Hiring a Web Development Engineer vs. a Web Developer

Kim Mays
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Some may argue that there is a difference between a Web developer and a Web engineer, but the prime distinction seems to be that engineers likely have a degree or an educational background in computer engineering. So when an organization is seeking a candidate to provide the structure for core Web-based business processes and projects, it’s important to consider the potential hire’s background.

Web developers are often extremely talented Web designers who have learned coding by doing. It’s not wrong to hire someone who doesn’t have a degree in computer engineering, but it’s important to consider all of the responsibilities of the job prior to writing up a job description and hiring someone.

Web development engineers are responsible for driving website designs and redesigns. For a large enterprise, it’s important for the hiring manager to ensure that the job description spells out exactly what will be expected from potential applicants along with the required qualifications that must be met. If the job entails cross-functional projects with other teams, it may be important to hire someone who can understand many types of technology. Depending on the types of websites the candidate will be working with, the applicant may need to possess a deeper understanding of the Web, networking and specific databases and languages.

In our IT Downloads section, we offer a free sample job description for a Web Development Engineer. Although it could be used as-is, it’s more likely to be a great jumping off point for an enterprise that is looking to hire such a candidate, but needs help creating a detailed description for the position. The Web Development Engineer job description includes a general company description concerning the job, and a description of the actual position with bullets explaining responsibilities. The PDF also includes a list of minimum qualifications along with preferred qualifications.

Any hiring manager or human resources manager should work with the current Web team in coming up with company-specific information to include with its job posting. It might include types of coding languages, compliance and governance expectations, database experience, degree preference and other integral qualifications that are necessary to job function.

For example, a qualifications list may need to include:

  • Experience with Adobe Flash
  • Understanding of JavaScript
  • Background in using JavaScript and CSS libraries such as jQuery, Backbone and Twitter Bootstrap
  • Proven experience in building scalable e-commerce sites and mobile apps

Prior to posting the job, it might also be a good idea to have the hiring manager or Web team read through and approve the wording of the job description.

Kim Mays has been editing and writing about IT since 1999. She currently tackles the topics of small to midsize business technology and introducing new tools for IT. Follow Kim on Google+ or Twitter.

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