Who are the Back-end developers and what do they do?
Do you want to become a back-end developer? If your answer is “yes”, this article is going to be absolutely useful for you!
Let’s consider the following questions about starting a career as a back-end developer:
- Who is a back-end developer and what is their role in development?
- What are the back-end developer’s responsibilities?
- What skills are required for becoming a back-end developer?
Who is a back-end developer and what is their role in development?
In general, any application has a client and a server “side”, called front-end and back-end respectively.
The front-end is an interactive user interface, which sends requests to the server to display some data to the user.
The back-end is a program on the server that has access to the database and shares such data to the front-end.
A back-end developer is a person who develops and maintains the technologies that are “invisible” for the user. Such technologies are located on the back-end application side. For instance, when a user visits an online store and chooses a required goods category, the front-end sends the proper request to the server, the back-end processes the request and “comprehends” what to send in return. The back-end goes to the database to retrieve the required category’s data. The database sorts the goods by category, selects the required one, and sends it back to the back-end. The back-end returns the data to the front-end as a response with the proper formatting.
Thus, the client-server coupling sequence is:
A user’s action on the interactive front-end → server request → request processing in the back-end → database request → the database returns the required data → back-end sends it to the front-end →the front-end displays the data to the user.
What are the back-end developer’s responsibilities?
A back-end developer must maintain the application’s scalability and proper functioning even when it’s overloaded. Back-end developers are also responsible for data storage; thus, it’s crucial to understand data security and consistency.
Depending on the required skills and experience, there are considered several expertise levels:
A Junior specialist is considered to be the least experienced expert in their team. Junior developers mostly need their experienced colleagues’ assistance and get the least prioritized tasks, working with requests processing and retrieving data from the database.
A Middle back-end developer must be capable of completing tasks on their own, requiring the minimum assistance from their teammates.
Middle specialists develop prominent API features (f.e., authorization service) and must be skilled in unit testing.
Seniors impact the projects the most. A Senior back-end developer must be skilled in architecture projecting, business needs analyzing, and required timelines evaluation/estimation.
Senior takes the manager’s responsibilities and is also responsible for data security.
Generally, back-end developers must be skilled in coding, managing server environment, and fixing malfunctions that occur during development processes.
What skills are required for becoming a back-end developer?
Skills are usually divided into soft and hard ones.
To become an efficient back-end developer, one should be responsible, attentive, proactive, reasonable. Being an excellent team player is another soft skill that greatly helps to grow as a professional in software development.
As for hard skills, a back-end developer must:
- know at least one of the following programming languages: C#, Node.js, PHP, Python, or Java;
- be skilled in working with frameworks of those programming languages: .NET (C#), Express, Nest.js (Node.js), Laravel (PHP), Django (Python), Spring (Java);
- be skilled in working with the following databases: MySQL, MongoDB, PostgreSQL, etc.;
- know SOAP and REST.
The back-end is the core of any web “stage”, and back-end developers are the lead actors on it .