Building and maintaining web-based applications, computer-based applications, mobile apps, and fintech apps is becoming increasingly part of the business owner’s daily life. You may find yourself regularly needing to source code for your web app integration, or you want to work with a developer to provide this service for your clients.
If you find that this is the case, then you should source a development partner. Having a developer on hand as a partner is one of the best things you can for business as it opens up affordable avenues for growth.
Read on to learn the benefits of hiring a development partner and five tips to finding a great one.
Why Should I Partner With a Developer?
For some, it might be evident that hiring a software developer is a good choice. If your business is continually producing software to be sold as a service, or if the business’s main sale operates because of proprietary software, you likely already work with a software developer to maintain the product after creation.
Many business owners don’t realize the unique benefits of hiring a software developer and partnering with one. By partnering with another business, you are entering into an agreed-upon contract for that business relationship. This shows each party in the relationship that you are serious about working together, that you value each other’s skills or knowledge, and that you would be (and often are) recommending that brand to other customers.
When partnering with another business, you are ready to take that business relationship to the next step. And this might involve offering new services to clients, such as website maintenance, mobile app maintenance, or setting up a new payment API. With a software developer partnership, you are opening up new avenues for improved ROI and brand growth!
5 Tips to Finding a Great Software Developer Partner
Sourcing the right software developer to partner with is challenging. After all, a partnership is a trusted relationship, so finding that person you can trust takes time.
If you find a good software developer, you’ll want to consider how you would want to partner with them (what benefits could you offer them) and think that they would be suitable for a long-term relationship like that.
If you don’t have a current software developer that you use for one-off jobs or contract hire, then you can use these five tips to try to find one who would stay with you in the long haul.
1. Analyze the Business’ Past and Current Standing
Any business that you partner with should display some track record towards success. It might be nice to offer a partnership to an up-and-coming company, but this does not necessarily benefit you in the short-term. The business may be falling behind on projects and not be able to keep up.
Be sure to analyze the business’ history. You can do this by searching their website, web history, and social media sites. When conducting this search, ask critical questions like:
- How long have they been around?
- What types of projects have they worked on in the past?
- What are their past customers saying about the business?
- Are there any legal issues pending at the moment?
- If you can see their past work, how does it look?
If you’ve identified that they are an overall good company, then you’ll then want to research whether or not they would be a good fit. In general, you want a company that has done work for the projects you’ll be expecting, and you’ll want the work to be good. Try to find out if any of the business’ clients are having their work re-done by other developers. Try to see the number of projects that they have contributed to.
2. Test Out a Complex Project
If you have found a developer that you think you want to partner with, you need to offer them something challenging. By presenting a more complex project, you will see how the business reacts to challenging situations.
Some developers crumble with a complex project. This happens when the developer agrees to more work than they can reasonably do, or the developer agrees to take on work even with unskilled personnel. By presenting a complex project, you are testing their strengths and finding hidden limitations.
Try not to make this the first project that you work on together to create a wrong impression. They may be unlikely to partner with you if they think that all your projects will be complicated. This project does not need to be lengthy either. A complex project might mean that they have not worked on aspects of the project before, or you are asking for something specific when it comes to design or functionality.
3. Find a Developer that is Compatible, Not Easy
It can be challenging to find a developer that you like. However, you’ll want to reach out to multiple developers to get quotes, see how their sales support is and see the different available offerings. With anything, you need to see what’s out there.
When you are hiring a developer, you’re hiring a technology partner. With this, you want that partner to have strong customer support, pay attention to your details, and be able to work within your timeframes.
Your developer needs to be everything you are looking for or willing to trade off with your wants and needs. This might mean that your developer produces products with the design, functions, and quality you like. You might want more oversight on the project. If your developer does not want to bring you into the production process or keeps you at arm’s length, which causes you undue stress, you might not be compatible with this developer.
If you can, try to find samples of what the developer has worked on or work out a small project. That way, you can see if you will actually like their work. Just because you like a developer’s work, it doesn’t mean that they will be a good development company to stick with. The developer should also educate you about potential risks associated with a particular design or functionality. They should also be receptive to hearing your feedback.
4. Identify Available Services or Value-added Services
Recognize now that different software development companies offer various services. Some create websites on WordPress and others create custom apps from scratch. While some companies can do it all, you can’t expect every company to. You should go into the business relationship knowing the limits and capabilities of the partner.
Find the company that specializes in your niche and go with them. Be sure to do your research around how long they’ve been in the industry, the number of projects they’ve worked on (i.e., estimated revenue), and happy clients. Identifying their past tech stacks, project management strategies, and coding styles is a good starting point.
Value-added services for you might involve services or skills related to scalability or maybe a service that you were looking for but didn’t know that they had. Value-added services might include design work, specialized software developer niches(like fintech or mobile apps), business development services, marketing, and content marketing.
5. Try to Determine Project Efficacy and Coding Skill
If the business is regularly fixing legacy projects, then they are generally a more experienced coder. Legacy projects are projects where developers go in and fix currently existing code. To take on legacy projects, developers need a strong knowledge of the code relationships and coding best practices. Sometimes businesses reject legacy projects to simplify business operations, so ask the developer if they have done legacy projects before or know-how.
You’ll also want to dive into their code quality. You want to inherit software that is clean, easy to read by other developers, and won’t contribute to code noise. If the back-end is messy, then this increases the likelihood of the technology failing for some reason. Have a discussion with the developer to identify if they follow industry best practices like:
- Code coherence
- Code simplicity
- Code Reviews
Project management is also vital to any successful business relationship. A good software developer will be willing to come to you for project updates when needed, ensure that you like the project, and ask questions. If you don’t hear from your developer in months, then this may be a bad sign. They may be producing a great product, but you won’t know if it’s what you wanted until all the work has been completed (and this can raise its issues).
Other Things to Consider
Billing can often be a big issue when it comes to B2B relationships. You don’t want a business relationship to sour because of weird billing issues.
Pay close attention to the bills that you receive from your developer (if or when you get them). If there are mounting fees that they did not warn you about, this might be a red flag that they only want to work with you for the money. You’ll also want to keep a note of contract negotiations. If they regularly come back to renegotiate something, this could sign a more significant problem.
While it might seem like a benefit for them, it makes you look better to pay full price and ask that the developer dedicate their full attention to your project. If you ask for discounts and short-cuts early into the relationship, then the developer might not appreciate this and won’t want to partner with you. Only seek a deal after you’ve done a few projects with them or decided to partner together.
You can ask them if they have partnered with companies in the past. If so, ask for a partnership package or demonstration so that you can see what it might be like to partner with them. Choosing a software partnership can be difficult. But, once you’ve found the right partner, you’ll have a smooth business relationship with a high-quality developer partner.
Put your trust in Rotate, a software developer who can handle all types of development projects, including blockchain, big data, web dev, artificial intelligence, system configuration, website maintenance, mobile app development, and more. We can also provide marketing services and business consulting services. With the experienced Rotate team on your hands, you will experience more seamless coding projects, up-to-date code, and stress-free code maintenance at your fingertips.