A Day in the Life of a Front End Web Developer

Building beautiful site navigation, rooting out bugs hidden beneath hundreds of lines of code, as well as staying up to speed on emerging tools and technologies is just another day in the life of a front end web developer.

What Does a Front End Web Developer Do?

Most of a front end web developer’s job description falls into one of three areas: designing, troubleshooting, and learning.

Designing

What draws a site visitor to a webpage? Front end web developers know. With help from back end developers, they prototype, create and improve the interactive visual architecture for websites and apps. This requires a deep understanding of the browsers, operating systems and devices through which users access their interfaces.

Troubleshooting

Buggy code ruins the user experience. Between build jobs, front end web developers regularly assist their buddies on the back end by addressing helpdesk tickets.

Learning

A front end web developer’s work is never done. New frameworks and dev tools debut all the time. Web development is always evolving. These professionals must study up, try new things and incorporate the best innovations into their workflows.

front end web developer at computerWhat Skills Should a Front End Web Developer Have?

Essentials

All front end web developers must know HTML, CSS and JavaScript. Not having these skills as a web developer is like trying to become a novelist without knowing the alphabet.

Apart from the fundamentals, front end web developers should also have a working knowledge of the following:

  • CSS preprocessors (Sass, LESS)
  • JavaScript frameworks (Ember, AngularJS)
  • Front-end frameworks (Foundation, Bootstrap)
  • Build tools (Grunt, Gulp)
  • Code versioning tools (Git, Mercurial)
  • Libraries (jQuery, Backbone.js)
  • Google Analytics and search engine optimization

Experience with authoring tools such as GIMP or Photoshop is a plus.

Soft skills

All the coding expertise in the world doesn’t make up for a lack of these necessary professional attributes:

Strong communication skills: Designers, back end developers, content creators, and management – front end web developers must keep all these different lines of communication open.

Quality and speed balance: True front end web developers thrive in a culture of immediate responses and tight turnarounds, but a single entry error, missed graphics standard or undocumented change can upend all their hard work.

Awareness and flexibility: Front end web developers don’t fear change. They are always on the lookout for new coding and web development trends. They experiment, then embrace what makes them better at what they do.

Interview Questions to ask Front End Web Developer Jobs

  • Can you walk me through your workflow for webpage creation?
  • What do you like about the latest versions of HTML and CSS? What would you change if you could?
  • Where does the job of the front end web developer end and the UI/UX designer begin?
  • Can you tell me the differences between long-polling, websockets and server-sent events?

Not sure what else to ask a front end web developer? Check out this blog post for more interview questions.

Profiles Front End Web Developer Recruitment

Whether you’re looking for a front end web developer or hoping to be one someday, the creative staffing specialists at Profiles know what it takes to connect today’s best businesses with highly qualified front end web development candidates.

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