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How To Hire PHP Developers

Hire PHP Developers

Everything you need to know about hiring PHP developers and PHP outsourcing services: hourly rates, salaries, outsourcing costs.

What is PHP programming?

Over the years PHP programming has extended its functionality and transformed into one of the most highly used scripting languages. Due to its effectiveness and flexibility it offers comfortability in the development process, allowing users to build not only simple software but also complex and highly scalable applications. That is why PHP has become the fifth most popular programming language in the world.

Such versatility offered many IT specialists room for growth, thus making PHP coders some of the most demanded coders in the market. A coder, who is a PHP developer and is knowledgeable enough to apply all the functionalities that PHP offers, has infinite opportunities for hire.

What Are The Most Popular PHP Frameworks Among PHP Web Developers?

When developing websites or applications from scratch, many coding processes may repeat. So instead of spending time on the recreation of repeatable functions and speed up the process, developers use software frameworks that provide a basic structure to build upon. There are a number of PHP frameworks that are highly useful because of their ability to facilitate offshore PHP application development.


Laravel is one of the most advanced PHP frameworks and arguably the most famous one. It is recognized for its understandable syntax and, most importantly, is able to work with complex web applications and at a faster pace than other frameworks. Additionally, Laravel offers a number of security features, including password reset, authentication, email verification, authorization, and encryption.

This PHP framework diminishes the complexity of common tasks, such as queuing, sessions, or routing, which highly facilitates the process of developing. It offers a number of handy tools that help to automate repetitive functions. As an illustration, Packalyst, the collection of Laravel packages, provides more than 15,000 packages good PHP developers can utilize for their projects.


Symfony has been used by developers for over a decade and has gained great trust among them. It offers a range of libraries and tools that help programmers perform a variety of functions, such as templating, configuration, and authentication. It has 4,000 packages to download and use in assignments. As an advantage, Symfony framework includes a testing function that helps developers check if the project runs smoothly.

This PHP framework is perfect for enterprise projects that are expected to be scalable, because of its flexibility and ease to install in the majority of platforms. Moreover, in comparison to other frameworks, it supports most of the databases, including Oracle, Drizzle, MySQL, and others.


CodeIgniter is a simple but powerful PHP framework known for its speed, small footprint, and minimal configuration requisites. It would be a perfect choice for those who want to start with PHP frameworks, as it is very easy to learn, but, at the same time, it offers a number of great extensions to use in projects.

This PHP framework has a wide library if you need to learn some tricks on how to get the most out of the platform. Its community offers a vast scope of CodeIgniter tutorials and includes a forum.

Zend Framework or Laminas Project

Zend would be a perfect choice for complex website building, but it is considered to be one of the most difficult PHP frameworks to learn. Despite a great variety of tools and more than 570 million installations, Zend is quite challenging for beginners. However, it offers the integration of external libraries that may be of considerable use. Its community has active forums and Slack groups for constant support.


CakePHP was the first PHP MVC framework and has been improving since its inception. This framework is easy to learn and install, because only a web server and a copy of a framework is required. Its most important features include proper class inheritance, validation, security, and improved modularity. The security area includes input validation, cross-site request forgery protection, cross-site scripting protection, and SQL injection prevention.

Yii 2.0

Yii 2.0 is a component-based PHP framework, which is most applicable when building large-scale, complex applications such as CMS, e-commerce projects, forums, portals, etc. Yii 2.0, the newest version of Yii, embraces the latest technologies and protocols, offering upgraded, ready-to-use functionalities such as RESTful API development support, query builders and ActiveRecord for databases, and applies the latest features of the PHP programming language (for example, traits and namespaces). Additionally, this framework is highly extensible, as it allows customizing or replacing almost every piece of code’s core.

PHP Developer Hiring & Screening

Undoubtedly, the choice to outsource PHP development has an immense number of benefits; however, having such a wide range of possibilities to choose from presents its own difficulties. Every business needs a PHP specialist with a specific skill set that will meet all the necessary requirements and successfully perform all the expected tasks.

How To Hire A Good Web Developer

Hiring a PHP developer may be a difficult procedure, especially for startups or small businesses if the budget is tight. Finding appropriate specialists will completely depend on the long-term success of your project, so even if it is a tedious job to do, it has to be performed with excellence. Only using reliable sources, correct techniques and tactics will help you find a dedicated PHP developer. As a matter of fact, one of the safest and efficient ways to hire PHP developers is considered through outsourcing services. Here are some steps you should take into consideration when you are planning to hire PHP coders.

Create An Attractive Job Description

First things first, in order to find a devoted PHP developer, put the most clarity in the job description as possible. You should specify in detail who your perfect candidate is and what skill set he/she has to possess to meet the needs of your company. Employers usually include:

  • basic knowledge of other programming languages, such as HTML, JavaScript, and CSS;
  • a deep knowledge of the PHP frameworks, such as Laravel, Symfony, CodeIgniter, Zend, and CakePHP;
  • knowledge of how to write scalable, secure backend code that meets coding standards for a platform;
  • ability to work with other team members;
  • ability to write unit and functional tests.

Obviously, the list of your requirements may differ, but make sure to clearly and accurately state and describe what is the work of a PHP developer in your company.

Where To Hire PHP Programmers

There are multiple places where you can find a devoted candidate according to what you are looking for. Choosing the perfect recruiting website is essential for your business success.

Traditional job portals

If your time is limited, traditional job websites may help you find a PHP developer according to your requirements. These include LinkedIn Jobs, Indeed, Glassdoor, Careerbuilder, and Monster.

Freelance marketplaces

Many PHP freelance developers out there are looking for projects like yours. If your business allows onboarding freelancers, then you should try such platforms as Upwork and Fiverr. The most famous sites for finding PHP coders are Toptal, Hired, Stack Overflow, and GitHub.

Remote-first forums

There are a number of platforms where you can look for candidates that will work remotely for your business. These include such websites as, Remotive, and WWR, all of which are quite popular among PHP developer roles.

PHP outsourcing companies

This is the fastest and most cost-effective way to hire a PHP developer to support your team. Companies already have what you are looking for and are waiting for you to hire their best candidates. It is worth mentioning that East European countries like Ukraine, Poland, and Belarus are the favorite countries to be outsourced.


Screening is when you get the chance to test the skills and knowledge of the candidates, and see whether they have all the required PHP skills to successfully meet your business needs. There is a great amount of pre-employment testing software available to help you perform prosperous screening. Obviously, you have to screen your potential candidates according to the specifics of the role; however, here are some methods that are widely used during this process:

  • LogicBox (AI-based platforms with pseudo coding)
  • Programming tasks
  • Audio/video questions
  • Coding stimulators
  • Multiple choice/answer questions
  • Multiple answer questions

It is crucial for a developer to be flexible with PHP functionalities. These methods should bring you clarity on your candidate’s abilities, including the quality of his/her code and the performance during specific cases. Make sure your test demonstrates the professional traits of your company; its difficulty should reflect the developer’s level and provide the possibility to use all the tools he/she may need when working in a natural programming environment. Based on the results, you can select your best fit and proceed with the interviewing step.


After selecting the best-skilled candidates, you will interview only relevant PHP coders. The interviews usually include questions about their experience, past projects, and portfolio. Your questions must be based on the requirements of the job description to see if the candidate can fit it. It is very much advisable to clarify any points that you might be concerned about. Moreover, it is crucial to evaluate his/her existing knowledge base, as well as learning skills, to understand if the candidate is capable of picking up new knowledge along the way. Never forget to evaluate the communication skills of the potential employee as well as his/her attitude.

Ask The Candidate The Right Questions On The Interview

Relying on the CV is not enough; it is always advisable to challenge the candidate to prove they possess all the skills mentioned. Moreover, asking the right questions will define the candidate’s thinking process and his/her approach to solving problems. Here are some qualifications you should not omit when conducting an interview:

Check For A Technical Background

Asking such questions is a good way to start the interview. You may ask about previous work experience, including his/her responsibilities within each position. Here you may expect to gather the information about the following:

  • Basic programming knowledge
  • PHP knowledge and skills
  • Project experience

Candidates should be able to discuss his/her technical background and work. Additionally, it is advisable to ask him/her to show examples of the past or present projects.

Ask About Completed Certifications And Courses

PHP scripting language has a wide range of possibilities for growth; thus, becoming a certified PHP developer brings a lot of career opportunities and benefits. Asking about certifications and courses may validate the professional’s PHP skills and formalize the knowledge of the language. One of the most advisable to possess is PHP framework certifications.

Don’t Forget About The Soft Skills

Before onboarding new specialists into the workflow, it is important to confirm their soft skills too. This will give you clarity on how the candidate will interact with other team members and communicate his/her needs or ideas. Pay attention to the potential employee’s attitude to identify how he/she will respond to stressful situations and his/her ability and openness to learn new skills along the way. It may be of interest that there are recruiting tools to help identify soft skills, including problem-solving skills and communication skills.

PHP Developers’ Hourly Rates And Salaries

Recently, many have been arguing that PHP is a “dead language” or “a language of the past” because of the rapid evolution of the technology market. Contrarily, its versatile nature and high compatibility prove that the language is here to stay for a long time. In fact, titan companies such as Wikipedia, Facebook, Yahoo, Mailchimp, WordPress, and Flickr, apart from 79% of the websites, are using PHP programming language for their components. Not bad for a “dead language”, right?

PHP Programming Language Demand

The demand for a competent PHP programmer is high for both start-ups and established businesses. According to data from, entry-level PHP developers are 834% more in demand since January 2020. As a result, this job position occupies first place in The 10 Fastest-Rising Tech Jobs.

PHP Freelancers

PHP freelancers usually work for several companies at once as contract laborers rather than permanent employees. This variant works best for small and short-term projects, as you do not obtain long-term commitment with the freelancer. As PHP freelancers work independently and possess time flexibility, they have the potential to make quite a bit of money.

According to CodeMentor report, an average freelancer income of a PHP developer per hour ranges from $60 to $100 depending on experience.

PHP Developer Hourly Rate Distribution

To make an estimate comparison, here is some information about hourly rates of freelance PHP developers from other countries:

  • Eastern Europe: ranging from $25 to $50
  • Asia: ranging from $18 to $40
  • Latin America: ranging from $35 to $70
  • Africa: ranging from $15 to $40

Local Full-Time PHP Developers

Hiring local PHP full-time developers is beneficial when you need a PHP programmer for a long-term commitment. It may take more time to find a dedicated PHP programmer, as you are limited in the location; however, you may find a specialist who will take time to completely understand your company processes to the core and will participate in all the necessary projects. There is a great amount of talented developers who possess the required skills and are willing to work as full-time employees.

Average PHP Developer Salary In The United States

There are a number of factors that influence the average salary of PHP developers in the United States. Taking into consideration the level of experience, location, additional skills mastering, etc., the numbers may vary depending on the source.

According to Glassdoor, the average salary of a PHP developer in the United States is $73k per year.

Php Developers Salaries in United States

However, PayScale reports that the average salary of a PHP coder is $65k per year.

Average PHP Developer Salary

The highest PHP developer salary presented in the report is $90k per year.

Average base salary

Differences In Rates By Experience

Taking into consideration the experience level of PHP developers, sources estimate relatively the same salary per year.

Entry-level or Junior PHP developers are those who have two or three years of experience, apart from education, and in most cases he/she will be asked to write a basic code. The average salary of a Junior PHP developer in the United States is as follows:

  • Glassdoor: $64k per year, ranging from $45k to $90k.
  • com: $63k per year, ranging from $56k to $71k.

Senior-level PHP developers have more than 3 years of experience. Generally, they can work without supervision and are likely to train entry-level developers. The average salary of a Senior-level PHP developer in the United States is as follows:

  • Glassdoor: $92k per year, ranging from $68k to $128k.
  • PayScale: $88k, ranging from $61k to $121k.

It's worth emphasizing that due to PayScale's research, you have to take into account that PHP developer rates differ according to skills and experience.

Pay by experience PHP Developers

If to compare the average hourly rate with other group of countries, according to CodeMentor the results lead to the following numbers:

Eastern Europe

Junior: ranging from $61 to $80

Mid-level: ranging from $61 to $80

Senior: ranging from $81 to $100


Junior: ranging from $41 to $60

Mid-level: ranging from $41 to $60

Senior: ranging from $61 to $80

Latin America

Junior: ranging from $41 to $60

Mid-level: ranging from $61 to $80

Senior: ranging from $61 to $80


Junior: ranging from $41 to $60

Mid-level: ranging from $41 to $60

Senior: ranging from $81 to $100

Full-Time Remote PHP Developers

Eastern Europe is one of the most competitive locations for outsourcing PHP developers, as PHP is considered to be one of the most popular scripting languages among coders. In fact, some PHP frameworks were developed by Eastern Europeans (Yii 2.0, for example).

PHP is considered the most common programming language among Ukrainian coders. Beginners start their programming career by learning PHP and proceed to improve their skills. Another reason why PHP programmers from Ukraine are so required is because of the high level of English proficiency, which makes the cooperation smooth and productive.

Let’s compare the average salary in Ukraine to the numbers that we know from the United States.

According to, the largest developer community in Ukraine, the average salary of a PHP programmer in Ukraine is $3,800 per month, ranging from $3,300 to $4,400, equalling approximately $45k per year. This is the net salary of Ukrainian developers, in contrast to the United States hiring market.

Developers salaries

Djinni research data proves that the hiring market for PHP developers is thriving. Below you can see how many offers a candidate received with a particular salary. Each column shows the number of offers; in other words, it is the demand level indicator. The higher the column, the more likely the specialists will be offered a role. According to this data, the specialists with $1.5k salaries have the highest demand.

Salaries PHP Kyiv

Now that we see the numbers, it's fair to conclude that the PHP scope in the future and the hiring market both in Ukraine and the United States is only getting wider. Where you plan to hire a PHP developer only depends on how much money you are willing to spend.

What Are The Benefits Of Hiring PHP Developers In Ukraine?

The IT industry is flourishing in Ukraine and has grown by 27% since 2017, according to the research data. Through the years, Ukrainian developers have gained an outstanding worldwide reputation as being qualified and highly skilled specialists. Stack Overflow reports that there are more than 166,000 developers in Ukraine, and, because of the competent technical education, this number is growing year by year.

  • In Ukraine, PHP is among the most popular programming languages, which include Java (26.3%), C# (15.4%), JavaScript (13.8%), PHP (13.1%) and Python (8%). Nineteen percent of all developers have more than 7 years of experience; however, the specialists are rather young, with the average age ranging from 21 to 29, and nearly 80% possess an intermediate level of English. In fact, having read the numbers in the previous section, Ukrainian programmers generally are satisfied with their salaries.
  • Ukrainian developers possess a high command of English proficiency. As a matter of fact, 34% of Ukrainian developers can communicate in English at an upper-intermediate level. Many Ukrainian developers work with international businesses in the United States or European countries, which transformed English proficiency into a requirement.
  • Hiring teams of PHP developers from Ukraine offers flexibility. There is no need to provide financial compensation if you decide to stop working with the developer. You can start and finish with your Ukrainian developers team any time that you need, without any financial or employment law risks. Moreover, if you decide to hire a developer through offshore companies, you do not have to learn the local employment procedures.
  • Ukrainian employment taxes are much lower than they are in such countries as the UK, Netherlands or Germany, which means that if you decide to hire a developer from Ukraine, you will have to pay only 5% of the salary and $160 per year for social security.
  • Ukraine is known for its outstanding technical education. More than 36k students graduate in IT-related fields per year. Leading Ukrainian universities and companies create conferences and courses to support this trend and proceed with the knowledge exchange between engineers.

Why Should You Outsource PHP Web Development?

If looking for a full-time PHP developer is not in your plans, or you do not feel like spending resources for operational costs if you need a whole PHP development team, then your best solution is to outsource PHP development from an experienced offshore PHP development company.

As an illustration, your business has a hot project where Laravel skills are required. Your fastest and cheapest option would be to hire an offshore Laravel developer to complete the needed tasks. This is what outsourcing is all about.

Sometimes the in-house team does not possess the necessary expertise for a certain task or project. You can hire an offshore PHP development company, who already found the best candidates who will successfully complete the project, and outsource the necessary specialist.

Generally, businesses prefer to invest in offshore PHP development companies, as they want to liberate resources for conducting their core business activities. So instead of devoting your IT team to a PHP project, outsource a PHP developer and create much more benefit for your company.

Support For Your Team

There is no doubt that your business has a talented and highly skilled IT team, but they probably need some support in projects. This is a good reason to benefit from an offshore PHP developer. Your in-house team can work on long-term projects while the incorporated programmer can speed up the pace with hot deadlines or by taking care of important short-term projects.

To outsource a PHP programmer means to temporarily onboard a team member who will work according to your company's requirements. It depends on what tasks you will ask the professional to perform and how he/she communicates with the in-house team during the project.

Cost Efficiency

Outsourcing is a much cheaper way to complete certain projects. Instead of spending resources on a full-time employee search, it is more beneficial to contact a PHP developer network that will provide you with the perfect candidate that will meet all your requirements. You are always allowed to communicate exactly what you expect to be done; thus, you will pay for exactly what you asked for.

Moreover, outsourcing to other countries such as Ukraine will save you great amounts of money, as the services are cheaper, but the quality remains high. Before onboarding the candidate, you can check if he/she has all the necessary skills for the execution of your project. At the end of the day, it's quality that really matters.

Businesses often encounter some trouble hiring employees, as it requires a lot of paperwork. With outsourcing there is no need to worry about taxes, insurance, vacation and paid leave. Thus, there are not only fewer legal issues but also fewer paid labor responsibilities. The cost efficiency of outsourcing is tremendous.

Access To A Global Pool Of Talent

It is necessary to mention the possibility to choose among the best global PHP talent while outsourcing. The PHP programming language is widely used worldwide and has an extremely large community of followers. This is probably one of the biggest perks of outsourcing, as you are not limited to work only with in-person providers, and you can look for your perfect candidate in any part of the world.


It would be fair to conclude that outsourcing PHP development is one of the most beneficial ways to hire offshore PHP developers. You will be provided with specialists that are able to deliver the skills your business requires and complete your projects on time. It offers you the opportunity to extend your in-house team with a dedicated professional who will provide quality offshore PHP application development supporting your team, or, through offshore PHP development companies, you can hire a whole team of dedicated PHP developers who will take care of your project. Your business will benefit from the full potential of the extensive expertise of coders with more cost efficiency.

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Written by

Natalia Boyarskaya

Starting from 2012, Nataly is working as a recruiter in the IT industry and helps companies from the US and Western Europe to staff their teams with highly skilled professionals from Eastern Europe.

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    Comments (1)

    • user avatar

      Thanks for sharing such a valuable content. It is difficult for the small business owner to hire a full time web developer.


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