Job Title: Web Developer
Type of Company: I work for a biotechnology company that focuses on rare diseases.
Education: BA in Political Science, Boston College MLS in Library & Information Science, Simmons College
Previous Experience: Most recently I am a Web Developer for a biotechnology company. Prior to that I was a corporate librarian for a manufacturing company and a defense contractor.
Job Tasks: I maintain custom web applications, as well as manage servers for a department within the corporation. I do HTML (what web sites pages are built with) and C# coding (what many computer applications are built with) as well as run SQL queries (how information is retrieved from a database) against databases.
I am also involved in several projects that require systems analysis - determining what would be required for hardware and software to make the project successful.
I also provide some graphic design support to my department, as well as general IT/computer support to the staff.
Best and Worst Parts of the Job: I prefer to be involved in projects that let me be creative and are a bit challenging. I like working with people on new ideas and seeing them successful completed. The worst part is some of the more mundane tasks like report writing that take a lot of time but are necessary.
Job Tips: Courses in web design and database design are important for a basic understanding. A certificate course that goes through all aspects is very important to get a complete picture of all of the components that go into building custom web applications.
Continuing education is also very important since this is a quickly-changing environment.
In addition to understanding the backend systems, it is very important to understand user interfaces and how your audience will use your applications, what environment they will be used in and what systems are supported in that environment.
Additional Thoughts: My occupation has changed quite a bit over the years. I started out as a librarian in a corporate setting but started building internal web sites (called intranets). I continued my professional development and took more and more courses to stay current with technology. As the technology changed so did my roles and responsibilities. I have enjoyed seeing how much corporate intranets have changed over the last 15+ years and look forward to more. Emerging technologies such as collaboration tools are just starting to become mainstream in corporations and will greatly change the way people work.
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