Web design is a hot job wherever you go. All companies – small to large – need to have a web presence to maximise business success. Some companies incorporate web design functions into the general position of IT manager, but a web designer does very specific things.

Web designers are versatile creatures. They must understand how to create and manipulate various coding languages (JavaScript, XHTML, CSS), work with multimedia technology programmes such as Flash and Silverlight, manipulate photographic media through PhotoShop and other programmes, and then put it all together to create a website that actually sells a company’s products and services. So, there are many different skills and programme requirements needed by a person going into web design.

One of the great aspects of becoming a web designer is the amount of time it takes to get a proper education. Many web designers are self-taught and are able to obtain a paid position within a company simply by having a superior portfolio incorporating a wide variety of applications. To add an actual educational component to their CVs, web designers can take specific classes to certify proficiency in certain programmes and languages, or they may choose to obtain further education through 2-year, 4-year and graduate programmes in universities and colleges throughout the UK. Distance learning, part-time and internet coursework are all options with this career.

According to ITJobsWatch, the pay scale for web designers in the UK ranges from £22,500 to over £40,000 per year. The average salary of £29,500 is up £500 from last year and has shown a steady increase over the last few years.

The London area has the highest demand for web designers, with the South East area coming in second. The average salary for the last three months in these two areas, respectively, was £32,500 and £30,000.

The top skills cited by employers listing web design in the job title, in order of importance, include:

    CSS (85.6%)
    HTML (71.2%)
    Flash (55.4%)
    JavaScript (53.6%

Furthermore, only 10.3% of postings stated they required a degree as a qualification. Demand for web designers accounts for 50% of all IT-related job postings. It is still one of the hottest tech jobs in the UK.

While we see some web design functions going overseas, demand for local, in-house web designers is still quite positive. I feel this position is a very promising career choice for many job hunters currently looking to change careers or boost their qualifications.