The 10 biggest mistakes people make when hiring a web developer

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Author: Danny
Date: June 4, 2021

If you’re looking to hire a web developer, it can be a daunting task. Getting your site up and running is the best way for people to find out about your business online. Creating a site that performs well, provides a good customer service and meets the needs of your customers requires a skilled web developer. There is a lot to consider, especially if it is not something you have done before, so finding the right web developer to fulfil your business objectives, and deliver the project on-time and on-budget is essential.

Let's take a look at some of the most common mistakes people make when hiring a web developer.

Hiring the wrong developer

There are a lot of reasons why hiring the wrong developer can be costly. For instance, they may have habits or methods that clash with other programmers in your organisation. They could also not code well in general which means you may need to constantly correct their work, or provide a poor user experience which can hurt your business.

When trying to figure out how to find the right developers, it is important that you consider what types of skill sets are needed for a specific project. Having someone who has similar skills as the required talent pool will help tremendously but still take into account their personal traits and preferences because there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to finding a great web developer.

Hiring a web developer without knowing what they do

Hiring a web developer without knowing what they do means you won't have the right expectations. This is going to lead to bad results and a lot of frustration on both sides. You'll end up having your time wasted as this frustration will inevitably turn into the relationship breaking down and the project coming to a grinding halt before it gets off the ground, or even worse further into the project and before it's complete.

If you're hiring a web developer and don't know what they do then perhaps consider speaking to others who have experience in this area, such as other business owners. Additionally, the internet has a wealth of information that can help you better understand, in Layman's terms, what web developers do, and what to look for when hiring one. Web development is a very skilled profession, consider asking potential hires to complete a short task, or questionnaire in order to better understand their capabilities.

Not having a clear idea of the scope and timeline for the project

Organization and planning are key to success. As with any project, it's important to have a clear understanding of the scope and timeline before starting anything. This can be difficult if you don't know everything that needs to be done, so this is something worth considering when estimating how long a project will take.

Many web developers work on a day-rate, so have a clear scope and project plan is essential to ensure you obtain accurate quotes and that there are no unexpected roadblocks during a project.

It is important to have a clear vision of the project in order for your team to fully understand the expectations and guidelines. It makes everyone feel comfortable knowing what is expected, thus avoiding any unnecessary delays or issues for the duration of the project.

Expecting someone to be able to work miracles

Asking yourself what you need to make your project a success is the first step in being successful. Having a clear vision of what success means for you will help to guide your actions and keep your end goal from slipping out of sight.

Don't assume that all web developers can work miracles and are capable of any web development task. Web development technology is vast, and while some developers are proficient in many areas, others tend to focus on one particular discipline.

While it's not always easy to find a web developer who can provide the services you need or help with a particular problem, there is often more than one person who would be able to do what you're looking for. For example, if you want a web developer to build a WordPress website but don't have any recommendations for one in your area, try searching online or asking friends and family members first. You may also ask other people at work about their experiences with different web developers, and which ones they might recommend. When you find someone whose skills sound like they'd suit your needs, consider scheduling a consultation before bringing them on as an employee or contractor.

Hiring someone who is too cheap/expensive

It is one thing to have a great idea and it is another to build it. You need the right person/team. I don’t mean just any team, but teams that are really good at what they do, understand your business objectives and who believe in your vision.

You’ve seen the TV adverts where a spokesman in a slick suit and shiny shoes says, “But wait! There’s more! You get this extra bonus worth $199.99 absolutely FREE when you buy it today. But that’s not all! Because if you act now, we will also throw in these three additional bonuses worth over $1,000 at no extra charge." More often than not, if something seems too good to be true, then it probably is.

On the other hand, don't just assume that if someone is pricing above the industry average, they will do a better job than those priced lower. You need to consider the price in addition to other things, such as their work history, reviews from previous clients, even their location. Working with someone locally can have its own benefits - but we'll leave that for another article.

Hiring the first person who offers to do it for a low price

If you're going to hire someone, look for a good fit. If they are not the right person for the job and end up costing your company money in other areas, that can be devastating. The Internet is littered with companies claiming to offer the cheapest prices. But at what cost?

Making a purchase decision is never easy, but it’s especially hard when you have so many options to choose from. In this digital age, we are more likely than ever to be presented with a dizzying number of services to choose from. Before you sign a contract, make sure that you consider all your options. When it comes down to price versus quality there will always be tradeoffs—you just need to decide what factors matter most in your situation.

Not understanding what you need / Not having a plan

Working with a web developer can be frustrating. The problem is that you're not sure what you need, and therefore, neither does the developer.

This is an all too common scenario.

We’ve all been there. You have a great idea for a website, and you need to get it online right away! It won’t take much time or money to build, will it? Unfortunately, this is the case with many businesses that are looking into web development. They don't understand what they truly need as far as functionality goes, nor do they have an actual plan in place on how the site should be built.

Designing a website for your business also often requires planning; both in terms of what you are trying to achieve as well as how you will achieve this goal within the constraints afforded by time or budget. Having a plan helps focus development resources on areas where they will have the greatest impact without wasting too much time or effort on features that aren’t needed.

Bottom line - have a plan before engaging with a web developer.

Ignoring the importance of communication

Communication is the foundation of any relationship. It shapes how people perceive one another and what they expect of each other, so it's no surprise that it plays a major role in every interaction.

Communication is not something that should be handled lightly. If your working relationships do not have clear and effective communication, the other party will find it difficult to trust you. Effective communication should become one of your top priorities once you start working with web external web developers.

But how do you achieve this?

Simple - from the first day working with a new web developer, define a communication strategy for the duration of the relationship. Be completely explicit, if you want to have a ten minute stand-up every morning at 0930, then insist on it. If you want a call every Friday to discuss progress, then make sure it's set in stone.

Giving up too soon

You need to stay determined and never back down. You'll be successful if you work hard, keep moving forward, and don't let anything stop you.

You’re working on a project, and you have been for some time. You are pretty sure that it will bring you results: sales, new customers, clients… But after some weeks or months of work, the results aren’t appearing as fast as they should be. Maybe the results don’t exist at all! The temptation is too big to abandon the project and try something else instead. Don’t do it!

Here are 7 reasons why giving up too soon can negatively affect your business in more ways than one:

    1. You'll miss out on the chance to grow your business
    2. You won't have time to do everything you want because of a lack of focus
    3. Your competitors will take advantage and eat into your market share
    4. You'll be missing out on new opportunities that come up in the future
    5. The goal is not just about making money, but also about having fun! Why not enjoy what you're doing?
    6. It's okay if it doesn't work out right away- sometimes things need more time than others before they start working well for us
  1. If you give up too soon, then there's a good chance that someone else will pick up where you left off

Not setting a budget

It's very important to set a budget for your project. If you don't, how do you expect to make money? It sounds like this is an issue that many of us still need to address in our lives and businesses. How can we expect to earn a profit if we don't know what it will cost? Certainly not with the kind of uncertainty that would come from just winging it and hoping for the best! It could be said that setting a budget is one way individuals and companies can take back control over their finances.

How do you know what budget is required you ask?

Do your research, speak to others who have completed similar projects and worst-case consider a budget range, i.e. $2000 - $5000.

Wrapping things up

Hiring the wrong web developer can be a costly mistake. The costs associated with poor communication and work quality are very high, so make sure you hire someone who fits your project and team well.

It's difficult to hire a web developer without knowing what they do. There are so many different skills and technologies that you need, it can be hard to find the right one for your business. Do your research, and make sure the person/business you are hiring are up-to-the job.

It's important to have a clear idea of the scope and timeline for your web development project. Managing stakeholder expectations, delivering on-time and on budget are key to completing a successful project. Make sure you hire the right web developer for the job.

Expecting someone to be able to work miracles is asking a lot. Set out clear expectations when beginning a project, but don't expect miracles.

When it comes to cost, have a budget in mind before you get quotes. Make your budget known to ensure no time is wasted and if a quote seems too good to be true, it normally is. Don't forget, paying more than the odds, doesn't necessarily mean a better quality outcome.

Finally, take the time to put a brief together before engaging with any third parties, understand what you want/need in order to fulfil your business objectives. Ensure your preferred communication method is clear from the start and if things aren't going to plan during a project, don't be hesitant to give up; consider your options carefully and do everything you can to get the project back on track.

If you've got this far, thank you for taking the time to read this article - I hope you've found it useful. If you think anyone else would benefit from this information please feel free to pass it on, or share it on your social media channels.

Bye for now, and good luck with your next project.


Are you looking for a web developer for your next project?

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Let us help you build an amazing website! Our goal is to make sure every client has a great experience working with us so we can continue growing our business together. We are confident that once you see what we can do for your business, you'll want to keep coming back for more!

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