How Can an Entrepreneur Without Programming Skills Hire a Back-end Developer?

As an entrepreneur, you may have a great business idea but need more technical skills to bring it to life. This can be particularly challenging when it comes to hiring a back-end developer, a key player in the development of any web application.

Understanding how to find and hire the right talent, even without a technical background, is crucial for your project’s success. This guide will walk you through hiring a back end developer for hire, from defining your project requirements to managing your new team members effectively.

Understanding the Role of a Back-end Developer

What Does a Back-end Developer Do?

A back-end developer is responsible for the server-side logic of your application. They manage the database, server, and application programming interface (API) that connects the front end (user interface) to the back end (server and database).

Key Responsibilities

  • Database Management: Designing, creating, and maintaining databases.
  • Server Logic: Implementing server-side logic and ensuring efficient data processing.
  • API Development: Creating APIs for communication between the front-end and back-end.
  • Security: Implementing security measures to protect data and server infrastructure.

Defining Your Project Requirements

Clarify Your Goals

Before looking for a back-end developer, you must clearly define what you want to achieve with your project.

  • Project Scope: Outline the main features and functionalities of your application.
  • Timeline: Set realistic deadlines and milestones.
  • Budget: Determine your budget for development, including potential ongoing maintenance costs.

Create a Detailed Job Description

A clear job description aids in attracting suitable candidates. Include specific skills and experience required, such as proficiency in certain programming languages or experience with particular databases.

Choosing the Right Hiring Model

Full-time vs. Part-time

Decide whether you need a full-time employee, a part-time developer, or a freelancer. This decision depends on your project’s scope, budget, and timeline.

In-house vs. Remote

Consider whether you prefer in-house developers who can work closely with your team or remote developers who offer more flexibility and cost savings.

Where to Find Qualified Back-end Developers

Online Job Boards and Marketplaces

  • LinkedIn: A professional network for posting job listings and finding candidates.
  • Upwork and Freelancer: Platforms for finding freelance developers.
  • Stack Overflow: A community of developers where you can post job openings.

Evaluating Potential Candidates

Reviewing Resumes and Portfolios

When evaluating candidates, it’s essential to look for those with relevant experience and skills. Pay close attention to their previous projects and the technologies they have utilized. This information can provide valuable insights into their expertise and suitability for your project.

Checking GitHub Repositories

Many developers maintain GitHub profiles to showcase their code. Reviewing these repositories can offer a clear view of their coding style, work quality, and expertise level. This can be a crucial step in understanding their technical capabilities.

Interviewing Techniques for Non-technical Entrepreneurs

Preparing Interview Questions

Prepare questions focusing on problem-solving skills, project management experience, and their understanding of your business goals. These questions help you assess how well the candidate can align their technical skills with your business needs.

Using Technical Advisors

If possible, involve a technical advisor or a trusted developer in the interview process. They can help by asking deeper technical questions and evaluating the candidate’s responses more effectively. This can be especially useful if you need a more technical background.

Assessing Technical Skills without a Technical Background

Coding Tests and Challenges

Utilize online platforms that offer coding tests and challenges to assess the candidates’ skills objectively. These platforms can provide standardized tests to help you evaluate their technical proficiency.

Sample Projects

Request candidates to complete a small sample project related to your application. This practical demonstration can help you better understand their abilities and approach to problem-solving.

Checking References and Past Work

Reviewing Past Projects

Ask for case studies or detailed explanations of previous projects. This can help you understand the candidate’s problem-solving approach and technical expertise, giving you a clearer picture of their capabilities.

Establishing Clear Communication Channels

Setting Expectations

Communicate your expectations regarding communication frequency, reporting structure, and project updates. Setting these expectations early can help ensure smooth and effective collaboration.

Tools for Communication

Use Slack, Trello, or Asana to facilitate clear and consistent communication. These tools help streamline communication and keep everyone on the same page.

Setting Up Effective Onboarding Processes

Introduction to the Team

Introduce the new hire to your team and explain each member’s role in the project. This will help integrate the new developer into the team and foster a collaborative environment.

Providing Necessary Resources

Ensure the developer can access all necessary resources, including project documentation, tools, and software. Providing these resources upfront can help them get up to speed quickly.

Regular Check-ins

Plan regular check-ins to review progress, resolve issues, and offer feedback. These check-ins help keep the project on track and ensure the developer feels supported.

Managing and Collaborating with Your Development Team

Setting Milestones and Deadlines

Set clear milestones and deadlines to ensure the project stays on course. Clear timelines help ensure everyone is working towards the same goals and can help prevent delays.

Encouraging Collaboration

Create a collaborative atmosphere where team members can exchange ideas and support one another. Encouraging open communication and teamwork can lead to better outcomes and a more cohesive team.


Hiring a back-end developer without a programming background can be challenging, but it’s possible with the right approach. By understanding the role, defining clear project requirements, choosing the right hiring model, and leveraging various resources and strategies, you can find and hire the right back-end developer for your project.

Effective communication, thorough evaluation, and proactive management will ensure a successful collaboration and help you bring your business vision to life.

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  • About the Curator

    Abelino Silva. Seeker of the truth. Purveyor of facts. Mongrel to the deceitful. All that, and mostly a blogger who enjoys acknowledging others that publish great content. Say hello 🙂

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