A Day in the Life of a Front End Developer

March 14, 2014

Here’s a peek at an average day for a front end developer at RefineCo:

8:30am – Walk into the office and brew up a cup of coffee to get those synapses firing. Sit down at my computer to read and answer emails, and to check for any new tasks that may have been assigned to me and require my immediate attention.

8:45am – Check JIRA task board to see what outstanding tasks remain on the various projects I’m working on. This gives me a rough idea of what I should be allocating my time towards, and helps me prepare for…

9:00am – …our daily stand up. The developers and project managers gather round, and the devs discuss what we worked on the previous day, any problems we encountered, resolved, or are currently stuck on, and what we will be working on today.

9:15am – After stand up, it’s time to throw on the headphones, cue up some raging metal tunes, and get down and dirty with HTML/CSS/JavaScript.

A large portion of my time is spent taking static PhotoShop designs and using the aforementioned trifecta of HTML/CSS/Javascript to bring them to life as clean, fast, easy-to-use interfaces for client portals, intranets, and public websites. Because RefineCo is primarily focused on Enterprise Content Management (ECM) development, our interfaces need to be integrated and work well with Microsoft SharePoint, which requires working with ASP.NET.

12:30pm – Lunch time. It’s either leftovers from dinner the night before, or head out to one of the nearby food establishments. If I stick around the office I might do some coding tutorials, or catch up on the day’s news. On Friday’s most of the team will head out to lunch together. It’s a nice opportunity for us to all hang and become BFFs.

1:30pm – Back to work. In addition to building out interfaces, I spend my time:

  • fixing layout, design, and usability bugs;
  • ensuring that our solutions are cross-browser, and in some cases cross-platform compatible;
  • working with back end developers to help resolve any front end issues they may run into, and vice-versa;
  • providing proof-of-concepts for new technologies and interface ideas;
  • writing awesome blog posts;

5:00pm – It’s likely that throughout the day I have been committing code through Git, the version control system we use. At the very least you want to make sure you do it at the end of the day. You’ll be able to sleep easy knowing that your day’s work won’t be undone if your computer pulls a Chernobyl overnight.

5:30pm – Time to head home and spend some quality time with the family.