Advanced Tpoics,  programming languages

What does a Back-end developer do?

Source: coursera , LinkedIn Talent Solutions , Francesco Lelli , Micheal Page

Nearly every company has a website, or uses software and IT systems. Backend development helps these systems run. Backend developer responsibilities include creating, maintaining, testing, and debugging the entire back end of an application or system. This includes the core application logic, databases, data and application integration, API, and other processes taking place behind the scenes. A highly skilled back end developer is a programmer who knows how to analyze user needs to ensure a positive user experience.

What is back-end development?

Back-end development means working on server-side software, which focuses on everything you can’t see on a website. Back-end developers ensure the website performs correctly, focusing on data stored in databases, business logic, application programming interface (APIs), architecture, and servers. They use code that helps browsers (or other clients) communicate with databases, fetch, store, understand, and delete data.

On a team, back-end developers collaborate with front-end developers, product managers, principal architects, and website testers to build the structure of a website or mobile app. Back-end developers must be familiar with a set of many kinds of programming languages, tools and frameworks. these make sure the back-end performs quickly and responsively to front-end user requests.

Back-end developer tasks and responsibilities and required skills

Duties and Responsibilities
The duties and responsibilities of a back-end developer typically involve designing, implementing, and maintaining the server-side of web applications. Here are some of the key duties and responsibilities of a back-end developer:

  • Designing and implementing scalable and robust server-side architectures: Back-end developers are responsible for building the structure and logic of the server-side of web applications. This involves designing and implementing scalable, efficient, and reliable architectures that can handle large amounts of traffic and data.
  • Developing server-side code: Back-end developers are responsible for writing server-side code using programming languages such as Python, Ruby, Java, PHP. They may also use frameworks such as Node.js, Django, Flask, or Laravel to streamline development and improve code quality.
  • Developing and maintaining databases: Back-end developers must be familiar with databases management systems such as MySQL, PostgreSQL, or MongoDB, and must be able to design and maintain databases that are efficient, reliable, and secure.
  • Integrating front-end and back-end functionality: Back-end developers work closely with front-end developers to ensure that the server-side of web applications works seamlessly with the client-side. This involves integrating back-end functionality such as APIs, databases, and authentication systems with front-end interfaces such as HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.
  • Writing and maintaining API documentation: Back-end developers are also responsible for documenting the APIs they create, including writing clear and concise documentation that makes it easy for other developers to understand and use their code.
  • Testing and debugging code: Back-end developers must be proficient in testing and debugging their code to ensure that it works as expected and is free of errors and vulnerabilities.
  • Incorporating adequate and future-proof security elements: Back-end developers must be knowledgeable about security and data privacy best practices and must be able to implement secure authentication systems, encryption, and other measures to protect user data.
  • Keeping up-to-date with new technologies: Back-end developers must stay informed about new technologies, frameworks, and programming languages and be able to incorporate them into their work as needed.
  • Working with UI / UX experts to make sure the user experience continues to be of a high standard

What tools do back-end developers use?

Web developers (in general) and back-end developer (especially ) use a variety of tools to develop and maintain web applications. Some common tools for back-end developers include:

  • Programming languages:
    • Python
    • PHP
    • JavaScript
    • Typescript
    • Java
    • C#
  • Frameworks:
    • Laravel
    • Symfony
    • Express Server
    • Spring
    • Ruby on Rails
    • Node.js

Qualifications and technical skills – How to become a Back-End Developer?

There are many paths you can take to become a web developer. Whether you are a recent graduate or hoping to switch careers, it is important to assess what transferable skills you already have and consider building the new skills needed to pursue a back-end developer role. 

Realistic candidates in this sector will be expected to have an understanding of at least one of the common back-end programming languages; PHP, Python, Ruby, Java, Net, JavaScript, Golang or Rust, knowledge of databases management systems such as MySQL, Postgress, MongoDB. Understanding of code versioning (GIT) and build pipelines CI/CD. Working knowledge of HTML, JavaScript and CSS is also important although less so than in a Front-End Developer role. Applicants with a good working background across these are in great demand on the job market.

Most Backend Developers are likely to have a strong academic background, with potentially a degree in fields like computer science, advanced mathematics, website development or computer programming. In some cases, an applicant will also be expected to show a fluency in a computer-based language.

Back-end developer technical skills

As a back-end developer, there are certain technical skills you will need to learn to navigate developing the back-end of the web or mobile application.  

  • Programming languages: Any back-end developer needs to be well-versed in one or more programming languages such as Python, Java, and PHP. These make the website function when used alongside databases, frameworks, and servers.
  • Frameworks: Frameworks are the libraries of programming languages that help to build the application.
  • Databases and servers: You’ll need to understand how to stack and recover data from databases, as back-end programming controls access to this information, including storage and recovery. MongoDB and MySQL are popular database management systems. A database stores and organizes client’s data so that it can be easily arranged and recovered, just like you might use cloud storage for your photos. This database then runs on a server that provides data upon request.
  • Application Program Interface (API): An API is a series of definitions and rules for defining how an application communicates with other applications.  
  • Accessibility and security clearance: You should develop knowledge of network protocols and web security. Knowing how to secure databases and servers will be critical to your success as a developer.

Back-end developer workplace skills

Alongside technical skills, these workplace skills will enable you to work more efficiently, effectively, and seamlessly with team members.

  • Communication: A back-end web developer needs to thoroughly understand the engineer’s vision in order to execute it. Strong written and conversation skills will help you communicate any ideas and troubleshoot with team members and stakeholders. 
  • Problem-solving and analytical thinking: You will need to find creative solutions when developing a web or mobile app, such as debugging code and revising it without crashing the entire site. As a developer, you should be able to analyze why a portion of code does or does not work, and anticipate and prevent errors.
  • Industry knowledge: Holistic understanding of the tech industry is always helpful to keep up with overall economic trends as well as updates to languages and platforms. To brush up, look into blogs, forums, news, and books related to web and app development.