What Does a Java Full Stack Developer Do?

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 4 October 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Software developers usually start their coding career with one or two programming languages. As they gain experience and exposure, they acquire programming skills in more languages and multiple technologies. Full-stack developer in Java is one career option for those who have learnt or acquired knowledge of both front-end and back-end Java technologies. In this article, we examine what front-end and back-end technologies are, what a Java full-stack developer is, the skills needed to become one and salary information.

What is a full-stack developer for Java?

A full-stack developer for Java is an expert who knows how to work with full-stack tools and frameworks compatible with Java. Their skills centre around core Java and the Java ecosystem. Their expertise lies in working with the complete Java suite of technologies, including web architecture, databases, REST API and servlets that are required to build websites and apps.

What does a Java full-stack developer do?

A Java full-stack developer is an individual contributor who does the work of many professionals. They develop websites and applications, and they also interact with clients to gather requirements. The main duties and responsibilities of a Java full-stack developer are to:

  • design back-end architecture using multiple technologies

  • build front-end technologies to create user interfaces

  • build flexible applications and websites as per client and end-user preferences

  • create an API based on the application

  • create strong databases and servers that can work without any disruption

  • collaborate with other departments, clients and professionals to integrate the software with other applications

What is front-end development?

In IT terminology, front-end development is called client-side programming. These are all the activities that create a website's visual aspects for users to see and experience. For example, you may log in to websites, read content, play videos or book tickets. Front-end developers do the programming that makes all this possible. Crucial skills for front-end development are HTML, CSS, JavaScript and UI and UX design.

What is back-end development?

When users access a particular feature in a website, many simultaneous things happen in the server to give them what they want. Back-end development, also referred to as server side programming, is a series of instructions that make this possible. Back-end developers are responsible for all programming in the server and database. The components of back-end development are languages, databases and frameworks. Some crucial back-end programming languages are .Net, Java, Ruby, Python, PHP, Erland and Node.js.

Related: Frontend vs. Backend Development: What Is the Difference?

What is full-stack development?

Full-stack is a combination of both front-end and back-end development. You can become an expert with years of experience or through learning platforms and certification courses. A full-stack developer works on both the client-side and server-side programming. Their skill levels are such that they can shift from one language to another or from one technology to another without difficulty. Some popular stacks are Java Stack, MEAN stack, MERN stack, Django stack and LAMP stack.

Related: What Is a Full Stack Developer? Benefits and Career Advice

What are the basic skills required to become a Java full-stack developer?

A Java full-stack developer is by default a specialised Java developer. They may also have expert-level skills in Core Java which is the Java Standard Edition. If you want to become a Java full-stack developer, consider adding the following to your skill set:

HTML and CSS

HTML and CSS are two of the fundamental skills required for web development. Both HTML and CSS are crucial for creating an effective and functional front-end. A Java full-stack developer may have an expert-level knowledge of both these languages.

JavaScript

Java full-stack developers benefit greatly from knowing JavaScript thoroughly. It is important, as it is an object-oriented programming language. Employers may state it as a mandatory skill in their job requirement, as it is used to write both front-end and back-end code.

Back-end languages

A Java full-stack developer's mastery over back-end programming languages helps them to code for the server-side. Examples of back-end languages include Python, PHP and Ruby. Knowledge of Python is crucial as many clients prefer it due to its simple syntax and large framework.

Java Server Pages

Java Server Pages is a back-end technology that helps with server-side processing. You can create web applications with JSP using Java as the programming language. It is another indispensable technology that a Java full-stack developer may benefit from learning.

Servlets

Servlets is a technology in Java programming that can extend the scope and capability of servers that host web applications. Servlets collect input from the user, gather information from the database and then load dynamic content. It is important to learn Servlets if you want to become a Java full-stack developer.

Java control systems

Another important skill a Java full-stack developer has to learn is Java control system. It helps them to track and manage any changes they make during application development. Git is one of the control systems that allows every member to work simultaneously. It tracks the changes, so that one does not accidentally erase or overwrite another team member's code.

Databases

Java full-stack developers often use databases. A database is a structured collection of information that is stored on a server. When your website has to store or retrieve information, developers do it through a database. A good full-stack developer not only knows how to implement databases into their applications, but also to monitor these databases to ensure optimum performance.

Software and web architecture

Not all Java programmers may be experienced in software architecture, which is an important phase in the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). A Java full-stack developer knows how to structure the entire code. They separate the files and track and structure the data in the databases to manage future tasks easily. You can consider acquiring software and web architecture skills to become one.

Frameworks

Spring is popular among the available frameworks for Java. Clients prefer frameworks like Spring MVC, Spring Cloud and Spring Boot, as they simplify coding in Java. By using Spring, developers can create high-quality, reusable and functional code.

APIs and libraries

Java has a good assortment of open source libraries and APIs. Code libraries are a collection of code that is designed to be used by multiple programs. Libraries are used so that developers can avoid building their programs from scratch. Developers can download a pre-made library and complete the relevant parts of their project. Popular front-end libraries include React, Svelte, Inferno, Animate, Normalize and Pure. Working knowledge in APIs and libraries is another essential skill for Java full-stack developers.

Related: 15 Important Java Developer Skills (And How To Improve)

How much time does it take to become a Java full-stack developer?

There are two ways to become a Java full-stack developer:

  • Many developers become one by gaining knowledge and experience working in both front-end and back-end technologies. In this process, they also become proficient to learn the core language, its syntax, structure, design and implementation. A Java full-stack developer also has to be proficient in design patterns, J2EE and object-oriented design. It could take ten years of experience, lots of coding and practise before a developer can become an expert Java full-stack developer.

  • A developer after two years of working in a Java based ecosystem can attend programs that teach full-stack development skills. Most companies may prefer people with good real-word work experience, while there are some which consider candidates who have the required certifications.

Related: How To Become a Web Developer

Why are Java full-stack developer jobs in demand?

Java full-stack developers are professionals with a varied range of skills. This expertise allows them to work independently with minimal support. With their experience, they can absorb and gain knowledge quickly in other relevant technologies, too. They can identify problems, bugs and glitches in both front-end and back-end programming, and resolve them faster.

Their independence allows them to optimise and prioritise their schedules based on the SDLC document. They can seamlessly work with clients during the planning, implementation and testing stages of the SDLC. They are goal-oriented and understand what a client and an end-user expect from a website or an application. Hence, these professionals are in high demand.

Who employs a Java full-stack developer?

Start-ups, small businesses and web designing companies prefer to hire one Java full-stack developer instead of multiple programmers. In a start-up, they may start as a generalist and move on to specialised roles as the company grows. Big companies hire Java full-stack developers as it gives the team leads and managers a little more flexibility in resource allocation for other projects. Large companies look at Java full-stack developers as prospective managers as their range of skills can help manage and train large teams.

How much does a Java full-stack developer make?

Java full-stack development is a profession which can provide many lucrative work opportunities. As a developer, your pay may depend on factors like experience, credentials and expertise. The average base salary of a Java full-stack developer is ₹7,38,138 per year.

Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organisation and a candidate's experience, academic background and location.

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