With Pulp Blog

How to Hire the Best JAMstack Developers

Sarah Harris March 23, 2021

Having the right JAMstack developers on your team is vital to staying up with the latest development trends. JAMstack is a new kind of stack that’s making sites faster all around the world.

When you’re looking to build a JAMstack team, before you begin to sift through an endless stream of applicants, take the time to learn what you should be looking for from a JAMstack developer.

#What is JAMstack?

JAMstack is a fairly new development stack that’s composed of:

  • JavaScript
  • APIs
  • Markup

This new stack is revolutionizing the way that people develop websites by providing a streamlined experience to end-users. Instead of making dozens of calls back to the server to build a page, the page is pre-built and served to the end-user as a simple HTML/CSS profile, with functionality added through JavaScript.

JAMstack websites are primarily built to deliver faster performance, but they’re also more secure and less expensive to operate. All of these things are encouraging developers to learn how to use the JAMstack to create amazing new sites.

Here's an article where you can learn more about the JAMstack and it's benefits.

#What Best Practices Do JAMstack Developers Use?

Most stacks have best practices that developers should adhere to, and JAMstack is no different. Following the best practices of a development stack can help you to reap the greatest benefits from that stack.

In order to have all of the benefits of a JAMstack site, you need to hire JAMstack developers that understand the best practices, which include:

#Hosting the Entire Project on a CDN

You don’t need a massive database to be hosted somewhere in order to have a JAMstack site. As such, you should distribute your entire site throughout a CDN. Not only will this increase speeds, but it will cut down hosting costs, too.

#Automating Your Builds

Your JAMstack developers likely already know that the changes they make won’t go live until another build is run and deployed. Automating builds to take place at a certain interval will save them time and streamline the entire process.

#Letting the Project Live in Git

Anyone involved in your project should be able to retrieve a git clone and fully run the project locally. Doing this will reduce the friction between developers and even allow volunteer developers to take part in your project (if it is an open-source project).

Projects that do not abide by the above best practices will miss out on some of the key benefits of JAMstack.

#What Tools Do JAMstack Developers Use?

JAMstack developers primarily use two main categories of tools to create and deploy their projects. These categories are:

#Static Site Generators

These types of tools are essential to creating a JAMstack site. A static site generator is any type of software that creates HTML pages from templates. Essentially, they apply data and content to pre-designed templates. They then generate a view of the page that can be served to the visitor.

Common static site generators include Gatsby, Hugo, and Jekyll. When you hire JAMstack developers, you’ll likely discover that they have a preference for a specific site generator.

#Headless CMS

The other primary type of software that JAMstack developers rely upon is a headless CMS, which stands for content management system. This type of software provides a way to store and author content that is not attached to a specific output type or head.

Instead of being called in as a database call, things are pulled in through an API. Doing so allows static site generators to do their job and makes the entire JAMstack possible. Common headless CMS providers are Drupal, Ghost, Contentful, and Netify CMS.

While there are other types of tools that some developers may like using, the above two are essential to be able to create a JAMstack website.

#What to Look For When You Hire JAMstack Developers

What should you look for when you set out to hire JAMstack developers? On top of all of the usual qualities that create a reliable candidate, you need to look for a few specific qualifications, such as:

#Specialization in JavaScript

This programming language gives life to JAMstack sites and is a required skill for any developer.

#Extensive Experience with APIs

Since APIs are the backbone of JAMstack sites, you absolutely need to hire a developer that is familiar with them.

#Work with Static Site Generators

Static site generators make the entire project possible. Experience with them is an absolute must. Work with Headless CMS Platforms

Experience using a headless CMS platform will go far in helping the developer to create outstanding JAMstack sites.

When you set out to hire JAMstack developers, any candidates that meet the above criteria are worth your time and attention.

Speaking of the JAMstack, this website is built using JAMstack! So are many of the websites we make for our clients. Contact us for all of your JAMStack development needs.