How to Hire a Programmer for a Startup | The Complete Checklist


You’ve just created a startup – congratulations! Of course, every startup needs a developer or a programming team to make its dreams a reality. But do you need a full-stack developer vs. a backend developer team? Or a full-stack vs. front-end developer? What do these phrases even mean? How to hire a programmer for a startup?

In this article, we’ll hopefully solve the full stack vs. backend vs. frontend question and provide some insight into the hiring process. Let’s dig in.

Backend vs. Front End Developer vs. Full Stack

If you need web development done and need a programmer, you’ll run into the full stack vs. front end developer vs. backend developer question right away. After that, we can answer the question of how to hire a programmer for a startup and share some places such as, which can open new opportunities for you. Here are the differences.

Front end Developers

The front end developers are concerned with the part of the website where users interact. When you open a site, you’ll immediately encounter the frontend, including the fonts, colors, menus, and navigation. Frontend developers use HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to create these interestingfrontendd user-facing experiences. 

Programming languages aren’t the only skillfrontendd developers need. They need to understand frameworks like Bootstrap, Backbone, AngularJS, ReactJS, and others to ensure that the content looks great across multiple devices. A lot of developers also need to use Ajax, a Javascript technique. Frontend developers tend to be quite creative, but this isn’t always necessary. Frontend developers work with designers or UX managers to create wireframes and mockups throughout the development process. Some can pinpoint problems in user experience and provide recommendations to solve them.  

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Backend Developers 

The backend of a website comprises a server, application, and database. Your backend developer builds and maintains this technology to power the the frontend components. We’ve covered the frontend in detail and understand where it comes from, but where is the data stored?

Backend developers need to ensure that the various components can communicate with one another. They learn different programming languages, including PHP, Ruby, Python, Java, and others. They may need to know how to use frameworks like CakePHP or Symfony and version control software like Git. Backend developers also need tools like MySQL, Oracle, and SQL to save, find and change data back to the user in the frontend. 

backend developers

The code needs to be clean, portable, and well-documented. They work with business owners to understand their needs and develop technical requirements. Backend development is the right field if you love data and data strategy. 

Without backend developers, you can’t store information, view pages, or log in to an account online.

Full-Stack Developers 

Is a full-stack developer a backend or frontend developer? They’re both! A full-stack developer can work cross-functionally on both the front and backend, the the client and server sidese. They need to know a little about everything, making them hard to find. A full-stack developer knows everything there is to know about the web: how to set up and configure servers, how to write APIs, how to power an application using JavaScript, what a good UX landing page looks like, etc. 

fullstack developer hire a programmer for a startup

Now that we’ve answered the full stack, backend developer, and frontend developer questions, we can move on to another burning issue: Where do you find them?

Finding Your Developers 

Finding developers and programmers for a startup isn’t as easy as posting a free ad on Craigslist or a job board. Developers are in demand all around the world. They come with hefty price tags and expectations. Large Silicon Valley enterprises will open up data centers and take a thousand developers off the market in the blink of an eye. As a small business, it can be hard to compete and find the right talent at the right price. There are a few avenues you can explore, though. 


There are plenty of developers for hire in a remote, freelance capacity. Sites like Upwork, Fiverr, and Freelancer are good places to start. This might not work for everybody, though. Freelancers have several clients and might not be as devoted to your project as you would like. They can also be quite pricey. 


Outsourcing Agencies

You can hire a dedicated outsourcing agency to lend you the expertise of a few developers for your project. The agency might be hands-off or hands-on, depending on your needs. It’s a great way to access the right talent without recruiting the staff on your own. The agency will handle all administrative requirements on your behalf and hire a programmer for a startup.

In-House Hiring

You can hire your staff in-house. Many developers prefer this option. The advantage of this option is that staff are fully devoted to your project. The downside is that it is expensive. If you go the in-house route, you have to hire, pay, recruit, vet, and reward staff on your own. 


Many companies are opting for offshoring – hiring developers in a different country where the rates are lower, but the skillsets are advanced. This is usually much cheaper – not just because of the lower developer rates, but because an agency handles the payroll, recruitment, vetting, and equipment sourcing for you. Popular offshore destinations include Ukraine, Belarus, China, India, and Argentina.

What Does a Programming Team Look Like? 

Chances are, you will need more than one developer. Whether you outsource your team, hire them in-house or do a combination of both, it takes a whole team to build a successful app.

In addition to developers and designers, you will need:

  • A Business Analyst to formulate team goals, document core processes and systems, evaluate what works and doesn’t work, and set KPIs along the way; 
  • A Project Manager to oversee planning and execution and make sure that things get done; 
  • A UX Designer that designs the interface and features that people will interact with; 
  • A Quality Assurance Engineer who tests the product to make sure that the requirements and quality standards are met.


There you have it! A full checklist for your startup and how to hire a programmer for a startup. Building your team isn’t easy, but apps and websites are extremely profitable ventures. Make sure you have the right staff backing you up, and you are on your way to success!