The Guideline To Become Skilled API Developer

Relia Software

Relia Software

Cong Dinh

Relia Software


API developers are app builders using software engineering to define, build, and maintain Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) for software system integration.

api developer

Table of Contents

Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) are essential for integrating various software systems and facilitating smooth data interchange in today's digital environment. Selecting and employing a top-notch API developer is now crucial since companies are depending more and more on APIs to improve their goods and services.

This post will offer a thorough roadmap of an API developer with a job description, skills, and salary for your business.

What is An API Developer?

API developers are app builders using software engineering to define, build, and maintain Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) for software system integration. These specialists create digital bridges that allow apps to communicate with one another and with outside services as well as with one other inside an organization. 

Their work lays the framework for scalable and flexible software ecosystems, which is important for modern applications using many web-based platforms and services. API developers are essential to the technical environment as the digital world grows more interconnected. They make sure that apps can access the resources they require to offer a rich and integrated user experience.

types of api developer
5 Types of API Developers (Source: Internet)

5 Typical Types of API Developers

API development is a dynamic and important topic in software engineering with many specializations in API construction and maintenance. Different API developers have different skills and specialty areas, contributing to the diversified digital platform and service ecosystem. Some common API developers in tech include the following.

RESTful API Developer

RESTful API Developers create and implement RESTful APIs. Their stateless, cacheable, and scalable APIs are popular for web applications. These developers know HTTP methods, status codes, and resource-oriented endpoints well. They collaborate with front-end development and back-end teams to make APIs easy to use and functional for web apps. Organizations that prioritize web API development for public consumption or microservices architectures need their expertise.

API GraphQL Developer

GraphQL API Developers are professionals in the open-source API data query and manipulation language. They operate with APIs that let customers request only the data they need, decreasing network traffic. These developers create fast, versatile APIs that can retrieve data from numerous sources. Optimizing data retrieval and performance with front-end developers is common. Their role is growing in current web development, as user experience depends on data loading and manipulation.

API Security Expert

API Security Specialists protect APIs from unauthorized access and cyberattacks. They master authentication, authorization, encryption, and threat mitigation. These developers follow data protection laws and implement security methods including OAuth, OpenID Connect, and API keys. To identify vulnerabilities and respond to security issues, they collaborate with API developers and security teams. Their expertise is essential for protecting API-accessed sensitive data.

 API Integration Developer 

API Integration Developers link software systems using APIs. They can provide APIs that allow data exchange and functionality between internal and external applications. These developers must know many API standards and protocols and interact with third-party APIs. Integration strategies that meet business goals are generally developed with enterprise architects and business analysts. Integration with multiple services and platforms is a competitive advantage in today's interconnected digital world, making their work crucial.

API Product Manager 

API Product Managers manage API product strategy and lifecycle. They set the API strategy, and roadmap, and ensure it satisfies developer and end-user needs. Technological expertise and business savvy allow these individuals to balance technological feasibility with market demand. 

To launch and evolve API products, they collaborate with marketing, sales, and engineering. Cloud service providers and API markets need them. Each API Developer position helps create effective, efficient, and secure APIs that enable modern software applications. API Developers in these and other specializations will be in high demand as the digital world evolves, providing several job options.

Essential Skills to Become Skilled API Developer

Technical Skills

Development Across Platforms

API developers must be able to design cross-platform apps with the same code base that are always prioritized. Companies create cross-platform apps to suit client demand and reach them on any device. That's why companies must ensure the developer can work across platforms.

>> Read more: Web Development Skills To Become A Good Web Developer

API Design 

API design, and connecting apps and devices are essential skills for the proper developer. Developers of desktop and mobile apps must understand API architecture for various systems. This helps diversify and expand their skills. 

Front-end Developing

An API developer should know that the applications they link with must perform seamlessly for clients. To improve this, companies should hire API engineers with front-end development skills.

Proficient in Programming Languages

Most organizations value developers who can write code in multiple web programming languages. Organizations can ensure optimal language use by engaging a multilingual API developer. They can also suit client and technology needs.

Integration Expertise

Integration of applications and systems to share data is the major purpose of an API. A person cannot call themselves an API developer without understanding API integration. Understanding integration and modern technology requirements helps design back-end systems for different clients with different needs.

Orchestrating APIs

API orchestration abilities allow API developers to write many lines of code that function together. They can also simply adapt current code to fit new requirements. Organizations require API developers who can write customizable code, therefore they evaluate API orchestration skills. This is crucial due to changing technology, company, and customer needs.

Programming Tools

API testing tools, database managers, and program editors may be used by developers while building or integrating APIs. These tools let developers start projects and thoroughly test compatibility. Companies hiring API developers must ensure they know how to use their technologies.

>> Read more: Top 10 Best AI Development Tools for Software Developers

skills of api developer
Skills of API Developers (Source: Internet)

Soft Skills

API developers need to possess a wide range of soft skills, such as:

  • Skills in mentoring (for API developers at the intermediate and senior levels).

  • Competence in planning and managing one's time.

  • Adaptability caring.

  • Communication skill.

  • Critical thinking and problem-solving.

  • Teamwork & collaboration.

  • Flexibility & adaptability.

  • Empathy and user focus.

  • Prioritization and time management.

  • Detail and quality assurance.

  • Learning and improvement.

  • Invention and creativity.

  • Emotional intelligence and social skills.

>> Read more:

Roadmap to Become A Professional API Developer

Based on the skills listed above, be ready to master coding, constant learning, and cross-functional teamwork if you want to be an API developer. This technical and detail-oriented professional path can be lucrative for those who love backend development and system integration.

Get a Good Technical Education

Start with a solid computer science, IT, or related education. A bachelor's degree is usually required, but appropriate coursework or a solid portfolio may suffice. Study data structures, algorithms, network security, and Java, Python, or JavaScript. To demonstrate your API programming skills, consider some best API Developer Certification below.

  • Certified API Developer (API University).

  • API Design and Fundamentals of Google Cloud's Apigee API Platform (Coursera).

  • Microsoft Certified: Azure Developer Associate.

  • Postman API Certification.

  • IBM API Connect v10.x Solution Implementation.

  • Red Hat Certified Specialist in API Management, etc.

Build Coding and System Design Skills

API creation requires coding and system design knowledge. Learn at least one API development programming language. RESTful APIs, OAuth authentication, and API testing with Postman are covered. Learn to design, develop, and describe APIs using OpenAPI. Coding challenges and open-source projects help you learn and practice.

Gain Practical Experience

Practical experience is essential. Search for internships, entry-level programming jobs, or API development projects. Personal projects, open-source software, and hackathons are examples. Git and CI/CD pipeline experience will also help. The API lifecycle from design to deprecation will be explained in these opportunities.

Expand Your Professional Network

Tech companies need networking. Meet experienced API Developers on social media, Stack Overflow, or at tech conferences. Join GitHub or GitLab. Networking can provide mentorship, collaboration, and professional support.

Portfolio Your API Projects

Build a portfolio of API projects as you acquire experience. Describe the technology, difficulties, and impact of your work. A well-documented GitHub repository may showcase your coding standards, clean and maintainable code, and API security knowledge.

Keep Up With Industry Trends and Best Practices

API development evolves with new technology and standards. Read industry blogs, attend webinars, and join developer forums. Stay current on API development frameworks, security standards, and best practices. You may stay competitive by taking online classes, attending workshops, or being certified.

Every step is crucial to becoming an API developer. Continuous learning and adaptability can lead to a rewarding and in-demand career with devotion and technical proficiency.

api developer salary
API Developers Salary (Source: Internet)

API Developer Salary Rates

The salary rates of API developers are also an essential thing you must consider when choosing to work as an API developer. Let's take a look at API developers' salary rates by types, levels, and regions below!

By Type of Developers

Each position of API development has different paid rates for developers. As below:

Type of API Developers


RESTful API Developer

$10,380 /month

API GraphQL Developer

$9,201 /month

API Security Expert

$7,092 /month

API Integration Developer

$9,978 /month

API Product Manager

$9,167 /month

By Level

There are also differences in rates per month between levels of API developers.



Fresher/ Entry Level

$5,501 /month

Junior Level

$6,603 /month

Senior Level

$9,546 /month

By Country

Each country and region will have different salary rates. Let's discover API developer salaries based on the countries below.




$10,000/ month


$4,583/ month


$12,500/ month


$7,000/ month


$2,700/ month


$1,500/ month

>>


Becoming an API Developer requires you to study and improve your skills day by day. As API-driven technology has transformed most industries. Every company is implementing API-powered functionality to fulfill their and their customers' needs. API Developers have been essential recently.

Hope this article helps you find a suitable way to become an API developer!

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