How to Become a SharePoint Developer

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What is a SharePoint Developer

A SharePoint developer’s skills must be as large and diverse as the SharePoint platform itself. This is because SharePoint can be the technological tool and foundation for everything from collaboration to process automation as well as entire line-of-business applications to public facing sites and so much more. Not only that but SharePoint itself is reliant on many systems and technologies for it to work. If you want to be a good SharePoint developer building solid solutions, you need at least a high level understanding of all of them. In fact, the value of SharePoint developers is very high because of the difficulty in achieving the skill set. That said, it isn’t rocket science and anyone who wants to, can become a good SharePoint developer.

How to Train

So how do you train? You need persistence and patience and understand that you won’t know everything about SharePoint in a day, month or year, perhaps even ever. It’s an ongoing process for the rest of your career, not only because of the size of SharePoint but the platform is continually changing every few years and will do so for the foreseeable future. The changes between the SharePoint versions to date have been quite enormous and it takes much effort to keep up with the pace. For example, SharePoint 2013 introduces an entirely new paradigm, called the App Model, which is a complete change in how SharePoint developers have traditionally developed solutions.

What to Learn

Learning SharePoint can be divided into four main areas: infrastructure, SharePoint services, server-side development and client-side development. Infrastructure is comprised of the servers and the services they run that SharePoint could not operate without. These include servers that run domain, web and sql services. SharePoint services are the supporting services to the basic SharePoint collaboration services that provide more advanced functionality and features. These supporting services, which can be shared across SharePoint web applications, include features such as enterprise search, user profiles, managed metadata, excel and form services to name a few. Development can be divided between code that runs on SharePoint servers (server-side) and code that runs in the browser (client-side). Server-side development mostly involves the SharePoint Server Object Model and .NET technologies. Client-side development consists of the SharePoint Client Object Model and technologies such as Javascript, web services, REST API and others that make up the new App Model paradigm of SharePoint 2013.

Getting Started

Congratulations! Just by coming to this site means you've taken the first step which is the most important one. This isn't the only one though, there are many other free resources online and an inexhaustible amount of technical information. The goal of this site is to take that technical information, together with practical SharePoint experience, and present it in simple and easy to follow lessons. Keep coming everyday as we promise to add one new lesson a day and within a short time you'll be able to confidently call yourself a SharePoint developer.