User interface (UI) is a critical part of software development. No matter how well the rest of your application performs, you can’t optimize it without a visually appealing and intuitive UI. A positive UI can make or break your project; it bridges the user and the software, eliminating friction points and increasing user engagement.
Despite the importance of ensuring you’re hiring the right UI developers, interviewers don’t always have the technical expertise to evaluate candidates properly. While this can be challenging, with a bit of research, you can gauge a candidate’s technical knowledge and ability to apply it in the real world.
If you’re looking for more hands-on assistance, Revelo can help you source skilled UI developers, line up interviews, and guide you through the interview process to hire UI developers.
What Is a UI Developer?
A UI developer designs and builds the user interface for software applications. The most prominent part of what they do is work on the visual aspects of an app or webpage. However, they’re also responsible for designing the optimal user flow, which includes how your users interact with your software from the time they open it until they close it. A good UI developer is proficient in psychology, design, and programming.
UI developers work on projects ranging from simple apps to enterprise-level software systems in every industry. Their daily tasks can include:
- Prototyping user interfaces
- Optimizing page loading times
- Integrating third-party APIs
- Ensuring cross-browser compatibility
It’s worth noting that although there is technically a difference between UI and UX design, UX design is broader and encompasses all interactions with a product, including emotions. So, practically, there’s a lot of overlap in job descriptions.
You should consider hiring a UI developer when creating or redesigning an application or website. A skilled UI developer can ensure your project is user-friendly, visually appealing, and performs optimally across different devices. They’ll also help you create a consistent brand presence and make your products accessible to the largest possible audience by following web standards and accessibility guidelines.
UI Developer Interview Questions
There are some general user interface developer interview questions you can ask developers at all levels. These questions are conversation starters that will allow the candidate to talk freely. Even if you aren’t technically proficient, you can learn a lot about a candidate by letting them take the lead with the following questions.
Why did you decide to pursue a career in UI development?
This is a softball question that every candidate will expect to be asked, which is fine. You aren’t trying to trick them. If anything, this question will put the candidate at ease and help them feel well-prepared.
There’s no one correct answer to this question. You’re looking for a candidate who’s enthusiastic about UI and can talk about it extensively. You can also use this question to evaluate their communication skills in general.
What programming languages are you proficient in?
Tell me about a recent UI project you worked on.
A candidate should be well-prepared to answer this question, regardless of their experience level. For example, an entry-level developer can tell you about a project they worked on in school or on their own, while a senior-level developer will be able to tell you about their real-world experience. Look for a candidate who can give you a clear, coherent explanation of their development and ideation process as well as what they learned from the project.
UI Developer Entry-Level Interview Questions
If you’re hiring a recent college or boot camp graduate with little or no experience, your goal is to determine if they have a basic understanding of UI development practices and processes. UI developer entry-level roles will primarily be supportive. So, you’re not looking for advanced technical proficiency. However, they should know what makes good UI design and be able to communicate effectively.
What is semantic HTML?
Semantic HTML uses markup to indicate what an element is rather than just how it will appear in the browser. For example, the tag <blockquote> is an example of semantic HTML because it tells you what the element is, while the tag <b> only tells you how it should look (bold).
Semantic tags improve the user experience by making webpages accessible to assistive technology. It also improves your SEO because it makes the intent of your content more explicit.
What is a responsive website?
A candidate should be able to explain the elements that make a website responsive, such as consistency across devices, intuitive navigation, and optimized images. Additionally, they should clearly understand the importance of building responsive websites — namely, making your site more user-friendly regardless of the device used to view it. This is particularly important given that Statista reports more than half of all web traffic comes from mobile devices.
What does DOCTYPE mean?
DOCTYPE is the first line of code in an HTML or XHTML document, and it tells the browser what version of HTML was used to create the page. You'll get a validation error if you don’t include a DOCTYPE declaration.
Mid-Level UI Developer Interview Questions
Mid-level UI developers should have enough technical proficiency to work as part of a team with relatively little supervision. Although they probably won’t lead projects, they can mentor junior developers.
How can you improve page performance?
Optimizing page performance has a significant impact on user experience. So, you want a UI developer who understands how to do it. Some good answers will include:
- Clear the cache
- Reduce the size of images
- Reduce the number of external HTTP requests
How do floats work?
This is a technical question that any mid-level developer should be able to answer. It won't give you a comprehensive overview of a developer's technical chops, but they should be able to talk about what a float is and how it works. This question will also let you evaluate how well a developer can communicate a technical point to a non-technical audience.
A good answer will include the following information: A float pushes the element to the right or left. It can have the following four values: inherited, left, right, or none. A float takes an element out of the normal document flow and moves it to the left or right of its container.
How do you keep up with UI development trends?
With the rapid pace of tech innovations, developers who don’t stay on top of new and emerging technology in the field won’t be able to keep up. Look for a candidate who embraces the concept of lifelong learning by taking classes, following leading blogs, participating in forums, and attending conferences.
Senior UI Developer Interview Questions
Senior-level UI developers should have top-notch technical skills and the ability to lead others. Since they’ll be heading up projects, their interpersonal skills are as important as their tech prowess.
How would you implement a design system?
This question will give you insight into how the candidate would approach the entire design process from the ground up. A good answer will include a systematic approach that consists of the following elements:
- Analyze the needs of the project
- Define the guiding principles
- Develop the components
- Test and iterate as needed
- Create documentation and guidelines
- Implement the system
Tell me about a time you experienced a work-related failure and how you handled it.
This question will give you insight into how a candidate deals with failure and their leadership style. Be wary of candidates who can’t admit to failing or offer pat answers intended to make them look good.
A good leader will look at failure as an opportunity to grow, not cast blame. Failing is a built-in part of the development process. So, look for a candidate who can learn from and handle it with resiliency. This won’t always be the most technically proficient candidate.
Explain how you handle the handoff between design and development to ensure success.
With this question, you’re looking for a candidate’s collaborative process. Communication between teams is a complex process that involves multiple stakeholders and often conflicting priorities. Look for an answer with a well-defined process that includes communication, collaboration, and attention to detail. It should cover the following touchpoints:
- Review the design files to identify any potential issues or elements that may be difficult to implement
- Collaborate with the design team to resolve issues and ensure everyone is aligned on priorities
- Create a development plan that includes a timeline and specific tasks
- Test and iterate as required
Hire a UI Developer With Revelo
At Revelo, we understand the challenges of hiring UI developers during an ongoing tech talent crunch. Our end-to-end tech talent platform streamlines the process. So, you can focus on building your business instead of sourcing, vetting, and onboarding new team members.
Our developers are based in Latin America and are aligned with US time zones, making collaboration easy and efficient. We pre-screen our applicant pool and match you with highly qualified developers with the specific skills your business needs.
Once you choose your ideal match, we handle hiring, onboarding, payroll, benefits, and compliance with local tax and labor laws. Whether you need one developer or an entire team, we’ve got you covered. Reach out today for more information.