Hire Web3 Developers: Salary, Skills and More

The blockchain ecosystem has seen unprecedented growth with many companies now looking to hire Web3 developers with experience in cryptocurrency.

The web is undergoing dramatic changes. Of the latest changes is Web3, a new version of the internet, which is quickly expanding in size and popularity.

As it’s still a new idea, finding Web3 engineers is a tedious task. It’s mostly cryptocurrency and blockchain enthusiast developers who are mastering this new form of the web, which is destined to change the internet in ways we have yet to understand.

Before we talk about how to hire Web3 developers, let’s talk about Web3 itself.

What is Web3?

Web3, unlike its predecessors, Web 1.0 and Web 2.0, is based on peer-to-peer (P2P) decentralized networks, such as blockchain.

Blockchain is a hallmark building block of cryptocurrency, and Web3 is a product of both. Web3 developers create apps that aren’t limited to a single cloud server but are instead distributed on a blockchain or decentralized P2P network that isn’t controlled by a central authority.

In simpler words, Web3 is similar to how most cryptocurrencies work based on the blueprint of Bitcoin.

How does this differ from the existing Web 2.0? While Web 2.0 is user-centric (most of the content is user-generated), Web3 has taken this approach to the next level by introducing more autonomy and keeping things more transparent and relatable. In Web3, computers are heavily involved in interpreting information on a human level.

Web3 has many additional attributes that distinguish it from Web 2.0 — it’s verifiable, self-governing, permissionless, distributed, stateless, and has built-in payment systems (cryptocurrency).

This lack of transparency and verification led to Web 2.0 containing too much content and information, most of which isn’t helpful for general users. Its security is also sub-par, which is why there are too many hackers today and a marked increase in identity theft and other cybercrimes.

Any application built on Web3 would be developed and owned by the users as they help create and maintain the app, earning their stake along the way. This is just how Bitcoin operates, as miners of the currency earn Bitcoins when they facilitate transactions through computing operations.

The apps on Web3 are called “dApps,” which is short for “decentralized applications.” You can expect to hear this term more often in the near future.

An effective Web3 developer is one who is familiar with the concept of Web3, is proficient in the relevant programming languages, and has the right tech stack to back their development work.

What Tech Stack Do Web3 Developers Use: Skills and Tools

The tech stack, or developer stack, refers to the technology or tools the developer uses and excels at. A good example is the MEAN stack, which is comprised of MongoDB, Express.js, AngularJS/Angular, and Node.js.

For Web3, there’s a specific tech stack that the developer you’re hiring must use.

Web3 SDKs/dApps

The Web3 SDKs, or libraries, are essential for building any dApp. These libraries support the interaction with a blockchain, such as Ethereum, and conduct transactions.

The most important of these SDKs are, and ethers.js. These are also linked with smart contracts, which are explained further below.

Cryptocurrency Wallets

If you’ve ever dabbled with cryptocurrency, you probably already know what a crypto wallet is. It holds your cryptocurrency and can be either a digital or hardware wallet. For Web3 applications, a wallet is required to facilitate transactions.

There’s a fee for the writing operations on the blockchain, which must be drawn from the wallet. For Web3, the developer can create an ETH (ethers) wallet using any of the common languages, such as Python, JavaScript, or Ruby. Alternatively, developers can use an existing wallet platform like MetaMask.


Nodes make up the blockchain and retain a copy of it. These are also called Web3 providers for this reason, as the application’s connectivity with the blockchain hinges on these nodes. Without these nodes, dApp cannot communicate with the smart contracts.

The most commonly used provider is QuickNode, which provides a global network of nodes powered by speedy operations.

Smart Contracts

In the crypto world, smart contracts are pieces of code that live on the blockchain. Written in Solidity, these cannot be altered or mutated. This code runs when the conditions for it to run are met.

This automates the workflow when the participants of the blockchain confirm an outcome. These smart contracts (pioneered by Ethereum) also helped give Ethereum the edge over Bitcoin in terms of transaction speed.

Web3 Developer Salaries

The average yearly salaries for Web3 developers can vary greatly depending on what you’re hiring them for. Here’s an overview of the most popular Web3 expert roles and their salaries.

Blockchain Developer

According to ZipRecruiter, the average yearly salary for a blockchain developer is $154,550 or $74 per hour. Note that this average is mostly drawn from larger companies. If you add smaller companies and startups into the mix, the average yearly salary drops to $80,000 per year.

Since the term “blockchain developer” is a broad descriptor, the associated salaries tend to vary. In general, there are two types of blockchain developers: blockchain software developers and core blockchain developers.

  1. Blockchain software developers: Blockchain software developers are responsible for creating applications based on blockchain protocol and architecture. One of their main duties is to create smart contracts, which are programs stored on a blockchain that automatically run when conditions are met. Small contracts are usually used to automate workflows and agreement execution so every participant will immediately know the outcome.

    They also create decentralized applications (dApps) that run on the blockchain, making them comparable with web developers, who use web architects’ design and protocol to create web applications. Additionally, these software developers are responsible for the front-end and back-end development of dApps and supervising the stack that runs them.
  2. Core blockchain developers: These blockchain developers are responsible for creating the architecture, design, and security of the blockchain system. They also:
  • Design the blockchain protocols
  • Design security patterns and consensus protocols for the network
  • Supervise the entire blockchain network

Despite their differences, both types of blockchain developers require a similar skill set. Here are the main blockchain developer hard skills you should look for when hiring a blockchain developer for your team:

  1. Cryptography: Cryptography is the study of blockchain protocols that prevent unauthorised and unwanted parties from accessing your data. A popular concept in cryptography is public-key cryptography, which forms the backbone of cryptocurrency transactions. Another hot topic is cryptographic hashing, which transforms cleartext passwords into enciphered text for storage. This slows down threat actors since they’ll have to decipher these hash values if they want to exploit the passwords.
  2. Data structures: Every blockchain developer needs to have extensive knowledge of data structures. This is because blockchain networks consist of data structures.
  3. Blockchain architecture: Blockchain developers need to know what ledgers are, how smart contracts work, and what consensus is. They should also be familiar with all four types of blockchain architecture: consortium, private, public, and hybrid.
  4. Web development: Blockchain developers should also know how to develop and create web apps, particularly if they’re blockchain software developers.
  5. A variety of programming languages: Finally, your blockchain developer should have experience with at three or more of the following programming languages:
  • Java
  • Python
  • C++
  • C#
  • PHP
  • JavaScript
  • Go
  • Simplicity
  • SQL

Like the rest of the roles on this list, blockchain developers need the following soft skills:

  • Commitment to and passion for the Web3 landscape
  • Interest in learning more about blockchain technologies
  • Client and project management skills
  • The ability to meet deadlines ahead of time
  • The ability to work in multi-disciplinary teams

Solidity Developer

The average base salary for a Solidity developer is $127,500 per year. Remote Solidity developers can earn up to an average of $145,000 per year, depending on which company they’re working for.

Solidity developers use the Solidity language to create and deploy smart contracts on Ethereum-based apps. The syntax of Solidity is similar to C and Javascript, so developers who already know those languages can quickly learn Solidity. Compared to other languages, Solidity offers multiple benefits, such as:

  • Statically typed programming
  • Accessibility to JavaScript debuggers, infrastructures, and other tools
  • Preciseness

With Solidity, developers can craft applications with self-enforcing business logic in smart contracts, creating a non-repeatable record of transactions. Solidity also supports libraries, a complex user-defined type, and inheritance. Thus, it’s a good choice for creating contracts for crowdfunding, voting, multi-signature wallets, and blind auctions.

Solidity developers are usually responsible for:

  • Integrating Solidity code across various platforms
  • Managing the full lifecycle of blockchain development
  • Ensuring blockchain integration with existing applications
  • Building smart contracts and ensuring that all timelines and expectations are met for finished smart contracts
  • Reviewing smart contracts for security and functionality
  • Supervising web services that use blockchain technology
  • Collaborating with multidisciplinary teams and product managers to discover new ideas for smart contract development
  • Assessing technical reviews of proposed solutions
  • Analyzing usage and transaction statistics to pinpoint and prioritize areas for improvement

Besides having a deep knowledge of Solidity and blockchains, Solidity developers should also have the following hard skills:

  • Blockchain technology, especially Ethereum blockchain
  • Strong background in Javascript, C, C++
  • Knowledge of AngularJS, React JS, and Ember JS
  • Portfolio experience with Ethereum testnet and mainnet
  • CSS/HTML/JS/React for application binary interface (ABI) integration
  • Experience with RESTful APIs
  • Experience with staking protocol implementation for liquidity pair and single-token staking
  • Familiar with different ways to deploy smart contracts, such as Remix, Truffle suite, and Hardhat
  • Experienced in staking implementing and test-driven development (TDD)
  • Knowledge of libraries, data structures, blockchain architecture, web development, and smart contracts

Smart Contract Developer

According to Glassdoor, the average annual salary of a smart contract developer in San Francisco, CA, is $94,674 with an average additional cash compensation of $20,950.

As their name suggests, smart contract developers are responsible for developing smart contracts for blockchain platforms. They use various programming languages, such as Solidity and Vyper, to create smart contracts, which, as we covered above, are blockchain programs that automatically run when conditions are met.

Image Source – Revelo

Unlike blockchain software developers who create dApps as well as smart contracts, smart contract developers are only responsible for designing and building smart contracts architecture and related tasks. As such, they have fewer responsibilities and lower salaries.

Here’s what they’re typically responsible for:

  • Designing, building, and deploying smart contracts architecture, yield pools, incentive structures, and strategies
  • Working with smart contract auditors and the rest of your IT team to implement fixes
  • Create, implement, and test smart contract additions and upgrades
  • Explore and research smart contract design implications

Most companies require smart contract developers to have the following hard skills:

  • Over four years of full-stack web development (client-facing apps and APIs)
  • Programming languages such as Solidity, NodeJS, and JavaScript
  • Cryptography
  • Experience in creating, developing, deploying, and testing smart contracts for all four blockchain architectural types
  • Experience with patterns that will make their Solidity code more readable and improve performance, such as:
  1. Oracles
  2. Pull over Push
  3. Eternal Storage
  4. Tight Variable Packing
  5. Guard Check
  6. Emergency Stop
  • The ability to write secure code that prevents threat actors from taking over contracts
  • Optimization of smart contracts
  • User experience (UX)

Rust Developer

There’s a lot of variation in the salaries of Rust developers.

According to ZipRecruiter, the average Rust developer earns $91,709 per year or $44 per hour. However, in certain major cities, the average salary of Rust developers is higher. For instance, the annual average salary of a rust developer in San Francisco, CA, is $106,131 with an average additional cash compensation of $11,867.

Rust developers are responsible for coding and developing web browsers, blockchain platforms and projects, servers and systems software, and operating systems in the Rust programming language. They may also be responsible for testing, debugging, and ensuring the security and safety of the systems, software, and platforms they develop.

Additional duties may include:

  • Collaborating with customers, management, and relevant departments to pinpoint end-user specifications and requirements
  • Analyzing user feedback to boost software performance
  • Creating technical documentation

Like Solidity, Rust is a popular language that has a wide range of Web3 applications. It’s particularly popular due to its use in the Solana blockchain, a potential competitor to Ethereum as the leading platform for dApps. As of March 2022, Solana is currently ranked ninth in market value on CoinMarketCap, making it the highest-ranked blockchain platform that uses Rust.

Most companies require Rust developers to have the following skills:

  • C++, since the Rust language is similar to it
  • Other programming languages such as Golang, Python, Java, Node.js, and React.js
  • Knowledge and experience with secure coding practices
  • Experience with network programming skills and multi-threaded programming
  • Familiarity with solana-web3.js, Solana’s official SDK (Rust developers use this SDK to develop Solana dApps)
  • The ability to create and launch Programs, which are the Solana equivalent of smart contracts
  • Experience with specific operating systems such as Android or Linux
  • Experience with certain databases, such as MongoDB and Apache CouchDB

Many organisations also prefer to hire Rust programmers who have at least three to five years of Rust coding experience since it’s a difficult language to master.

According to the Rust Survey of 2019, most Rust programmers rated their expertise as 7 out of 10 or below, even though over 68% of them wrote Rust code weekly. Additionally, 22% of Rust users indicated that they didn’t feel productive while coding Rust and the steep learning curve was the second most common reason for not using Rust on some projects.

As such, it’s important to get a good idea of how familiar and comfortable your potential hire is at Rust. Give them a few test assignments and make sure that they know how to create, test, and debug the programs and apps you want them to create.

Where to Find Web3 Developers

Whether you’re looking to hire Web3 developers for a long-term project or a small gig, knowing where you can find the best talent for this specific set of skills can substantially cut down your search time.

Web3, like cryptocurrency in its early days, is driving impressive innovation. It’s an excellent opportunity to be a part of the blockchain ecosystem and help formulate the future of the web.

Unless you live in a tech hub where you can find talent locally, it’s probably easiest to hire remote developers. Here are the best places to find these developers and Web3 engineers:

Crypto Job Boards

Even while talking about something as cutting edge as Web3, you may find the age-old approach of searching job boards to be quite convenient. However, you’ll want to choose a job board that’s known for harboring blockchain and crypto developers.

There are several recruitment websites that focus solely on crypto-related jobs. You can increase your chances of finding the right person by posting the position on more than one of these platforms.

Some of the most popular online crypto job boards include Crypto Jobs ListCryptoJobs, and Angel. Other more general job sites include Indeed and


LinkedIn is another online job board, but it’s also a social media platform. Many startups begin their talent scouting here.

Not only do you have the opportunity to post Web3 development jobs on LinkedIn, but you can also search for professionals with experience by viewing the profiles of prospective employees. Profiles present workers’ skills, experience, and education, and if you like someone, you can communicate with them directly on the website or app.

While LinkedIn is an excellent place to find a developer, it also provides a great platform for promoting your business, especially if you’re looking for financing. It offers opportunities to show off the talent you hire as well, to make your venture appear even more valuable.

Talent Marketplaces

Online talent marketplaces are another viable option when searching for Web3 developers. These usually have both remote workers and freelancers, so you’ll first need to figure out exactly the kind of worker you need.

Do you want a permanent member of the team? Do you want a contractual freelancer? These are serious considerations. For example, for long-haul collaboration, you’d likely want the developer to be an employee of the company.

There’s nothing wrong with going with a freelance developer, provided this kind of relationship meets your needs and you can find someone suitable. But if you’re looking to embed developers in your team and hire them permanently, Revelo is an excellent place to start. You’ll be connected with top-notch remote talent specializing in Web3 engineering or development, or whatever technology you need to grow your business.

One of the most significant benefits of using Revelo is that the developers are pre-screened, so the skills and experience they list on their profile are what you’ll get. Therefore, there’s no need to confirm their experience — you can just move along with the interviewing process.

How to Hire Web3 Developers

You probably don’t want to spend endless hours reviewing resume after resume and conducting dozens of interviews. At the same time, you also don’t want to miss out on good talent by overlooking their applications.

To help you pick out the best from the rest, here are some examples of job postings and some guidelines for the interviews themselves.

If you find hiring daunting, don’t worry — hiring developers doesn’t require the formal interviews, group discussions, or IQ tests that many big corporations use. If you’re all for decentralization anyway, you might as well do things a little differently than more centralized corporations.  

Web3 Developer Job Post Example

The first thing you need to nail is the job post itself. Whether you choose to go with a job board, LinkedIn, or a talent marketplace, you’ll need to define the position you’re offering.

This is important because, believe it or not, many recruiters and contractors end up using the wrong terms in their posts or adding too much detail. This can cause candidates to overlook the most important requirements of the position. In these cases, you’ll end up with irrelevant resumes and often too many of them to sift through.

When you’re looking to hire Web3 developers, the post should be direct. It should address that you’re looking for a blockchain developer who specialises in Web3 development and has the right tech stack to support it.

Ideally, you would want people with experience working with blockchain to apply. So, make a list of the relevant keywords to put in your post. Those keywords will also help the post rank better on search engines, so anyone who types those keywords will see your job posting.

To help you write an immaculate job post to hire Web3 programmer, here is an example:

“We are looking for a passionate and experienced Web3 developer to help us build our project XYZ.

Our ideal candidate is someone with experience developing blockchain-based applications, especially those for Web3 (dApps). They should be aware of and use the latest technologies in crypto, blockchain, and Web3 development. With collaborative energy and willingness to learn, the right candidate will readily communicate with and assist other team members on the project.

Necessary Qualifications:

  • Experience with blockchain development
  • Experience with Solidity and dApp development
  • Basic knowledge of front-end development of dApps to bridge the gap between the complex blockchain and usable Web 2.0–based interface
  • Ability to work remotely and collaborate with the team when necessary


  • Help create scalable applications with Ethereum blockchain
  • Analyse and solve problems in the development phase
  • Communicate and collaborate with back-end and front-end teams
  • Develop and optimise smart contracts
  • Help document the development process of the blockchain and dApps
  • Optimise development and implementation
  • Adopt best practices for Web3 and blockchain development”

You can follow this layout or create your own based on this sample structure:

Begin by briefly introducing your company or the idea of the project without giving too much away, especially if you’ve come up with a new idea.

Then, talk about what the ideal candidate should have, including the desired skills and qualifications. Don’t be too general with these but try to be straightforward. Keep in mind that Web3 is relatively new, so asking for 5 or 10 years of specific experience may be unreasonable and limit who applies. This could cause you to miss out on exceptionally qualified candidates.

Consider adding a pay rate or range in the job posting. This transparency will ensure that neither you nor the candidates waste time with interviews or application materials if your expectations are drastically different.

Lastly, list the responsibilities that the developer will have. Include both technical and non-technical responsibilities that you’ll expect of a new hire.

Remember that a clearer job description will attract more relevant applicants.

Web3 Developer Interviews

Once you have shortlisted the candidates, you can begin setting up interviews. You already established during your initial review that they meet the requirements you defined in the job post. Now, it’s time to get to know them a bit better.

You’ll most likely be conducting the interview remotely via a web meeting tool, like Zoom.

It’s always a good idea to formulate your interview questions beforehand. You should write down your most significant concerns with hiring Web3 engineers and keep each candidate’s resume handy either in paper format or on your computer screen.

Ask them how they plan on working remotely, especially if they are located in a different region with a significant time zone difference. Discuss the communication tools and methods of your team and whether they have any experience with those.

Make sure to formulate these discussions and concerns into a set of questions and create a smooth flow. For example, consider dividing the interview into technical and non-technical sections. However, it’s not necessary to stick to your script. If you think of something during the interview, you can go ahead and ask and come back to your pre-written questions after.

Lastly, discuss their salary or pay expectations. Do they prefer to be paid hourly, annually, or by the project?

Here are some sample questions you can use in your interviews:

  • How do you think Web3 is different from the previous versions of the web?
  • What blockchain projects have you been part of? What was your role?
  • What Web3 development tools and technology have you used before?
  • What coding languages are you experienced in?
  • How do you respond to feedback from other team members?
  • What testing methods do you use for your code?
  • What is your preferred mode of communication?

Don’t forget to keep the mood light and friendly!

Web3 Coding Challenges

No matter how well the interview went and how experienced the candidate claims to be, it all comes down to their skill.

To measure and confirm their level of knowledge and experience in Web3 development, you should conduct several small coding challenges. These can be presented to the candidates in written form or as video presentations to explain the purpose of the assignment. The task shouldn’t be longer than an hour unless you plan to pay them for their time.

If you’re hiring a developer to carry out different coding tasks, you should create different coding challenges, each dealing with a specific need of your project — for example, creating nodes, writing smart contracts, or developing the front end of a Web3 application.

Another popular approach to coding challenges is pair programming. In these tests, two developers work together on a problem, either in person or remotely. This is a great way to test their technical skills and their team and communication skills. The code wouldn’t be written by both of the developers, however. One would formulate the code or define the approach, while the other would actually write it. You can reverse the roles for a second test.

Here are some tips for developing coding challenges:

  • Utilise problems related to your project. You want to see the developers working in the context of your application. You should take a problem related to your project and present it as a challenge to see how the candidate might benefit your team.
  • Focus on the process, not the result. When examining the coding challenge results, don’t just look at whether they solved the problem. Even if they didn’t quite find the solution, their results can help you get to know how they work and whether they have the potential to learn more.
  • Use the same challenge. For a single job posting, use the same coding challenge to see how different candidates compare. However, don’t reuse the test once you’ve hired someone successfully.
  • Create from scratch. It’s best to create the challenge yourself, using a real problem related to your project. Pre-designed coding tests may not provide the best outcome, and many times the solutions have been published online, which defeats the purpose of testing. If you’re not a developer yourself, consider asking your current developers, especially those responsible for testing, to create these tests for you.


Hiring Web3 developers is not difficult if you search in the right places, conduct the interviews effectively, and design a solid coding test. Even if you believe a candidate is not seasoned, you can always train them. However, they should have the drive to learn more.

Revelo can solve your talent hunting issues by presenting some of the best developers from Latin America to become an integral part of your team and take your Web3 project to the next level. Contact Revelo and get matched with vetted developers within 3 days.

Business Tips

How can developers improve their paycheck.

As a software developer, what is the most lucrative opportunity you could be working on? This is a very relevant question to ask. Software skills are generally scarce and good developers are highly coveted. Furthermore, developers are mobile, in the sense that the nature of their trade allows them to work from remote locations quite easily and marketplaces for their services are well established. So which project should you pick to improve your paycheck?

developer salary

There are many reasons why someone might prefer one job over another, but let’s be honest: developers deserve to get paid well, given their important position in the global value chain. For the first time in 12 editions, we asked developers in our survey how much they earn in salaries or contractor fees. The results are in and from the data we learn several insights that can help developers improve their paycheck, and conversely, provide opportunities for organisations to find talent.

First, there are enormous differences in how much developers in each region and software sector earn. The best earning developers in our survey – those in the top ten percent – often earn tens and sometimes hundreds of times as much as the least well-off, i.e. the bottom decile. Part of this gap is location-driven. We’ll come back to that shortly. This said, we can only conclude that a developer’s skill, knowledge, and reputation do matter. Investing in them will pay off.

Developers working in areas with a higher technical complexity generally earn more.

Talking of skills, developers who work in areas with a higher technical complexity – and therefore higher barriers to entry and ultimately fewer developers doing it – generally earn more. Developers that work on cloud computing and other backend services report higher salaries than those working on front-end web apps. Machine learning specialists make even more than the backend folks. In Western Europe, for example, the median web developer has a yearly gross salary of $35,400 USD, the median backend developer earns $39,500 and a machine learning developer makes $45,200. This relationship is seen across regions and also at higher wage levels. Web and mobile development are the most commoditised; there is a fairly low barrier to start making simple apps or websites, and these tasks are relatively easily outsourced to other regions.

Scarcity of skills drives up paycheck amounts for developer services.

Scarcity of skills drives up the price for developer services. This is also true for new, emerging areas of development, like Augmented and Virtual Reality, or the Internet of Things, but only at the top end of the scale.The best developers in emerging areas earn top dollar, while the bottom half of the developer population makes less than their counterparts in more established sectors. Let’s compare Augmented Reality (AR) with backend developers in North America as an example. The median wage for an AR developer in that region is $71,000 USD, a good bit less than the $79,200 that the median backend developer makes. At the top end, however, AR development is more lucrative. At the 75th percentile, the AR developer is paid $132,300 and the backend developer $122,800. At the very top (90th percentile), the difference is even more pronounced: $219,000 for AR, $169,000 for backend. The reason for this wide range of salaries is that markets like AR/VR or IoT are still commercially underdeveloped. Companies that are early adopters pay large sums for skilled developers, who are scarce. At the same time, less experienced developers are attracted by the hype. Their compensation suffers both from a lack of relevant skill and from a lack of companies that are hiring in the early market.

Again this pattern repeats across regions. The exception is South Asia. The outsourcing model that drives software development in that region seems to be built on maintaining legacy code and developers there are less involved in emerging innovations (a conclusion that’s also supported by our developer population sizing research).


We’re still a long way off a global market for developers!

We started this chapter by saying that developers can market their services location-independently if they choose to. However, it’s clear from the data that we’re still a long way off a global market for developers! The median web developer in North America for instance earns $73,600 USD per year. A Western European web developer earns half of that – $35,400 USD – although recent exchange rate shenanigans due to Brexit and the Euro-crisis will have affected that comparison. Web developers in other regions earn again half of that: between $11,700 in South Asia and $20,800 in Eastern Europe. Not just the region of the world you live in matters, but also the country and even the city you call home.

This opens up opportunities for organisations who will accept remote workers. You can hire a top 10% Eastern European backend developer for less money than the median North American wage in that sector. For developers, it means that brushing up your English skills and looking for opportunities beyond your backyard can be very interesting indeed. Developers who take that leap and seek opportunities that pay to international standards are in the minority. This explains why top wages in emerging regions (Asia, the Middle East, Africa) are so exuberantly high compared to local standards. A Western developer in the top decile earns about three times as much as the median wage in his sector and region. In the emerging world, top wages are seven to ten times the median. The best developers in those regions work for multinationals or sell their services on international marketplaces, while most stay employed locally, at much lower remuneration levels.

So what’s a developer to do if you want to move up in the world, financially? Invest in your skills. Do difficult work. Improve your English. Look for opportunities internationally. Go for it. You deserve it!

Take our Developer Economics Survey and speak out about other challenges you face!


Every year software developers get less experienced

That might sound odd, but it’s one of many conclusions drawn from our biannual study, and presented on developer experience in our (free) State of the Developer Nation report.

The report draws on data from the world’s-biggest survey of those working in software. During the latest wave we reached more than 21,000 developers, and found that they have less experience than they did a year ago.

Developer Experience across all areas

Not individually of course. There’s no memory loss involved here. What happens is that the developer community is growing, and new programmers inevitably bring down the average level of experience. This has serious implications for the future of the industry.

If we take mobile developers, who are typical, we can see that right now 40% of them have been developing software for more than six years, but a year ago that proportion was 43%. At the other end of the spectrum we have 17% of developers with less than a year under their belt, up from 14% this time last year.

Building Developer Experience

That pattern is repeated across all sectors, even IoT (which is so nascent it often bucks the trends). While a good proportion of developers have built up their skills over time, we are going to have to adjust to a world where more software is being created by developers with less hands-on experience, and understand the implications of that trend.

One of those implication is a shift in the popularity of certain programming languages over their more-traditional brethren. This time we’re focusing in on the last six months, but if we again look at mobile developers we can see them embracing scripting languages, at the cost of Java and the various forms of C. Objective C takes the biggest hit, assaulted by Apple’s new wonderkid Swift on one side, and the (JavaScript powered) cross-platform toolkits on the other. Objective C is dropping fast, while C/C++ has a gentle decline and C# is just about holding its mindshare (thanks to Xamarin, which compiles C# to Android and is now a Microsoft property).

On the cloud the trend is less pronounced, but still evident. Java is growing, but so are all the other languages. PHP… C#… Python… in fact all the top languages have gained mindshare as cloud developers become increasingly polyglot while giving up on some of the niche dialects.

Developer Experience: the rise of high level languages

One area on the rise, across all the sectors, is the use of visual tools for software development. These drag-‘n-drop environments are often looked down upon by “proper” programmers, who respect the digital hierarchy (where Assembler is king, dialects of C make up the court, Java is left outside the room, and scripting languages aren’t permitted into the palace). These visual tools are still only used by a minority (25% of mobile developers, 19% of cloud) and fewer still rely on them as a primary tool (5% across mobile and cloud) but that proportion is growing steadily, and relentlessly.

The fact is that there aren’t enough low-level programmers to go around, and most applications don’t need them. Visual tools, and scripting languages, are good enough for the vast majority of applications in any sector. That applies across consumer and enterprise markets, as users of all kinds start creating apps with a few clicks. However, there is a question about how long can we consider those users to be software developers, and the tools they use to be designed for software development.

“If This Then That” ( is a marvellous tool, enabling anyone to create “recipes” where an event (“this”) triggers an action (“that”). An incoming email can trigger the (Philips Hue) lights to flash red three times, making the owner feel like Batman while simultaneously aggravating his whole family.

IFTTT users can chain recipes together, creating actions that seed multiple events, loop back on themselves, and even branch based on inputs. At some point we have to accept that the IFTTT user has become a software developer, or that IFTTT shows us what the future of software development might look like.

Not all applications will be written that way of course. Lower-level languages will still be needed to plumb the functionality together, but there will come a time when the vast majority of applications will be created by developers with no software development experience at all.

Developer Experience trends

That day is a long way off, but with every year it gets a little closer and our data shows that process is in action. You can see more by downloading our State of the Developer Nation report, or talking to us about custom reports looking at the developer community, while there still is one.