Web developers and designers create websites, including the creative look of the site, the technical aspects of it and sometimes the content. Many Web developers go on to become Web management professionals, also known as computer and information systems managers. These professionals go beyond creation of websites and work to plan, coordinate and implement computer-related activities for organizations or businesses. Entry-level positions requires a degree and some require minimum amount of pertinent experience.
Web design and management specializations
There are numerous specializations under the umbrella of Web design and Web management. For instance, some developers take on all aspects of website creation from start to finish, while others focus on developing skills in a particular area. Here are some of the possible specializations in Web design:
- Webmasters. Once a website is complete, it is often maintained by a webmaster. This person regularly checks websites for smooth operation and problems, such as broken links.
- Web designers. These Web professionals are responsible for how a website looks and how seamlessly it works with other applications, such as checkout programs for retail sites.
- Web architects or programmers. The technical construction of a website falls to these professionals, who create the structure of the site and ensure that it can be accessed appropriately. They might supervise others who add onto or change the site pages.
Those in Web management can also specialize and hone their skills in a particular area. Here are some of the most common positions for those in web management:
- IT security managers. These professionals work with large networks to ensure that data is secure. They might implement security policies and assess threats to an organization's information network.
- IT directors. The information technology director oversees an organization's technology department, including hiring, budgeting, implementing new technologies, and more.
- Chief information officers. This job entails overseeing all aspects of a company's technology needs, including the large, long-term issues related to company growth.
- Chief technology officers. These technology experts work to implement the plans of the CIO, and often have a great deal of technical expertise.
Certifications and degrees in Web design and management
Schools across the country offer courses and degrees in Web design and Web management. Those who are interested in a career in Web design must earn the minimum of an associate degree in order to qualify for most entry-level positions, according to the BLS. Those who intend to work in the more technical side of Web development might need a bachelor's degree. Those who have also taken classes in graphic design and have earned a bit of experience in the field might be more attractive to employers.
Those who want to move into Web management must hold at least a bachelor's degree in computer science or a related field. Those who hope to advance might pursue a graduate degree, such as a master's degree in business administration with a computer tech concentration. Since most employers prefer applicants with at least five years of experience, many students choose to work in a position related to Web development or computer technology as they pursue their bachelor's and master's degrees.
In either Web design or Web management, those who go the extra mile are often recognized when promotions are handed out. To that end, many choose to take courses that result in certification for various Web systems, programming languages and software. Since the world of technology and information moves so quickly, continuing education is a must to stay relevant in the field.
Web design and Web management salary and career outlook
Employment of Web developers is expected to grow by 20 percent from 2012 through 2022, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS.gov). Much of this growth can be attributed to the booming online retail industry, and the constant demand from companies to build, grow and expand their online presence. The use of mobile devices is also expected to drive employment of developers. Those who have in-depth knowledge of programming languages and digital media tools might find an edge at hiring time.
Employment for computer and information systems managers is expected to grow 15 percent between 2012 and 2022. As companies expand their use of wireless networks and mobile options, more jobs for experienced IT professionals are expected to open up. The rise of cybersecurity threats also adds a boost to the jobs available for Web managers. Workers can expect to see the best prospects in companies that offer cloud-computing technology, as well as in the health care field, where employment of IT workers is expected to grow by 42 percent.
The national median annual wage for Web developers was $63,160 in 2013, according to the BLS. Those in the lower 10 percent made up to $33,320, while those in the upper 10 percent made at least $110,350. For computer and information systems managers, the national median annual pay was $123,950, with the lower 10 percent making up to $76,420 and the upper 10 percent making greater than $187,199 per year.
According to Projections Central, those interested in a Web design career can expect to see the best job opportunities in Utah, Colorado and California. Those who graduate from Web management programs might find the most job openings in Utah, Colorado and Washington.
Since the world of technology is constantly on the move, those in the field must be constantly learning. Those who have extensive knowledge and several years of experience may see the best job opportunities. Earning a degree from Web design or Web management schools may be the first step in a bright future.
Computer and Information Systems Managers, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2013, http://www.bls.gov/OES/current/oes113021.htm
Computer and Information Systems Managers, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, January 8, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/computer-and-information-systems-managers.htm#tab-1
Long Term Projections, Projections Central, https://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm
Web Developers, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2013, http://www.bls.gov/OES/current/oes151134.htm
Web Developers, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, January 8, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/web-developers.htm#tab-1