How to Find an App Developer?

Marlena Walburg

It is hard to imagine a world without mobile applications these days. In 2020, it is difficult to fully use the opportunities and business potential without offering a modern solution for your services or products. For this reason, more and more people are thinking about opening the door to a bigger career, greater development, and income, as well as reaching new users through their application.

Having an idea in mind and deciding to create your own software, you still have a long way to go. Of all the issues that need to be considered in the stages of app development, choosing the right developer is not without significance and may apparently be a problematic matter. There are many options to choose from, both in terms of forms of cooperation and the number of developers and freelancers. Before you start looking for an application developer, however, consider your business needs. When working in a startup, the best solution may be an experienced specialist who will help you create software quickly and relatively cheaply and enter the market with it. But having a company with an established position that wants to automate its processes, an in-house team may turn out to be better. No matter what you ultimately choose, it’s important to find the right people for the role. How to go about it and what to pay attention to? This guide will certainly help you with that.

When do you need an app developer?

Once your vision is clear, you can start looking for an app developer. A good cause for this step may be the moment when you find a solution to a market problem or an undeveloped niche in which your application could fill the gap. A perfect moment is also your desire to improve your traditional business and go online with it. Then you can outline a few ideas for the application, list the function you would like to include in it, and even create sketches or simple mockups of what the application should look like. Getting to this point is a sign that it’s time to find a contractor for your project.

What are the forms of hiring an app development team?

One of the decisions you need to make when looking for an app developer is the form of hiring. It depends mainly on your business needs. As you can easily guess, each of the available options has its pros and cons, so we put them all together.

Inhouse (pros/cons)

The approach that you have in-house developers has many advantages. If they are regular team members, they are more aware of the values of the company they work for, so you can count on the commitment and a better sense of business needs. They are also more motivated to achieve the best results. The constant presence of the development team at your fingertips helps streamline the communication process, save time, avoid confusion, increase flexibility, and speed up the development process. 

In-house development will also mean higher costs, especially in the early stages. The final price includes expenses for the entire period, such as office rent, taxes, hardware, software, benefits and more. Besides, there is always the risk of an important employee leaving, and finding a new, qualified specialist is in itself difficult. This slows down the development process and generates additional costs.


Freelancers are, in most cases, easier to find, and the cost of hiring them is lower. By employing freelancers, you gain a lot of flexibility when you enlarge or shrink your team. It also allows you to hire talented programmers from anywhere in the world. When one person takes care of a project, they make decisions much faster.

However, when it comes to the disadvantages of hiring freelancers, the biggest problems are related to the quality of the software provided by them. If you want to be sure your app is well done, you will need to hire a separate Quality Analyst to evaluate the work. The difficulties caused by the lack of certain non-technical skills, such as a lack of good organization, are also a trap. The risk of not understanding business needs and values is very high due to the lack of attachment to the company or startup for which they develop the product.

Dedicated Development Team

The advantage of outsourcing programming teams is greater experience and knowledge in various fields, and thus the value for money is more reasonable. The team’s experience also guarantees an efficient, well-established development process. It is easily scalable to accommodate changing product needs, which also helps you stay on budget. Dedicated development team allows you to start the project immediately and bring it to market faster, without the need to recruit and deploy new specialists, as is the case with internal development.

Unfortunately, outsourcing is also not without its drawbacks. When choosing a partner for collaboration, we must be sure that they are trustworthy. This way, you will avoid the dangers of a lack of transparency.  Sometimes, there is also a problem with communication. The absence of an established routine may result in misunderstandings and the inability to complete the project on time. It’s worth doing good research before you decide to cooperate then. You will reduce the likelihood that the code and documentation provided will be poorly executed, and thus the further work and development of the obtained product will not be hindered.

5 steps to find the right app developers

The form of hiring is one of the many elements to be determined when choosing an app developer. As you’ve already known them, take a look at steps you need to acquire to make the best possible choice.

Identify what you really need

It is fundamental to determine what you need and what you want to achieve in the long run. Even the choice of the form of hiring an app developed team depends on this because, for example, if you want to implement more than one project of a mobile application, it is worth considering an in-house development team. Identifying business needs is desired not only to determine how the project is supposed to end to call it a success. They are also helpful to clearly set goals for the development team. As a result, it is easier at the research stage to verify which candidate will be the right one and help you succeed. Also, clearly define what you require directly from the app development team, what your needs are in this regard. Do you want a complete team, with a PM and a tester who will take on the implementation of the entire project, or maybe just hire a freelance developer due to the small scale of the project? Surely you can already see that you need to accurately identify all the details, write them down, and on their basis, you will clarify the vision of your ideal project contractor.

Look for a right tech stack

Choosing the right technology is a bit tricky. It mainly depends on the features and functions you want in your application. The developers you hire would probably help, but you should familiarize yourself with the methodologies available and what they enable. With this knowledge, you can choose candidates that work with your wanted technology. Knowing what functions your application should have, it is easier to rule out options that, due to their capabilities, will not allow you to implement them. It will also help you decide whether to develop a native, hybrid, or web-based mobile application. Of course, you don’t have to decide on a technology stack yourself. When choosing an agency or freelancer to cooperate with, check if they work with a wide range of mobile development technologies and what experience they have so that, if necessary, they can choose the best solution for you.

See these platforms

You can look for a development team in many places, starting from friends who can recommend a company, to social media and a notice board. A good place and often with the largest selection are platforms such as:


The most popular platform with ratings and reviews of leading IT, marketing, and business services companies. It is a field guide for B2B buying and hiring decisions. There you will find a business directory which can be a valuable clue to who is worth your attention. Besides, ratings come directly from customers, are verified and truthful.


GitHub is a website hosting service for development projects, and for developers to collaboratively work on a code. All kinds of developers, software agencies and IT companies are present there, and so, you have a good insight on their projects.


It is self-promotion and social network platform for digital designers and creators. Dribbble serves as a project portfolio platform, job listings, and recruiting website. It is one of the largest websites for designers to share their work online and a great place to review completed projects with the greatest emphasis on the visual aspect, but not only.


Behance is an Adobe-owned social media platform that works much like Dribbble and is a place to display your creative projects, including digital products. Here, too, many IT companies have their projects portfolio.


Medium is an online publishing platform that is very popular in the IT industry. Many companies publish industry articles, case studies or share knowledge there. It is a good platform to find experts who validate their expertise with advanced writings on these topics.

Check case studies

Case studies are the ideal material for analyzing your candidates’ projects. They show not only a solution to a problem, but also the entire concept, the thought process that occurred in the application development process, and innovative solutions. The case study shows what a given IT company/agency can do, increases its credibility and confirms its expertise, so it is worth reviewing what your candidate can boast about.

Read also: Can You Patent an App and How to Do It?

Set up a call to ask all of your questions

This is the easiest way to check if a potential subcontractor meets your expectations. Sometimes the information on websites can be too general, so at such a meeting or call, find out all the details. Write down any questionable, unexplained issues and arrange an interview.

What not to do when hiring developers?

There are many traps that you can fall into while searching for an app development team. See what you should avoid.

Cost as the main factor

Unfortunately, as is usually the case, the quality does not go hand in hand with the lowest price. The optimal price is not the only factor that will ensure your success. However, this does not mean that the most expensive team will immediately guarantee you the best product on the market. Try to find a golden mean and focus on good specialists with a holistic approach and wide knowledge who are sometimes not worth saving on.

Looking only for development skills 

Of course, these skills are necessary, but a team that is totally ignorant of your business and its nuances is a bad idea. When selecting contractors, consider whether they have already completed a project similar to yours, their approach to business values, and any non-technical skills.

Doesn’t compare offers

The offer consists not only of the price, which, as mentioned above, should not be the main and only condition. Therefore, always compare the available options and see widely – will you get a guarantee of quality, care for the right UX, will the design be at the highest level, etc.


The choice of the application developer will determine the fate of the entire project, so do your research well. We hope that the above guide will give you a clue on how to get it right.

Read more about mobile app development best practices on our blog:

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