I am a 24-year-old analyst programmer with two years' experience developing business applications. My main skills are C and Unix. I am currently learning Front page 2000. I would like to start developing my skills toward e-commerce. However, I do not want to leave my current skills behind me. Which technologies should I consider?
The desire to develop new e-commerce skills while retaining your current skills is a sensible and balanced way to move forward in your career.
The technical architects, or equivalent body in your company, should be able to explain the technical strategy they follow and the rationale behind their recommen-dations. In my experience they are usually pleased to respond to someone showing a healthy interest. The trade press is also useful.
Within general commerce, the way forward will probably be to focus on C++ / Java Script and Microsoft 2000. On the development side, ASP (Active Server Pages) along with VBScript will be in the running too. It is likely that screen and page design will be more geared towards Dreamweaver, Fireworks, Flash & DHTML and the Macromedia tool-sets.
It is also advisable to improve "soft skills", such as communication and interpersonal skills. Now the e-commerce explosion is well underway also give some consideration to creative thinking.
Solution by Brian Butterly, technical director at Capita Tomkins
The panel consists of Elan, Best International Group, Computer Futures, Computer People, Apex, Monarch Recruitment, ITNTO and Capita Tomkins