Knowledge, Functions, and Responsibilities of a Backend Engineer vs. A Backend Developer

While there are some similarities between them, the titles of Backend Engineer and Backend Developer carry different weight and responsibility. Our Director of Recruitment, Ihor Shcherbinin, in collaboration with others, has authored a piece that explores the variances between the two roles, highlighting their specialisations and accountabilities.

List of Topics

  • The meaning of Backend development is.
  • What exactly is the definition of “Backend Developer”?
    • The Responsibilities of a Back-End Developer
  • A definition of “Backend Engineer”
    • Elaborate on the responsibilities of a Backend Engineer.
  • Glossary of Languages Utilised in Backend Development
  • Essential Skills and Tools for a Backend Developer
  • Main Differences Between a Backend Engineer and a Backend Developer
  • FAQ

What is Backend Development?

Sometimes, the functionality of certain websites and applications might seem very impressive. For example, when browsing through a website, clicking on the links can lead to different sections such as our blog. Similarly, while making online purchases, your personal information might be required. Having knowledge about how such information is obtained and for what purpose can be crucial.

The back end of a website or application is the area where data is sent. In simple terms, the back end is the site’s server-side processing that allows for the functionality of various applications and websites. It encompasses all the processes that transpire behind the scenes when we interact with a website or application.

Backend development primarily involves databases, scripting, backend logic, APIs, and website architecture.

Frontend programming, also known as client-side programming, pertains to the portions of the system which are visible to users, and are performed in the browser. It is responsible for generating features like pop-up windows. On the contrary, backend development involves the behind the scenes working of a website.

What is the Definition of a Backend Developer?

Modern websites and mobile applications are built on web services and application programming interfaces (APIs), and the development of these features is the responsibility of backend engineers. Their primary task is to create the backend logic of web applications and ensure that it is adequately integrated with the front end.

One of the key responsibilities of backend developers is to create and manage the central database, which includes maintaining its optimal performance and ensuring prompt response to queries from the front end, among other tasks.

The Responsibilities of a Backend Developer

In the field of software development, a backend developer can be compared to a sous-chef, who possesses the expertise to create a finely-tuned product. They have a thorough understanding of the frameworks created by backend engineers and are responsible for the implementation of various functions and processes.

Skills Required of a Backend Developer

  • Proficiency in working with JavaScript, HTML5, CSS3, Node.js, ES2015+, and jQuery.
  • Connecting multiple databases and data sources.
  • Implementing user authentication and authorization across diverse servers and systems.
  • Proficiency in JS Frameworks like ReactJS, VueJS, AngularJS, and jQuery.
  • Producing code that is easily understandable and editable.
  • Acknowledging the importance of program portability and cross-platform compatibility.

Responsibilities of a Backend Developer

  • Resolve software bugs and glitches.
  • Conduct UI testing and optimization.
  • Participate in the development cycle of applications.
  • Develop durable web applications using clean coding techniques.
  • Support your team by mentoring and motivating team members.

Definition of the phrase “Backend Engineer”

A Backend Engineer is accountable for server-side development for websites and applications. Their primary task is to establish the infrastructure for software programs.

Backend engineers play a crucial role in software development teams, as they are accountable for furnishing the fundamental components for the team’s primary goals. This includes delivering business logic, server scripts, and APIs that will be utilized by other developers and team members.

Backend engineers are committed to enhancing server performance, maintaining a secure and reliable infrastructure, and offering code libraries and data storage solutions that can be continually reused.

Backend engineers’ responsibilities comprise of:

  • Optimizing server settings for maximum efficiency.
  • Implementing defensive measures for protection.
  • Creating collections of code that can be reused.
  • Developing novel techniques for storing data.

Elaborate on the responsibilities of a backend engineer.

Backend developers need a particular skill set to ensure their efficiency in performing their tasks. Additionally, they are accountable for offering direction to the software development team.

Backend developers are accountable for creating the framework of a program. They produce server scripts and Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) to be utilized by user experience designers and front-end developers.

Specialists in backend engineering create the server-side of online applications, including web services and data storage. Furthermore, they may be accountable for executing business rules.

Competencies of a Backend Engineer

  • Proficient in PHP, Python, Ruby, Java, .NET, JavaScript, and other related programming languages.
  • Proficiency in Java, HTML5, and CSS3.
  • Capability to utilize SASS and/or Less on a server.
  • Acquaintance with server accessibility and regulations.
  • Proficient understanding of object-oriented programming and software architecture.
  • Mastery of databases.

Responsibilities of a Backend Engineer

Aside from the previously mentioned responsibilities, a backend engineer is also accountable for:

  • Regularly reviewing server code to search for ways to enhance performance is crucial.
  • Formulate and implement plans for data storage.
  • Compose unit tests and automate repetitive tasks to enhance the quality of the team’s code.
  • To gain a better understanding of the end user’s requirements, it is crucial to closely collaborate with the product and design team.
  • It is necessary to establish the functionality of the backend for the frontend applications.

Backend Terminology for Programming Languages

The languages used in backend development can be classified into two primary categories:

  1. Object-oriented Programming (OOP)

    This programming paradigm is based on classes and objects, which can store data and execute instructions. Data is stored in fields, and algorithms are implemented as processes.

    The aim is to break down complex programs into manageable chunks of code (classes) that can be reused to create new objects.

    Object-oriented programming (OOP) allows objects to communicate, respond to environmental changes and execute instructions from the user by exchanging messages.

    Some of the most commonly used object-oriented server-side languages include:
    • Python
    • Java
    • .NET
    • C++
  2. Functional Programming

    In the functional programming paradigm, functions are the fundamental building blocks of a program’s structure.

    Function definitions in this programming paradigm are not stated as a series of imperative statements. Rather, they are represented as trees of expressions that map an input value to an output value. Furthermore, names may be associated with functions, and functions may accept arguments and return other functions.

    Here are some examples of popular functional programming languages:
    • Clojure
    • Wolfram
    • Racket
    • Haskell

The following languages, based on these two programming paradigms, are most commonly used for backend development:

  1. PHP

    PHP (Hypertext Preprocessor) is a commonly used programming language for creating websites. It operates on the server and can be used to gather user data, which is then securely stored in a database.
  2. Python

    Since its inception, Python has become increasingly popular because of its flexibility and ease of use with emerging technologies like Machine Learning and the Internet of Things. The language’s primary advantage is its expansive standard library, which simplifies development for programmers. Python also has additional features that make development easier, including enhanced code readability, interoperability with other programming languages, and support for graphical user interfaces.
  3. Java

    Java is a popular language for developing web applications at the enterprise level and is also utilized in scientific, mobile, and desktop software. Its advantages include cross-platform capability and enhanced security. Developers can employ Java for connecting to databases, processing images, and working with networks.
  4. Ruby

    Ruby is a highly efficient and clear open-source dynamic language. It is incredibly useful as it requires fewer lines of code to build a web app, making it ideal for creating prototypes, websites, and mobile applications. Additionally, Ruby is compatible with numerous popular operating systems, including Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux.
  5. C#

    In recent years, C# has fallen in the ranking of top programming languages, primarily due to its widespread use in the development of Windows software, video games, and related fields. Nonetheless, C# still offers several advantages, such as shorter compilation time, improved interoperability, an organized and component-oriented language structure, and a broad range of libraries that simplify and enhance the programming experience for developers.

Essential Skills and Resources for Backend Developers

Backend specialists, including engineers and developers, often need some form of education or training to acquire the necessary expertise. Some have completed courses tailored to their chosen field, while others hold degrees in areas like computer science or advanced mathematics.

Due to the extensive range of backend development, the skillset required for a specific role may differ. However, it is anticipated that every backend specialist possesses a thorough understanding of the relevant languages, as well as the following abilities:

  • Proficiency in either deployment or hosting.
  • Familiarity with version control systems (Git and GitHub) is essential.
  • Understanding of accessibility standards and security regulations is necessary.
  • Ability to manage databases and supervise a hosting environment is crucial.
  • Having an understanding of application scalability to handle the diverse demands presented by high data flow is important.
  • Proficiency in front-end technologies (HTML, CSS, and JavaScript)
  • Understanding of data structures and algorithms is required.

Important Differences Between a Backend Engineer and a Backend Developer

Despite the similarities in their roles, the titles “backend engineer” and “backend developer” are frequently interchanged. Nevertheless, a backend engineer’s primary duty is to assess end-user requirements with business executives, providing them with a more comprehensive view of the application’s development needs.

The main responsibility of a Backend Developer is to execute the plans created by a Backend Engineer. They facilitate the development of software programs by utilizing their specialized functions and features.

It can be argued that engineers, not developers, are in charge of the overall design of the development process. The responsibility of the project’s backend engineers is to showcase the feasibility of the project’s architecture and the plans they have formulated.

Looking to urgently recruit a Backend Developer or Engineer? Utilise a Remote Control Device

There are several advantages of hiring remotely for this type of role. The most obvious benefit of remote recruitment is the access to a larger pool of potential candidates. Experienced backend engineers and developers can be sourced and employed from anywhere in the world. Global hiring enables employers to find skilled individuals in regions where they are in high demand, while also saving money on salaries. To find a capable backend developer or engineer for a job, you can check websites such as:

  • Works
  • GitHub
  • Upwork
  • Dice
  • Guru
  • WP Employed is a website which can be checked.
  • Works
  • is another website worth checking out.

If you need someone to establish the structure of your business application, then a Backend Engineer is the right choice. However, if you require additional support to work on the backend of your app as part of your development team, then hiring a Backend Developer would be the best option to handle the necessary tasks.

Both roles, in their own distinct manner, act as a liaison between internal team members and external clients.

The ideal candidate for this position must display a clear capability to explain the site’s functionality to clients who lack technical expertise. They should also be capable of providing project updates, generating technical documents and effectively communicating with stakeholders, both verbally and in writing. Furthermore, they must be self-driven, able to troubleshoot on their own and have excellent time management abilities, as unforeseen delays can arise during the project development process.

When beginning the recruitment process for your remote team, it is crucial to take into account the soft skills they possess. They must not only have technical expertise, but also be able to think on their feet, devising inventive solutions to any challenges that your app may encounter.

Locating the perfect candidate for the job is effortless in this age of instant global communication and access.

Where to Find the Top Backend Engineers and Developers

Works has a successful record in assisting businesses to hire high-quality remote IT professionals. Our all-encompassing service allows you to discover the perfect candidates for your technical needs, helping you to achieve your projects and objectives with the most suitable resources.

To recruit the best backend developers for your company and elevate your project, just follow these simple and effective steps:

  1. We are able to infer what’s on your mind.
  2. Spread the word and commence an outsourcing campaign for recruitment that will be successful.
  3. Don’t allow human resources to impede your progress.

In summary, the process is straightforward. We start by comprehending your company. After conversing with you and your team, we gain a clear understanding of your objectives. Once we have a precise concept of the requirements, our sourcers will begin searching for the most suitable candidates for your project and business. From that point, we will take over and aid you in interviewing potential new team members. This recruitment phase is just the beginning of our service. To guarantee that the best long-term fit is found, our outstanding HR team will schedule frequent meetings with you and the candidate to evaluate progress.

We can lend a hand in your pursuit of a skilled backend developer. Contact us without delay!


1. What is the current rate for a backend developer, and what is the expense associated with hiring one?

The salaries of backend developers are established by the same two primary factors as most other professions:
Qualification and Expertise:

  1. Their Professional Background
  2. The Location:

    As per PayScale, the average annual pay for a software developer in the United States is $61,042. Additionally, beginner-level backend developers with 1-4 years of experience can expect an average yearly salary of $70,965, while those with 5-9 years of experience can anticipate a salary of $87,500. These figures demonstrate the high wages commanded by IT experts in the United States.

    Remote back-end developers may expect to receive lower salaries than their on-site colleagues. For example, a senior back-end engineer in Argentina may anticipate a yearly salary ranging from $31,913 to $42,180, depending on the location. In Germany, an experienced back-end developer may expect an annual pay of around $64,450.
    The hourly charge for a backend developer can vary between $65 and $100.

2. What is the remuneration for a Backend Engineer?

The salary of a backend engineer is similar to that of a backend developer and is dependent on experience and location.
According to PayScale and Ziprecruiter, a Junior-level Backend Engineer in the United States earns an average compensation of $68,388 per year. This amount rises to an average of $95,864 for a Mid-level Backend Engineer and to over $137,369 for a Senior Backend Developer. Pay may differ depending on the country; for instance, a Senior Backend Developer in France can expect an annual income of $77,950.

3. Which is the optimal language for backend development?

The following eight are the most popular programming languages for backend development based on your specific requirements:

  • JavaScript utilized by Netflix
  • Python employed by Instagram.
  • Ruby is leveraged by the Github Development Team
  • Written in C#, which is the preferred programming language of Microsoft Visual Studio
  • PHP is utilized by WordPress.
  • Java, Twitter’s essential platform technology
  • Perl is a key technology for the BBC
  • Adobe Photoshop necessitates code written in the C++ language.

4. Is front end development more challenging than back end development?

Although front-end developers are typically seen as easier to train than back-end developers, the initial stages may indeed be straightforward for those starting out. Nevertheless, becoming an expert in either field necessitates equal dedication, hard work, and discipline. To hire skilled front-end developers, you may visit Works’ front-end developers.

5. What sets front-end development apart from back-end development?

The primary focus of front-end development is to program the visual components of the interface that the user interacts with. Conversely, back-end development deals with the server-side aspects of websites and applications that are typically not visible to the user. While both play vital roles in website development, they operate in distinct ways.

6. What is the Best Programming Language for Back-end Development?

Selecting the ideal programming language for a project is dependent on its specific demands and development phase. While certain languages may be more prevalent, the most appropriate language for a given task should be chosen based on its effectiveness and practicality. To learn about the top-performing programming languages in 2023, consider referring to this useful handbook.

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