Information & Communication Technology
Web designers are responsible for the technical and graphical aspects of the look and feel of websites and web-based applications.
What does a Web Designer do?
Web designers are responsible for the technical and graphical aspects of the look and feel of websites and web-based application. They may also determine how a website or application works, and might also be responsible for the maintenance of existing sites.
As a web designer, you would:
- meet with clients and developers to discuss what they want their site to do and how they want it to look
- draw up a detailed design plan, showing the site structure and how the different parts link together
- deciding which branding, text, colours and backgrounds to use
- use a variety of coding languages or software
- lay out pages and position command buttons, links and pictures using design software
- add multimedia features like sound, animation and video
- register domain names and organise website hosting if necessary
- test and improve the design and site until everything works as planned
- ensure that web pages are optimised and responsive no matter what type of device a viewer is using
- make sure the site complies with and legal or accessibility requirements
- optimise the website for search engine use
- upload the site to a server for publication online
- hand the completed website over to the client
- train client staff in the use and functionality of the website.
Key skills and interests
To become a web designer, you would need:
- an understanding of programming and scripting languages
- a good working knowledge of a range of web design software programs
- strong creative skills
- attention to detail
- good problem-solving skills
- a logical approach to work
- the ability to explain technical matters clearly to people who may have little knowledge of IT.
Working hours and conditions
As a web developer, you would usually work a standard number of hours per week, Monday to Friday. Some evening and/or weekend work may be needed to meet deadlines. If you are self-employed, you would work the hours necessary to complete projects.
You would work in an office or home office. If you work for a company you would normally be at one site, but if you are self-employed, you might work from home and on the client's premises.
How to become an Web Designer?
Entry Level Education
You can work as a web designer without formal qualifications. Skills may be developed through practice and experience.
However, most employers would require you to either have a VET qualification or a degree. You may like to consider a qualification in interactive digital media, web-based technologies, website development, information technology or communication design. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your senior secondary school certificate or equivalent. English, mathematics and coding would be appropriate subjects to study prior to university.
Web designers usually start their careers as junior or entry-level designers before progressing to senior or mid-level designer roles after around five years.
Membership of the Australian Computer Society is available to those who hold, or are working towards, suitable qualifications.
Employment of web designers is projected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations.
Almost all organisations require web design and development work at some point. Demand will be driven by the growing popularity of mobile devices and ecommerce, and the need to develop, maintain and upgrade websites and web-based applications.
For entry level roles, prospects are likely to best for those with strong coding skills and knowledge alongside creative design skills.