WordPress’s global expansion started in 2003. It was then that two web developers, Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little, first released their blog-publishing platform. Over the years, it has outgrown the original vision of its founders and became one of the most powerful content management systems in the world. It’s currently powering up to 35% of all sites on the Internet, and its share of the World Wide Web is constantly growing.

Such a huge success wouldn’t be possible without thousands of tech specialists who contribute to the platform’s growth. If you consider becoming a part of that community, here are some milestones you’ll have to pass on the way.

Understanding the Essential Skillset

As an aspiring web developer, you’ll have to explore how WordPress functions and learn what’s behind its user-friendly interface. Here are some skills you should master to get familiar with the platform’s ins and outs:

  • Programming Languages

HTML is the first thing on your know-how list. It is a markup language that shapes the structure of any page on the web. It’s often entwined with CSS, which defines how the site will look on the screen. Another cornerstone web technology you’ll encounter is JavaScript. It helps to turn static elements into a dynamic web page allowing users to interact with its content. For the projects connected with WP back-end development, you’d also have to learn the PHP language on which the platform is built.

  • Tech Expertise

MySQL is one of the core components of the WordPress structure. It is a relational database management system used for storing and operating all the information on the website. For this reason, you’ll need to understand some of its basic functions and capabilities.

WP is currently accountable for more than 60% of the global CMS market, so it would be wise to gain at least some knowledge in content management. This way, you’d be aware of different aspects of the content lifecycle and what tools you can offer your clients to cater to their needs

It’s quite likely you’ll have to deal with the esthetic side of web development as well. It doesn’t mean you have become a PhotoShop guru or take an elaborate course in web design. For a start, the nitty-gritty of creating responsive web pages would be pretty enough.

  • Soft Skills

If you dream of a career in web development, don’t skimp on this part. Problem solving and perseverance, adaptability and open-mindedness, communication and empathy, teamwork, and ability to receive criticism are the little cobblestones that pave your way to success.

Learning Web Development

If you are a complete novice in the IT sphere, you’ll have to build your technical abilities from scratch. To find your footing in the industry, start by choosing a learning path you’d follow. There are three major options:

1. Academic degree offers a well-structured and supported learning experience. It provides a solid knowledge base in fields like programming, graphic design, software, data structures, and computer architecture. There are some bonus features in addition to the core curriculum, including networking opportunities, project management expertise, and business skills enhancement.

An associate’s degree in Computer Science can be an excellent springboard for your tech career. It usually takes two years to complete and requires 60 credits for graduation.

BS degree is a 4-year program, where you have to obtain 120 credits. You’ll also have to fulfill senior project requirement and take writing-intensive courses in each of your majors. Those courses involve writing at least 20 pages over multiple assignments, but that can be easily tackled with the help of essayservice.com.

2. Coding boot camp is an intense training where participants learn the most relevant skills they would need to launch their careers. Such courses typically last between three and nine months, and during that time, students acquire enough practical experience to get a job in junior developer positions.

3. Self-education is the most affordable way to study programming, but it requires a lot of motivation and self-discipline. There is a great variety of resources at your disposal – from WordPress’s own developer handbook to online courses by such renowned platforms as Udemy, Lynda, TutsPlus, and more. You can also follow blogs from WP experts, join dedicated web development communities to get some help and support, attend tech events, and local meet-ups to learn from your peers.

Choosing Your Main Specialization

The number of things you have to deal with on your way to becoming a WP developer may seem overwhelming. Here is a tip on how to overcome that hurdle: narrow your focus and decide what development area you’d like to get involved in. It is better to become a pro in one thing than be a jack-of-all-trades and master of none.

Since WordPress is a web building platform with a lot of parts and pieces working together, there are many options to choose from. If you are determined to know the ropes of how this system operates, you can become a core developer. It means you’ll get into the WP’s code, help to fix bugs, and contribute to the platform’s overall functioning.

If you lean more towards front-end development, you can try your hand at creating themes and plugins. Themes are the templates that define the look, styling, and layout of WordPress websites. You can build one from scratch, fork your own version of the existing theme, or adopt the project that’s been abandoned by another developer. Plugins are applications that expand the functionality of the website by introducing specific features that are not set out in WP’s core code.

Getting Started

Once you get confident with the WordPress essentials and gain some practical experience in web development, you are ready to start your job hunt. Summarize your tech resume, create a portfolio, share your work with the community, and let the world know you are open to new opportunities. You can check freelancing sites like Upwork, try to find potential clients via your professional network, or even browse job postings on social media.