Web developer

Front end developer Back end developer Full stack developer
Computing and ICT
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Career outlook for web developer

UK Salary Ranges





Currently employed in Scotland


Salary information is provided by the "National Careers Service". "Oxford Economics" supplies job forecasts and employment figures. Due to COVID-19 the jobs market is constantly changing. Some of the information may not reflect the current situation.

What's it like?

Web developers design, build and look after websites and web applications for clients.

Some developers work on the software and databases that help websites function. You might hear this called the 'back end', this is because it's the part that users can't see.

The web developers who work on the part users can see, are front end developers. They programme the user interface and other visual aspects of web pages.

You'd specialise in either of these, or work in both areas. Doing both, you'd be a full stack developer and would need a broader range of skills for this.

You could work for many different businesses and public sector organisations. Each project is different. For example, you could:

  • create a secure online shopping website
  • develop a virtual learning environment (VLE) for a college
  • set up a company intranet for staff

What you'll do:

  • talk to the client about their ideas
  • build a site and add buttons, forms, video, sounds or animations
  • make sure that the new site works with the client’s own systems and database
  • work on the site's appearance, often with a web designer
  • come up with solutions for user access and security
  • test the site to find and fix any problems before the public see it

Once you have built the site, you may continue to make small changes to make sure it's working. Depending on the contract, you could also continue to look after the site once it is up and running.

Working conditions


You'd usually work 37 to 40 hours a week, Monday to Friday. Evening and/or weekend work to meet deadlines is common. If self-employed, you may have to work long hours to complete a job on time.


The work is mainly office-based. If you work for a company you would normally be at one site, but if you are self-employed, you might work from home or on the client's premises.

UK employment status





Self employed


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  • Cooperating
  • Working with technology
  • Creative
  • Problem solving
  • Researching
  • Attention to detail
  • Sorting
  • Taking initiative
  • Taking responsibility
  • Recalling

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Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you'll need.

Foundation Apprenticeships

Choosing a Foundation Apprenticeship as one of your subjects in S5 and S6 can help you get a head start with this type of job.

You'll get an SCQF level 6 qualification (the same level as a Higher) plus valuable work placement experience and skills you can't learn in a classroom.

Interested? Find out what's on offer at your school on Apprenticeships.scot.


You'd need a Higher National Diploma (SCQF level 8) or a degree (SCQF level 9/10) in either:

  • Web Development
  • Multimedia Development
  • Computing Science
  • Software Engineering

To enter a Higher National Diploma (SCQF level 8) course, you'd need National 4 or 5 qualifications and at least two Highers (SCQF level 6).

To enter a degree course (SCQF level 9/10), you'd need National 5 qualifications and at least four Highers.

If you have a degree in another field but wish to be a web developer, then you'd need to do a postgraduate 'conversion' course in an IT subject.

You can move to this job from other relevant ICT careers but you must have an understanding of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standards for website accessibility.

Some entrants move into web development from other computing jobs, such as programming.

Useful subjects

  • English (required by most courses and employers) 
  • maths (required by most courses and employers) 
  • physics
  • technologies subjects such as computing science

You will also need

You'll need to have a good knowledge of programming languages. You can learn these through formal learning at school or college and university. You can also pick up knowledge and skills by learning online.

You may need to sit a technical test as part of the recruitment process.

Helpful to have

Qualifications and experience that show knowledge of software, creative and problem-solving skills such Skills for Work Creative & Digital (SCQF level 4).

Work-based qualifications such as Scottish Vocational Qualification in ICT (SVQ level 2/3/4).

Knowledge of databases, content management systems and web technologies.