7 Reasons You Can't Get A Junior Web Developer Job - LoudProgrammer

7 Reasons You Can’t Get A Junior Web Developer Job


Web development is still a lucrative career in 2017. More companies are realizing the need for an online presence and are investing in websites.

You have taken your time to learn how to code but you are struggling to get your first gig. Job searching as a junior developer can easily turn into a frustration if you do not know what to look for, what to accept and what to reject.

As a junior developer, your easiest point of entry is web development.

You will start by building websites for

  • individuals,
  • businesses and
  • startups

before you can work your way to a full time developer role at company X.

But more surprising would be to find that even landing that first web development gig is a real pain.

In this article I highlight 7 reasons why your job search up to now has not been successful.

These are mistakes that you are probably already making that keep you locked out of the opportunities you are actually looking for and in need of.

1. You are not confident

Self confidence is key when you are starting out.

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When you are new to web development,  and have probably taken a few months learning some JavaScript, HTML and CSS, you will still feel inadequate. That’s completely normal.

Probably you even feel like you are an impostor when you call yourself a web developer.

The truth is that there is no time you will feel completely ready for a job.

In your career as a developer, everyday is a learning opportunity. You will always have to work with new technologies, APIs and you will learn them on the go.

Be confident in your skills.

Your lack of confidence will come out in the way you communicate with your clients, peers or seniors when you are talking about your competence.

How do you be confident when you know that there is so much you don’t know yet about what you do?

Every one single senior developer started out as a junior, just as you are now.

No one single developer knows all the technologies and frameworks in the world. And when I say ‘know’ I mean that you have built something in it, not that you have heard of it or have some surface level knowledge of it.

2. Nobody knows you 

Most developers spend their time honing their skills in the particular stack or language they are studying, thinking that after you are done, you excellent skills should speak for you.

This is where you are wrong.

There is no experience that is of greater value than real world experience

Building a software that people are actually using.

So as much as you are studying, your focus should be on how you can then apply this in the real world.

The connections you build with people before you need a job will be very helpful in assisting you land your first job.

Don’t wait to make the connections when you are in need, you will end up being pushy and this is a big turn off.

As much it is the truth, people want to feel that the relationship you are building is beneficial both ways before they commit to help you.

Connect with your peers who could be in relevant positions to help you when you are in need, long before you need that connection.

Find a coding buddy with whom you can share ideas.

Join local meetup groups in your locality. These meetups are particularly a great place to network and hook up with code monkeys.

It is at these meetups that you could as well find a developer who knows a startup that is looking to hire or that might be in need of your services.

3. You don’t have a portfolio

More than a couple of times have I met developers looking for web design or development gigs without a proper portfolio to show off.

Having a portfolio helps to demonstrate what you are capable of doing.

You’ve probably been told that having a personal domain puts you a mile ahead in your search for clients.

But if your domain is not filled with useful content placed in the right manner, it will be a automatic turn off for the client you are seeking to woo.

If you are venturing into web design, you need a domain.

Your client will ask himself why you want to build a website for others when you don’t even have one for yourself. If you are seeking a real client, outside your inner circle, who is ready to spend money on you, then you need to have a portfolio domain to show.

When starting out you probably don’t have much money to spare in buying hosting space and a domain.

But remember you are competing against a multitude. There are probably a dozen other developers approaching the same client for the same service you are seeking to offer.

You need to stand out.

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Geoffrey is a lead software developer, author and writer. He writes code from scratch and frequents GitHub. He also writes and talks about technology trends, small business tips and software developer productivity hacks. He is no coffee addict.

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17 Comments on "7 Reasons You Can’t Get A Junior Web Developer Job"

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Thanh Tung

7 reasons you wrote are right. Nice post :)

Long Pham

Thanks Geoffrey Bans. Your have great ideas and attitude. Many will benefit by following your advices.


Any sincere thing one would say about this post will fall within what the comments above
So, kudos and more grace to your elbow.
Got here from a post you made on quora, can i talk to you?
Thank you.

Richard V Krane

I just finished my software eng degree from Oregon Tech. But I am learning the Python/Django stack and building my portfolio BEFORE I start interviewing.

I figure getting the degree was a step. I have 10 yrs exp as a mainframe pgmr as another step. Building my web sites and code samples will be the third step.

But holy cow! I have spent 22 years learning stuff – and I have another 6 months to go!!!

IT is not a trade for those who want to have a life. IT is your life if you want IT.

Mary Walsh

Honest and helpful post. Thank you!


The one reason you can’t get a junior web development job:

Because every company listing “junior” web jobs wants a computer science degree and 10 years experience in every language that exists.


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