Spring has come early in the Northwest, and so has a flood of annoying recruiters. Recruiters aren’t the best for anyone looking for a career, so I’ve taken the liberty of breaking down the phrases I’ve found in some of the job postings. Without further ado, I present a front end developer’s guide to reading job postings!

“Work hard, play hard" 

Translation: Workaholic culture is the norm, we’re chained to our desks and when/if set free, we drink ourselves silly to forget the fact we’re over-worked and underpaid. 

"Work life integration" 

Translation: We have no respect for work/life separation. Expect to work 65 hours a week and a divorce/break up or to remain single. You’re better off serving Lattes for a living.


Translation: We have unreasonable expectations in your abilities.

“True Startup”

Translation: Expect mismanagement. 

“Excellent benefits”

Translation: Average benefits.

“Highly competitive benefits package”

Translation: Has 401k.

“highly skilled” / “problem solver”

Translation: Personal capable of working unsupervised.

“strong experience”

Translation: Actually did this at your last job.


Translation: Shows up on time to work/meetings.

“Full Stack”

Translation: Unrealistic qualifications at not enough salary.

“kick-ass team”

Translation: Our team, but we think it sounds cooler.


Translation: Incrementally improving.


Translation: Understaffed.


Translation: Job, but we think it sounds cooler.


Translation: Dead line oriented.


Translation: Unlikely.

“Quickly build prototypes”

Translation: Use CSS frameworks.

“Work directly”

Translation: Open office floor plan.

“mobile optimization”

Translation: Probably isn’t using resolution independent images yet but would like to.

“UX design principles”

Translation: Not really a UX job.

“highly interactive”

Translation: We miss Flash.


Translation: Expect phone support with our clients

“responsive design”

Translation:  Web design, post 2010.


Translation:  Not really a front end job.


Translation:  Business as usual.

“end-of-year holiday party”

Translation: Mandatory.

“social web”

Translation: The part where people spam each other things.

“key stakeholders”

Translation: The people who have the money.

“native JavaScript”

Translation: Without JQuery.


Translation: See native javascript.

“learning by doing" 

Translation: Shiny new libraries are preferred.


Translation: More than a front end job.

“Ember, Angular, Require" 

Translation: 1 in 3 chance of your preferred library.

"Sass, Less, Stylus”

Translation: 1 in 3 chance of your preferred precompiled language.


Translation: Probably PhoneGap.

“HTML5 and CSS3”

Translation: You have “CanIuse” bookmarked.

“Demonstrated Ability…”

Translation: Will be in your job interview.

“wide range of support”

Translation: Usual attention to edge cases

“Semantic HTML” / “DHTML”

Translation: Sounds better than HTML.

“Strong understanding ”

Translation: You have “StackOverflow” bookmarked.

“revolutionizing” / “revolutionary”

Translation: Less than 5 years old.

“insanely driven”

Translation: Reads e-mail before meetings.

“stock options”

Translation: Non-redeemable compensation.

“best practices”

Translation: The design pattern/methodology that the supervising Project Manager read about.


Translation: A 14-18 hour work day.

“Ping pong table”

Translation: Something you probably won’t use.

“unlimited vacation”

Translation: No Vacation. 

"mandatory vacation”

Translation: Good idea.


Translation: We have a business plan.

"stealth mode”

Translation: We do not have a shipping product.


Translation: 2008 Mindset.


Translation: Photoshop and Illustrator proficient. 


Translation: Expect to support Internet Explorer 8.


Translation: Expect to support Windows Mobile 8.

“Internet of Things”

Translation:  Job description was written by HR