While I'm still working on the larger book about hiring in-house developers, I took a brief tangent and wrote a short ebook on the other side of the coin - finding, hiring and managing outside developers.

I wrote it mostly because I've learned a lot of fairly painful lessons along the way when it comes to this topic … And it's one I've never seen a lot of advice on.

The package walks through finding development partners, setting the proper expectations and doing everything you can to ensure you can get as accurate a bid as possible.

I had to learn all this on my own, and I figure you shouldn't have to.

You can buy the book on Gumroad, or sign up for the later book on hiring in-house developers below.

In the meantime, what you'll find in the rest of this post is a sample section of the book. Enjoy, and let me know if you have any thoughts or questions.

As part of my day job, I have to hire a lot of outside developers and development firms for projects. I’ve made a lot of mistakes along the way, and I’m going to tell you how to avoid them and find the best possible person or firm to tackle your project.

Right off the bat, let’s talk about why this process is fraught with peril.

You probably have a picture in your head that hiring outside developers and managing them will be easier than doing a project in-house. You wrap up the project details, fire it off and forget about it until it gets done.

Easy-peasy, right?


Let’s break down the differences between in-house and outside developers.

When a project is done by an in-house staff, you get a slew of advantages. You can push scope if need be to keep a client happy. You can adjust the workload in other places to throw more people at a project in trouble. The communication is easy — after all, they’re in the same room or building or chat room as you. Status updates are easy; adjustments are easy; compared with outside developers, everything’s easy.

Your scope can be kind of loose because your in-house developers have the authority to fill in the blanks.

Most importantly, your in-house development team has a direct stake in the outcome. It’s your company’s name on the work, and, therefore, the team’s reputation. Caring makes a whole lot of things easy from a management perspective.

Almost everything about working with an outside development firm, on the other hand, is hard.

Read more and get the whole package - including example documents and functional specs - over at Gumroad