How to Check Your Potential Backend Developer: Backend Interview Questions And Answers

9 min read
Jun 30, 2021
How to Check Your Potential Backend Developer: Backend Interview Questions And Answers

What Do You Need to Know Before Hiring a Back End Developer?

The back end developer builds the application server-side. They are responsible for building and testing the client-server environment. Often, they have to work with quality assurance testers, project managers, front-end developers, and other categories of professionals to produce a functional software program. Asking the right backend development interview questions or, in the case of the front end – front end Developer Interview Questions, and Answers can help you uncover a professional’s skills.

Though back-end developers don’t work directly on the UI, their work eventually reflects in the overall user experience of a program. This article details the commonest backend developer interview questions and how they should be rightly approached. This resource contains useful information and tips for developers and employers alike.

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Back End Developer Skill Set

The back end developer hiring test is important for hiring server-side programmers. Before going into the backend interview questions and answers, we need to first examine what employers should look out for in a backend developer candidate? These factors may be helpful, even if this list is by no means exhaustive.

  • A company may not request a computer science degree. Although, this is no longer necessary in a number of places as long as a candidate demonstrates an understanding of computer science concepts such as algorithms, coding theory, and computer networking.
  • Proficiency in cloud computing services such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, etc.
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  • Experience building scalable software solutions while implementing coding best practices
  • Fully understand at least one backend programming language such as Java, PHP, Ruby, or Python.
  • Fully understand and be competent to work with database technologies such as MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle, MongoDB, etc.
  • Soft skills such as teamwork, critical thinking, and innovation.
  • For senior developers, leadership skills are important

List of Backend Developer Interview Questions

The backend development interview questions in this article have been grouped according to the level and years of experience of different professionals.

Beginners Level Backend Technical Interview Questions (1-2 Years of Experience)

Backend interview questions and answers for developers examine the most basic ideas; not something technical or too technical initially. After all, most entry level developers are needed to render assistance to intermediate and senior developers.


What Programming Languages do You Like to Work With?

Young programmers are not yet proficient in their skills. Therefore, two of the main factors you should look out for is their curiosity and enthusiasm. These will help their performance on the job. This reflects in how they talk about their preferred programming languages.

However, an important point about programming is that there is no absolute best language; some languages and frameworks are more suitable for certain tasks than others. So, a candidate should be able to explain their preferences and how their preferred languages help them to accomplish specific goals and tackle specific problems.

What is Difficult About Writing Code?

Everyone talks about how hard writing code is. For the ‘freshers’, this difficulty is heightened. They have to learn several terms that they have previously never heard of. By asking beginner candidates how they pull through the difficulty of writing code, you can gain an idea of how motivated and resilient they would be at work.

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It takes a focused mind to be successful at coding. Coding seems hard because it takes a lot of time to master and even build the first useful program. You want to work with inspired developers; this is how to find out.

What is your approach to debugging?

This is a good question to ask especially when there is no live coding test included in your back end developer hiring test. There is no perfect coder anywhere, neither is there a perfect code. Debugging is to coding what proofreading is to writing. Basically, an excellent coder must be an excellent debugger too.

What you should look out for in a candidate’s response to this question includes the debugging tools they use, how they handle troubleshooting, and what exact steps they take to fix issues. Of course, one needs to take into consideration the fact that different types of bugs should be handled differently. With this question, you are mainly getting a feel into what their work is like.

backend job interview questions should include debugging

Mid-Level Backend Developer Interview Questions (2-4 Years of Experience)

Mid-level developers are approaching the peak of their careers. The backend technical interview questions for this section should cover some more advanced concepts that provide an understanding of the framework of backend development.

What’s the Difference Between Software Architecture and Software Design?

Software architecture is the structure of a program. That is, what’s left of a program when it is stripped down; its ‘skeleton’. Software design, on the other hand, is the actual code-level implementation of the software requirements. If software architecture is the blueprint of a program, software design would be the ‘building’ of the program.

Therefore, software design delves into more details regarding the development process. The best approach is to treat the architecture and design as two processes that are separate yet integrated to form a cohesive development process.

backend development interview questions should include architecture and design

What are some CI/CD Practices?

Continuous integration and continuous delivery are two interconnected terms in software engineering that have transformed complete development life cycles for many organizations. Continuous integration is an ongoing automation process that ensures the regular building and testing of a program. Continuous delivery occurs later in the lifecycle and refers to the ongoing development of a program ahead of production.

Taken together, CI/CD is an automated process that closes the gaps between the development and the operations teams in a bid to scale up production. Modern DevOps projects are built on this idea and it is important for a developer to be familiar with it.

back end developer hiring test can be hard

How do you Build Scalability into a Software Program?

Scalability is important in software development to meet rising user demands and adapt elements and functions to the growth of the user data. The lifetime value of a program depends on its scalability. Most apps that lack scalability initially often have to be rewritten, sometimes with a different tech stack, in order to adapt to the needs of a growing audience.

Features such as cache, API, asynchronous programming, states, or sort can help improve the scalability of a program. Also, some tools, such as databases and frameworks, maybe more scalable than others.

Advanced Level Back End Engineer Interview Questions (More 4 Years of Experience)

Of course, backend development interview questions dwell on the most practical aspects. Also, because senior devs are often the decision-makers, and during a back end developer hiring test you should make them justify why they will choose certain technologies, tools, frameworks, languages, etc. and jettison others. In a matter of fact, all these answers can reflect in the Back End Developer Salary.

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Why Would You Use Microservices Architecture?

Microservices architecture is defined by the integration of multiple smaller independently deployable services into a single application. It improves the versatility of the operation since individual services may be written in different programming languages. Therefore, you leverage the strengths of each language for the requirements of each service.

Moreover, the services, though integrated, remain loosely coupled, thus ensuring easier maintenance. Larger teams particularly find the microservices architecture model effective though there may be some challenges with debugging and the likes. A developer worth their mettle should be able to determine when particular kinds of architecture should be used.

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What is your most challenging project?

Being a senior developer is not just a matter of years of experience. It is also a matter of the kinds of projects the developer has handled, and how they have surmounted the toughest challenges. One way to discover this is to ask the candidate for what their biggest endeavour has been and how they pulled through.

A senior developer has responsibility for support and guiding the rest of the team through all kinds of projects, difficult or otherwise. You want to make sure that they are up to the task.

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How Would You Organize a Software Development Team?

Senior developers often have to bear the burden of maintaining cohesion within the team. Thus, good leadership skills position an excellent developer and these must be examined via back end engineer interview questions. One of these is being able to organize the team properly to focus on a goal and achieve the tasks leading to that goal as due.

You can probe this by finding out how the candidate has fared monitoring junior developers to them. Basically, a typical correct answer to this question will have the developer explaining ways they have used their team-building skills to positively impact a project.

How to prepare for a Back end developer interview (if you are a Developer)?

When preparing to answer backend technical interview questions, start by noting that one of the most important things an interviewer looks out for is your work style. Are you an independent worker? Are you creative? Do you work best within a team? What is your work philosophy?

They may not ask these questions directly, but even in the technical questions they ask, they expect the answers to be embedded with easily discernible clues to what it looks like to hire/work with you.

Therefore, you need to pay attention to not just your answers, but how you deliver them. Interviewers are not only interested in how well you can describe caching, CI/CD, architecture, or software scaling. They want to see how you integrate these skills and knowledge into your work. As such, feel free and confident to draw from a personal example of your own work (individually or with a team) that can buttress your points and your delivery.

How to prepare for a Back end developer interview (if you are an Employer)?

It is one thing to follow some list of backend interview questions and answers. It is quite easy to adhere to textbook prescriptions, but the only way to determine if a developer is as skilled as they say they are is to probe their past projects. Every developer must have worked on some project before, whether a pet project as a beginner or a massive project for a big business.

Backend developers can work remotely; in fact, most do. Therefore, you can hire from anywhere. No matter the country you are in, ProCoders has provided a client like yours with excellent development services by building cohesive development teams for your project.

We have done this for a number of companies whose projects are successful today. As an employer, you need to worry less about recruitment so that you may attract the best talents.


At ProCoders, we have a winning formula for identifying developers with the biggest potential, the highest drive to succeed, and the best skills for project achievement. To hire backend developers, you can always reach out to us. If you want to find developers for startup, we’ll even build a whole team for you to handle your entire project.

ProCoders have handled various backend development projects in the past without faltering. We ask the right back end engineer interview questions when examining our candidates to ensure that they are the best fit for our numerous clients.

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