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The must-have skills to look for when hiring your next developer

June 2024

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Full-stack developers are in high demand, but the competition to hire them is strong. What are the hard and soft skills you need to look out for when recruiting your next full-stack developer? We spoke with Igor Ayello Borges, an experienced full-stack developer, to find out.

How did you become a full-stack developer? 

I started my career in 2005 as a graphic designer and worked in various areas such as TV, automotive design, games, and educational technology. But after seven years, I realized that job opportunities in that sector were disappearing, so I decided to move to software development.

My first experience in software was developing mobile and desktop games for iOS, Android, and Microsoft platforms using the Unity engine with the programming language C#. It was a great experience, but I found the games market to be quite unstable, so after three years, I decided to change my career path from games to conventional software.

I became a full-stack software developer in 2016, working in different areas such as transport, banking, insurance, and retail, using different programming languages and frameworks like .Net, Java, Python, Node.js, Angular, and ReactJS. Now, I’m a full-stack developer working with the .Net platform and ReactJS in one of the biggest food companies in Brazil.

When companies hire a full-stack developer, what are the technical skills they are looking for? And what soft skills are important?

Technical skills: Most companies look for developers who understand at least one SQL database system like Microsoft SQL Server or Oracle DB. They need professionals who also know about NoSQL databases. When it comes to backend programming languages and frameworks, the biggest companies have legacy systems built on the .NET platform or Java. Newer companies and startups also use .NET or Java, but they like to explore the benefits of new languages like Go and Python. For front-end tools, most companies use a JavaScript/TypeScript framework like ReactJS, Angular, or Vue along with a CSS framework. Developers must have a basic knowledge of cloud computing.

Soft skills: Junior-level professionals must learn key soft skills such as communication and collaboration. They must research new development trends and understand their company’s business. Mid-level developers must build on the soft skills they learned earlier in their careers and have the ability to support junior developers and train new teammates. Senior professionals should perfect the skill of speaking confidently and effectively to product and business owners. They should be able to suggest new features that will increase business growth for their clients.

What advice would you give people interested in pursuing a career as a full-stack developer?

My advice is to start with basic knowledge such as math, statistics, and logic, as well as programming concepts like conditionals and loops, databases, and programming languages. After acquiring the basics, they can focus on cloud computing using one of the popular platforms like Azure or AWS.

The next step is artificial intelligence. Many cloud services have an artificial intelligence stack that can be used to solve your company’s problems. Integrating AI services with a full-stack system and presenting this to your product or business owner will help you stand out from the crowd.

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