2021 State of the API Report

Postman State Of The API Report Postmanauts researching ontop of graphs. Illustration.

Who Works with APIs

Primary job function

We asked survey-takers about their primary roles, and it's approximately an even split: about half of respondents considered themselves developers (full stack, backend, frontend, etc.), and about half have different roles within the organization. The most popular role to work with APIs? Full stack developers, accounting for 27% of survey responses.

The big story here is one that’s ongoing across the industry and is expected to accelerate in the coming years: It’s not just developers who work with APIs. A more and more diverse range of job titles and job families are steadily increasing their presence in the API field.

Full stack developer: 27%
Backend developer: 17%
Quality engineer: 9%
Frontend developer: 5%
Technical/solutions architect: 4%
Director/manager: 4%
Integration engineer: 3%
DevOps engineer: 3%
Student/professor: 3%
Data engineer/analyst: 3%
Product manager: 3%
CTO: 2%
Business Analyst: 2%
Mobile developer: 2%
Support / customer success: 2%
CEO: 1%
Sales/solutions engineer: 1%
Network engineer: 1%
Security engineer: 1%
VP of engineering: 1%
Other (please specify): 5%

Due to rounding, percentages may not add up to 100%.

Industry

We asked individuals about their industry, and the results are clear: Technology represents the largest industry, followed by business/IT services, banking/finance/insurance, and healthcare.

Technology: 29%
Business/IT services: 28%
Banking/finance/insurance: 11%
Healthcare: 5%
Education: 4%
Retail: 3%
Gaming/entertainment/media: 3%
Advertising/marketing: 2%
Manufacturing: 2%
Government/defense: 2%
Automotive: 2%
Nonprofit: 1%
Real estate: 1%
Other: 6%

Due to rounding, percentages may not add up to 100%.

Years of experience

The API field continues to be an industry made up of individuals with relatively few years of experience: 76% of respondents reported between 0 and 5 years of experience with API development, compared to 74% last year.

0: 4%
1 - 2: 36%
3 - 5: 36%
6 - 10: 17%
More than 10: 6%

Due to rounding, percentages may not add up to 100%.

Generation

For the first time in 2021, we asked respondents about their age group by which generational label they identified with. The bulk of respondents identified themselves as Millennials, followed by Gen X, Gen Z, and finally Baby Boomers.

Gen Z: 16%
Millennial: 63%
Gen X: 19%
Baby Boomer: 3%

Due to rounding, percentages may not add up to 100%.

Gender

Also for the first time in 2021, we asked respondents to identify their gender. Our results indicated that the world of APIs skews heavily male, with 86% of survey-takers identifying as men. Only 10% of respondents identified as women, 1% as non-binary, and 3% preferred not to answer.

Man: 86%
Woman: 10%
Non-binary: 1%
Prefer not to answer: 3%