Explore the career of a Front End Developer, understand their typical workday, and learn about the various opportunities in this field. Dive deep into the skills, tools, and specializations relevant to front end development, and discover the array of workplaces and roles available to them.

Key Insights

  • Front End Developers design and develop websites, applications, and other software, interacting with Back End Developers, Designers, Project Managers, and Product Managers to deliver successful web projects.
  • Job opportunities for Front End Developers span major corporations, nonprofit organizations, small businesses, government agencies, and tech startups, with options for full-time, part-time, remote, freelance, and independent contract work.
  • Essential skills for a Front End Developer include proficiency in HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, along with strong communication abilities, teamwork, and time management skills.
  • Specializations in front end development often involve JavaScript, Git, and Agile, with a user-centric focus, proficiency in JavaScript frameworks like React and Node.js, and familiarity with project management tools like Ora.
  • A typical workday for a Front End Developer involves checking and responding to emails or other communication platforms, interacting with the web development team, and consistently checking and refining their code.
  • Noble Desktop offers several live online courses and certificate programs for those interested in becoming Front End Developers, featuring real-time, hands-on instruction in relevant skills and technologies.

Anyone considering a career as a Front End Developer will likely be curious about the expectations and makeup of a typical workday. Finding out the details about what a Front End Developer does can go a long way towards a person deciding whether the line of work is the right way to go. Front End Developers design and build websites, web applications, and other computer related programs and software while typically working with Back End Developers to complete web-based projects. Without exception, Front End Developers are expected to work as part of a team. Aside from Back End Developers, Front End Developers work with Designers, Project Managers, and Product Managers in designing, developing, maintaining, and troubleshooting websites and web applications.

Front End Developers can find work with major corporations, nonprofit organizations, small businesses, government agencies, and tech startups. Front End Developers can find full-time and part-time employment working inside offices or remotely as well as freelance and independent contract work.

This article provides detailed information on what to expect in a typical working day as a Front End Developer. Topics will include the skills, tools, and routines that a Front End Developer uses daily as well as how a typical work day progresses.

While it is essential for a Front End Developer to possess skills with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript among several required coding and programming languages, it’s also important to have skills for communicating and working with others as well as being able to manage a schedule by getting assignments completed on time.

What is a Front End Developer?

Becoming a Front End Developer involves building websites and applications using common front end web development languages. The front end of a website is what users see on their web browsers and is built using HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and other coding languages. 

Web development includes creating websites and apps from scratch. This means applying front end, back end, and full stack web development procedures. Front end development focuses on how a user interacts with a website while back end development concerns the functionality of that website within browsers like Chrome and Safari, for example. Full stack development combines both those functions.

Skills needed for becoming a Front End Developer can also qualify you for working as a Web Developer or Web Designer.

Read more about what a Front End Developer does.

Front End Developer Specializations

A Front End Developer typically uses JavaScript, Git, and Agile with a focus on the user-side of building a website. Front End Developers must know JavaScript frameworks and libraries like React and Node.js. A Front End Developer's skill set must include project management tools like Ora, using email or Slack for communicating and checking up on assignments, having a code editor for text editing with building web pages, and using Google Drive for being able to store and access files when at work or outside the office.

Being a Front End Developer requires working with Back End Developers, whose emphasis is on the server-side, or functionality side, of a website as opposed to the user-side with front end web development.

For the sake of creating a picture, this scenario takes place on location in an office as opposed to working remotely from home. Given the teleconferencing technology available these days, much of this information should translate into working in a remote circumstance.

Starting Your Day

Getting to the workplace is the first step for getting started with work. However, before getting a foot inside the office, a Front End Developer should have a good idea about what awaits with work for the upcoming day. It’s important to think about the specific projects being started or currently worked on. What’s been done? What needs to be done? A Front End Developer’s job is to bring together design and coding technology in an appealing package for Back End Developers to correspond with in making sure that the design and implemented coding are functioning as they should. By weaving HTML, JavaScript, and CSS coding into a web design, the Front End Developer puts together the design layout, content, buttons, images, navigation, and internal links for a functioning, interactive website.

9 AM:

After getting to the workplace and sitting down, the Front End Developer, like anyone working in an office setting, has to turn on the computer and open email to check the status of current work or see if there are any new assignments awaiting. Nowadays, in addition to email, many working organizations use social media platforms like Slack for exchanging work-related information. After gathering any new information, the Front End Developer has a good idea about how to take on the day ahead.

An efficient Front End Developer checks to make sure that completed assignments function as they should by examining whether something needs an adjustment or making sure that everything is in order before moving forward onto the next task.

At some point early in that day, Front End Developers must correspond or physically interact with Back End Developers and other members of the web development team to discuss the progress of recent and current projects.

11 AM:

Around eleven o’clock is when anyone working any office job begins thinking about the lunch break ahead. This means Front End Developers should focus on getting whatever portion of a project they’re working on to a point of completion. This does not mean finishing the project, of course, but simply making sure that a specific area being worked on is not left dangling.

Just before lunch is usually a good time to go over the assignment and make sure that everything is rolling along smoothly. This includes making sure that the coding does what it’s intended to do, or that everything that needs fixing gets fixed. If Front End Developers find minor problems somewhere with the assignment, they should make notes so that the issue can get addressed after lunch.

Most organizations use a variety of timekeeping online databases and platforms for tracking the time spent on a project. It’s a good idea to make sure that the time tracked is accurate and noted somewhere for individual records and invoicing.

As lunchtime approaches, the employee should get to a good stopping point and take the lunch break, which includes logging out of accounts and logging off computers to further secure work.

2 PM:

After returning from lunch, it’s a good idea to again check email for new assignments or the status of current and recent projects. Of course, once that has been done, the Front End Developer should get back to the current task with the goals of getting the assignment completed. As before lunch, they should continually check the coding to make sure that the design is doing what it should. 

Front end web development is a collaborative effort, and Front End Developers must constantly interact with Back End Developers in making sure that both sides of their work correspond. This again provides opportunities for making sure that individual projects–in progress or completed–are functioning property.

5 PM:

In wrapping up the workday, Front End Developers should have a clear understanding of the status of whatever they’re working on. This includes spending the last hour of work tying up loose ends and setting up for continuing with a specific assignment the next day.

There may be times when a web development team needs to work overtime or during weekends. Barring these events, once the Front End Developer has reached a point of completion with a portion of an assignment, it's a good time to head home.

After Work

While it's not always a good idea to take work home with you mentally or emotionally, taking a moment to assess what you’ve worked on and how your projects are holding together could help you smooth out areas that may need to be addressed. It’s also a good idea to review work related material once you have gotten home to make sure that your assignments are at a good place. As with first sitting down at work, you should also check your email or Slack account once you’ve gotten home to see if there is something you need to address the next day. 

It is always a good idea to assess your day by having a general understanding of the state of your projects as well as realizing the direction you want to head. Other than that, it’s a good idea to relax and enjoy life until the next morning and getting back to work.

Learn the Skills to Become a Front End Developer at Noble Desktop

People have several options for learning to become a Front End Developer, which include in-person and live online training courses, bootcamps, and certificate programs that provide real-time hands-on instruction. Noble Desktop offers several live online Web Development courses.

For example, with hardly any prior coding experience, an individual could complete the Front End Web Development Certificate and get headed in the right direction for their new career with training in how to build the user side of a responsive website. This course aims to keep class sizes small so that students can receive tailored advice and guidance from their instructors.

If you would like to learn about designing websites or email programs from coding with HTML, CSS, or JavaScript, you can train for the Web Design Certificate. In addition, this course will teach you how to build websites using WordPress.

If you would like to learn about more options for building websites or apps from scratch through skills in front end web development, Noble Desktop provides information on their Learn Front End Web Development page, which can guide you through learning about several options for becoming a Front End Developer, including what free resources are available and career advice.