Front-End Developer Skills: Definition and Examples

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published November 9, 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

A front-end developer is a professional who plans, organizes, and creates websites and applications using coding language. If this sounds interesting to you, consider pursuing this position by developing a vast skill set. Learning about the many technical and non-technical skills for this role may help you find more success in your job performance. In this article, we discuss front-end developer skills, list five skill examples, discuss ways to improve your skills, review skills in the workplace, and explain how to highlight them during a job search.

What are front-end developer skills?

Front-end developer skills are soft and hard abilities to accomplish tasks for this role. Skills for this position allow professionals to build applications and websites for users to enjoy. If you're working in this role, you handle the coding for the visible parts of websites and applications. Your responsibilities include creating the coding for its design and ensuring its functionality is practical.

Related: 28 Front-End Developer Interview Questions and Answers

Example skills of front-end developers

Here's a list of technical and non-technical skills for a front-end developer:

Testing and debugging

Testing and debugging websites and applications allows developers to determine the useability of the programs. You can test a site or application to ensure it's user-friendly to navigate and allows users to accomplish their goals. In coding, a bug is an error in the computer coding language. In this position, you can use systems, such as functional and unit testing, to determine if there are bugs in the program. It's beneficial to learn how to use these testing programs to help you ensure the usability of websites and applications.

Related: What Is Debugging? (With 7 Effective Strategies to Use)

Browser developer tools

Typically, when using a browser application, it comes installed with browser developer tools and allows you to view how long it takes a website to respond using various browser applications. For this role, you can become familiar with these tools to determine how a website responds to the coding. You can inspect the website pages using the developer tools and create edits in the coding language. Some browser developer tools allow you to investigate the coding errors in real-time as the website attempts to interpret and produce the coding instructions.

Related: How to Use Inspect Element to Temporarily Edit Webpages

Web performance

Web performance refers to the response time of a website or application. As a front-end developer, it's helpful to learn how to increase response time and improve web performance because it may increase the chances of users returning to the site or application. For example, you can enhance a site's response time by optimizing the images and reducing unnecessary characters in the site's coding. These strategies can help improve the efficiency of the websites and applications for users to complete their goals.

Related: Web Developer Skills: Definitions and Examples

Problem-solving

Problem-solving is the ability to generate solutions to a challenge, which can include thinking creatively to rectify situations. When you possess this skill, it can help you minimize the time you spend solving challenges and disruptions in your workflow. As a front-end developer, this skill can help you find resolutions to solve coding challenges. Additionally, you may use your problem-solving abilities to plan and organize website specifications and data access requirements. Maintaining a structured system for solving challenges can help you accomplish your goals efficiently.

Here are a few problem-solving skills to improve for this position:

  • research

  • analysis

  • collaboration

  • creativity

Related: How to Problem-Solve in the Workplace

Communication

Communication is the ability to express your thoughts and messages to others effectively, which includes speaking and writing. It's essential to develop strong communication skills because it can help you explain your ideas for a website or application to others on the development team. This skill can also benefit your clients because you can define the project to them in simple terms and answer their questions effectively. Here are some communication skills to consider developing:

  • active listening

  • presenting

  • empathizing

  • expressing respect

  • using non-verbal communication cues

Related: What Are the Various Benefits of Effective Communication?

How to improve skills for front-end developers

Here are a few ways you may improve your skills for this position:

1. Practise your skills

Improving your skills can involve scheduling time in your day to practise the skills. You can ask experienced coworkers or managers to supervise your learning and provide feedback on job tasks, such as functional testing of a website. Additionally, you may accomplish your practise at home using your computer. Before or after work, you can exercise your skills to become more familiar with them and increase your confidence in using them in the workplace.

2. Find a mentor

Finding a mentor is beneficial for your professional development because it's a learning opportunity. A mentor in your industry can provide specific advice about how to improve your skills and enhance your job performance. Your mentor may share how they learned a new skill or tell you how to avoid mistakes they made early in their career. You may find it beneficial to schedule weekly or monthly meetings with your mentor to learn from them and provide them with progress updates.

Related: 13 Good Mentor Qualities (Plus Tips on How to Find a Mentor)

3. Further your education

To help improve your front-end developer competencies, you can further your schooling. You can continue your education in a variety of ways. One way to expand your knowledge is by enrolling in a local university course about front-end development. These classes may allow you to stay up-to-date about prevalent practices and strategies in the industry that you can use to improve your job performance.

A second way to increase your knowledge is by obtaining a certification from an online course to help you learn a new skill or understand your existing abilities in more detail. A third way to expand your knowledge is by researching on your own. You can read peer-reviewed sources or trustworthy industry publications about front-end development online.

Related: 15 Websites for Free In-demand Online Tech Courses

Front-end developer skills in the workplace

Here are a few ways you can use your skills in the workplace as a front-end developer:

  • Creating projects: You can use your communication skills to organize developer projects and inform the other front-end developers and technical professionals about the project's goals. When creating projects, you may also use your testing and debugging skills to ensure the site functions before presenting it to the client.

  • Implementing mobile designs: When implementing mobile features, you may use your problem-solving skills when encountering coding challenges, which you may solve by using your abilities to navigate browser developer tools.

  • Incorporating search engine optimization (SEO): Use your web performance skills to help improve a site's performance by incorporating SEO. You can do this by optimizing the site's images, which includes reducing the image's size without losing its quality and coding in alternative photo descriptions to help users with their web search.

Related: Comparing Front End vs. Back End (With Definitions)

How to highlight skills as a front-end developer

Here are a few ways you may highlight your front-end developer abilities during your job search:

Front-end developer skills for a resume

On your resume, list your abilities for this role in a dedicated section. Include your soft and hard skills to show companies your wide range of talents you can use in the position. Soft skills are your abilities that can transfer to other fields or industries, such as communication and problem-solving. Hard skills are technical abilities you may have learned through formal education and practice. You may also share additional skills in your experience section when discussing the job tasks you completed in previous roles.

Related: How to Create a Developer Resume (With Tips and Example)

Front-end developer skills for a cover letter

On your cover letter, discuss one to two additional skills in further detail that you didn't include on your resume. You may find it beneficial to define skills not already on your resume because it provides the hiring manager with new information about you. The content of your cover letter can include sharing stories about when you used your skills in previous roles.

Be sure to describe the situation, how you implemented the skills, and how those around you benefited from your abilities. For example, if you solved a debugging challenge in record time, explain how it helped the company.

Front-end developer skills for a job interview

During a job interview, a hiring manager may ask you to discuss your skills directly or expand on the skills you provided on your resume. Similar to your cover letter content, explain when you have used one or several of your abilities to solve a challenge or accomplish a goal for the company.

If an interviewer doesn't ask you about your techniques and strengths directly, you can discuss them in other ways. For example, if an interviewer asks how you handle a challenging client, explain how you may react to the situation by implementing your problem-solving and communication skills.

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