React Native Developers Hiring Guide

A Front-End JavaScript Library Created by Facebook

React (also called ReactJS) is a JavaScript library for building interactive elements for websites. With it, you can create very complex user interfaces that can make your site more modern and easier to navigate.

With React, you can build things like:

  • Single Page Applications (SPAs)
  • Apps
  • Data visualization tools
  • Messaging apps
  • Social networks
  • Enterprise web apps
  • Cross-platform mobile apps

React is a language your company is going to want to be integrated into your development pipeline.

  • Hiring Guide

  • Interview Questions

  • Job Description

React was released in 2013, so there's been plenty of time for developers to not only familiarize themselves with the library but successfully integrate it into their work. And because web and SPAs have exploded in popularity over the past few years, React has become incredibly popular and useful. 

So if your company is serious about accelerating growth, React should certainly be on your radar. But why has React gained such popularity? First and foremost, this open-source library was created and released by Facebook. The company created React because they needed an MVC-like framework and didn't want to employ AngularJS (because it was developed by Google). 

At the time, Facebook needed a very specific framework, because their platform used PHP and JavaScript server-based rendering. Facebook realized the PHP/JavaScript model was outdated and decided to create their own tools for the job. Because Facebook was so critical of Google, the library they would eventually create would wind up quite different from AngularJS. And because React was so well crafted, Google would wind up evolving AngularJS such that it would become more like React.


How difficult is to find good React developers?

The good news is, React developers abound. Because of the massive popularity of web and mobile apps, you'll find an abundance of developers who are fluent with the library. The one issue you must take into consideration, however, is that prospective developers must also be proficient in JavaScript.

Why? Remember, React is a JavaScript library, so developers will use it in conjunction with JavaScript. Because of that, you'll need to look for developers who can work with both JavaScript and the React library. And because React has become the single most popular JavaScript framework for interactive UI elements on web and mobile apps, you can be sure that developers with these skills are easily found.

This is, in part, because React is quite easy to learn and maintain. And because React is the most widely-used tool for developing SPAs, it’s employed around the globe. So you can hire onshore, nearshore, or offshore developers, and trust they have the necessary competencies to use the library.

Since React is so prevalent (and so easy to learn), you must focus your hiring efforts not just on developers who are competent with JavaScript and the React library but are also well-rounded developers who show outstanding skills beyond these two languages.


How to choose a React developer for your project

Remember, your React developer must also be skilled with JavaScript and should know how to use a library. One of the great things about language libraries is that they make it possible for developers to re-use the code they've created as well as code created by others. This means the development lifecycle is more efficient.

To make that work for you, possible hires need to understand how to integrate objects and elements created by others and be willing to do so. You certainly don't want to hire a developer who believes they are the only person with the skills to deliver. You want someone who understands that efficiency and reliability are often more important than being the developer that solved an ongoing problem or delivered the perfect UI or app. 

One very particular skill React engineers should grasp is the Document Object Model (DOM). Unlike other libraries and frameworks, React makes use of a virtual DOM to enhance performance. A DOM represents the UI of an application, and every time a change is made to the application state, the DOM is updated to represent that change. 

The traditional DOM isn't well-suited for SPAs, which is why the Facebook developers opted to go with a virtual DOM for React. The virtual DOM is a virtual representation of the actual DOM, so every time the state of the app changes, the virtual DOM is updated instead of the real DOM. Because the virtual DOM is so much faster than the real DOM, the updates are made more efficiently.

Beyond languages, those developers should also display strong competencies for:

  • UI design
  • UX development
  • Teamwork
  • Object-Oriented Programming
  • Debugging 
  • Communication with clients and teammates
  • Openness to alternative solutions for problems
  • Creativity
  • Proactivity, but willingness to take directions from other teammates
  • Agility to change directions at a moment's notice
  • Understanding of how to work with libraries and frameworks
  • Full-stack development.

Conclusion

You shouldn't have to sweat hiring a React developer. Because the language is so widely used in modern computing, you'll find developers familiar with the library are everywhere. Because of that, you'll want to focus on the intangibles and other X-factors found in star candidates.

What is React and what makes it different from other JavaScript libraries?

React is an open-source JavaScript library for building complex web and mobile app UIs.

One primary difference is that React doesn't separate HTML from JavaScript, so developers can add HTML to the DOM without requiring additional methods.


What is the difference between a DOM and a virtual DOM?

A DOM represents the UI of an application, and every time a change is made to the application state, the DOM is updated to represent that change. The virtual DOM is a virtual representation of the actual DOM, so every time the state of the app changes, the virtual DOM is updated instead of the real DOM. Because the virtual DOM is so much faster than the real DOM, the updates are made more efficiently.


What is JSX?

A dialect of JavaScript, created by Facebook, that embeds raw HTML templates inside of JavaScript code. Because JSX can’t read by a browser, it must be transpiled into traditional JavaScript with tools like Babel and webpack. 


What is the lifecycle of a React component?

  1. Initialization
  2. State/Property Updates
  3. Destruction

What are the components of the Flux pattern?

  • Stores - which manage the state
  • Dispatcher - broadcasts the actions/events to all registered stores
  • Views - the user interface component
  • Action - a plain object that contains all information for a particular action
  • Action Creators - functions that create and dispatch actions

We are looking for a React Developer responsible for creating exciting, modern UI elements for both web and mobile applications. Your primary focus will be the development of both web and mobile applications. You will also be in charge of integrating any necessary back-end elements built by your co-workers into the application. Therefore, a basic understanding of front-end technologies is also necessary.


Responsibilities

  • Create user-friendly elements and interfaces that can be used with either web or mobile apps.
  • Build efficient, testable, and reusable React components.
  • Solve complex performance problems and architectural challenges.
  • Integrate data storage solutions.
  • Debug and fix code.

Skills and Qualifications

  • Strong knowledge of the React library
  • Strong knowledge of JavaScript.
  • Understanding of Object-Oriented Programming.
  • Solid grasp of DOMs and virtual DOMs.
  • Understanding of accessibility and security compliance.
  • Strong knowledge of the common React vulnerabilities.
  • Understanding of fundamental design principles behind a scalable application.
  • Solid grasp of user authentication and authorization between multiple systems, servers, and environments.
  • Knowledge on the integration of multiple data sources and databases into one system (and how they are employed by GUI applications built with React)
  • Proficient understanding of code versioning tools, such as Git.

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