Recruiting and programming languages

There’s an eternal flame war between programmers, which programming language is the best. For the purpose of developing server side of web applications, the most popular programming languages at the moment are the three dynamic lanugages: PHP, Python, and Ruby.

Infographic: PHP vs. Python vs. Ruby

Udemy has put together an infographic that compares Ruby, PHP and Python. This looks (briefly) at the history, popularity, ease of use, demand for programmers, benchmarks, and more for each language. If you’re job-hunting, Udemy says that you probably want to know PHP above Ruby or Python.


All good programmers that I know, are familiar with at least half a dozen programming languages and they are all capable of learning a new programming language in the matter of weeks. So the times of one language to rule them all are long gone. But from my experience, the choice of the programming language greatly influences your hiring process.

If you are a PHP shop, you’ll be flooded with applications. Everybody seems to know PHP. When I was hiring PHP developers, I was always more interested in their knowledge of other programming languages, than in applicants’ PHP experience. A guy/girl who only knows PHP is (almost) by definition a lousy programmer. (S)he might do the job, but the resulting code will be unmaintainable, unscalable, and error prone.

If you are a Ruby shop, you’ll have to put a Ruby boot camp in place. At least in Slovenia, there are so few Ruby developers that there’s no other option but to raise them yourself. Unrelated to that, I always look for the knowledge of Ruby when I’m hiring JavaScript people. IMHO there’s quite a strong correlation between being a good JavaScript developer and being a Ruby developer. No idea why?

If you are a Python shop (like Zemanta is), you get a lot of people whose origin is in Java/C/C++. I don’t have any good explanation, but it seems that Python is quite compatible with the mindset of Java/C/C++ programmers. And since Java/C/C++ programmers are usually very good, I think that is quite an advantage of Python over PHP and Ruby.

What’s your experience? Does programming language influences how recruiting is done?

2 thoughts on “Recruiting and programming languages

  1. Pingback: The old problem « Polyglot Posturings

  2. Pingback: What language is best for your new development?

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