By Alex Husar
Magento is one of the most popular e-commerce platforms that are out there, famed for providing no limits when it comes to customizing your online store. Whether you’ve decided to build your store from scratch, wish to optimize or migrate the one that you have, you won’t make it without some professional help of specialists. In this article, we give you tips on how to hire expert Magento developers and which questions to ask them.
Tips on Hiring Magento Developers
Before stepping to the questions, it’ll be helpful to know a couple of things about the process.
There are many specialists all around the globe, and you need to know who you’re looking for as the developer services can differ based on what you need: migrating the store, building it, optimizing it, etc. Having a clear vision of what you need specifically makes up almost half of the deal. Make emphasis on experience with similar projects to the one that you’re planning, this can eliminate some unneeded questions or blind spots. Keep in mind the time-lag if you’re hiring someone on the other side of the world. Which Questions to Ask a Magento Developer
Now that we’ve given some general recommendations of where to look for Magento developers and what to keep in mind as you’re searching, let’s move on to the actual questions you can ask and why you should do so.
1. How many years of working with Magento do you have?
Speaking about Magento development, the experience of actual work on the platform is the key factor to pay attention to. Because Magento isn’t easy to get in the hang of, it can be challenging to understand and master even to those who have many years of general development behind their shoulders or to those who are good at PHP.
The more years of hands-on work that the developer (or team) has with Magento the better. The reasons for that include the quality of code that is produced as well as the wider range of tasks and issues that could be taken care of. Importantly, make sure those who you’re considering to hire have plenty of experience with the Magento 2 platform, as Magento 1 (the previous version) differs from it big time.
That said, you’d surely want your developer to know how to sidestep a problem, avoiding it before it even arises, as well as to have the necessary knowledge to fix things quickly and efficiently in case something goes wrong.
2. Are you Magento certified?
To be fair, having Magento certification is not an obligatory requirement. Yes, on the whole, certification is a big plus since it somewhat proves that the candidate has the needed knowledge, and that he/she took the time to confirm having it. Nevertheless, although there are many types of Magento certificates out there, some of the questions that the tests include to get the certificate are outdated and don’t cover the recent turns such as PWAs (Progressive web applications).
So, if the person in front of you is officially Magento certified, that’s wonderful. If not, that shouldn’t become a ground-breaking reason not to consider them for the job, especially if they could boast having plenty of Magento 2 experience under their belt.
3. How well do you know Magento 2 architecture?
As mentioned earlier, Magento isn’t a piece of cake. This question is especially relevant if you don’t understand which Magento (1 or 2) the person who’s before you has worked with. Magento 1is becoming outdated, and everyone is either making the move to Magento 2 or building ground-up on it. Consequently, it is vital to dot the “I’s” regarding where the candidate stands in terms of Magento 2 architecture knowledge.
Like already stated, Magento 2 architecture is radically different from Magento 1. It’s quite hard and time-consuming to figure it out too if you’re just getting acquainted with it (roughly, you need about a year to hold up well). This is why you should definitely be on the lookout regarding this.
4. Have you ever migrated a Magento 1 store to Magento 2?
As you’ve probably guessed by now, moving a store that was created on Magento 1 to Magento 2 is a very complicated problem to solve. The thing is that in order to cope with the task successfully and within adequate time frames, the developer (or team of developers) should be equally witty in both of the platforms. They need to know M1 and M2 like the back of their hands, keeping in mind all the features and elements that the two differ in. They have to be able to carry out loss-free data moves, come up with custom solutions, deal with the compatibility of modules, among other things.
Thus, if the candidate has migrated Magento previously, that could be a good sign. You may ask about what was challenging, how long the process took, and look at the website.
6. Do you have experience with Magento’s PWA Studio?
Progressive web applications are a highly popular and promising trend in e-commerce. Because the solution offers an affordable replacement for native apps and allows your website to work like an app (even offline), at the same time being fast, responsive, and accessible by search engines, it’s a solution that many store owners want to get ahold of. Ask your developer whether they’ve built PWAs and their thoughts on the subject.
7. Which of your former Magento projects was the toughest/are you most proud of?
Browsing real examples of work is yet another great option. CVs and portfolios might be packed with information, so fishing out some specific highlights can do you good. You can ask which aims were set, how were they handled. Pay additional attention to the points that are connected with custom solutions and configuration.
On another note, make certain that the portfolio in front of you actually reflects the work of the specific candidate and that it’s authentic, you don’t want to waste your time on something that’s claimed to be theirs but really isn’t. You can attempt in contacting the company and ask them a few questions.
8. If you were to give advice on Magento optimization what would it be?
Let’s face it, if you’re running a business in the sphere of e-commerce, you want your online store to be performing at its best. Time is moving forward, technology is evolving, new trends are established. This means that you’ll need optimization so that your store is viable, fast, findable via search engines, provides a great user experience, etc.
Some replies that can count here would surely include recommendations on optimizing website speed, improving the product search, and reworking the checkout. At times just several touch-ups can already make a change for the better.
9. Do you provide support after the site’s release?
Knowing that your developers will have your back after the release also helps. After all, if there will be a situation when you’ll need urgent assistance, having a service level agreement with your developers wouldn’t hurt. For this reason, settling from the very start the “what happens after the release” matter is in your interests.
10. Do you mind preparing a test assignment?
It is considered good practice to offer a test task to the specialist who you’re planning to hire. After all, it’s your chance to see the person in action. One of the ways to do that is to request to solve an actual issue that you have or to turn to specialized platforms that were created for test assignment purposes, for example, Devskiller.
All in all, approaching the matter of hiring a Magento specialist for your project is very important. Ultimately, these people will be entrusted to deliver a product that’ll influence your business. We hope that this guide will help you when searching for your perfect match!
By Jimi Wikman
On October 15th 2019, the Meet Magento conference will take place in Stockholm at Clarion Sign Hotel. The #1 Magento-event in Scandinavia. For merchants, agencies, developers, service providers, and others interested in Magento.
Listen as latest features, trends, and tools are presented by some of the most successful minds in the industry. Walk away with an abundance of practical takeaways, tools, and insights into ground-breaking technologies to aid your eCommerce success.