PHP is, without a doubt, a widely used language online today. Even though it has been around for a while, it still has what it takes to rule the web development industry for many years. Therefore, every organization needing a reliable, scalable, and adaptable website or application chooses PHP, regardless of whether it’s a small or enterprise-level project.
However, PHP is a scripting language that is just a means to an end; the ultimate success lies in selecting the right PHP developer who can bring you good results with optimum agility.
However, choosing the best from the rest in a large pool (5 million+ PHP developers!!) is a daunting task, especially if you’re a non-technical person. In addition, several other factors influence the decision on PHP hiring – experience levels, technical capabilities, budget, etc.
Chances are that you’ve stumbled upon this blog while looking for answers to these and many other critical questions, such as “What questions do I ask in a technical interview?” & “What skills do I check for while hiring a good PHP developer?”, Where can I hire a good PHP developer? And so on.
This blog will give you answers to these questions and many more. To begin with, let’s first understand the basic –
What exactly does “PHP” mean?
PHP is a scripting language to create web pages and interactive internet applications. It is not visible to the user because it is managed on the server. It allows for the production and editing of files on the server, blocking access to specific internet pages within the more extensive website, information encryption, and cookies, among other things.
It also allows database management, which demands knowledge of SQL. It is also worth noting that the most recent versions of PHP have excellent performance, which affects how quickly websites built with them load. PHP is currently the most used internet development language.
According to the RedMonk index, PHP is the fourth most popular programming language, and Stack Overflow rankings have consistently placed it among the top techs for years. It has also been used to construct 80% of the top 10 million websites.
Because it is distributed under an open license, anyone can download it for free and use it without restriction. This language has lately acquired traction in the fast-developing e-commerce sector, where it is used to design and build online stores.
PHP is commonly referred to as a server-side language. It means that the visitor’s browser does not support PHP code. It is instead performed on the server that has been included in the HTML before it is provided to the user.
Who is PHP Developer?
A PHP developer creates computer programs using a particular programming language. They use it to create customized website code and manage data transmission between the website and its users.
PHP developers create web pages and web applications using the PHP programming language. Before beginning the project, they must define its goals and objectives and the hardware requirements for its implementation.
The PHP Developer then constructs the application or website’s functionality in the form of algorithms using the features of the PHP programming language. The application is then tested and, if necessary, adjusted. The final step is to install and run the developed program.
A PHP developer’s responsibilities include improving and updating previously established solutions, such as adding new features or resolving issues. They are also in charge of creating and updating documentation for specific projects.
They may also produce user manuals or other technical materials on occasion. Working on tasks also necessitates collaboration with specialists from various disciplines. A PHP developer tests and analyzes the results of applications and websites to generate insights.
Many PHP programmers work on their own. However, some organizations require collaboration. You should be aware that a large project may necessitate multiple labor hours from the developers. In contrast, some companies give programmers a lot of leeway in arranging their work and don’t impose regular hours because the end product is what is important in this field of work.
What makes a good PHP developer?
A skilled PHP developer works on projects of varying levels of complexity in addition to writing, testing, and maintaining code for websites. A significant amount of analytical and problem-solving abilities are needed for this. A competent PHP developer also works with other talented developers to produce a variety of apps and performs debugging as needed.
Most PHP frameworks, including Laravel, Yii, Codeigniter, Zend, Symfony, Kohana, CakePHP, Joomla, etc., are familiar to him/her through personal experience.
Here is a summary of the fundamental abilities that any competent PHP developer needs to have:
Working with SQL or MySQL databases; Understanding of the PHP programming language; understanding of HTML and CSS;
- knowledge of frameworks such as Laravel, Symphony, and YII2;
- using a CMS like Drupal, Joomla, or WordPress in practice;
- OOP knowledge (object-oriented programming).
How to Select a Perfect PHP Developer?
You can determine the interviewee’s technical aptitude by using the aforementioned questions. However, it is much more important to ensure that you are recruiting the ideal applicant when filling a senior job while bearing in mind the following advice.
1. Steer clear of cliched inquiries
You’ve studied PHP extensively, evaluate your needs, and are now prepared to conduct interviews with potential hires. Making a list of questions is the next stage. However, avoid asking stereotype-based queries like –
- Describe PHP.
- When was PHP initially released?
- Who is PHP’s creator?
It is preferable to ask questions that will allow you to determine whether the developer has the appropriate skillets to meet your demands rather than performing this type of memory test, such as –
- How can cookies be set in PHP?
- How can data be encrypted using PHP?
- How much time have you spent using web services?
- These inquiries not only gauge a candidate’s technical competence but also reveal his or her technological strengths.
2. Inquire about previous projects.
It is imperative to thoroughly examine the previous projects undertaken, whether working with a reputable offshore PHP development firm or a PHP developer. You can do this by asking the candidate for a brief summary of the projects he or she has worked on and how important they played in those initiatives.
Employing a portfolio, case studies, and client testimonials can help you determine a candidate’s true skills and work history for a project like yours. By doing this, you will avoid dealing with project quality issues that can arise later in the development process.
3. Assess your knowledge base and your learning abilities.
Given how quickly technology is evolving, it is essential to invest in a resource that is not only capable of completing your projects but also of keeping up with the most recent trends and learning new skills along the way. You should follow the developer to see what he does to stay current on trends and technology in general.
4. Assess communication abilities
Even if it may not be the first talent you consider when hiring a PHP developer, communication should be high on your list of requirements. It goes without saying that a PHP developer may not be expected to communicate as well as an HR, Marketing, or Legal professional. Still, it is misguided to believe that communication is a “good-to-have” rather than a “must-have” talent.
Your developer may need to communicate with clients who aren’t developers on several occasions. These clients may be leaders, other members of senior management, or clients. In these situations, the entire team may need help if the developer can hold a fruitful face-to-face meeting with the client or adequately defend the development budget.
Additionally, the developer must be familiar with various communication channels, including audio, video, the web, email, and phone.
Along with assessing their communication abilities, it’s essential to determine whether an outsourcing firm will employ the project management and communication software of your choice. Confirming that you have access to the developers who will be working on your project directly is also critical.
5. Evaluate the disposition
Herb Kelleher of Southwest Airlines created the phrase “Hire for attitude, train for skills,” which is straightforward but significantly impacts effective hiring. It may be possible to locate a PHP developer that excels at what they do, but if they need soft qualities like communication, optimism, or a willingness to learn, it may be challenging to work with.
Throughout the process, remember that it is essential to clarify everything on your mind, regardless of its significance. If you’ve decided to hire a freelancer or an outsourcing company, prepare a contract with all the necessary information, including a breakdown of the costs and milestones. To prevent future horror stories, all non-disclosure agreements and terms & conditions must be made very clear.