full-stack-development

Full Stack Development In A Nutshell & Why It Matters In Business

There are three segments of web development and design. One is dealing with the user interface or what the customer sees. Front End development is responsible for the crucial elements that make up the presentation of the page. The next is Back End, which handles the processes involved in the web page. It deals with information validation, database management, as well as transactions. As businesses continue to grow, the third segment emerged to accommodate their increasing needs and lucrative goals. Building applications from end-to-end is what makes a full stack developer. It is a more versatile role that is considered the Jack of All Trades.

Web Development: Front-End, Back-End, Full Stack

As the web progresses, it requires an expert that is knowledgeable with comprehensive, cutting-edge technology. There are also complex aspects that need someone with more specialized capabilities. 

For this reason, web development divides into three main categories:

Front End Development 

Front End Developers manage the customer-facing aspects of a website or applications. From the key elements, functionalities, placement, themes, and overall user interface, they are responsible. Simply put,  it is the responsibility of front end developers to make informed decisions on creating a web page immersive, engaging, and functional.

Back End Development

On the back end of web development, it involves the supporting aspects of the things that users see on the webpage. Ultimately, back-end developers are responsible for establishing the foundation of the website or the application. They manage both the infrastructure and database, which are integral to navigate around webpages seamlessly.

Full Stack Development

Full-stack development is technically a hybrid of front end and back end web development. Businesses take advantage of their versatility to manage everything in between. From a web stack, a mobile stack, or a native application stack, these developers are the ones responsible.

What are the responsibilities of a Full Stack Developer?

As previously mentioned, full-stack development involves both ends (front end and back end) of a website or application. This duality indicates that full-stack web developers or engineers take on projects surrounding databases and building user-facing websites. There are also times when they need to talk to clients to develop a map of the project phases.

To become an effective, competent full-stack developer, you must have the following skills:

  • Extensive knowledge in one or more back-end programming languages, especially HTML, CSS, or JavaScript.
  • A growing number of full-stack developers expand their knowledge and even specialize in complex programming languages like Ruby or PHP, or Python.
  • Since full-stack developers also deal with clients, businesses look for those with experience in project management.
  • Full-stack must also be proficient in visualization, web design, and user experience development for the front end development skills.

To complete your stack, it is integral that you know the front end and back end development. Although there is a fine line between these two web development segments, employers would prefer someone who can excel on all the parts of the site. They utilize their end-to-end web development skills to make the best decisions for the job. Additionally, full-stack developers are the ones who often oversee the development process. Since they know all-around the process, they can contribute valuable insight into either end.

Contrary to what most people perceive, full-stack developers are not solely responsible for developing the code. Instead of performing code, they spend most of their time in either the front or back end code of a webpage. Yet, developers are often experts in coding across the entire stack. In this way, full-stack developers can dive into either the front end or back end if necessary. There are full stack developers that formulate the code for an entire website or application. However, they are often working on a project basis or freelance.

To give you an idea, here are the primary responsibilities of a full stack developer:

  • Manage the development of a website or application.
  • Formulate the code and functionalities of the programs.
  • Troubleshoot issues, and develop testing methods to track the progress of the website or app.
  • Work with animations, graphics, and design of the website or application.
  • Coordination with teams in both front-end and back-end development.

Overall, full-stack developers have a knack for developing the infrastructure, database, and user interface of an app or website. They should be able to leverage cutting edge technology to manage either end of web development. Proficiency in multiple programming languages like HTML, JavaScript, CSS, PHP, Angular, Ruby, MySQL, Node, MongoDB, Apache, etc., is also recommended.

How Full Stack Developers Contribute To Businesses

Full-stack development is integral for digital entrepreneurs to progress towards growth. Developers curate the functionalities establishing the infrastructure, test for glitches across the web, and manage the project in general. It is an extremely rigorous job that requires them to complete the application from scratch. Furthermore, they should be able to grasp the different layers involved in web development.

Here are the advantages of full-stack developers to entrepreneurs:

Project Management

Full-stack developers can streamline web development, managing every aspect of the project.

It is essential for entrepreneurs that full-stack developers have experience in project management. The executive and management skills are vital to working on multiple layers of web development. They can help businesses resolve issues before it arises, considering that they oversee end-to-end development. It also allowed them to come up with innovative solutions using tools from either the front-end or back-end. Lastly, their clear understanding of the entirety of web development will enable them to reduce the project’s total costs. This reduction is helpful for small businesses that have a restricted budget.

Extensive Technical Knowledge

Full-stack developers have vast potential. They often have extensive technical knowledge that comes in handy throughout the project. It is in the best interest of digital entrepreneurs to hire full-stack developers that perform better than an individual front-end or back-end developer.

Reduce Operational Costs

Full-stack development deals with all aspects of the project, from the front end to the back end. It eliminates the need to form a team of experts and further reduces the project’s operational costs. Full-stack developers can handle end-to-end development single-handedly if needed. If you have a limited budget, hiring a full-stack developer is a practical solution.

Streamline Web Development

As full-stack developers clearly understand the technologies, tools, and techniques applicable to end-to-end development, they can streamline the project. Instead of spending time planning the project, teams can start right away. The time spent collaborating with the team can also be eliminated if you let full-stack developers perform all the work.

Time is precious for any business. The more time lost when the project gets delayed means more missed opportunities. Full-stack developers offer feasible solutions in building applications or developing a website. Instead of relying on a single developer for the front end and back end development, you can save time and money when dealing with a one-person team.

Increase Productivity

Full-stack developers can coordinate across the front end and back end developers to unify their project plan. They can also work in a collaborative environment overseeing either side of the web development, which increases the team’s productivity.

Understanding a full-stack developer as a profession

Gone are the days where one might have referred to themselves as either a web designer or web developer. In response to the rapidly increasing complexity of the internet and technology, the more specialized role of a full-stack developer was created.

Full-stack developers are a hybrid of two categories:

  • Front-end developers – who deal with the visible components of a website, app, or piece of software. Their primary focus is to provide a platform where consumers can interact and receive information. 
  • Back-end developers – more concerned with the creation, recollection, and editing of data through databases such as MySQL. Back end developers are also involved in website server management and increasingly, cloud-based infrastructure.

Full-stack developers, then, are well versed in front and back-end languages and frameworks. More experienced individuals will also have a solid understanding of the user experience and use their business nous to offer strategies to grow revenue.

What skills does a full-stack developer require?

Soft skills

  1. Problem-solving ability. Working on the back and front-end, the full-stack developer needs to be able to rectify inevitable conflicts such as coding errors. Awareness of security vulnerabilities is also crucial.
  2. Creativity. Full-stack developers must have creativity and style in designing aesthetically pleasing sites and apps.
  3. Patience and attention to detail. Coding is a meticulous and therefore time-intensive process. The best developers are those who keep the bigger picture in mind and see a project through to completion.

Hard skills

  1. Database and web storage. This includes an understanding of how to connect a programming language with a database. Knowledge of caching mechanisms is also beneficial.
  2. Back end language knowledge. JavaScript knowledge is important, but so is familiarity with languages such as PHP and Python. 
  3. HTML and CSS. Mastering these front-end technologies is crucial for attractive website content and design. 
  4. Familiarity with Git if working in a team to track codebase changes.
  5. An understanding of how HTTP and REST interact to provide seamless communication between the front and back-end.

Benefits of full-stack developers to business

A suitably qualified full-stack developer can perform the roles of two or three individuals. Provided that they are not overworked, they are ideal for smaller companies with similarly small project budgets.

Full-stack developers also use their vast experience to see the bigger picture. They can explain or take questions on any aspect of the process because they are involved from start to finish. This has important benefits for client and stakeholder relations during conferences, conventions, and presentations.

Lastly, full-stack developers can pair a visually appealing website design with a functional and stable back end. Both elements must work in harmony for a business to be competitive.

Key takeaways

  • A full-stack developer works on both the front-end and back-end of website, app, or software development projects.
  • A full-stack developer must be creative and possess good attention to detail. They must also have a robust understanding of databases, back-end programming languages, and front-end technologies such as HTML and CSS.
  • A competent full-stack developer can assume the role of two or three individuals, which has obvious benefits for businesses on a budget. Their expertise is also useful in communicating certain aspects of a project to key stakeholders.

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Published by

Gennaro Cuofano

Gennaro is the creator of FourWeekMBA which reached over a million business students, executives, and aspiring entrepreneurs in 2020 alone | He is also Head of Business Development for a high-tech startup, which he helped grow at double-digit rate | Gennaro earned an International MBA with emphasis on Corporate Finance and Business Strategy | Visit The FourWeekMBA BizSchool | Or Get The FourWeekMBA Flagship Book "100+ Business Models"