basis and working on various projects from time to time.

From web development to server and network support, the IT field has a lot of opportunities. Orange Technical College has a variety of career certificate programs that can help you get your foot in the door. Find out more about our programs and campuses today.


  1. “Computer and Information Technology Occupations”, Bureau of Labor Statistics, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/home.htm
  2. “Web Developers and Digital Designers”, Bureau of Labor Statistics, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/web-developers.htm