5 Front-End Developer Skills You Need to Get Hired

Alex Miller

Alex Miller

5 min read
Become a web developer

If you want to be a front-end developer, you need to know where to start learning. With so much to learn, it's easy to get overwhelmed. But don't worry! We've got you covered.

There are five core skills that every aspiring front-end developer needs. These skills will help you build a strong foundation for your career.

Before we get started on the skills, let’s cover what front-end developers do, and why it’s still one of the most marketable skillsets jobseekers and career changers can have.

What is front-end developement anyway?

Development work can be divided into two types: front-end and back-end. Front-end is what you see as a user. It’s Facebook’s newsfeed, Google’s search page – the things you see and interact with.

Back-end web development is all the behind-the-scenes coding and data that supports a site’s functionality. It includes cybersecurity, account management, data storage, and so on.

Web developers are front-end developers who specialise in building websites (rather than, say, apps or games).

While most front-end developers aren’t web designers, they still get to use plenty of creative prowess. They express themselves through their development and build sites that leave an impact on users.

What do front-end developers actually do?

While the exact tasks can differ from company to company, there are some key responsibilities that all front-end developers know how to do. These include:

● Developing (coding) websites and user features ● Organising the layout and structure of web pages ● Optimising pages and websites for performance, such as faster loading times ● Building reusable code that makes future updates and modifications easy ● Coordinating with other members of the web development team to produce an exemplary end product

5 skills every front-end developer needs

If you want to become a web developer or front-end developer, these are the five skills you should focus on.

1. HTML

Hyper-text markup language (HTML) defines the structure of a site or app (rather than the style or functionality). It is the backbone of the entire internet. You wouldn’t have any page structure or content without HTML. No matter how impressive a site might look at its core, there is pure HTML code serving as its foundation.

HMTL is extremely beginner-friendly. You use a series of code commands, called tags, to build different site elements. For example,

is a tag in HTML that starts a paragraph on a page.

2. CSS

CSS, or “Cascading Style Sheets”, defines the style of a page. When you see HTML in its final form, it isn’t much to look at.

Want to change the colour? Or change the font? Move HTML elements around on the page? Animate? CSS can do all of this (and so much more!)

If HTML is the bread of web development, it’s safe to say CSS is the butter.

3. JavaScript

You can make a website look amazing with just HTML and CSS, but if you want to add interactive elements like forms or carousels, you’ll need to know JavaScript.

It’s a fundamental front-end development skill. You can build a simple site without being confident with it, but you probably can’t become a front-end developer – front-end devs need to have absolute command of JavaScript.

JavaScript allows developers to handle data and perform logic (like “if we have less than 3 in stock, then display the “Limited Stock” banner), and use powerful tools like React or Vue. More on this below…

4. A Front-end Framework or Library

Front-end frameworks and libraries, like React, Vue or Angular, use JavaScript to help developers build sites efficiently. They give them total control of the data flowing through the site. They can also give them control of components (like buttons or headers) which can be freely re-combined to form new pages without having to repeat code.

Many employers will expect front-end developers to know a front-end framework or library. They’re so prolific a front-end developer could be known as a “React Developer” for example in some organisations.

5. Git & GitHub

Git and GitHub allow developers to easily track changes to their code. Git is for version control, allowing you to update or even restore past versions of a website. This can be lifesaver if you ever run into trouble and need to correct problems from an earlier version of your code.

GitHub, on the other hand, is a cloud-based hosting service that lets you collaborate on projects with other developers from anywhere in the world. You can use Git and GitHub together or on their own.

Honorable Mentions

There are some other skills you may want to include in your web development arsenal. These include:

● CSS preprocessors like Sass/LESS ● CSS frameworks like Tailwind ● Search engine optimisation (SEO) ● JQuery (Though this is less used today thanks to the rise of React/Vue)

Ready?

More career changers than ever are training from absolute beginner to professional developer by going to a coding bootcamp. Strong career support and industry connections sets the best bootcamps apart. You could also complete an introductory course to help you decide whether coding is for you.

Take a look at the front-end development bootcamps on Knoma right now

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