Leading a startup can be an incredibly exciting and daunting experience all at the same time. When it comes to some aspects of your startup, it can pay to bring in some outside expertise, especially if you are branching out into unchartered territory. Mobile app development is one of these areas. Choosing an app developer is tough, but if you’re ready, then let’s touch on what you need to factor in to help make your choice.
- Experience is key
Mobile app development isn’t exactly a skill that is commonplace, it takes experience to get it right and to know what to look for. When choosing your mobile app developer for your startup, look for a developer with an experience that matches your specific needs. Mobile app development can dive into some pretty niched areas, so insist on having a wide collection of past work that includes these highlights. Now that’s not to say you have to stick to an industry, you can also look for developers who have worked on apps with functionality and features similar to what you’re looking for. Having that kind of experience working on your startup’s mobile app could be priceless in the long run. Take the time to find the right experience and you’ll thank yourself down the track.
- Know your platform
Mobile app development today is still a complex process when you take into account the competing platforms and organisations who own them. Apple and Google platforms will require different development, permissions and functionality. As a startup, you don’t want to waste your time or money making an app for a platform you don’t wish to engage with. Make the decision early and make sure you consider this when choosing your app developer. Going with a developer who can develop for both has many advantages, as does a single platform focused developer. Depending on your needs this may help narrow your choice, although developing for the platform where your customers are (as proven with data) is probably your best strategy.
- Reference checks
As well as looking at a potential developers experience, ask for design references. It’s fairly easy for developers to work on a project, but that doesn’t mean they left a positive impression. Do your research and talk to their previous customers to ensure their working style will fit in with your own. Questions around their responsiveness, willingness to take feedback and collaboration are all key things to check as a startup. The last thing you need is a developer working on your dream, and they won’t call you back. References are the best way to provide your startup with peace of mind and assurance of choice and to avoid any nasty surprises.
- Be willing to negotiate
Resources, like money, might be a little tight. Don’t let that hinder your search. Negotiating with the right developer is possible, you just need to be willing to open up a dialogue. If you are driven by price alone, you find yourself facing the old saying, buy cheap, buy twice. Instead of having to do rework because you chose a cheaper option, speak with the superior developers and ask about their flexibility. Negotiating on deadlines, priorities or pivoting on some features, for now, may seem like a loss, but with the right developer, there will be gains in the future. Developers are specialists, which explains why cheaper will almost certainly not be what you want as a startup.
Choosing a mobile app developer for your startup doesn’t need to be so scary. There are a lot of variables to consider and it may not be your area of expertise, so share the responsibility with your team. Doing references and finding someone with experience in your field are great ways to mitigate risks. Knowing your budget and being willing to negotiate can help get you the developer you need, not the one you can afford.