“Curiouser and curiouser!” declared Alice of her adventures in Wonderland. The neologism applies to us as well. At A List Apart, we are perpetually and ever more deeply curious about the lives and livings of people who make websites.
What educational background or economic circumstance led us down this particular rabbit hole of a profession? By what titles do we market ourselves, which skills do our employers expect of us, what can we hope to earn, and which prejudices hurt or benefit us? How mobile are we, how fluid are our titles, and how, in an increasingly complex and frequently perplexing field, do we keep our knowledge current? About these things and a dozen others are we continually and unabashedly curious.
It is a curiosity many of you clearly share. Each year, when we post our Survey For People Who Make Websites, thousands of you kindly take time to complete it. The resulting data, sliced and diced per a team led by An Event Apart’s inimitable Eric Meyer, presents a living picture of the businesses, backgrounds, and aspirations of professional web workers most everywhere.
Of course, our findings are far from the last word on the comings and goings of designers, developers, UX folk, and related web professionals. We can only make sense of the data we have, so only those who took this year’s survey factored into its results. We are read worldwide, but survey respondents tend to come chiefly from the US, Canada, and Europe—particularly those countries where English is a first or second language.
You can change this by helping spread the word to your far-flung colleagues when the next survey rolls around. For example, if you work with back-end teams in India or China, reach out to those folks. The more of us who complete the survey, the clearer, more accurate, and more informative our results will be.
As always, should your curiosity exceed the bounds of our reporting, you can do your own data slicing and dicing. You’ll find the anonymized raw data files at the end of this year’s results, where you can download and inspect the data your own way.
Now dive in boldly, find out how your situation compares to others’, and keep building respect for this most elegant of professions.