AWS Lambda Developers Hiring Guide

The “Swiss Army Knife” of the AWS Ecosystem

Among the many options available in Amazon Web Services, AWS Lambda has got to be among the most popular ones. This event-driven serverless computing platform comes packed with so many features that many people see it as a Swiss Army knife for engineers and cloud architects. 

The best thing about Lambda is how it automatically handles the backend infrastructure and its related administrative tasks. That’s precisely why it’s called a serverless platform—because development teams can use it to automate their backend and focus entirely on working on their code.

AWS Lambda is also a highly flexible platform that can serve in many different projects and scenarios. Besides, it’s easy to implement in a vast variety of environments and runs with minimal operational costs. All these things explain why so many engineers are now turning to Lambda for their cloud-based needs.

  • Hiring Guide

  • Interview Questions

  • Job Description

What Is AWS Lambda?

AWS Lambda is an event-driven serverless computing platform. That means that it provides computing services that run code in response to events, which can be website clicks, file uploads, database updates, and HTTP requests, among others. It also automatically manages the computing resources required by that code, which means it only uses resources needed to run active events. 

Lambda can automatically carry out operational and administrative tasks, such as applying security patches, deploying code, monitoring execution, running a web service frontend, and capacity provisioning. In a certain sense, it feels like a PaaS platform, but in reality, Lambda is a function as a service (FaaS).

The main difference with PaaS services is that AWS Lambda only runs when called, it can instantly scale up and down as needed, and supports multiple languages, including popular choices like Java, Python, Go, and C#. 


AWS Lambda’s Popularity Today

Serverless architectures are steadily gaining momentum with each passing year. So, as part of Amazon Web Services, the leader in the cloud computing market, it’s hardly surprising to learn that the use of AWS Lambda is rising with it

In fact, 87% of companies betting on serverless are currently using Lambda, with Microsoft’s Azure Functions coming in a distant second with only 16% of companies using its offerings.

That means that 55% of AWS users are investing in Lambda to handle their backend needs in the cloud. And that trend doesn't feel like it’s slowing down anytime soon. 


What To Look For in AWS Lambda Engineers

More and more engineers are learning how to work with Lambda given its rising popularity. That phenomenon is facilitated by the platform’s ease of use and multi-language support, which makes it easy for developers to use their language or framework of choice when approaching Lambda for the first time. That, in turn, means that finding a Lambda engineer shouldn’t be a major hassle.

Finding a good Lambda engineer, though, implies doing some extra work. It’s not enough to just have a certain experience with Amazon’s platform. The best Lambda engineers also should have experience with other Amazon Web Services, including CloudFormation, DynamoDB, CloudFront, and even [email protected] 

Additionally, they should have strong multi-language skills in Java, Go, PowerShell, Node. js, C#, Python, and Ruby. Knowing some frontend technologies (like React) also helps in shaping the best Lambda engineers, as does having experience with DevOps. 

The best Lambda developers also know their ways around security technologies like AWS Identity and Access Management, Vault, and AWS KMS. Finally, they should hold experience in distributed applications and serverless architectures as well as be able to communicate effectively with non-technical staff.

What is serverless computing?

Serverless computing is a type of cloud computing service that provides companies with backend infrastructure that flexibly adapts to diverse needs. That means you can build and run applications on the cloud without worrying about backend-related tasks, as they are all responsibilities of the service provider. 

It’s important to mention that, while the name might imply otherwise, serverless computing does use servers. The idea behind the name is to convey that worry-free sense of having someone else taking care of the infrastructure side of things. In the case of AWS Lambda, that means Amazon is the one in charge of the servers—you only pay them for using those services.


When should you use AWS Lambda versus Amazon EC2?

The main difference between AWS Lambda and Amazon EC2 is in instance provisioning. With EC2, you have to think about provisioning capacity, monitoring fleet performance and health, and designing with fault tolerance and scalability in mind. With AWS Lambda, all those things fall under Amazon’s scope of responsibility. 

Additionally, EC2 offers you more customization options and provides you with full control of the underlying instances. Lambda doesn’t have those for you, as the operational and administrative tasks are all conducted by the provider.

Those things mean that AWS Lambda is the best fit for companies that don’t have the budget or the capabilities to properly set up, customize, and maintain cloud-based instances. EC2, on the other hand, is perfect for anyone that has enough firepower and knowledge to take customization and control to the next level. 


What is an AWS Lambda function?

Any code you run on Lambda is turned into a Lambda function. All Lambda functions have information associated with them, including names, descriptions, resource requirements, and entry points. It’s important to remember that all uploaded code has to be stateless, otherwise, it won’t be translated into functions. If you need any persistent state, then you have to store it in one of the other Amazon services (S3, DynamoDB, EFS).


What is Code Signing for AWS Lambda?

Code Signing is an Amazon system that ensures that all code you deployed in your functions comes from approved developers and it’s unaltered. This allows you to use code from the community without security concerns. Additionally, you can sign your own code (through tools like AWS Signer), which you can later deploy in applications and share with other people. 


How do you automate deployment for a serverless application?

Amazon offers AWS CodePipeline and AWS CodeDeploy for automating the release of applications. CodePipeline is a continuous delivery service that lets you build and automate steps to release serverless applications. CodeDeploy is an automation engine for the deployment of your Lambda-based apps. Using both of them, you can highly automate your workflow and release code that’s safe, stable, and production-ready.

We are looking for an AWS Lambda developer responsible for creating and managing serverless applications. Your primary focus will be the development of programs with a serverless architecture as well as overcoming diverse issues in our cloud systems within a complex environment. 

Since Lambda applications closely work together with other Amazon technologies, the developer will have to take care of the integration of the Lambda applications with diverse cloud service offerings. Finally, we are searching for a Lambda engineer with strong communication and critical thinking skills to devise different solutions based on AWS features and possibilities. 

You are expected to be a subject matter expert on AWS services, tools, and best practices. You will answer questions on various cloud-native technologies and AWS services, and you will provide recommendations on what service to use and when. As such, you should have extensive hands-on experience with the varied AWS services, their limitations, and alternate (non-AWS) solutions that might serve better in particular situations.


Responsibilities

  • Build efficient, testable, and reusable serverless applications
  • Solve complex performance problems and architectural challenges in AWS Lambda
  • Integrate applications with other Amazon products 
  • {{Add other responsibilities here that are relevant}}

Skills and Qualifications

  • Strong knowledge of AWS Lambda 
  • Solid understanding of AWS offerings, including CloudFormation, DynamoDB, and CloudFront
  • Experience working with multiple languages, mainly Java, Python, and C#
  • Basic understanding of front-end technologies, such as JavaScript, HTML5, and CSS3
  • Experience with security compliance {{Depending on the specific project}}
  • Understanding fundamental design principles behind a scalable serverless application
  • User authentication and authorization between multiple systems, servers, and environments
  • Integration of multiple data sources and databases into one system
  • Proficient understanding of code versioning tools, such as Git
  • {{Make sure to mention other frameworks, libraries, or any other technology related to your development stack}}
  • {{List education level or certification you require}}

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