What to Expect When You Hire Junior, Mid-level and Senior Developers

Recruitment is about putting the right people into your team. But when it comes to hiring software developers, it could be a tall order. With software developers often classified into junior, mid-level, and senior, you often wonder where to start, especially if you’re not familiar with the IT industry.

Bootstrapping startups tend to favor junior developers, as they command the lowest pay range. However, without understanding the limits of a junior developer’s capability, such a move can often backfire and results in more losses than gain.

Before you start offering a developer a position in your team, here’s a brief guide that prepares you on the right expectations when you hire junior, mid-level, and senior developers.

Junior Developers

Junior developers typically have less than 1 year of working experience. This makes them limited in both industry and technical knowledge. When you hire junior developers, expect a higher rate of mistakes as they are still trying to polish their skills on the job.

Instead of expecting junior developers to build applications from scratch, it is more realistic to assign them a standard function or module within the entire framework. Often, they will need regular and clear instructions from a team leader to complete a task successfully.

Some companies are overlooking junior developers as they are burdened by the cost of mentoring the junior recruits. But it’s important to note that every seasoned developer was once a junior developer.

Fresh from college, junior developers do not carry the baggage of bad programming habits, and they can offer a fresh approach or perspective that may surprise their seasoned counterparts.

Mid-Level Developers

While there are no formal definitions that categorize mid-level developers, it is often agreed that they are well-experienced enough to perform most technical tasks with minimal supervisions. Mid-level developers usually possess 2-4 years of working experience and have a balance of industry and technical knowledge.

Unlike junior developers, mid-level developers have no problems of understanding the entire framework of an application. Occasionally, they may need assistance for complicated tasks but other than that; you can trust them to carry out their responsibilities without worries.

With that said, there is room for growth for mid-level developers, although some of them may be trapped in the comfort zone of the job. Given the proper opportunities, mid-level developers could be honed with leadership skills. Combined with their technical abilities, they make good candidates to fill in the shoes of senior developers.

Senior Developers

Senior developers are often entrusted with the entire scope of development of an application, and they will be involved in making key decisions that will impact the growth of the business itself. The years of experience accumulated by senior developers are translated into efficient coding and troubleshooting.

Besides working on a project itself, senior developers often doubles up as trainers to beef up the knowledge and skills of their junior counterparts. They also need to shine as leaders when coordinating a team of developers with various experience to accomplish a project.

Senior developers typically exhibit traits of self-reliance and have a thirst for growth. They keep track of emerging technology or changing trends and apply their knowledge in their work. The entire team also benefits when trained by a senior developer.

As a result, you could expect almost flawless results from a senior developer. There is a huge contrast of quality between a senior and junior developer, and the same applies to their remunerations.

The common issues of disconnection between developers and the business aspect of the company can be reduced as senior developers tend to have a better grasp of the business flow. This results in software applications that are more in synch with the business nature of the company.

Which Level Of Developers Should You Recruit?

One of the most common mistakes we noticed business owners are making is hiring a junior developer and expecting he or she performs the tasks of a senior developer. It’s important to understand that each level of developers offers a different set of advantages to a company.

If you’re a total outsider to the IT world, a senior developer is your best bet to run things around without supervision especially if time-to-market is your priority. Mid-level developers are great for scaling up an existing project or getting straight into a job with minimal training.

Despite their lack of experience, hiring junior developers is a wise move to beef up your existing software team as they are often the most energetic and creative group. Some of the best software teams consist of junior, mid-level, and senior developers.

Not sure which level of developers you should  hire? Get professional opinions from our team at Netcore now.

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