what is a front-end engineer?

As a front-end engineer, you build the front-end or client side of a website or software application. However, unlike other developers, you take an artistic and pragmatic approach instead of focusing only on the technical aspects. That means your code determines how the web design is implemented on the internet. Website pages often combine structure, design, content, data and functionality — without a front-end engineer to create a user-friendly page, users cannot navigate the functions. Your job is to transform the web layout to help users access the functions they need by packaging the technical side in the back end.

You work on various projects centred on a website's appearance and user experience for end-users. For instance, you turn websites into intuitive and visually appealing sites. You also create purpose-built landing pages for running contests, niche marketing and advertising campaigns. Front-end engineers use graphic design tools to create website prototypes and code editing tools. You can work in various industries to develop functional websites for your employer.

Would working as a front-end engineer suit your interest in information technology (IT)? Then read on to find out what competencies and qualifications you need to thrive in a front-end engineer role.

front-end engineer jobs

average front-end engineer salary

According to the Economic Research Institute, you earn an average salary of €40,000 per year as a front-end engineer. On the lower end of the pay scale, entry-level front-end engineers take home €26,000 per year. The low salary is due to minimal experience and qualifications. When you have extensive experience as a front-end engineer, you take home an average salary of €47,000 per year.

how to increase your salary as a front-end engineer

Your earnings as a front-end engineer fluctuate based on various factors. For instance, your experience and skills determine your compensation package. When you have minimal experience in programming, you start with a lower salary — and as you advance your skills, your earnings increase gradually. While you can work as a front-end engineer without formal qualifications, having professional web development credentials improves your salary prospects.

The company you work for and the project size also affect your earnings. When you work on small projects, you have fewer responsibilities. Hence, your salary is lower compared to front-end engineers in charge of large projects. Working in large organisations also attracts better compensation packages due to the vast resources available.

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types of front-end engineers

Some of the types of front-end engineers include:

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working as a front-end engineer

As a front-end engineer, you incorporate your artistic and design skills into your work. Let's look at the tasks and work environment of front-end engineers.


front-end engineer skills and education

While you can become a front-end engineer without educational qualifications, some projects require additional qualifications, including:

  • Education: to become a front-end engineer, pursue a degree in computer science or software development. These courses prepare you for website building and creating applications.
  • Work experience: you need work experience to excel in your role as a front-end engineer. Consider finding entry-level jobs in software development to build your skills and gain experience. You can also attend boot camps to improve your programming skills.

competencies and characteristics of front-end engineers

Apart from technical expertise, you need a lot of other skills (soft skills) to excel as a front-end engineer. These include:

  • Curiosity: the website development landscape is constantly evolving, and you should keep learning and staying on track with emerging front-end components and tools. With curiosity, you will be inspired to research trends and implement them in your work.
  • Empathy: since you are developing a brand's visual image, the goal isn't to decorate it with various graphics or colours. Being mindful of how others perceive the colours and the graphics is crucial. Empathy allows you to put yourself in the users' shoes.
  • Problem-solving skills: the work of a front-end engineer comes with various challenges, and you need problem-solving skills to help you break down the issue and find a solution. Your problem-solving skills help you troubleshoot issues on websites and handle unexpected challenges.
  • Collaboration and team skills: you work alongside a team of developers and collaborate with back-end developers to ensure websites work properly. Team skills help you maintain positive relationships with your colleagues.
  • Creativity: while your role as a front-end engineer is tech-oriented, there is room for creativity. As a developer, you ensure the website is visually appealing, user-friendly and alluring. Your creativity helps you develop functional applications and websites.


Here, you will find the answers to the most frequently asked questions about the profession of a front-end engineer.

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