What are Full Stack developers? Why and How to Hire Them

Posted by Vipin Jain
October 16, 2017

Self-Published

Full Stack developers

Initially, web development used to be very simple, with neat partitions between front-end, back-end, networking, with each task handled by different teams. But as new technologies came in, they brought into picture terms like scalability, user experience, responsiveness, and more that didn’t exactly fit into one particular domain and the partition between front-end and back-end started getting blurred.

Yes, client-side and server-side are still two different tasks, but their interdependence has become so deeply integrated that to deploy two different teams would do more harm than good. And if you add to that the factors of security, business intelligence, among others, it becomes evident that the only way to perfectly synchronize them all is to keep them under the same roof. That is exactly what ‘full stack developers’ offer- complete command over entire web development procedure. From idea inception to product delivery and everything in between, nothing lies beyond their competence.

Here are the key aspects that they must master:

Front-end– This includes creating an intuitive graphical user interface and responsive web experience. With HTML, CSS, and JavaScript at its core, there is a myriad of frameworks that full-stack developers can use to meet the purpose.

Back-end– This refers to the server-side scripting for request handling, rendering web pages and maintaining sync with all the connected clients. PHP, Node.js, .NET are few technologies that full stack developers use in the development procedure.

DBMS & RDBMS– Constituting the core of any sophisticated web application, database is one of the trickiest aspects to plan and implement, but full stack developers are expected to be competent in both SQL and NoSQL paradigms and deliver well in technologies like MySQL, Oracle, MongoDB, among others.

In addition to these three main components, there are many other aspects of web development that are not limited to API integration, security, networking, hosting, quality assurance, and more, of which full stack developers are expected to assume complete responsibility.

Now that the competencies of full stack developers are clear, let’s take a look at what exactly you, as a business, can gain from such expertise:

When you hire Full stack developer, less time is spent on coordination between different teams and more on actual development tasks. This obviously results in higher productivity and more refined products.

Leveraging their command on various technology stacks, these developers can come up with innovative solutions for any business challenge in a short time, which otherwise would take weeks if multiple teams collaborate.

How much they cost?

As you can expect, owing to their vast field of expertise, full stack developers are also the most expensive lot of developers to hire, generally costing around 20% more than front-end or back-end developers. But given that they can easily handle the tasks of both, this inflated cost is still a bargain. The exact figure however largely depends on many other factors like:

  • Experience
  • Project size
  • Project complexity

How to hire them

Well, this is a delicate aspect. For someone who commands expertise in such wide range of technologies, you simply can’t test them all before hiring. So, instead of focusing on particular technologies like if they know Python or MongoDB, focus on larger domains. Like how much competent they are in server-side scripting or designing database

The first step should be to give them a realistic project you have already completed and ask how would they proceed to solve any particular challenge. The technology stack they would deploy. The estimated time it would take and more. If you are content with their problem-solving skills and discover that their estimates are in line with what you’ve achieved, you can then proceed to test their technical skills by either through their GitHub repository or any custom problem of your own. If it’s okay, then congrats! You have hired a full stack developer.

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