How to Hire the Best Node.js Developers
The key to hiring the best Node.js developers lies in having at least a basic understanding of Node.js and the technologies related to it. In this guide, let us go through important information regarding this technology, as well as the essential skills and traits you must look for in your potential Node.js developer.
The Node.js community is also big and friendly, and any author can publish code or create modules in a public repository. Moreover, there are more than 475,000 code packages in the NPM alone. When your Node.js developer comes across some challenge or task new to them, there is probably already a solution shared in the community.
Node.js is particularly great in these areas:
- Chat - Node.js works wonders with messaging chat applications, especially in dealing with multiple users, big traffic, intensive data, and performance across multiple devices.
- Data streaming - With HTTP requests and responses which are data streams, Node.js can also be used to create positive features, such as file processing while they are still being uploaded (e.g. for audio/video encoding).
- Monitoring dashboards - Node.js can also be used to make system dashboards to collect real-time data about website visitors and visualisations. Seeing user statistics and what they are doing on your website can be greatly beneficial for your business.
What are the benefits of using Node.js?
Below, let's discuss in detail the benefits and advantages you get with Node.js, and why you should use the platform:
You get fast and flexible applications
Paypal, after deploying Node.js applications, reported 35% less in their response time with twice the number of requests received per second.
Node.js is an idea for building real-time web applications
Node.js has amazing features especially for creating and developing real-time applications such as chatting and gaming applications. This runtime environment is also a great choice for programs that require an event-based server or non-blocking driven servers.
You only need a single code base
A web app framework built with Node.js executes the same codebase, regardless of whether it is on the client-side or the server-side.
Here are other benefits you get when you build your applications with Node.js:
- You get to keep your data in native JSON format in your database
- Node.js has multiple modules (NPM, Grunt, etc.) and it also has a supportive community
- It is ideal for creating real-time apps, such as chats and games
- Great for data streaming, such as audio and video
- Node.js is sponsored by Linux Foundation as well as PayPal, Microsoft, Walmart, Joylent
- Has a wide range of hosting options
What are some best practices in Node.js development?
Make use of the same style-guide
Especially in a company with hundreds of developers, following this best practice can be quite challenging, but it has to be done to make your processes more efficient. As much as possible, have everyone agree on the set of rules.
It may be hard to do this, so one possible solution you can use is to consult a seasoned developer as to which rules will be included in the style guide and which won't, and then ask the help of other developers involved. The goal is to have a final decision that everyone agrees with.
In this digital age, security has become more important than ever. It helps to review your code with the help of professionals who are experts in security.
To help you improve your security knowledge, there are also plenty of resources readily available online which you can utilise. Here are some of them:
Directly use new browser APIs
Adopt the Twelve-Factor app principles
The Twelve-Factor application principles actually describe the best practices in writing and building web applications. Here are the following areas covered by this manifesto:
- One codebase tracked in revision control, many deploys
- Explicitly declare and isolate dependencies
- Store config in the environment
- Treat backing services as attached resources
- Strictly separate build and run stages
- Execute the app as one or more stateless processes
- Export services via port binding
- Scale-out via the process model
- Maximize robustness with fast startup and graceful shutdown
- Keep development, staging, and production as similar as possible
- Treat logs as event streams
- Run admin/management tasks as one-off processes
Pick up the ECMAScript features
As a Node.js developer, learning the new ECMAScript features can help increase your productivity. With these features, you are able to write more self-explanatory code.
Here are some ECMAScript features that, although not new, are considered favourites by many developers:
- Spread syntax
- Rest parameters
- Async functions
What technical skills should you look for when hiring Node.js developers?
Knowledge of and experience in working with Node.js Frameworks
When looking for Node.js developers, the first thing you must look for is obviously their knowledge of Node.js and their practical experience.
Express is the foundational Node.js framework that a Node.js developer must know. Moreover, frameworks such as Koa.js, Hapi, and Total.js are other technologies that developers must know to be able to expand the basic functionalities of Express.
Other skills you must look for in your candidates are Model-View-Controller (MVC) frameworks like Strongloop, Sinatra, and Rails. Full-stack MVC frameworks such as Keystone.js, Meteor, ActionHero, and Derby, on the other hand, offer more features out of the box.
RESTful APIs and API Communications
Great Node.js developers are proficient in RESTful APIs; consequently, they know how to interpret existing API codes as well as to adopt in on the projects they are currently working on. They know how to handle multiple systems and how they interact with each other.
Asynchronous programming, which is also called non-blocking I/O, is simply what Node.js is all about. It only makes sense that Node.js developers are knowledgeable in asynchronous programming and its workarounds.
With non-blocking I/O, developers can be more efficient and productive as the waiting time for requests can be significantly reduced, and two or more functions can be executed at the same time.
It is important to note that asynchronous programming is a fairly new concept and method. Node.js developers must understand its workarounds and they must consider its quirks to be able to perform appropriate actions.
Database Schema Creation
Another skill that good Node.js developers possess is database management skills. To be able to build Node.js applications successfully, a Node.js developer must be able to create database schemes that are not only efficient, but are also representative of your company's business processes.
Great developers must integrate multiple data sources and databases into one seamless system. With a skilled Node.js developer who has strong database management skills, you are sure to improve your business workflows and processes.
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