Most businesses today have a web presence – be it a website, a social media page or a listing in an online directory. The fact is, that in today’s marketplace, a company’s website very likely to be the first point of contact with a potential customer, and the first chance to make a good impression! With the birth of the digital marketing and online advertising age, having a website that is visually impressive is now just as important as having one which is ‘search friendly’. Innovations in Content Management Systems (CMS) mean that web design is no longer an exclusive techie club and more and more people are learning how to build and manage professional websites. Whether you are considering web design as a new career or considering learning some web skills so you can better manage your own businesses online presence the following information will hopefully give you some guidance on where to start.
Careers in Web Design
‘The world is your oyster’ is the phrase that comes to mind when you consider the career options available in the world of the web today. If you are new to the area spending a little time doing some research into the various areas that web designers and developers work in is a good idea. Knowing where you want to go is always the first step in planning the route to get there! There are so many different areas that web designers and developers work in. HTML, Design, Layout, Programming, Administration, XML, Graphics are just some of the different areas web developers can work in. Ideally, your first step should be to learn the basics! HyperText Mark-up Language or HTML is the language of web design. You should start by completing a foundation course in this area which will provide you with the skills required to build and publish a live website. From here you could then design to advance into more technical areas or if you are considering working freelance or becoming self-employed you could combine your web building skills with other skills such as Digital marketing and Search Engine Optimisation to be able to offer your clients a full online web presence service.
Honing your skills in specialist areas such as programming and multimedia web design may land you an exciting role in a large organisation. Most large organisations in operation today have in house web design teams who are dedicated to the development and management of their all-important online presence.
Web Design Courses and Qualifications
There are no specific minimum requirements for working in this area. It is a skill and competence-based and it would be very difficult to bluff your way into a role as a web developer without having the practical skills to back it up! There are many different routes into this career area however there is one common trend with web developers…they never stop learning and developing their skills. The World Wide Web is changing every day and those who are working in it need to keep up!
As mentioned earlier HTML is the starting point for any would-be web designer. You need to learn how to build and publish a live website. The QQI Level 5 Component Certificate in Web Design (WordPress Version) is an excellent starting point. WordPress is the most widely used CMS system today and this Tutor supported eLearning course will have you launching your first professional website in under 10 weeks!
Web Design Courses: What will I learn?
While individual programmes will vary from provider to provider if you are enrolling on the Level 5 QQI Web Design award with CMIT you can expect to study a comprehensive course that will equip you with both theoretical and practical knowledge in building a website. The course will show you how to build web pages, add content, create navigations and add working contact forms. This course sets the foundations of the basics in web design and web design principles. At the end of your course, you will have produced a fully functional professional website using WordPress. You will be familiar design and building a site from the concept stage right through to publishing your live web-pages.
The programme is delivered through Tutor supported eLearning allowing you a flexible approach to your studies. You will have access to a dedicated Tutor for the duration of your course who will provide written feedback for you on all assignment submissions.
The web is an ever-growing industry. As referenced throughout this article there are countless opportunities in the sector. For those considering continuing with the education and training in the area, there are many paths to take such as developing specific skills in:
- Digital Marketing
- Mobile Application Development (Mobile apps etc).
- eCommerce (Banking, Shopping)