IT Strategy

​​How to Hire a Web Developer

Learn how and where to find the best web developers for your project.

Finding and hiring the right web developer or an entire team of developers for your project might be a daunting task but it does not always have to be that way. You have to consider a variety of factors when looking for and hiring people for your project, and first and foremost, you need to learn how to find a web developer who would complement your team, help you get your project through the software development life cycle (SDLC), and realize all of your ideas. At Intersog, we constantly expand our talent outreach helping the industry leaders connect with the best web developers from all around the world, and we are here to share our experience on where and how to hire a good web developer. 

In today’s article, we are going to give you a step-by-step guide on hiring the best dedicated developers for your project without wasting too much time and money in the process.

Define Your Project

The first thing you need to do is to have a clear understanding of what your project is going to be like. A precise knowledge of what you are going to work with is the key to hiring the right set of professionals for your project. Most software development companies begin their cooperation with any of their clients by gathering their requirements for the project, and the clearer those requirements are, the faster it goes. Intersog can help you formulate those requirements in a more precise manner, so you would know exactly what your project is going to be like. If you have your requirements ready, finding a good web developer becomes even easier.

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Defining your project is not just about telling your developers what you want, it is also about your developers knowing what they are signing up to. For instance, if you are looking at a long-term and large-scale project, it means that your developers are signing up for a long-term commitment, which might not be what some of the developers are looking up to. At Intersog, though, we help you find web application developers who are up to both short-term and long-term projects. 

You should also consider your budget, as it might either expand or limit your selection of talents for the project. If you want to save some money or just do not want to go overboard with your spending, the best idea is to partner with the outsourcing company that would let you choose from the talent pool overseas. Hiring web developers outside of the US is generally cheaper, which is exactly why so many companies shoot for partnerships with companies in Central Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. Intersog is a global provider of tech talent that functions across the Americas, the Middle East, and Europe, which allows us to hire developers that match both your technical requirements and your budget constraints. All of our developers are world-class experts that can deliver tangible results regardless of their location.

What Kind of Specialist Do You Need? 

Depending on the scale of your project, you might need different numbers and multiple types of web developers. While some projects are relatively small and could be handled even by a single developer, other projects require an entire team of developers who bring different skills to the table and contribute to the SDLC from different angles. So, what kind of developer would your web application development project need?

Designer vs Developer

A designer is an expert whose main task is to come up with the website’s outlook and create a range of visual assets such as images and icons. Their knowledge of Photoshop, Figma, Pixlr, and other visual design tools allows them to create visually appealing assets for your website. Designers do not create or implement the website itself; instead, their focus is on creating its visual representation and defining what it would look like in the end. An expert designer can leverage a variety of techniques that would help you catch the user’s eye, make the interface more appealing, improve the user interface, and enhance the user's experience to make them come back to your website again and again. 

A developer is a person who writes the code behind the website. Basically, these guys build your website from scratch or update your existing website leveraging frameworks like Django, Ruby on Rails, Angular, Vue.js, and many more. All of those have their specific benefits and Intersog developers are experts in many of the web development frameworks that allow them to create outstanding web apps that match different requirements and different types of businesses.

At the end of the day, you can’t have one without the other, and it’s not about juxtaposing designers and developers – both create value for your project and play their role in the SDLC. You need both designers and developers to get your project going and see it cross the finish line.

Front-End vs Back-End Developers

Developers can also be divided into subcategories with front-end and back-end developers being the most prominent. Just a brief reminder here: the front-end is what your user sees and interacts with when visiting the website, and the back-end is everything behind the curtain that your users do not see. The back-end is where you interact with and manage your website and communicate with your server and the databases.

In more detail, the front-end developers take care of how your website looks and feels. Even though the area of expertise of designers and front-end developers often overlaps, the difference here is that front-end developers might not be the same people who come up with the design and the concept. In most cases, these are creative professionals but their main task is to implement the design and make sure it functions fluently in conjunction with the back-end. 

Back-end developers focus on how your site works; they are more concerned with the performance of the website, how it handles large numbers of client inquiries, large amounts of data, and other technical issues. These guys leverage languages and frameworks like Python, PHP, Java, Ruby on Rails, and more. 

Again, both the front and back-end are essential for your website and you can’t have one without the other. If you are building the website from scratch or require fundamental improvements on your existing website, you would need both types of developers to get that project through. Intersog is a talent powerhouse that gives you access to the world’s best front-end and back-end developers, so you do not need to seek different types of developers in different places. You can just tell us how many people you need and we will get them for you from our vast selection of web developers.

Full-Stack Developers

Front-end and back-end developers are specialists who are quite affluent within their area of expertise but are not that versed in other disciplines. So, if you need to fill different roles within your project, you would have to hire several specialists. Though it is a totally viable strategy, it would cost you more. Luckily, there are people who are well-versed in several areas of expertise who can fill several positions all at once allowing you to save money. 

Hiring a full-stack developer is a wise move when you already have a working team and need to supplement it with a generalist who can perform a set of different tasks. Having a jack of all trades working for you might be rather beneficial for your business but you should also remember that such a generalist would not give you the level of skill and knowledge a highly specialized developer would. You know what they say about jacks of all trades, they are masters of none, so it does not automatically mean that hiring a full-stacker is the best solution. 

Different types of developers fit different types of projects and different requirements, so you have to evaluate your needs and make the choice that fits your needs. It all comes down to understanding your project’s scope and requirements. Once you have a clear picture on your hands, you can make informed decisions and hire the right people for your project. Choosing the right set of developers is not just about picking the full-stackers just because they can do all the work; it is about pinpointing your problem areas and choosing the right web developer who can address those problems.

Freelance vs Inhouse

That’s where things get more complicated because both freelance platforms and in-house development companies can give you access to expert developers. Which one do you choose to hire dedicated developers? It depends on your goals and your expectations.

If you are looking for a single person who would only do a one-off job for a short period of time, a freelance developer might be a good choice. You can go to any of the many freelance platforms out there and find people who match your requirements in a matter of minutes, contact them, and see if they are available for the new offers. Then, you negotiate the hourly rate, time frame, delivery provisions, and so forth, after which the developer gets to work. The obvious downside of freelancers is their unreliability. Of course, some of them are great experts you can trust with the most complicated tasks and trust in their integrity but there’s just no way you could guarantee a long-term commitment from the freelancer. What if somebody approaches them with a more lucrative offer in the middle of your project? They would just leave and you’d be left with an unfinished code and a position to fill. 

Though hiring freelance developers might be a viable option for certain projects, it is not the most reliable cooperation model, so you might want to find a more consistent partner. Cooperation with a reputable software development company that has a proven record of expertise, extensive portfolio, a vast talent pool, and years of experience is a much better option. Intersog works with in-house developers who can develop any kind of web app either for a startup or a large business. We offer you a talent pool of 250+ developers who can join your team on a long-term basis. Alternatively, we can help you gather a whole team of developers, so you don’t even need to worry about finding anyone yourself. 

So, hiring a freelancer might be a viable option but it is surely more reliable to hire developers from a software development company. 

How to Determine Developer’s Skills

The key to knowing how to choose a web developer that matches your project is being able to evaluate their skills. If you are not well-versed in web development yourself and you do not have any expert web developers on your team, you might find yourself in a precarious situation. So, what if you don’t really know how to evaluate the developers’ skills because anything they say would sound like tech gibberish to you? Ask for the proof of expertise – see what projects they’ve worked on before, and if possible, reach out to the people they’ve worked for in the past and ask for their feedback. This would give you a clear understanding of whether this person fits your requirements. 

When partnering with a software development company like Intersog, all you need is to just tell your partner what kind of project you are working on and they would simply give you the right people for the job. This is the most reliable and the simplest approach to go with as all of your needs would be catered to by the team of experts, and you’d be able to just kick back and observe the results of their work.

The Cost of Hiring Web Developers

The cost of hiring web developers depends on their expertise and their location. Hiring people in the US or Western Europe would be more expensive than in Canada, Mexico, or Central Europe. The average hourly rate for a web developer in the US is around $28, which is not that expensive, but you can surely cut that by hiring people nearshore in countries like Canada and Mexico or offshore all across the globe. 

Going too cheap, though, is not the best idea either; you cannot expect a decent quality and satisfying performance from people who charge like $10 an hour. A reasonable line of thought would be to hire people who charge somewhere around the industry’s average as it would leave you in a safe spot. You should also refer back to our suggestions on how to determine the developer’s skills, as the price is not always an indicator of expertise. That being said, there are two main pricing models which you should also consider when negotiating with the vendor.

Hourly Pay vs Fixed Price

Hourly pay, also known as the time and material model, implies gradual payments in response to the project’s growing or changing needs. Basically, you do not have a fixed budget for the project, only an approximate estimation, and you pay your developers in accordance with the amount of work they do. This begs the question of how much does it cost to develop custom software, and the answer is – it depends. Building a website is one of the cheaper types of service provided. 

Judging from our experience, the most complicated, feature-rich, and data-heavy websites cost around $25,000, and the majority of websites cost somewhere around $5000. The price would depend on your goals, so you need to know exactly what you are shooting for. The budget, however, might bloat somewhat if you decide to add new features to the website along the way, and that is where the hourly pay model is a better option.

The fixed price model is best suited for clearly defined projects that have a precise timeline and objectives. If you know what your website is going to be like and when it is going to be ready, you can just negotiate the price with your vendor, pay half of the price upfront and the second half after the project is over. This model would fit smaller short-term projects, so you should consider this option. 

Cost Saving Tips

Spending as little money as possible while gaining as much value as possible is the ultimate goal of every business and every financially sound person in general. You should not be stingy with your money either if you want to get positive outcomes from your investments. So how do you achieve a perfect balance and spend just the right amount of money to get the results you want? Here’s our checklist:

  • Repurpose the existing assets. If you’ve been in business for some time now, you probably generated some assets over the years, and while some of those might be completely obsolete, some could be put to good use with some minor refurbishing. You can use your existing website as the base asset, renovate it, and add new features to fit your new vision.
  • Keep it simple. Do not overstuff your website with features it does not need; try to keep it simple, intuitive, and concise. The more stuff you put in there, the more it would cost and the more likely it will be to crash. 
  • Reduce the total number of pages. Every page takes time and money to make, and many websites have completely useless and redundant pages nobody ever enters. Make sure all the pages on your website are relevant and useful. 
  • Use existing templates. There are tons of website templates online, and there’s no shame in taking some inspiration from those templates. While you can develop a one-of-a-kind experience for your users, you can also reuse some brilliant ideas from other websites to save yourself some time and money. 
  • Outsource. Instead of going through the tiresome and costly process of finding and hiring people in your local talent pool on your own, just contact a software development company that suits your needs and ask them to give you the right people. This would save you tons of time, and subsequently, a considerable amount of money. 

Where to Find Web Developers

Finding an expert web developer is the key to having your project going smoothly and getting an expertly crafted website by the end of the SDLC. This is why you should know where to look for the right people. Luckily, there are several routes you can go, even simultaneously, to hunt for the industry’s best talents.

Freelance Platforms

There are tons of freelanced platforms like Upwork, Guru, Toptal, Solidgigs, and more. All of those platforms are quite popular among freelancers, so you are sure to find lots of people who match your search criteria. Despite there are some clear disadvantages to working with freelancers, they might be quite useful for short-term projects and non-essential tasks, so you can try your luck there and a couple of people from those platforms.

Employment Networks

You can go to online networks like LinkedIn or Craigslist and look for the right people there. The benefit of those is that most people share their work experience and their portfolios on their profile pages, so you can see what kind of expert you are dealing with before even entering a dialogue. The disadvantage here is that most of the experts are already employed, so you would have to beat whatever they are paid by their current employers to get them to work for you.

Outsourcing

That is where things get simpler – all you need to do is find the right software development outsourcing company to partner with, and they will get you the right developers for the job. Now that is a more complicated part of the equation: how do you find the right software development partner? Well, you should find a company that has a vast portfolio, a proven record of success in delivering on complex projects, and the backing of their previous partners. Go to rating websites like Clutch and see what people say about your potential partners. Check their rating, see what they’ve been working on before, find out whether their clients were satisfied with the results. This would give you a clear idea of what you are signing up for. Once you’ve picked your software development partner, just tell them what you need and they will handle the rest.

Here at Intersog, we offer you 15 years of experience, a talent pool of 250+ developers, and a vast portfolio of hundreds of successful projects behind our belt. We can get you a full team of dedicated web developers in a matter of weeks, so you do not need to waste your time and money on a long recruitment process.

Making the Right Choice

Now you know how to hire a web developer but how do you know you’ve made the right choice? Well, most times the performance speaks for the developers; if they are good, you are going to see your project goals achieved one by one on time and without any headache. This is the simplest way to tell you’ve hired the right people. But what if the outcomes of their performance are not so clear or tangible? You can hire a Quality Assurance expert who would run regular quality tests to see if the code is running the way it is supposed to. 

If you have a tech-savvy lead in-house, evaluating the performance of the team gets much easier. You can trust that person with leading the team and observing its performance, which will give you a clear picture of where your project is going and whether the team is doing a good job.

If you do not have such a trusty person on your team, a good idea would be to break the development process into milestones with certain deliverables upon each of those milestones. With that, you can evaluate the performance of your team by seeing the actual results of their work.

Hiring a team of great developers is not easy, and many companies spend months upon months just gathering their teams, which is not ideal for when you need to get things done fast. Luckily, there are ways to make that process much faster and less tiresome. The best way we offer is to partner with a strong development company that can give you a full team of experts for your project. Intersog can be your new partner to help you drive your digital transformation and get your web development project going without any friction along the way. We give you a talent pool of expert web developers and help you find the best solutions that would give you and your business a competitive edge over the long term.

Your IT success partner
Intersog has been recognized as a leading IT solutions provider in the United States and beyond. The company has been providing tech consulting, staffing and software development services for Fortune-500 companies, tech startups, and SaaS enterprises for more than fourteen years.