Finding a trusted and competent developer?

BarneyLongden

Aspirant
Joined
Nov 20, 2017
Messages
47
I am a content guy – not a developer. I know I have some JavaScript / PHP issues with my site but have had terrible luck finding a consultant to work on it. The one guy I really trust has been backburning the project for months.

Suggestions?
 

cscgal

Adherent
Joined
Jan 14, 2004
Messages
324
I have had many good experiences from Upwork. You can also try Toptal.
 

FTL

Adherent
Joined
Nov 4, 2021
Messages
371
The one guy I really trust has been backburning the project for months.
Yeah, I know what it's like when someone keeps on promising to do stuff, but then just doesn't bother. Annoying AF.

Sorry, I don't have any suggestions for you.
 

sactown

Enthusiast
Joined
Jul 26, 2017
Messages
105
You still have to be very careful: do your due diligence. I did some good hires there.
Due diligence… the phrase is often used as if others who got screwed didn’t do any. Problem is when you’re trying to hire someone to do something you don’t know how to do yourself it is really hard to know if the person you hire actually knows what to do and do it well. The world is full of bull**** artists and people who think they know more than they actually do.
 

Alpha1

Administrator
Joined
May 28, 2007
Messages
4,167
What I mean by that is that you have to carefully review past projects of the developer, read all the reviews and then carefully talk to the developer and clearly define what needs to be delivered before they can get paid. Of course it still boils down to taking a chance. When possible first do a small project and see how that goes before going bigger. Even then you will still get burned here and there.
 

sactown

Enthusiast
Joined
Jul 26, 2017
Messages
105
What I mean by that is that you have to carefully review past projects of the developer, read all the reviews and then carefully talk to the developer and clearly define what needs to be delivered before they can get paid. Of course it still boils down to taking a chance. When possible first do a small project and see how that goes before going bigger. Even then you will still get burned here and there.
Yes, in spite of great effort to evaluate people we still get burned. Been there.
 

Nev_Dull

Anachronism
Joined
Apr 27, 2010
Messages
2,519
My advice is find a local developer. It always goes better when you can sit down with them and discuss what you need and why. Both sides get a better understanding of the issues and it's easier to find a solution that works the way you want.
 

Study Force

Enthusiast
Joined
Oct 29, 2012
Messages
103
Local developers are no better than remote. The last thing a local developer wants is to waste time meeting with their client in person. Who pays for that meeting? Who decides how long it takes? Emailing is just as effective, so is video conferencing.

If you need Javascript help, for instance, join a prominent Javascript forum, and make acquaintances with the experts there. Personal message them if they're interested in working with you, ask their rates, and hopefully you can form a friendship.
 

Nev_Dull

Anachronism
Joined
Apr 27, 2010
Messages
2,519
Maybe it's a regional thing, but I've always had much better results from local people, whether coders, designers, whatever. If a local developer won't sit down with you, that's the first red flag that they aren't worth your time or money. With a remote developer, you have no way of telling how seriously they take your business.

With something as simple as php and javascript, you can also have really good results looking to your local Uni or tech school. The students there are always looking for new projects and eager for a bit of cash.
 

zappaDPJ

Administrator
Joined
Aug 26, 2010
Messages
8,122
Suggestions?
Get recommendations and checkout the developers work. I would generally seek recommendations from within the community that are using the same platform as you if that's possible.

If your requirements are likely to be significant and costly I'd consider putting a toe in the water with a small job first.
 

paul_from_minibb

Aspirant
Joined
Mar 20, 2012
Messages
15
I work as a JS/PHP consultant and coder for more than 20 years, and the first thing you should keep in mind when hiring - 3rt party projects cost more to support and investigate than the bugfixing in my own script, or in the script which was well documented by previous team of coders. Most of codes come with no wide or not at all commenting, no documentation of the script in general; so when getting closely to them, the new developer should restore in his brains on his own whatever your previous coder did. This takes much more time than the final answer or fix, but noone actually wants to pay for it considering it not the job at all. So, if you found someone who's delaying the dates, it's the sign that you both actually didn't agree on the proper work payment, and what this work would really include.
 

Tracy Perry

Opinionated asshat
Joined
May 25, 2013
Messages
5,194
This takes much more time than the final answer or fix, but noone actually wants to pay for it considering it not the job at all. So, if you found someone who's delaying the dates, it's the sign that you both actually didn't agree on the proper work payment, and what this work would really include.
I personally think documenting your code is one of the most important things a developer can do. Sorry, but if a developer won't document the code he provided to you, then I would not use him again and would STRONGLY suggest others not to. He/She is simply trying to TIE you into only coming back to them for support. You PAID for that code to be developed, so no matter how much they may want or believe otherwise, unless the contract states such, it BELONGS to you, along with the documentation for its development. If the coder won't do that... look elsewhere, there are MANY more professional developers out there. The truly professional developers realize that they may not always be supporting their code.
The exception of documenting the code directly of course is them supplying you with actual documentation - which few developers do as it's easier to document the actual code.

The contract should be fairly simple...

You code an app that does X, Y, & Z, with those being specific in nature as requested by the contractee - not generalities. During the coding of the app you document your code as any professional developer would do.
You develop the code to perform in the manner specified. If further improvements are desired by requestor, specifics pertaining to the extension of the code and the amount due are to be discussed and agreed upon in writing. After consensus on extension and pay are reached, they are performed AND DOCUMENTED in the code.

You don't need much more than that in the agreement, other than being specific on what X,Y, & Z are.

The problem comes into play with the defining of X,Y,& Z. Most requestors have in their mind what they want... they just can't express it well... an experienced, professional developer should be able to tease that information out of them

A classic case of a grade A developer is Bob, the maker of ShowCase, Classifieds, AMS and more for XenForo.
 
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