Electron Developers Hiring Guide

A Powerful Desktop Application Framework

What is Electron? Simply put, it’s an open-source framework for building desktop GUI applications. A relatively new technology, it was initially released by GitHub in 2013. Some of the major names that have turned to Electron for facilitating the creation of cross-platform desktop apps include Discord, Facebook, Microsoft, Slack, WhatsApp, and WordPress. 

Despite its young age, Electron has gained a fair amount of popularity in the past 8 years. Are you in search of a developer who leverages Electron to build desktop apps? Keep reading to learn about what the framework can do and what to look for in a developer.

  • Hiring Guide

  • Interview Questions

  • Job Description

What is Electron?

Electron is a framework that leverages web technologies to create native desktop GUI applications. It’s free and open-source and maintained by GitHub. 

Using the framework, developers can build cross-platform desktop apps using JavaScript, CSS, and HTML. It utilizes the Chromium rendering engine and Node.js runtime. Electron apps are capable of running on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

Along with GitHub, Electron is maintained by a huge community of developers, who actively contribute to the framework regularly and support peer developers. As you can see from the above list of companies using Electron, the framework facilitates the creation of many different types of applications.


How difficult is it to find an Electron developer?

Electron is a fairly popular technology that is backed by a large community. Developers who are versed in languages like JavaScript should be able to learn the framework quickly and easily. 

There is one hiccup that might hinder your search to find an Electron developer. Desktop application development is not as popular as mobile in today’s world, which means you may have some trouble looking for someone who is eager to specialize in Electron. That doesn’t mean these developers are impossible to find, though. It just might take a little extra effort as you search for someone who has extensive experience using the framework. 


What to look for in an Electron developer

Electron isn’t too difficult for an experienced developer to pick up, but you should still seek a professional with experience using the technology. They will need to be a strong JavaScript developer with plenty of desktop application experience and knowledge of other programming languages such as C++, along with Node.js API and other tools and frameworks.

What are some of the main benefits of using Electron to aid development?

Electron offers a huge number of advantages that make desktop application development easier and quicker. For one, it can be used on all major operating systems — Windows, Mac, and Linux. It’s not that difficult to learn and master, either. Apps built using Electron can be set up to be automatically updated, which can save time and effort.

Electron also comes with a large community that lends support, resources, and troubleshooting tips to developers who use it.


What are the types of processes in Electron?

Electron utilizes a multi-process model, with 2 types of processes: main and renderer.

The main process is responsible for the state of the application, created as soon as the application is launched. It interacts with the operating system’s GUI. Meanwhile, the renderer process focuses on running the user interface of the app.


Explain packaging in Electron

You must package your desktop application for each operating system — Mac, Windows, and Linux — in order to distribute it with Electron. There are both tooling and manual approaches you can use to do so.


What are environment variables?

Environment variables allow you to control application configuration and behavior without having to change the code. The 2 types are production variables and development variables.

Production variables are used at runtime within packaged apps. Development variables are usually used for the development and debugging of the app.


What is Inter-Process Communication in Electron?

The Inter-Process Communication (IPC) module facilitates both synchronous and asynchronous messaging between the main and renderer processes within Electron. There are 2 IPC modules:

  • ipcMain
  • ipcRenderer

What are the types of menus in Electron?

Using Electron, you can create 2 different types of custom menus. The application menu, the first kind, is labeled with your app's name. It appears within the app itself, at the top as a drop-down menu. The second type is a context menu, which is triggered by user interactions, such as by right-clicking with a mouse while using the desktop app, causing the menu to appear on the screen.

An industry leader in web development is in search of a talented JavaScript and C++ desktop engineer to join our rapidly growing team. Your main responsibility will be to develop and build upon existing cross-platform desktop applications using Electron.


Responsibilities

  • Develop high-quality desktop applications primarily using JavaScript, along with languages like C++ and others as needed
  • Maintain a high standard of exemplary code delivery
  • Leverage frameworks and open-source technologies including Electron and Node.js 
  • Work closely with the QA tester, PM, designers, and other team members to optimize development and resolve issues
  • Research requirements
  • Provide mentorship and feedback to junior team members
  • Implement DevOps and agile practices and methodologies
  • Communicate with stakeholders

Skills And Qualifications

  • At least 5 years experience developing desktop applications using JavaScript
  • At least 3 years experience using Electron and Node
  • Fluency in additional languages such as C++, C#, TypeScript, Rust, Objective-C, Swift, and others
  • Experience working with multiple platforms and operating systems
  • Experience developing cross-platform applications for macOS, Windows, and Linux
  • Unit-testing and debugging skills
  • Experience creating CI/CD pipelines
  • Knowledge of Git
  • Familiarity with MVC architecture
  • Software design
  • Strong communication, problem-solving, and collaboration skills
  • Experience teaching and mentoring other developers
  • Comfort with DevOps and agile best practices and methodologies

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