I’ve not seen any figures as to the employee numbers of web designers businesses either here in South Africa or overseas. However, I would hazard a guess that a good 25% of the businesses are OMBs (one man bands).
The calculation would be complicated by the fact that website design is sometimes not the principal endeavour of the business and may exist along with hosting, marketing, design and printing.
The Choice of Website Design
I worked in a university environment for many years and when I left I was faced with the ‘What now?” question. Universities get technology very early on. We had email from the early 1980s and the web from around 1995.
I remember my friend bursting into my office in 1982 telling me that he’d found a way of writing a letter on one computer and getting it read on another remote computer. I thought “This’ll never take on”. Remember that there were very few people who could read the letter. Mostly those in other universities.
In 1995, there was only a single browser and you could have the website background any colour as long as it was grey. Nobody knew what direction the ‘Internet’ would take – or even if it would take any direction at all.
You don’t need clean air, three phase electricity, running water, cooling towers. You don’t even need anyone else. An aircon is nice though in Durban.
What you do need is a knowledge of HTML, adequacy with a graphics programme and a good understanding of usability. Common sense in other words.