April 8, 2022 THE ULTIMATE WEB DEVELOPER HIRING GUIDE FOR EMPLOYERS AND DEVELOPERS
Guide to hiring the right web developer – Interview Process
Identify your requirements
Figure out the type of problems you are trying to solve, the challenges your candidate will face, and the outcomes you want to achieve. From there, let the nature of the work and the goals of the position determine the strengths, innate traits, and foundational knowledge that a candidate needs to possess. For example, if you are looking to hire the right software developer, the key skills to look for are mathematical aptitude, problem-solving, knowledge of programming languages such as Java and Python, accuracy and attention to detail, etc. While you may be an expert, it is always wise to bring more technical expertise and resources into recruiting. You can put your developer team in a room together and talk to them about how you can hire people like them. They can help you with the correct terminologies that are must-have and nice-to-have.
Get everyone on the same page
It is important for the hiring manager, the development team, and the leadership team to be on the same page about who they are looking to hire, what will be the employee’s responsibilities, what primary technical skills are required, and how the person’s success in the role will be gauged. By having a clear understanding of expectations, hiring managers can make sure candidates can perform the tasks efficiently which will be required as part of the role.
Start with a conversation
Pre-employment or take-home coding tests are an absolute necessity for evaluating the skills of a developer. However, tossing them at a busy developer in the early stages will drive them away. Hence, before you give them a test of any sort, start with a face-to-face or telephonic discussion about prior work experience and technical projects that they have worked on. This allows both the employer and employee to assess the chemistry and fit, learn from each other, and decide if moving forward with a coding test or additional interviews makes sense.
Listen, learn and collaborate
Each employer should be asking open-ended, thought-provoking questions to begin a dialogue with the interviewee. Some examples include:
- Tell me something about a project that you are working on: By asking this question, you should be able to get the developer talking in a comfort area. If candidates are strategic in their answers, they will pick an area that’s aligned to the role they are interviewing for. Look for a candidate’s ability to tell a story and whether they can explain why they are working on it. This question acts like an icebreaker that can lead to several other questions and discussion areas that will help you understand who is sitting in front of you.
- Where are you in your job search? In addition to being a good ice-breaker, asking this question will also give you an idea of how far the candidate is in the job exploration and research process. Ultimately, you’re looking to understand what motivates them in the workplace, so you can assess if there is a likely fit between your technology work and their work style and aspirations.
- You can also discuss the work style and practices of the potential candidate. If your candidate is someone who works remotely, you should ask questions about how they’ve been successfully working in a remote environment and the challenges they faced while collaborating with centralized teams. It is important to remember that while some developers like to mentor, others need mentoring, and some prefer working alone. These questions are designed to help you evaluate whether the candidate is the right fit, whether he/she will be able to enhance the working style of the team they may join, and what may be the areas of change.
Hire the best candidate
You could give them a small project that’s complicated enough to test their problem-solving and role-specific skills and simple enough to be finished in a short time without a considerable cost. Hire the developer only if the code is right, is delivered on time, and you are satisfied with the communication and way of working. Finally, define expectations straight from the beginning.
Understanding different types of developer jobs
There are many different types of developers and the lines between distinguishing which one you are can be blurred. The more experienced and professional you become, the more types you will fit. Nowadays, different developers have similar if the not the same skills needed to complete their role. However, there are also certain skills that will make a developer unable to do every developer job there is out there. For example, a mobile developer may know the same tools as a game developer but isn’t a game developer and would not be able to complete their job. This makes a hug difference in the types of developers, do below are some different types that you may come across.
The backend developer specialises in design, implementation, functional logic and performance of a system that runs on a machine which are remote from the end-user. The back end of a website is made up from a server, application and a database and a back-end developer helps to build and maintain these components. By doing this they are enabling user-facing side of a website to exist. Their development skills are Java, C++, Ruby, Python, Scala and Go.
Full stack developer
Mobile developers write codes for applications that run on mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones. Mobile developers only started to become popular after the boom of mobile devices in the early 2000s and the growth of the smartphone market. A mobile developer understands mobile operating systems such as iOS and android and the environment and frameworks used to create software on these systems. They have a variety of development skills, such as Java, Swift, Objective-C, Application Programming Interfaces, web development languages and cross platform mobile suites.
Being a game developer is very demanding and complicated. They specialise in writing games and have specific knowledge and skills in designing engaging interactive gaming experiences. Game developers use frameworks such as DirectX, OpenGL, Unity 3D, WebGL and programming languages such as C, C++ and Java. On mobile devices, Swift and Java are used for iOS and Android games.
Data scientist developer
Data scientist developers write programs to analyse data sets. They are normally in charge of statistical analysis, machine learning and predictive modelling. The skill set a data scientist should have, would need to cover several science related things. For example, programming languages (R, Python), different techniques that are a valid approach, being familiar with machine learning methods, understand and know multivariable calculus and linear algebra and deal with imperfections in data. Being able to communicate all imperfections and calculus is incredibly important for these types of developers.
DevOps developers are familiar with technologies which are able to build, deploy and integrate systems and manage back-end software. To simplify the definition, a developer is someone who creates applications, an Ops, deploys and monitors the applications and a DevOps can create applications and deploy and monitor them. DevOps need experience in the following skills, Kubernetes, Docker, Apache Mesos, Jenkins etc.
Security developers specialise in creating systems, methods and procedures to test the security of software systems and fix security flaws. They use a variety of tools to complete their job such as scripting languages like Python and Ruby. They also use coding languages such as C and C++ to read and understand operating systems. The aim of their job is to ethically hack systems to discover their vulnerabilities.
Best tips to get hired for future employees
Perfect your basics
To get selected you need to have a solid foundation of your technical concepts. You need to have knowledge of fundamental technical concepts like:
- Data Structure concepts like – linked list, queue, stack, trees, etc.
- Core CS subjects like Operating Systems, DBMS, and Computer Networks.
- Algorithms like analysis of algorithms, sorting/searching, dynamic programming, Big O notation etc.
- System Design concepts like caching, proxy, load balancing, CAP theorem, and databases.
These are some of the basic concepts which you need to work on to get selected.
Common web developer interview questions
How would you describe the role of a Web Developer? What are the most important aspects of the job and why?
The specific role of a Web Developer will vary greatly depending on the specific job description, and whether or not a hiring manager is looking for back-end specialists or front end web developers. Ultimately, though, most Web Developer roles will span the following responsibilities:
- Working directly with clients or company stakeholders to understand their needs and requirements
- Designing, developing, programming, testing, upgrading, and debugging web applications
- Collaborating with designers, other developers, UX specialists, sales and marketing teams, and other stakeholders to design, develop, and deploy major web projects
- Support the maintenance of websites, web applications, and other web products Those are just the most general routine web development tasks, but to get more specific, refer back to the job description and make sure your answer covers the major responsibilities and competencies demanded by the position.
Understanding Api questions
- What is an API?
- What are the Limits of API Usage?
- What are some architectural styles for creating a Web API?
- What is API Testing?
- What is the test environment of API?
Understanding programming languages questions
- How would you describe the role of a Web Developer? What are the most important aspects of the job and why?
- What is inline elements, headers, cross-origin resource sharing?
- What are the advantages of HTTP 2.0 over HTTP 1.1?
- What is the difference between ID and Class selector?
- What is the difference between null value and undefined value?
- How is HTML different from XHTML?
- What is an ETag and how does it work?
- What is the difference between responsive design and adaptive design? What is progressive rendering in HTML?
- What is the difference between span and div tag in HTML5?
- What are CSS selectors? Name some.
- Explain quirks, full standards, and almost standards mode.
- What is HTML5 Web Storage?
- What is the difference between ES5 and ES6?
- How do you organize your class modules and assets?
- How would you explain APIs to non-technical stakeholders?
- What is the difference between black box and white box testing?
- Please explain big-O notation in the simplest terms.
- What do you think will be the biggest trends in future web development? What is the biggest difference between developing for mobile and desktop? Provide a basic overview of push technology. What are its benefits and drawbacks? How can Page Visibility API be useful?
- What are the front end and back end?
- What are fonts?
- How do I enable cors?
- What is web design?
- What are Full stack developer skills?
Sample of Web Development Interview Questions: Technical Questions
Technical interview questions put your web development knowledge to the test. In these questions, you need to explain how you would apply your skills to various problems or tasks.
For technical interview questions, it’s important to clearly articulate your thinking and process. Any real-world examples you can provide illustrating how you applied these skills will make your answers resonate with hiring managers.
A few examples of technical Web Developer interview questions include: What are the advantages of HTTP 2.0 over HTTP 1.1?
This technical question is meant to test your overall knowledge, explore your experience level with both HTTP 2.0 and HTTP 1.1, and ensure you have the communication skills that a good Web Developer needs. In other words, it is important to provide a concise and easy to-understand answer. HTTP 2.0 improves search engine rankings, consumes less broadband, and offers better loading speeds.
As a Web Developer, how do you optimize your site’s loading time?
There are many different ways you can reduce the page load time, including cleaning the web code, minimizing redirects, caching, choosing smaller images or reducing image size, removing extraneous widgets, and reducing lookups. Explain to the hiring manager how you then check the speed (perhaps using Google PageSpeed Insights) to verify the success of your actions, or to see if further effort is needed.
- Can you describe your workflow when you create a web page or web app? What specific languages are you working with?
- Which web development tools do you use?
- How do you manage your time during a development cycle? What methods do you use for estimating how long specific development tasks will take?
- How do you take into account SEO, maintainability, UX design, performance, and security when you’re building a web application?
- As a Web Developer, how do you optimize your site’s loading time?
- How do you make sure your websites and applications are accessible to users? Walk me through the process of creating a web page from scratch.
- How do you check other people’s code for bugs?
- What user interface and security principles do you consider when building a website or online application?
- Give an example of a website or web application that you don’t like. What would you change?
Sample of web development interview questions: personal (soft skills) questions
A Web Developer often must collaborate with other departments, so employers are seeking candidates that would be a good overall fit with the company.
Personal questions can reveal a lot about a job candidate outside of their technical qualifications.
Personal interview questions for a Web Developer may include:
How do you keep on top of web development industry news and trends? How do you apply this to your work?
You need to show your interviewer that you are passionate about the development industry and determined to stay on top of the latest trends. Try to provide a diverse list of specific web development blogs and vlogs, social-media influencers (Jeff Atwood, Jeffrey Zeldman, Brad Frost, Sara Soueidan, and Rachel Andrew are a few popular senior developers on social media), YouTube channels, and more. You could bring up an interesting article or webinar you saw recently. It is also worth mentioning if you have a circle of colleagues or professional contacts who enjoy sharing interesting development-related content.
- Tell me about yourself.
- Talk about your preferred development environment.
- Tell me about the projects you’re working on (or have worked on) in your spare time. Where do you see yourself in five years?
- What are your interests outside of development?
- What kind of team environment do you thrive in?
- What got you into coding? Why are you interested in a career as a Web Developer? What are your favorite types of projects to work on?
- Are there any projects at our company that you are excited about?
Sample of Web Development Job Interview Questions: Leadership and Communication
At any stage of your Web Developer career, leadership and communication skills are two important qualities to have. To assess your leadership and communication abilities, employers may ask questions such as:
- When have you solved a problem that didn’t involve coding?
- How would the Web Developers/Project Managers you have worked with describe you? What is dom is used for development process?
- How do you communicate your progress to clients and/or stakeholders?
- Give me an example of how you would describe web development to someone completely new to tech.
- Do you like working as part of a team while you’re coding? What do you think contributes to a successful team?
- How do you help your team members improve their coding skills?
- user Input should be valid.
- GitHub profile should be valid for the user
Sample of Web Development Interview Questions: Behavioural
With behavioural interview questions, employers are seeking to understand how your past behaviour may translate into the current position. Focus on explaining the situation or problem, how you handled it, and the result or outcome of your actions.
Behavioural interview questions for Web Developers may include: Tell me about a project you’re particularly proud of. What did you do that worked out well?
Tell me about a time you had to respond to negative feedback.
Even an entry-level Web Developer has likely faced criticism at some point. The hiring manager will be looking to see that you have the communication skills and service-oriented attitude to respond professionally to negative criticism and ultimately use it to improve the quality of your work. Still, you should not choose an example where a client was unhappy simply because of poor work. A better example would be a time when a client or stakeholder was not pleased with a web application or product even though it was developed according to an agreed-upon plan. If you can then describe how you pivoted from your original plan to create something that everyone was happy with, it will show that you are adaptable and devoted to customer service.
- Tell me about a project you’re particularly proud of. What did you do that worked out well? Tell me about a project that disappointed you. What would you change? Tell me about a time you had to respond to negative feedback.
- Tell me about a time when you got stuck while coding. How did you work your way through the problem?
- Describe a time when you dealt with negative feedback.
- Describe a time when your program didn’t run. How did you troubleshoot your code?
- Has your team ever failed to meet a deadline? What went wrong and how did you address the situation?
- How do you handle conflicts on your team?
Front-End Developer Interview Questions
When hiring a front-end developer, look for in-depth knowledge of HTML5, an understanding of key website design principles, testing and debugging skills, and advanced problem solving skills. Great candidates for your front-end developer role may also have a user focused mindset and experience implementing usability and accessibility standards. Ask 5-10 of the following interview questions to get a better sense of a candidate’s front-end development skills and experience.
- How do you ensure that your website design or web application is accessible and user friendly?
- What are your favourite features of HTML5, and how have you implemented them in your front-end development projects?
Front -End Developer Interview Questions
- How do you ensure that your website design or web application is accessible and user friendly?
- What are your favourite features of HTML5, and how have you implemented them in your front-end development projects?
- Can you explain the concept of a CSS float and provide an example of its usage?
- What’s your process for addressing browser-specific rendering problems? Do you find that a certain browser is more challenging to work with than others?
- What resources do you use to learn about the latest in front-end development and design?
- What are your favourite types of front-end development projects to work on? What do you like about them?
- What do you think are the most important aesthetic aspects of a webpage and why? https://www.devteam.space/hiring-interview-tips/
Java Web Interview Questions
- What is www?
- What is a web service?
- What is w3c?
- What is TCP / IP?
- What is FTP?
- What is the difference between HTTP and HTTPS?
- What are http request Methods?
- What is a data transfer protocol, what do you know?
- What is a web server?
- What is a web application?
- What is an application server?
- What is the difference between a web server and an application server? What data transfer methods do you know?
- What is the difference between get and post methods?
- What is HTML?
- What is XML?
- What is CSS?
- What is the MIME type?
- What are cookies?
- What is a session?
- Give the definition of “authorization” and “authentication”, what are their differences? What is Ajax? How is this technology fundamentally arranged?
- What is ORM, how to translate it and how should it work?
Tailor your resume to match the job requirement
Hiring managers often get thousands of resumes for a single job profile. So, the best way to get noticed is to tailor your resume as per the requirements. This will justify your enthusiasm and prove that you are fit for this profile.
Your resume must include:
- The information manifests that you are just the right choice for a job profile. A separate section of your technical skills
- Appropriate keywords as per job description
- Relevant accomplishments and projects
- Must be visually appealing
The best interviewers will not only be looking for what you do know, but also what you don’t.
Part of working effectively with others is knowing when to be able to ask for help from those around you when needed. I’ve found that the better the role I have applied for, the more likely it will be that the interviewer(s) will look to explore topics that I clearly have less experience on.
The goal of this type of questioning is to see how far the candidate needs to be questioned before they stop looking for the ‘correct’ answer – of which there sometimes isn’t one – and concedes that they don’t know and should ask someone else for advice on the subject. Not only does this show more humility towards the candidates own ability, but it also gives the
impression that they would be less likely to relentlessly plough on attempting to solve a problem themselves when the best option would be to ask for some help.
Tips cultural/personal Interview
The cultural interview is often candidate’s first impression within a company.
Typically, cultural interviews start with “So tell me about yourself.” It’s imperative to have a well thought out response to this question.
Tips for the cultural interview:
- Have a short story prepared to illustrate who you are
- Have 1–2 stories which demonstrate your greatest achievement and a difficult problem you solved
Be honest about your skill set. You don’t want to be caught in an awkward position when asked about the details of Redux if you only threw that buzzword in to make it to the next round of interviews.
Don’t bash your current, or past, employers. When you say negative things about your previous companies, it shows a lack of respect. Future employers need to know that you’ll be loyal to them, even once your employment has come to an end.
Have questions prepared for your interviewer which show insight into the company and role to which you applied. Towards the end of the interview, your interviewer should ask if you have any questions for them. Have two insightful questions. A good format would be: “I saw your company just did X… how will this impact Y?” This shows that you researched the company and keep up to date in the tech industry. You can also ask what the recruiter’s favourite thing about working for the company is. You might be surprised!
Take notes. You’ll probably have a lot of interviews, and it’s important to keep them all straight!
Don’t ask about minute specifics of salary or benefits. These details can be sorted out once you have an offer letter. But inquiring about the perks of a job too quickly can portray you as someone who’s only there for the money.
Be yourself. This interview is a two-way street. You want to make sure the company culture harmonizes with your personality. So don’t put on an act; be yourself.
Some tips coding Interview
Think out loud. It’s important for the interviewer to hear your thought process!
If you’re unclear about one of the directions, ask. Sometimes interviewers will even give you a hint.
Fail fast and often. Always try your ideas, and when they don’t work, learn from them and iterate.
If you’ve received an interview question before, and know the solution, you should let your interviewer know. If you know the solution step-by-step the interviewer will be able to tell you looked up the answer (or previously figured it out). Honesty is always the best policy.
If you have a solution, try to improve the performance or run-time. Optimization is key.
If you don’t know the answer, it’s okay. I would often admit: “To be honest, I’m not sure, but if I had to make an educated guess…” I’ve seen candidates fully bullshit their way through a question and pretend it’s right as rain. In my opinion it’s better to admit when you don’t know but give an educated guess.
Take home challenges
Some jobs may not require you to complete a take home challenge. But if they do, it’s your chance to showcase your awesome development skills without the pressure of being watched.
The type of take-home challenge may vary. You might get a simple “Create a to-do list application” prompt. This is a great challenge because it allows you to use a JS framework, if you so choose, but can also be done with vanilla JS. Plus, it’s not too time consuming to complete.
You might get a link to a General Assembly challenge that you have to complete online. These are occasionally timed but try not to let that freak you out.
Or you may get asked to recreate a piece of the company’s application.
Whatever the challenge is, do your best and write clean code. Here’s the process I usually follow for take home challenges.
Don’t spend more than a day on it. If you’re spending several days on it, most likely you should go back and work on some of your technical skills.
It’s okay to pull yourself out of the candidate pool. I have had interviews in the past where I’ve had to email the recruiter and tell them that my skills weren’t where they needed to be. This shows them a level of self-awareness. I have even had recruiters come back to me several times to see if I was still interested in an interview. It’s okay to admit when you have areas to improve upon. Plus, you don’t want to stress yourself out with a challenge that is too difficult, because when you get a job offer, chances are the job will stress you out just as much.
Be clear about the project requirements. Do they want you to use a JS framework? Can you use a CSS framework to save time on style?
If you need additional time, just ask. Recruiters know that you’re busy, and as such life can get in the way of an interview. Email the interviewer and let them know that this is extremely important to you, and you want to devote a proper amount of time to completing it. Most companies would prefer you spend a few more days on an assessment than sacrifice the quality.
Questions to Ask Yourself Before Submission:
- Did I meet all the project requirements?
- Is my solution performant?
- Is my solution responsive/mobile friendly?
- Is my solution accessible?
- Is my solution appealing to look at?
- Is my code clean and efficient?
- Am I proud of this solution?
- If the answer to any of these is no, you might want to go back and re-work a few things.
Final meeting and offer
Here are a few things to keep in mind if you receive an offer:
- Ask how long you can think about it. Most managers will give you around a week to give an answer.
- It’s okay to say no. If you don’t think this job will make you happy, then don’t take it!
- You can ask for more money, if it’s appropriate to the average salary for your job role and location.
- Ask if relocation assistance is available. If you’re moving across the country (or world, like I did!), lack of financial assistance may be a deal breaker.