OpenSense Labs: The ideal Drupal 9 developer

Drupal CMS

The ideal Drupal 9 developer
Maitreayee Bora
Fri, 01/28/2022 – 16:36

Drupal can be seen emerging as one of the leading CMS for organizations today. Therefore, organizations are presently migrating to the latest released version of Drupal 9. Are you also planning to do the same? But for that, you’ll need the help of Drupal 9 experts. So, do you know exactly what is the expertise of a Drupal 9 developer based on which you can trust them to assist you with the migration process? This article helps you with all the required information and knowledge that can further enable you to choose the right Drupal 9 developer.  

Who can be your ideal Drupal 9 developer? 

This is when the real challenge begins. You’ll have to choose the best Drupal 9 developer for the migration process which is the need of the hour. So, how will you make the right choice? It’s something to ponder about. Well, without taking much of your time, let me just help you catch on to the expertise that a Drupal 9 developer should possess.  

Knowing the basics is a must 

If you want to experience a successful migration then you must find a Drupal 9 developer who is well versed with the very Drupal basics. To be more precise, he or she should be fully aware of the recent Drupal developments, latest and upcoming Drupal releases such as Drupal 9.1, Drupal 9.2, and Drupal 9.3 which were released recently and about the upcoming release of Drupal 9.4 and Drupal 10 in  2022. Keeping in mind about the new Olivero frontend theme which was added in Drupal 9.1.0 can be of great benefit for the Drupal 9 developers. Improvements in installer performance and frontend performance, enhanced security provisions, various additions to Claro administration theme, support for WebP image format, and support for CKEditor 5 are some of the recent developments that have happened in Drupal 9 minor releases and that every Drupal 9 developer should know about when building and maintaining a Drupal 9 site.

Moving forward let me now talk about the upgrade tools. So, it is essentially important for a Drupal 9 developer to be well equipped with knowledge on the right tools that are required in the Drupal 9 upgrade process. You can read more about Drupal 9 upgrade tools here.

And finally, how can we forget about the significant new Drupal 9 features? The new capabilities added to Drupal 9 such as replacing Symfony 3 with Symfony 4, removing the support for deprecated codes in D8, and replacing Panelizer with the Layout Builder and others should be in the know-how of the Drupal 9 developers at the time of migration. 

Well certified professional

It’s quite obvious that Acquia-certified professionals are mostly preferred. So, you’ll have to prioritize Drupal 9 developers who are awarded Acquia’s Drupal development, site building, front-end development, and backend development certifications for their great work efficiency.

Let me also tell you that we at OpenSense Labs have our own proficient Acquia-certified Drupal developers. And most proudly, we have an Acquia Certified Drupal 9 developer, Pritish Kumar, who is a Technical Lead at OpenSense Labs. 

Good knowledge of PHP, & PHP Frameworks

As we are familiar with the fact that Drupal 7 was built using PHP, and Drupal 8 was built using Symfony, (a PHP framework), therefore, it’s important for a Drupal 9 developer to be well aware of PHP and PHP frameworks. Also, to set up a Drupal database, it is essential to have a proper understanding of MySQL. So, these are some of the expertise which a Drupal 9 developer cannot afford to miss on. Check out this guide on updating PHP to get the download of PHP and its frameworks and why you need to be updated.

Hands-on experience in installing and creating Drupal modules

Since Drupal modules allow you to integrate many third-party services and tools with your website. In such a manner, your website can possibly become a hub for acquiring most of your routinely used tools from one place, additionally a much more highly customized tool for your website visitors to use. Well, there isn’t any particular set of lists for specific modules that your Drupal 9 developer should include in your website, but he or she should usually be familiar with installing the views module, panels module, and cTools module. Additionally, your Drupal 9 developer needs to know how to develop modules by himself. Learn more about the key modules to start your Drupal 9 site here.

Proper understanding of Drupal theme development

Your Drupal 9 developer should have a proper understanding of the Drupal theme development. Do you want to know why? It’s because the theme of your website plays a significant role in influencing the appearance of your site (or user interface) and also the user experience you offer. Therefore, having a good understanding of UI/UX design is highly recommended. The Drupal community facilitates with a thousand themes to choose from (over 2,000+ at the moment), you will find that most of the themes will meet your design requirements but not all of them. So, if you want a unique theme for your website then your Drupal 9 developer should be able to build a custom theme matching your expectations. 

Good hold on version control with Git

You must be knowing that Git and GitHub are used by developers to attain version control over project sizes and types. So, utilizing Git and GitHub have commonly become standard practice, and you will feel relief in knowing that your Drupal 9 developer uses these tools as well. It is seen that Git on its own helps developers to work more efficiently by making it simpler for them to manage their project files. Furthermore, by storing code in a GitHub repository, for instance, your developer is able to store the code for every version of your Drupal project he or she builds. In that particular way, even if in the future something goes wrong with the code, your Drupal 9 developer will be able to revert it back to a prior version. 

Proficient in debugging and updating a Drupal site

Along with utilizing Git version control, another significant skill that Drupal 9 developers must have is the capability to recognize bugs in their code while they write it. Even if no Drupal 9 developer is able to identify every potential error or issue during the coding procedure, but if he or she is able to at least address errors during the coding procedure, it can save a lot of time and prevent further issues from occurring in the future. Although debugging during the developing process is beneficial, addressing bugs that arise after the site goes live is even more essential. But again, not all the Drupal 9 developers provide post-launch maintenance, if they do then they can certainly ensure that your website is bug-free, up-to-date, and offering the perfect user experience for your users.

A strong grip on the frontend languages

Are you familiar with the fact that a Drupal 9 developer must be essentially well-versed with JavaScript? Well, there is a need to specifically know jQuery – a JavaScript library that helps in carrying out standard DOM (Document Object Model) and AJAX functions. Moreover, working experience with Angular, React, or Vue can be an added advantage for a Drupal 9 developer as one of these JavaScript frameworks can be used as a frontend of a headless Drupal solution. 

An active participant in the Drupal community 

Last but not the least, a Drupal 9 developer need to actively contribute to the Drupal community so that if ever an issue is being identified, he or she should be able to fix it and share the patch or even report the issue to the community where other people can help him/her to resolve it.

Learn more:

The definitive guide to Drupal 9
Web development planning and strategies with Drupal 9
Burning questions on Drupal 9
Drupal 9 upgrade FAQs
The complete guide on upgrading from Drupal 8 to Drupal 9
Drupal 8 End of life Essentials
Configuration management strategies in Drupal 9


Well, you will find many Drupal 9 developers but the biggest challenge is to find the right one who can offer you the best quality services. I am still hoping that after understanding the above-mentioned skills, you will be able to choose the perfect Drupal 9 developer, or team of developers, who can make your Drupal project a huge success.

I think you can finish up your search here with us since, in OSL, you will find Drupal 9 experts who can successfully build your Drupal projects in accordance with your expectations and within the stipulated time period. So, what are you waiting for? Let’s talk.