In tough economic times, some industries rise while others fall. Industries that make money or help others make money seem to always fare better than others. We have heard how the tech industry has been laying off large numbers of employees and contractors. You can argue much of this is COVID-19 fallout, with companies still fearing a potential recession.
The headcount at Twitter has been reduced by 70% in the past year. Facebook laid off about 13% of employees in 2022, and will probably lay off another 12% in 2023. Other tech companies that have recently reduced workforce numbers include LinkedIn, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, Microsoft, Yahoo, Zoom, Salesforce and more.
However, these figures are just one side of the equation. Looking at the U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics for May, we can see that U.S. tech occupations across the economy increased, and the unemployment rate decreased slightly from 2.1% to 2.0%. The current national average unemployment rate across all occupations is 3.7%. This means that even with big cuts in the large tech companies, we are seeing great resilience in the tech job market as a whole. Specifically, web design and development jobs are as strong as ever.
What Do the Numbers Say?
With all the economic turmoil in the tech sector, is entering a career in web design and development a good idea? Let’s look at the numbers. Overall, employment of web developers and digital designers is projected to grow 23 percent from 2021 to 2031, which is a much faster rate than the average for all occupations. It is estimated that there will be 21,800 openings for web developers and digital designers annually over the next decade. A large portion of these openings will be to replace retiring designers and developers.
So, why is web design and other tech careers growing even in the times of layoffs? Web design and development is key to how companies make money. Every company needs to get its product story to market, which is where the web designers and developers come in. Web design is key to how a company makes money.
Think about it: who are the creative people managing the search engine optimization (SEO) that drives connections with the customers? Who creates the engaging content, graphics and sites that deliver the product story that gets people to buy? The answer is web developers and designers who help to execute marketing in a way that makes a company successful.
What Can I Do With Web Design and Development Skills?
Although many people think of the tech world when it comes to web designers and developers, they are in high demand in virtually all industries including healthcare, energy, manufacturing, telecommunications, financial services, and retail. Put simply, any company or organization that needs to reach a target audience and maintain an online presence must have designers and developers. Those with web design and development skills can work in many different areas including programming, cybersecurity, database management, AI and robotics, graphic design, information security, user experience (UX) and others.
The good news is that a career in web design and development does not require a traditional four-year degree. You can earn certifications, like the ones we offer here at Web Professionals Global, that will demonstrate your skills and set you apart when it comes to proving yourself in the professional working world. If you have a certification (or multiple certifications) and a portfolio of projects you have created, hiring managers will be eager to talk with you because they know you would be starting with them ready to hit the ground running on day one. Plus, many designers and developers work on their own with a variety of different clients and act as their own bosses.
Why is it Important to Be Part of a Community of Professionals?
If you are considering becoming a web design or development professional, take advantage of becoming part of the largest community of web professionals in Web Professionals Global. Our mission is “Community, Education and Certifications,” and we help promote the advancement of all professionals in internet-based careers. We have special programming and certifications for web educators and teachers, and we work with teachers who want help or direction from a local or regional professional as well as independent and remote designers and developers who need advice running their own business. Web Professionals Global really is the one-stop shop for those in internet-based careers at any level.
Start Your Career Today
Whether you are a teacher looking for web design and development certifications for your students, or you are an adult seeking to transition into a new career, we can help. Reach out to us today to learn how Web Professionals Global can assist you in advancing your career.
So, the district “powers that be” come to you with a great idea. Why don’t you start a coding course next year? Why not add a prep to your schedule on a topic that you may not be familiar with? Sound familiar? We have educators contact us all the time to talk about this very topic.
10-15 years ago, you could get most students excited about coding. All you had to do was show them that they could make a game or control something on the screen to intrigue them. Thanks to the newness, students would put in the effort learning coding to make it all happen.
Students have changed in that it now feels as though you need to convince them more to put in the effort. You have to work harder to get that initial engagement and then you have to keep up the work to maintain allure long enough to get the learner over the hump and value the learning.
I tell teachers who have tried to teach coding classes that “It is all fun and games until logic shows up.” Any teacher who has taught coding knows exactly what I am saying. When you are teaching programming, you tend to lose students when the logic aspect comes up. Everyone learns logic at a different pace. However, there are ways to give students confidence in being able to code and get them engaged without letting logic knock them off the path.
This is why one alternative path to introducing coding is through HTML (HyperText Markup Language). HTML allows you to engage learners in that you can use words and commands in a “language” to boss a computer around to do your bidding. Sometimes you have to let the students go on a little power trip. In reality, HTML as a language allows the learner to boss around a browser. Think about it: there are 4.9 billion active internet users worldwide. That’s 62% of the world’s total population. 500,000 new internet users show up every day to join those ranks. What is the primary language used for all the content those nearly 5 billion internet users see? HTML, which is the language of the internet.
This means the demand for web design is huge. Every business, large and small, needs a website and someone to create it and maintain it. This opens up real opportunities for students with the basic skills, passion and certifications. This is no joke, as web designers can start their careers while still in high school. Check out our blog post < > then share this post with your students.
Like I said before, I have a couple ways I like to introduce coding to newcomers. One is robotics, and anyone who has spent any time around me knows how much I love the topic and the potential of robotics. However, robotics requires hardware and software, which drives up the cost. HTML is a very budget-friendly way to introduce coding. You can do it with nothing more than a simple text editor or online IDE. Since the target for the code is a browser, any PC, Mac or Chromebook has all that it takes to make the magic happen.
Still not convinced? Give me another moment to make my case. Let’s look at some facts about using HTML and how it can inspire the next generation of creators, designers and coders.
Why is HTML a great introduction to coding?
Simple syntax: HTML uses simple and easy-to-understand tags to define the structure and appearance of web content. This allows beginners to quickly grasp the basics and start creating simple web pages.
Immediate feedback: With HTML, you can see the results of your work in a web browser almost instantly. This immediate feedback loop makes it easy to experiment and learn from your mistakes.
Extensive resources: There is a wealth of resources available online for learning HTML, from tutorials and documentation to forums and video courses. This makes it easy for beginners to find support and guidance as they learn.
Cross-platform compatibility: HTML code can be written and executed on any platform with a web browser, making it accessible to a wide range of devices and operating systems.
Collaboration opportunities: Learning HTML can open up opportunities for collaboration with other web developers, designers, and programmers. Understanding HTML is often a prerequisite for working on web projects, even if your primary focus is in another area of coding or design.
In-demand skill: HTML is an essential skill for a variety of careers in web development, web design, and digital marketing. Learning HTML can be a stepping stone to a rewarding and in-demand career.
Overall, HTML is an excellent starting point for beginners because of its simplicity, widespread use, and the numerous resources available for learning. It sets a solid foundation for further exploration into web technologies and programming languages. The beautiful part of working with HTML and browsers is that one can view the source code to learn how someone accomplished what you see. Yes, there are instances where code is minified or obfuscated, but many sites still display code which can be viewed (so you can always learn from others).
How prevalent is the use of HTML and CSS?
HTML and CSS are extremely prevalent in the world of web development, as they form the foundation of every website on the internet. HTML (HyperText Markup Language) is used to create the structure and content of web pages, while CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is responsible for the visual appearance, including layout, colors, fonts, and other design elements. Together, they define how web pages are built, displayed, and rendered in web browsers.
In practice, HTML and CSS are used in virtually every web development project, from simple personal blogs to complex web applications and platforms. They are essential skills for web developers, web designers, and other professionals working with web technologies. Additionally, HTML and CSS knowledge is often required or beneficial for professionals in digital marketing, content management, and user experience (UX) design, as these roles often involve working with website content and layout.
The wide applicability and use of HTML and CSS in the web development industry make them two of the most important languages to learn for anyone interested in working with websites or web applications.
What are the benefits to learning both HTML and CSS?
Complementary technologies: HTML and CSS work together to create the structure and design of web pages. HTML provides the content and basic structure, while CSS is responsible for the layout, colors, fonts, and other visual aspects. Learning both languages in tandem provides a comprehensive understanding of how web pages are built and designed.
Simplicity and readability: Both HTML and CSS have simple and human-readable syntax, making them easy for beginners to understand and start working with. Unlike many programming languages, HTML and CSS do not require knowledge of complex logic, data structures, or algorithms.
Immediate visual feedback: As you work with HTML and CSS, you can quickly see the results of your changes in a web browser. This immediate feedback loop helps beginners understand the relationship between the code they write and the visual output, making the learning process more engaging and enjoyable.
Abundant resources and community: There are countless resources available for learning HTML and CSS, ranging from online tutorials and documentation to forums, video courses, and books. Additionally, the web development community is extensive and supportive, making it easy for beginners to find help when needed.
Cross-platform compatibility: HTML and CSS can be used across different platforms, devices, and operating systems, making your skills applicable in a wide range of contexts.
Marketable skills: Proficiency in HTML and CSS is valuable for various careers, including web development, web design, digital marketing, and content management. Learning these languages can open doors to new opportunities and help you build a strong foundation for a career in tech.
In summary, HTML and CSS are a great first step to learning coding because they offer a simple, visual, and accessible introduction to web development. They provide a solid foundation for understanding more advanced web technologies and programming languages, and they offer valuable skills for those interested in pursuing a career in the tech industry.
How can teachers use HTML with their students?
Teachers can use HTML as a way to introduce coding to their students in various ways, including:
Start with the basics: Teachers can begin by explaining the fundamentals of the web, including the role of HTML as the structure and content provider for web pages. Introducing basic HTML tags, such as headings, paragraphs, and lists, allows students to learn the syntax and structure of HTML.
Utilize hands-on exercises: Encourage students to create simple web pages using HTML, providing them with templates or examples to start. This hands-on approach helps students understand the relationship between the code they write and the visual output in a browser. And, don’t forget to make the portfolio-building exercises career-relevant, and fun for students.
Include industry-based certifications: One way to make sure the students realize what they are learning is relevant to their futures is to connect the curriculum with certifications from industry, and not just some testing platform. This is also a sure way to get the parents excited about your program.
Integrate with other subjects: Teachers can incorporate HTML into lessons related to other subjects, such as English, history, or art, by having students create web pages to present their projects or research. This can make learning HTML more engaging and relevant to their interests.
Integrate with complimentary careers: The right curricula will offer ways to connect with other careers. For example, with web design it is easy to see how a web animation or web and mobile game course will complement what the students are learning and give them the chance to see other web careers.
Pair with CSS: Introduce CSS alongside HTML, so students can learn how the two languages work together to create visually appealing web pages. This can help them understand the importance of both structure and design in web development.
Use online resources: Utilize curriculum with interactive tutorials, coding sandboxes, and video lessons to provide students with various learning options. These resources can help students learn at their own pace and explore topics that interest them.
Encourage creativity and experimentation: Provided that the interactive curriculum you use allows for sandboxing the coding your students will be more likely to experiment with different HTML tags and CSS properties, encouraging them to explore various design options, be more creative problem solvers, and find their unique style.
Utilize collaborative projects: Encourage students to work together on web-based projects, such as creating a class website or online portfolio. This is how the work world operates. Coding and design is a team sport, and this can help students learn from each other and develop teamwork and problem-solving skills.
Introduce web accessibility: Teach students about the importance of web accessibility and how to create accessible web content using HTML. This can help them understand the broader impact of their work and the importance of inclusive design.
Keep it real: Use projects and activities that challenge the learner to apply what they have learned to real-world scenarios. This can help identify areas where students may need additional support or practice, keep everything within an industry context, and build a robust portfolio showing the learner’s growth in web coding.
Discuss career opportunities: Highlight the various career paths that involve web development and the importance of HTML in these roles. This can help students understand the value of learning HTML and motivate them to explore further coding languages and technologies.
By using these approaches, teachers can effectively introduce coding to their students through HTML, providing them with a solid foundation for further learning in web development and programming.
Whether you are a teacher, parent or student, contact Web Professionals Global today to find out how our organization and certifications can help you.
Here are some of the articles we have been reviewing during the month We hope you find them as interesting as we did. [Note: these links will all open in a new browser tab.] Don’t forget to let us know what else you would like to see in terms of current professional trends in web design and development. Here are the categories of what we encountered during February:
- Web Development Trends
Here is an interesting read – 10 modern layouts in one line of CSS. These include sidebar says, the pancake stack, the 12 span grid and much more. Let us know what you think of these.
If you are curious where CSS is going, consider the high definition CSS color guide. With Chrome 111, there is support for CSS Color 4 gamuts ( size of something) and color spaces (this is explained in much ore detail in the linked article). This means there is 50% more colors in supporting browsers.
Native CSS nesting may also be finally arriving (in Chrome 112, for example). Bryce Wray provides a nice overview of recent experiments with this.
Web Development Trends
As professionals, we are always working with clients. We thought it might be helpful to share a horror story or two each month. Obviously, there are lessons to be learned. However, the fact that we have been using web technologies over three decades and still see some problems repeating means we are not fully learning these lessons.
Case in point. I was helping a client with a WordPress site. They had recently purchased a plugin and were experiencing difficulty in using the enhanced features which came with the upgraded plugin (freemium model is still very popular, isn’t it). Specifically, I was asked to investigate why all the added functionality remained greyed out despite having paid for the upgrade. To keep the story short, one had to click on the greyed out item to “load” the enhancement. Took yours truly about an hour to figure that one out. Lesson we should all have learned by now – there are standard design patterns which must be followed. To show something as greyed out means it is not active and not available. Breaking a pattern which has been in use for well over a decade causes unnecessary consternation. A simple explanation that one must click on an item to activate it might have sufficed (instead of wasting the time of multiple individuals).
As if that wasn’t enough, when helping another client, I needed to contact technical support for a WordPress plugin. Believe it or not, the individual who was trying to help me quickly asked for my username and password so they could access the site as an administrator to see what the problem was. Ummm, NO. Ok, they then asked if I could create a separate administrator account for them to use so they could see the site. Ummm. NO again. Think about this from a security perspective – if you allow someone (who you don’t know) administrative access to your site, you have handed over the data and capabilities of the site to a stranger. Would you gladly hand your car key fob to a stranger who asked for a ride to the store while you were waiting for the light to change? Maybe if your car was making a strange noise? Same concept. Never, ever, provide such access no matter how severe you think the problem is with a WordPress plugin. If you need that much help, it is time to find an alternate plugin. Shame on the vendor in this case for even allowing an employee to make such a request.
OK, readers, that is enough on the horror stories for this month. Do you have something you would like to share which tops these horror stories. Please let us know in the comments (or send us an email to our membership email at the top of the page). We are always interested in what you liked and would like to see in future articles. Just let us know that as well.
In case you missed these…
We recently published additional information about the proposed Websites and Software Applications Accessibility Act. We encourage you to review this post to keep up to date with what is happening regarding website accessibility.
Curious about security (especially passwords), please review our passwords and psychology article.
We also announced our 2023 web design and development competitions (including that we are recognized as a SkillsUSA Official Partner.
We are always what you find interesting and what you would like to learn more about. Please provide comments below so we can better address what you find most interesting.
We are proud to announce our new and streamlined for states to use for their SkillsUSA web design and development competitions in 2023. This model is based on over 20 years of running web design and development competitions (including 2 decades running the SkillsUSA national web design and development competition – which started as a demonstration competition in 2004). With the COVID-19 pandemic, we gained significant insights in running this competition 100% virtually. We have employed this knowledge as we enhanced our model for 2023. We are also proud to announce that we have been recognized as an official partner of SkillsUSA for 2023.
We have been working with SkillsUSA for over two decades because of how much we are aligned in our vision of workplace needs. The SkillsUSA framework focuses on technical skills in addition to personal skills and workplace skills. This is the exact mix we strive for in our competitions. It is important to know the technical aspects of your trade, and it is equally important to work well in a team environment and follow ethical standards. This is also why we ask readers of our articles to sign our code of ethics (for members and non-members).
Our Internet based competition
This refreshed competition model is the most accessible it has ever been, enabling students to focus on creating innovative projects and equipping facilitators to run the competition seamlessly. Students only need a PC, Mac or Chromebook and an internet connection to participate in the competitions—giving those in rural, urban and suburban areas equal access.
Competitions can be run entirely online, which levels the playing field for students across the country and can give you flexibility should you need n the age of COVID-19 . This new competition model is future-proof and will be able to be implemented for years to come, no matter what the pandemic looks like in coming years.
Our (Web Professionals Global) competition support is free to state SkillsUSA competitions, and the new model makes the judging process more standardized and easier than ever before. States can run competitions whenever they want in 2023 in anticipation of our national competition in June in Atlanta. Please give us time to get your state setup with our online IDE (Integrated Development Environment), online exam, and online competition materials. Obviously each state will need Internet access during the day of competition for all competitors.
Not only does our new approach make it easier for any state to run their own web design and development competition, but it also ensures that every state is conducting their own competition that models the expectations their competitors will need to meet at our national competition. This gives every state — from small to large — the same turnkey resources to ensure a successful competition. This model is intended to only be used for the current cycle of SkillsUSA competitions.
This new model includes:
- Competition project with all graphic and textual assets that are similar in scope and style to what the competitors will experience at the national competition.
- Easy-to-apply rubrics help both new and veteran judges quickly evaluate team projects for creativity, design and best practices.
- Web-based coding editor and folder system allows judges to easily review any state competitor submissions. Judges can review work with just an internet connection, allowing states to have judges join virtually from anywhere.
- Web-based editor and site storage means your events committee does not have to worry that any competitor’s work can be lost or misplaced—all of it remains safe on the web.
- Judging preparation materials and training videos are included to make it easy for new judges to quickly get up to speed and be able to deliver consistent judging.
- Optional competition kickoff and welcome video delivers a consistent message to all competitors as well as some helpful hints about the competition project.
- Technical back up and support provided by our Web Professionals Global Organization.
- Fast and easy sign-up for state SkillsUSA leadership teams to reserve their free competition kit and web-based tools suite.
Contact us now
Because of these new systems Web Professionals Global is implementing for this year, any state can run a turnkey competition and give students an opportunity to build meaningful projects in an engaging online environment. All of this is provided free of charge to any state wishing to have an organized and impactful state-level web design and development competition to prepare their students well for the national competition.
Let us know as soon as you can. As you can imagine, there will be many states taking advantage of all this support, and we need time to be able to deliver all that you need.
Our organization was proud to help facilitate the web design contest at the national SkillsUSA competition in Atlanta, GA from June 19-24, 2022. Our team arrived on Sunday, set up Monday and Tuesday, and ran the high school competition on Wednesday and post-secondary competition on Thursday. We also organized a Thursday evening debrief and meet and greet with industry professionals and participated in the overall awards ceremony on Friday evening. We would like to thank all our team members for using their vacation time to support SkillsUSA and the web design contest.
This year, the web design contest teams were greeted with messages in Spanish, German, Chinese, French and Arabic from our international members. One of the benefits of our organization is that our community is made up of members from all over the world, and our international experience and membership helps to craft the real-world challenges that our competition delivers. We are about helping to create and support whole professionals ready to work both domestically and internationally—especially in this age of remote work.
The competition was held at the Georgia World Congress Center, and the competitors were teams of two from different states in the country. The teams were tasked with creating websites for clients, all while completing specific tasks in the process to demonstrate web design proficiency.
We were able to utilize the online technologies we developed in 2020 and 2021 when we ran the contest fully online due to COVID-19. This design allowed all competitors on-site to participate—whether they had a laptop, PC, Mac, or Chromebook. All tools were available online and were the same for each of the teams. This meant the teams could focus on listening to and meeting the client’s needs, fundamentals and creativity to win the day. Our new system allowed us to judge all the competitors’ work online, which improved the efficiency of judging the final products that the teams designed.
It should be pointed out that this competition is far more than just a competitive challenge. We at Web Professionals Global, which started the competition in 2004, brought our mission of “Community, Education and Certification” to the competition. Our community of professionals developed the competition challenges and judged the work of each team. We also provided training before the event to help give the competitors the chance to learn about trends in the industry and more about what it takes to be competitive in this in-demand and high-paying career pathway.
Just like in the real-world, each team met with the client whom they were building the website for. This provided the competitors with a real-world environment to get a taste of what it is like to work as a web design professional. After the event, we held a Q&A event with the web design professionals who had been part of the judging team. This was an opportunity for the teams to hear from professional web designers about personal experiences, how to get started, the ups and downs of the career pathway, day-to-day experiences on the job, and how to set themselves apart and on the path of success.
To learn more about Web Professionals Global or the SkillsUSA competition, contact us today. We would love to chat with you.
Jonathan, the client, holding a meeting with all of the competitors Wednesday morning at the beginning of the event.
David Jackson and Bryce Hickson, web designers and lead judges, speaking to the high school and post-secondary competitors in the competition debrief on Thursday.
The competitors chatting with David and Bryce after the debrief.
Mark DuBois, Executive Director, Web Professionals Global, handing out awards at the ceremony on Friday night.
The Web Professionals Organization would like to congratulate Edra T., the first person in Albania to earn a certification from Web Professionals. Edra earned her Web Developer Associate certification to further her career in web development. Edra’s success shows that you can take advantage of remote learning and working to develop your career, no matter where in the world you live.
We talked to Edra to find out more about how she earned her certification, the importance of certifications in her home country, and the world of global remote work.
What did you like about your experience earning the certification?
The thought of having my skills and knowledge certified is really appealing, but the part that I enjoyed the most was the entire process of studying for the exam. Despite having some prior knowledge, I consulted the materials mentioned in the WebProfessionals self-study section and read the referenced books. That helped me understand that no matter how well I thought I understood things worked, there was always something I didn’t know and something new to learn.
What attracted you to web development?
Growing up in a post-communist country came with its own set of constraints and obstacles. I initially chose computer science as my major because I’ve always wanted to develop systems and programs that make life easier. I also wanted to fight the perception that the field is masculine, as it has long been a male-dominated field. I eventually became an intern at the company where I now work as a .NET developer. My company assisted and contributed to the certification of my skills, and I’m grateful and pleased to see their involvement in employee professional development.
How are industry certifications viewed in Albania? Do employers value them?
Although the Albanian technology market has yet to expand, the demand for web developers and software engineers has been steadily increasing and will most likely continue to do so in the coming years. While certification isn’t required throughout the hiring process, it is seen as a major plus by most employers. The number of employers interested in hiring certified workers is rapidly increasing.
How has earning the certification changed your view of global connectivity and people being able to learn and work remotely from any country?
Remote work is the biggest trend in development right now. It is not only adaptable but also incredibly efficient for employees. The idea of being in Albania and taking a certification exam that is acknowledged in many prominent institutions and other countries was very appealing to me. Earning the certification made me realize that web development allows people like me to work remotely freely and efficiently, which is especially important now that the globe is gripped by a global pandemic and traveling to work or study is more difficult.
How has earning the certification empowered you to take the next step in your career?
Most significantly, the certification helped me gain confidence in my skills. This was something I lacked as a young web developer and struggled with, as other young developers do. I believe that confidence is a big bonus when looking for a job, and being able to confirm your skills and knowledge helps a lot in gaining that confidence.
How was your experience working with the Web Professionals Organization?
I’ve had a great time working with the Web Professionals Organization so far. Everyone on the Web Professionals team has been very helpful and attentive. They have expressed interest in my journey frequently and worked hard to make the experience easy and enjoyable. I’m very thankful and would like to keep working with the Web Professionals Organization in the future.
Be the Next Certification Recipient
The Web Professionals Organization is proud of Edra and all of its certification recipients around the globe. If you are interested in furthering your career in web technologies, contact us today. No matter what country you live in, we would love to work with you.