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Back-End Developers

How to Hire a Back-End Developer

Back-end development is a significant part of every project,especially larger ones. You may be thinking,"how can I hire a great back-end developer?" We have done our best to help you handle this challenge.

Who is a back-end developer

Back-end dev is responsible for many features of a site or application. Tasks for back-end developers include data storage in a DBMS, registration form and basket fields, integration with a payment gateway, automatic letters, loading, and updating of content. However, it is also worth noting that a specialist in back-end development, like any programmer, does not work in isolation, but in close collaboration with other team members. That is why, while selecting the developer, you should pay attention to the future employee’s soft skills. 

The back-end developer is responsible for:

  • - Designing the site architecture and the entire back-end system, which will ensure the viability of the project and the implementation of the functions and capabilities requested by the customer

  • - Developing the core, platform, and basic functionality of the Internet portal. If we are talking about a relatively simple and small site, then one person can handle this task. However, when large-scale resources are needed, a whole team of backend programmers usually creates their “foundation.”

  • - Designing and creating a common library of components, which can be used by all programmers working on the site (as well as those specialists who will subsequently be engaged in its support). The library should be accessible and intuitive to use for both back-end and front-end developers

  • - Designing and developing an API, sometimes in close collaboration with front-end programmers

  • - Monitoring the status of the database and all components of the site platform. This includes writing integrations and unit tests, which make it possible to diagnose the current state of the project. If necessary, the back-end developer can be engaged in optimizing the site, implementing more economical and effective features, expanding its functionality, etc.

  • - Testing and debugging applications and individual components

Where are the back-end devs needed

As in the case of front-end development, back-end programmers are required on every website or application that interacts with the user. However, it's worth mentioning that everyone needs back-end developers of different levels:the larger the project, the more comprehensive the skill stack a back-end developer should have. For example, complicated web products generally require a developer to work with:

  • - High loads

  • - Microservice architecture

  • - Containerization (Docker, Kubernetes)

  • - Monitoring systems ( such as Zabbix, Grafana)

  • - Scrum skills (optional for specific companies)

For a small project, knowledge of iPHP-Ajax, DBMS, and basic knowledge of HTML may be enough.Requirements for the candidates are also vastly different depending on the project.

What personal qualities should a back-end developer have

Any specialty is described not only by a set of professional knowledge and skills but also by several personal qualities that an appropriate employee should possess.

A good back-end developer must have the following personality traits:

  • - Analytical mindset and pronounced logical thinking abilities.

  • - The ability to manage time.

  • - "Structural thinking" - to identify causal relationships between facts, to structure a large amount of data, and to understand how its elements are organized.

  • - Flexible mindset and a high degree of creativity.

  • - The ability to maintain concentration for a long time and be extremely attentive to all the little things and nuances.

  • - The ability to collaborate with other people, to work in a team.

  • - Responsibility, determination.

  • - The desire for continuous development. To be a successful back-end programmer, you need to be aware of all new solutions, trends, developments, and technologies.

What should you do before you hire a back-end developer

Now you know everything about who the back-end developers are, their responsibilities, and what personal and technical skills are required for the project. But before you start hiring a developer, you need to plan your budget. Therefore, you’ll need to know how much money you should pay to an employee with those skills that are needed on your project.

We decided to simplify the task and put together a list where we divided the technical level of the back-end engineers into junior, middle, and senior. However, each company is unique in its requirements and requests. In our opinion, this distribution looks like this:



Junior Back-End Developer

Middle Back-End Developer

Senior Back-End Developer


Less than 3 years

3 - 5 years

More than 5 years


Basic knowledge of HTML and CSS. Has practical knowledge of the technology he or she has chosen.

Fluent in one of the programming languages and is comfortable taking on projects on their own.

Knows one or a couple of programming languages in detail, has a lot of experience and is able to manage projects and oversee newer developers.


Small list (3 or less)

Medium list (4-7)

Large list (8 or more)

Risk of critical error during operation




Cost per month

From $500 to $1000

From $1000 to $3000

From $3000 to $5000

Sources:, upwork

Back-end developer job description

Finally, it’s time to move on to reviewing the resume and choosing the best candidate. Based on the knowledge gained, the most important parameters of choosing a developer are work experience, case studies, a list of programming languages and technologies, and knowledge of English.

For the example below, let’s assume we need an online store. There is a design. A site has been developed, now only the server part remains. The site should issue requests instantly, and the database should accommodate a huge amount of assets. 


  • - Develop and support the server-side of the project

  • - Run and monitor performance tests on new and existing software

  • - Ensure that security and quality assurance best practices are followed throughout the entire software development life cycle

Skills and Qualifications:

  • - 4+ years of development experience

  • - Strong knowledge: PHP

  • - Frameworks: Laravel, YII2

  • - Proficient in the use of version control/source code management tools

  • - Knowledge of CMS and CRM platforms:Salesforce, Adobe AEM/CQ

  • - Excellent communication skills, both verbal and written

  • - Experience in writing reusable unit test documents

  • - Strong organizational and communication skills

  • - Skilled in performance tuning, query plan/explain plan analysis, indexing, table partitioning

  • - Exceptional knowledge of Database technologies: RDBMS or NoSQL

  • - Excellent communication skills, both verbal and written

Q&A to Hire a Back-End Developer

Let's move on to the job interview. At this stage, it is important to create a list of technical and personal questions. You understand if the developer can cope with the project and whether it is comfortable to work with him or her. Here are some questions you can ask:

Question 1. What kind of projects have you worked on?

What the answer tells you: Previous work shows how big or small the developer's projects were. Most importantly, you can see a result that can be evaluated. Make sure you hire a web developer for their knowledge and skills, not just for eloquence.

Question 2. Do you consider yourself as a team-player?

What the answer tells you: This question will help you find out how open a person is to build relationships in a team and how willing they are to find compromises. No doubt, some people are more sociable, some are less. You should be guided by the needs of your team and position when evaluating a person based on the answer to this question.

Question 3. Ask the developer to tell about the technologies indicated in his resume.

What the answer tells you: Many candidates indicate a list of technologies without a description of how they used them, on which project etc. A developer who understands what he or she is doing can talk about how they implemented technologies into a project and why. 

Question 4. Have you learned any new technology this month?

What the answer tells you: Does the developer seek to improve their skills or remain at the same level of knowledge? This is a very important issue because the world of IT-technologies is developing rapidly. Almost every day, new services and technologies appear that make it possible to solve tasks easier and faster. A good developer usually monitors trends to implement the technology into the code at the right time.

Question 5. How do you create technical documentation for your projects?

What the answer tells you: Good documentation of the project leads to profit. If the developer is good, they’ll explain a project documentation strategy focused on profit rather than cost. Also, technical documentation may simplify the work for future programmers, letting them know why it was written this way in some part of the code.

Question 6. What is your approach to coding and ensuring your code is solid, organized, and optimized?

What the answer tells you: Knowing languages is one thing, but you want a candidate who lives, eats, and breathes code. Part of this means your back-end engineer should know how to manage their code, recognize errors when they come up, and know how to work with them.

Question 7. What does "sprint" in Scrum mean?

Answer: A sprint is the fundamental unit of development in the Scrum methodology. Scrum sprints conform to Agile iterations. Typically, every sprint takes 2-4 weeks. Every sprint starts with a review of the previous sprint and retrospective to identify new tasks, and estimate an approximate time to achieve the sprint goal. The team sets up daily meetings (up to 15 minutes) to share what they are doing, and what challenges they have during the day.

Question 8. Name some performance testing steps.

 Answer: Some of the performance testing steps are: 

  1. Record User Scenarios

  2. Parameterize Test Scripts

  3. Group User Scenarios

  4. Create Load Scenarios

  5. Simulate & Execute Load

  6. Analyze Test Results

  7. Generate Reports

Question 9. Have you ever worked with Docker or Kubernetes? 

Answer: Generally, Docker and Kubernetes are the tools for managing isolated containers. What makes them special is that when you're running a container, you know exactly how it will work - it’s predictable, repeatable, and immutable. All of your application’s code, libraries, and dependencies are packed together in the container as an immutable artifact. Such characteristics make containers an awesome tool and an essential thing to know. 

Question 10. Name several types of software design patterns.

Answer: Software design patterns can be incredibly helpful if they're used in the right situations and for the right reasons. When applied strategically, they can make a programmer significantly more efficient by allowing them to avoid reinventing the wheel. But you should ensure that the developer understands how and why each pattern works.

Types of software design patterns:

  • - Singleton

  • - Factory Method

  • - Strategy

  • - Observer

  • - Builder

  • - Adapter

  • - State

These are only 7 of 23 of the most popular Software Design Patterns. Each developer chooses a convenient type of pattern for their style of code.


Summing Up

We've told all the secrets of finding a back-end developer from the basics to the most complicated things. The main thing when interviewing the developer is to look at the resume and compare it with what a candidate says. Asking the good interview questions will allow you to identify professional remote developers. We wish you good luck with the search