If you need back-end web developers for your startup or established tech company, you may want to hire Django developers. As their name suggests, Django devs are experts in Django, a high-level Python-based open-source framework. Widely considered the best web framework for development, Django assists in the rapid development process and helps create clean and realistic designs for sites. It's also highly secure and scalable.
However, hiring the best Django dev for your team remains an uphill battle. Although there are more Django devs than ever, many lack the skills and experience to develop high-quality web apps. You may need to design a recruitment strategy to find the best candidates.
Our comprehensive guide about what you should look for in a Python Django developer resume can help. We'll cover the job requirements you should have for Django developers and provide practical tips on hiring professionals that meet your development standards.
What Should Stand Out in a Django Developer Resume?
When looking to hire Django developers, you need to explore specific resume sections one by one, starting with the skill levels, industry knowledge, and experience. Here's what you can focus on within each category to save time and achieve the best results:
First, you should evaluate the skill level of each applicant. Is a job seeker a beginner, intermediate, or advanced Django programmer? Then, look at the role you want to fill and see if it matches the applicant's skill level.
Ideally, the applicant will have all the necessary skills for operating your software tools. However, some roles are more flexible than others. You may be able to hire a junior programmer for a senior position.
Here's a breakdown of skill levels in Django development:
Beginner or entry-level software developer resumes will show zero to three years of experience. You'll notice new developers are fresh grads with bachelor's degrees in Computer Science, Information Technology, or other related fields. Some may be self-taught or recent graduates of non-traditional educational paths such as boot camps.
Since they have little to no relevant work experience, these developers tend to have fewer skills. Therefore, you should be less demanding and be more willing to train them. Consider providing them with mentorship and educational resources and opportunities.
Here's what an ideal entry-level Django dev should have:
- Basic knowledge of software development principles
- Zero to five years of experience in any programming language, including Python, C, C++, and Java
- Experience in Django is preferred but not required
- Strong verbal and written communication skills (team player)
- Strong problem-solving and analytical skills
Intermediate or junior software developer resumes should display three or more years of relevant work background. Since junior dev should have a more extensive experience than entry-level professionals, you can afford to be more demanding with them. Look for specific skills such as:
- Experience writing scalable and effective code
- Previous experience with Meteor, NodeJS, and React
- Continuous Integration (CI) and Continuous Delivery (CD) pipeline
- Thorough understanding of Python and Django
- Familiarity with event-driven programming
- Experience with REST APIs
- Sound knowledge of SQL databases
- Proven ability and experience working in a team environment
Last but not least, we have advanced or senior Django devs. These seasoned developers have over five years of experience and know how to:
- Work in a multidisciplinary team
- Scale and optimize web apps
- Build, test, profile, and debug projects
- Mentor junior and entry-level Django and Python devs
Here's a list of developer skills and experiences you should look for when hiring senior Django programmers:
- Over five years of experience creating high-volume microservices and APIs
- Expertise in Django, Python, and Python application frameworks like Django REST, Flask, and FastAPI
- Proficiency with database frameworks like MySQL, SQLAlchemy, Django ORM, MySQL, and DynamoDB
- Hands-on experience with serverless Amazon Web Services (AWS) technologies like Step Functions, Lambda, and Fargate
- Strong leadership skills
- Top-notch verbal and written skills
- Proven track record with testing, editing, and debugging web apps
- Experience developing event-driven architectures
Professional Experience and Relevant Experience
After exploring skill levels, you need to look at each potential hire's professional and relevant experience. It will help you determine how well a candidate knows their stuff and whether they can apply their skills to the workplace.
Keep in mind that what you're looking for depends heavily on the role you want to fill. You can ask the following questions when reading each applicant's resume to determine compatibility with a particular position:
- What are your core skills? What does this developer know best? Python? Django? What can they bring to the table? Do these skills fit what you're pursuing? If not, keep looking.
- What are your secondary skills? The ideal job seekers should also list out their secondary skills. These skills can be refined through mentorship and training.
- What problems have you solved? Good resumes don't just list out skills — they also contain specific problems that the applicant has resolved for previous businesses (or professors, if you're hiring an entry-level programmer). For example, the applicant could include a short anecdote about how they helped their previous employer build a machine learning web app.
Their Previous Employer
If you're interviewing devs with previous work experience, look at their work history. If their backgrounds are similar to the role you're offering, they're probably a good pick for your company.
As mentioned, the role you want to fill highly affects the kind of work experience you should look for in the next hire. Ask the following to determine how the applicants' previous work experience has shaped them:
- Who did your work for, and what did you do for those employers?
- What are the differences and similarities between your previous roles and this one?
- Do you have any outstanding achievements you would like to share?
You should be able to determine whether an applicant can adjust to the new position based on the answers.
A prospective hire should also have the technical skills to move your projects forward. As previously discussed, you should avoid having extreme requirements for entry-level Django devs. However, you need to look for specific technical skills when hiring intermediate and advanced professionals.
Here's a breakdown of the core technical skills for intermediate and advanced Django programmers:
Understanding of REST Web Services
Also known as a RESTful web service or REST API, a REST web service is a maintainable, lightweight, and flexible service built on the REST architecture. It plays an integral role in connecting the back-end with the front-end.
Therefore, every junior and senior Django dev needs to understand REST web services. Otherwise, they won't be able to build web applications.
The right Django hire should also know system programming. The practice involves writing and designing computer programs that allow the hardware to interact with the user and programmer. Without system programming, computers wouldn't be able to execute application software.
Here are some system programs that your hire should be able to program and manage:
- Operating system and firmware
- Programming tools like interpreters, compilers, loaders, schedulers, and linkers
- Runtime libraries of programming languages
Another vital Django dev skill is application development. The process of creating an app or set of apps, application development is closely linked with the software development lifecycle (SDLC). The basic stages of the SDLC are:
- Planning or research
- Building or construction
- Support or maintenance
Besides knowing how to develop applications according to the SDLC, your hire should also know how to work with various application development methodologies, such as:
As the most traditional way of creating an app, the Waterfall methodology revolves around planning and sequence. If your devs follow Waterfall, they expect the entire SDLC to be mapped in the planning and analysis stages.
This methodology is called Waterfall because once you fall, you can't go back up. The development team always takes things one step at a time and requires teams to establish detailed plans before building. When they create the entire app, they work with the Quality Assurance (QA) team to ensure it's working properly. The app then gets deployed to the end-user.
Consider hiring a Waterfall Django dev if:
- You don't anticipate many changes in your workflow.
- You have a lot of time to release your application.
- You've done similar projects before.
- Budgets have already been fixed.
- The end-user has clear requirements and doesn't want to be involved until the end.
Rapid Application Development (RAD)
As you can see, Waterfall isn't for everyone. If you're running short on time and anticipate many changes to your app, consider hiring rapid application development (RAD) Django devs.
Unlike Waterfall devs, these programmers work fast. After all, the goal of RAD is to create working prototypes of your app as quickly as possible. RAD also encourages customer feedback throughout the SDLC by promoting collaboration between devs and customers.
Agile Django devs are similar to RAD devs. However, they have some differences. Instead of focusing on prototypes, Agile devs present completed work after each "sprint." In Agile terminology, a sprint is a timeframe where an app feature should be created, tested, and presented. As a result, customers only see finished work.
Agile is also more team-based. With RAD, clients work with a small team of Django programmers. With Agile, the dev team also includes UI/UX designers, copywriters, SEO experts, team leads, product testers, and more.
Consider hiring Agile Django programmers when:
- You have strong team leads and project leaders.
- Your project is large enough to split into several sprints.
- You know the overall direction of the project and can plan it out.
- You have a lot of departments that can work together.
The best Django hires should also know database modeling. At a minimum, they should know how to use models and databases to organize project data. For that, they need to have basic database skills, including:
- Database design and data modeling: Your hires must have the ability to create efficient database designs from application specifications and logical data models.
- Database schema creation and management: Django programmers should be able to translate a logical database design or data model into an actual physical database. They should also know how to manage the database after creating it.
- Recovery and backup: Implementing robust recovery and backup procedures for databases is part of a Django programmer's job.
- SQL code reviews: Your hires must be able to work with other devs and departments to review SQL code for bugs and other errors.
Your programmers should also know how to use Django to:
- Create models: Models are definitive sources of information about your project data. Each model contains essential behaviors and fields of the data stored. Most models map to a single database table.
- Make queries: After creating data models, your Django devs will use Django's database-abstraction API to make queries by creating, updating, retrieving, and deleting objects.
- Manage multiple databases: Your programmers should know how to use Django to interact with multiple databases.
- Optimize database access: The best hires for your team need to know how to optimize databases for memory and speed.
- Perform raw SQL queries: Django devs should know how to perform raw SQL queries by:
- Using Manager.raw() to return model instances
- Avoiding the model layer and executing custom SQL directly
Like all programmers, Django devs should have ample experience with programming. Specifically, they need to know how to code in Python. Remember, Django is a Python framework, so devs can't do anything with it unless they know Python.
For the same reason, intermediate and senior Django programmers should also know how to use React to create seamless UI.
Professional Resume Format
Finally, consider whether the applicant used a professional resume format. A professional resume should be:
- Formatted properly: Let's face it. You don't have a lot of time or energy to spend on each candidate. So if a resume is confusing to read, chuck it aside. Good resumes should use:
- Section headings and sub-headings to organize information
- Bullet points for achievements and skills
- Readable fonts like Avenir, Calibri, Times New Roman, Georgia, and Helvetica
- 12-point font — anything smaller or larger is unprofessional
- Well-written: A good resume shouldn't have grammar or spelling mistakes.
- Under two pages: Resumes should be under two pages. The emphasis should be on the applicant's most recent and relevant experience.
- Direct: Applicants should use plain language.
What Job Requirements Should You Have for Developers?
Now that you know what to look for in a Django developer resume, it's time to think of the job requirements. These refer to the attributes, skills, and experience you expect candidates to have when hiring for a position.
Here's a Django developer resume template of the most common job requirement components in developer job postings:
When looking for candidates to fill positions, you need to list the hard and soft skills required. Typical skills for Django devs include:
- Technical skills that we mentioned above, such as understanding REST web services, system programming skills, and programming experience
- Soft skills such as:
- Helpfulness and approachability
Use this job requirement to attract candidates with certain types or years of work experience. For example, if you want to hire a Django developer who can develop web apps on their own and with other team members, consider hiring one with at least three years of Django web development experience.
Many companies require job seekers to have a certain level of education, such as a bachelor's degree in Computer Science.
However, we highly recommend broadening your search to include applicants with no degrees — otherwise, you'll miss out on a lot of great talent. Some of the best programmers in the world are self-taught.
Some startups require candidates to be certified in some technologies, such as AWS. Certification shows that an applicant has the skills and experience to perform in specific roles. Maintaining certification also shows a developer's commitment to the profession.
This is where you list the location for your position. If it's in-person, mention where the hire will need to work. If the role is remote or hybrid, state it in the job title and at the top of the job ad.
Find a Developer That Meets Your Development Standards
Finding the best Django programmer for your startup can be challenging, especially when you don't have the time or energy to read through piles of resumes and portfolios.
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