With nearly two billion websites on the Internet as of June 2022, the demand for web developers is on the rise. Most employers understand that there are three types of web development: front-end, back-end, and full-stack. Before filling these positions, however, it's critical to understand the key differences between each field and what is driving the current demand for web developers.
While it may seem straightforward to hire a full-stack developer to handle all development tasks, or a specialized professional for unique requests, the reality is that choosing the right developer is not always so straightforward. The strategic goals of the project typically play a significant role in determining the best developer for the job. It's important to understand the key differences between each type of development to make informed hiring decisions. In this post, we will explore these differences and provide guidance on how to choose the right developer for your project.
What qualifications and skills should you look for when hiring for these positions?
A front-end developer must be well-versed in the scripting languages that power a website, controlling the layout and formatting how the elements appear to a user. Here are some examples:
- TypeScript (Angular/React)
A front-end must understand content management systems, APIs, and frameworks in addition to programming skills:
Furthermore, a little creativity helps a front-end developer achieve the right balance of functional, responsive, and aesthetic design.
A back-end developer must be proficient in server-side languages, which are used to create applications that allow a server, application, and database to communicate with one another. Here are some examples:
As a back-end, it's important to be proficient in one or more of these server-side languages, depending on the needs of the application and the preferences of the development team. Having a strong understanding of server-side languages and their associated frameworks and libraries is crucial for building efficient, scalable, and secure web applications. Back-end developers must also be familiar with a variety of data tools in order to retrieve data from the database for use in the front-HTML end's files, such as MySQL, SQL Server or Oracle.
In addition to these specific tools, it's also important for back-end developers to have a good understanding of SQL, which is a standard language used for managing relational databases. With a strong knowledge of SQL, he/she can work with a variety of databases and data tools beyond just the ones listed above. Overall, having a solid understanding of data tools and databases is essential for any back-end developer who works with web applications.
A full-stack developer must also possess a creative eye to achieve the perfect balance between functionality, responsiveness, and aesthetic design. For back-end development, a full-stack developer must be proficient in server-side languages. They must be familiar with data tools such as MySQL, SQL Server, Oracle.
A full-stack developer must also possess a strong understanding of SQL, which is a standard language used for managing relational databases.
Full-stack developers are well-suited for projects where there are limited resources or small teams, as they can handle both front-end and back-end development tasks. They are also a good fit for startups that require a versatile developer to handle multiple tasks. They are valuable assets in projects where the development team is small and has to work on various aspects of the application development process.
Overall, a full-stack developer is an all-rounder who can handle a wide range of development tasks. They possess a broad skill set that is essential for building and maintaining web applications. They are proficient in multiple programming languages, frameworks, and databases, making them an ideal choice for projects with limited resources or small teams.
When should you hire a team of front-end and back-end developers, and when should you hire a full-stack developer?
With the growing demand for web development, a 'jack-of-all-trades' full-stack developers may appear to be the logical choice for most businesses. However, this is not always the case. While a full-stack developer can typically manage projects in less time, working seamlessly across the entire job, they are less likely to master each aspect of web development as thoroughly as a specialist front-end or back-end developer. Investing more in a team of both back-end and front-end developers, on the other hand, can result in a higher project quality because the developers are more able to be at the cutting edge of their respective fields. Ultimately, deciding between a front-end and fack-end or a full-stack comes down to project requirements.
- Project budget: For businesses with limited resources, a full-stack developer is a welcome and cost-effective option. However, if resources allow, hiring both a front-end and back-end developer will result in higher quality project outcomes.
- Project complexity: Larger or more sophisticated projects will necessitate a team of front-end and back-end developers with in-depth knowledge of the individual elements and tasks.
- Project size: Because smaller projects don't necessitate the same number of developers as larger projects, a full-stack developer is the most cost-effective option.
- Project flexibility: For projects that are likely to evolve or require regular adaptations, the universal skills of a full-stack developer provide greater flexibility and may be more cost-effective in the long run.
- Project timeframe: If time is limited and the project is not too complex, a full-stack is a good option. Because they aren't reliant on other team members, they can often complete a project faster than a pair of front-end and back-end.
Let’s examine the critical differences between developers by looking at tasks' main parameters.
- High Performance: In this case, you need to hire a fulls-tack developer, as they will allow you to scale the project effectively without any additional help from designers or other specialists. But if your project is not so complicated, front-end and back-end developers can be enough.
- User Friendly: If the main goal of your project is to create a website that will be easy to use, then hire a front-end developer. It's the best fit for simple sites. Also, they will be the best for adding additional features to the existing website.
- Scalability: In this case, you need someone who understands multiple languages and frameworks. It's not easy to work with different app layers and add or remove modules simultaneously. Better to work with full-stack developers for such types of tasks.
In simple words, the difference between specialists is related to their skills, and you need to choose one whose skills will be enough for your project.
Each project is unique and necessitates a different type of developer. To find the best developer for you, decide on project priorities such as scalability, high performance, or whether "easy-to-use features" are important. In this post we outlined the fundamental principles that will assist you in selecting the best specialist for your projects. Do you require assistance in assigning these roles? Our experts are standing by to assist you, contact us today!