Every entrepreneur has had this question: I have an idea for app, or I need an app for my business, but don’t know how to find somebody that could build it. The good news is that developers are not rare to find. Follow these suggestions and you’ll be on your way to make your app idea come to reality.
Start from your extended network
Before you start your search on the internet, think about the people in your extended network. These might be friends of friends, and if you are on LinkedIn, it should be simple to start a search for “mobile app developers”. It might be easier to convince somebody that you know either directly or indirectly through a friend to take on your project.
If you don’t know anyone, either look for a freelancer or hire a company.
Hire a freelancer
A freelancer is an independent worker that usually works solo or in a small team. There are thousands of mobile app freelance developers and hundreds of online marketplaces where you can find them. Where do you start?
- Seek them directly since many do not use marketplaces. Just Google for “freelance mobile app developer” and look for individual websites.
- Find a marketplace like elance.com, gun.io or odesk.com.
The difference between looking for individual developer and using a marketplace is that a marketplace will facilitate the process of finding the right match for your project while taking care of payments, delay issues, resolve possible conflicts and disputes. On the other side, a marketplace charges a fee and because of that a lot of experienced developers prefer not to join these places.
Before you go about hiring anybody (either via a marketplace or individually), make sure that you have a signed contract that expresses both parties expectations and responsibilities. Never hire somebody without a written contract.
Freelance developers are usually good at handling small to medium size projects. If you expect your app to be fairly big, you might want to consider option #2.
Hire an app development company
When you expect your app project to be big, hiring a company might be your best choice. Companies have larger teams and can handle bigger projects compared to freelancers. Companies do not typically join marketplaces like freelancers do, so you will have to seek them individually. Try to search on Google for “mobile apps company“.
You should be prepared to invest more when hiring a company, compared to hiring a freelancer, since companies have higher costs to sustain, but if you have a long term vision, there might be several reasons for choosing a company vs a freelancer.
Company vs Freelancer
Probably the most important reason to choose a company is because they will be more stable; if two years down the line you decide to make an update to your app, it’s more likely that the company will still be around to help you, whereas a freelancer might have moved on onto other work.
Freelancers can give you more for your money, but you will have to do much more work for quality control, testing and specification drafting.
The comparison is just difficult to do; each situation is unique, and your goals, your familiarity with the app market, as well as your budget, dictate which choice works best.