How to hire an iOS developer

  • 7 min
  • Oct 10, 2019
Dasha D.

Dasha D.


Oleksandra I.

Oleksandra I.

Head of Product Management Office


With the popularity of iOS development comes increased competition for talented developers who can build the apps your company needs. While there’s no silver bullet to help you immediately find the right person for the job, here are a few things to keep in mind when you’re hiring an iOS developer.

What to look for in an iOS developer?

Finding a skilled and experienced iOS developer can be hard. In this post, we describe the main things to consider when hiring an iOS developer and how to evaluate a developer’s qualifications, including their hard and soft skills. 

Skill set 

It’s not easy to give a universal description of an iOS developer’s ideal knowledge and skills. However, general knowledge of the following is required to become an iOS developer:

ios developer for hire

Some IT companies stick to a three-level model – junior, middle, senior – to make it easier to evaluate a developer’s expertise. It’s popular to define each level with a set of specific requirements including experience, skill set, and knowledge. Let’s consider these levels in detail.

Junior iOS developer

This is the entry level for iOS developers. Junior iOS developers have gotten their knowledge at university or through specialized courses and have a basic understanding of programming languages and iOS frameworks. At work, junior iOS developers generally assist and learn from their more experienced colleagues. It usually takes them a year or two to level up. During this time, they focus on getting more knowledge and developing their skills.

Middle iOS developer

After working on a variety of projects, developers get promoted to a more advanced level called middle iOS developer. As a rule, middle developers have from two to four years of development experience. Middle developers work on projects more independently. Also, they have more knowledge of the UI/UX design of apps. In addition to the knowledge of a junior iOS developer, a middle developer has:

  • The ability to develop software in both the Objective-C and Swift programming languages
  • An understanding of SQLite, Core Data, and offline caching logic
  • Knowledge of concurrency and asynchronous programming in iOS
  • Experience with Core Location
  • Experience with Store Kit and Map Kit
  • An understanding of how push notifications work
  • An understanding of the app signing process and how to deploy apps to App Store Connect

Senior iOS developer

A senior iOS developer has over five years of experience. They have taken part in many projects and submitted tons of code, have experience with automated deployment processes, and have excellent organizational and leadership skills. Senior iOS developers deal with complicated tasks and architecture. Typically, the responsibilities of a senior-level position include not only coding and designing but also testing, debugging, and reviewing code, integrating APIs, and handling security matters. What’s more, a big part of their work includes:

  • Mentoring junior and middle developers
  • Preparing technical documentation for further application development
  • Defining and managing development standards according to industry best practices and trends
  • Taking part in job interviews to validate candidates according to project requirements
  • Building the development team workflow
  • Defining and implementing GitFlow


Another important factor to pay attention to is a developer’s portfolio. A candidate’s portfolio will show both their experience and expertise. It will also show you if the candidate has ever dealt with an app similar to yours. If possible, check out apps or websites the developer has worked on. This way you’ll be able to evaluate their overall proficiency as well as their attention to detail. Moreover, you can ask for a list of clients to get feedback from them directly. Sometimes, developers add projects and clients to their resumes whom they’ve never worked with. By confirming past experience, you can see if a candidate is trustworthy.

Moreover, you can find a developer’s portfolio on Stack Overflow. This professional portal provides wonderful exposure to a global community where iOS developers can learn, share their experience and knowledge, and build their careers.

Soft skills

The business we’re in is more sociological than technological, more dependent on workers’ abilities to communicate with each other than their abilities to communicate with machines.

Tom DeMarco, an American software engineer, author, and software engineering consultant

Not only technical skills matter; soft skills are of the utmost importance in terms of teamwork and achieving goals. The 2019 Global Talent Trends report by LinkedIn showed that 92 percent of recruiters and hiring managers agree that candidates with strong soft skills are more important than those with hard skills. 

hire ios developer

Based on exclusive LinkedIn data, LinkedIn Learning conducted research on the most valuable soft skills in 2019 that HR managers have a hard time finding. The skills that most help businesses serve their clients and customers better include persuasion, adaptability, time management, and collaboration. Below, we outline some of the most important soft skills and why they matter for developers:

  • Teamwork. Although developers spend most of their time working independently, they still work in a team to achieve a common goal. Good collaboration influences the project’s success, team spirit, and role distribution.
  • Empathy. In the workplace, empathy means being respectful of colleagues and showing that you care. It’s especially relevant during the refactoring process, when developers comment and rewrite somebody else’s code.
  • Open-mindedness. An open-minded developer can easily adapt to the ever-changing environment of their profession. Not only can they understand and listen to the opinions of others, they can learn continuously, facilitating their work.
  • Proactivity. Proactive people look for opportunities to create and don’t focus on their limitations. To put it simply, they make things happen, take the lead, and guide others. This is the type of worker you want to see in your team.

Cultural fit

Cultural fit is becoming more and more important when it comes to choosing candidates. No matter how skillful and proactive a candidate is, there’s still a risk they won’t fit your team and share the same values. The most successful employees know how to achieve the company’s goals while sticking to the company’s values. 

It’s worth mentioning that sometimes differences in culture lead to misunderstandings, prejudice, language barriers, and, consequently, halts in work. A team with a similar mentality, as a rule, is more productive and delivers faster. So when the time comes to find a developer, try to choose among applicants who live in the same region as you.

Where to find an iOS developer? 

There are many sites where you can look for a candidate. Your choice should be based on a multitude of factors:

  • How quickly you need to hire an iOS developer
  • Whether or not you’re equipped to test technical skills
  • How many iOS developers you need to bring on
  • What experience your iOS developer needs to have 
  • What your budget constraints are
  • Your openness to remote workers

The last factor plays a determining role, defining where exactly you need to look for a professional. 

If you’re looking for an in-house developer or freelancer, visit professional job websites like Glassdoor, LinkedIn ProFinder, and GitHub Jobs, which provide employers with qualified and experienced iOS developers for hire.

If you’re interested in a team or outsourced company, go through professional matching services like TopTal or Upwork, or visit Clutch to check lists of established software companies with verified reviews.

Summing up

We hope this article will help you hire an iOS developer who is the right fit for your company. Define the level of proficiency you’re looking for, make a list of requirements and qualifications, look at specialized sites, visit technical events, and choose wisely. 



Dasha D.

Dasha D.


Oleksandra I.

Oleksandra I.

Head of Product Management Office

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Comments (1)
sachin sangle
sachin sangle over 4 years ago
Nice post about hiring developers, Dasha! One thing I really got out of it that developer’s portfolio. Again, thanks and keep up the good work, it’s very helpful.

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