Earning the nickname, the Swiss Army Knives of software development, full-stack developers play a large part in the development process. With that said, hiring them is an important process as well. There are loose interpretations of full-stack developers and that often causes difficulties on the surface when hiring managers or recruiters begin their search.
The desire for having full-stack developers within a company, in particular, has increased significantly, but so have the obstacles hiring managers and recruiters face in the hiring process.
What are the 3 main obstacles to hiring full-stack developers?
- Misinterpretation of Skillsets
- Generalizing Tech Stacks
- Monitoring All Progress
Misinterpretation of Skillsets
In the tech industry specifically, each developer has their own skillsets, levels of experience, preferred software, and so on. To assume that all full-stack developers will have the same skills or use the same tools is a misinterpretation of skillsets. Often, hiring managers and recruiters believe the term ‘full-stack’ means those developers can handle every aspect of the development process. While they may be able to do each part of the process, doing it all on their own generally isn’t possible.
Full-stack developers will know about the parts of the development process, however, some may be specialists in a certain area. The hiring process should include whether the recruiter or hiring manager is looking for a general full-stack developer or a specialized one.
Generalizing Tech Stacks
Similar to thinking all full-stack developers can do everything, an obstacle that’s often faced in the hiring process is the generalization of tech stacks. These tech stacks contain the tools that full-stack developers use and include front-end and back-end tools. Most of the time, these developers will have at least a basic understanding or experience with a large portion of various software. However, they shouldn’t be expected to be able to know how to work with all software.
Before hiring any full-stack developer, hiring managers and recruiters must be aware of what software their candidates can or can’t use. If those candidates aren’t versed in the most popular software, they may not be a good fit. Their knowledge of the development process combined with their experience is part of what makes someone a good full-stack developer.
Monitoring All Progress
During the hiring process, full-stack developers should at least be able to demonstrate that they can build an application from the ground up. If it’s possible, assigning them the task of actually building a simple app could be an excellent way to determine if they are the right person to hire. However, it’s often not an option since there are too many candidates and it would extend the hiring process itself. Recruiters and hiring managers primarily have to rely on what knowledge candidates can tell them or display those skills in much smaller tests. Larger candidate pools are also a problem since there isn’t any way for those in charge of hiring to monitor all progress of full-stack developers before deciding whether or not to bring them on.
Tailoring the hiring process to the individual company, general tasks that would need to be completed, and being more specific in job postings are some ways hiring managers or recruiters can get around these obstacles. Nonetheless, they may still remain, which is why those in charge of hiring should keep these obstacles in the back of their minds.