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Hiring freelance web developers is often an arduous task requiring Herculean stamina and immeasurable patience. It’s often a complex process, and with a limited supply of talented web developers available for hire, it’s often rife with mistakes.

Freelance web developers of every skill level are always in the running for a new project and are always willing to join a team so it is up to the hiring manager to fund the perfect fit.

Any hiring manager or executive worth their salt knows that to hire effectively you have to hire with the entire team in mind. It doesn’t matter if your company has an endless supply of top talent if they cannot work together or cooperate. 

5 Tips When Hiring Freelance Web Developers:

1. Get Personal

First, find out why they picked your company and then evaluate their response to find any cultural relevance to your current team. 

Your candidate may not enjoy working in pairs or may not believe in iterative development for whatever reason. These seemingly small things can be the deal-breakers that determine if your prospect is the best first for the job. 

To limit how much time you spend interviewing, you should commit yourself to a personable interview style. Rather than rigidly technical or perilously informal, you should take a measured approach. 

2. Leverage Pseudocode

Pseudocode is one way to test technical skills and problem-solving ability without getting too technical or technology-specific.

Another key facet in understanding their fit is by assessing their proficiencies and preferences when it comes to web development. 

Freelance developers won’t do your team much good if everyone specializes in the same technology. However, the same is true if the specifications are too spread out. Aim for a good balance of specialties and make sure that your prospect won’t slow a specific area down. 

3. Propose Continued Education

What an individual can do right now is only half the equation. You’ll also want to take stock in what they’re capable of and what they’re willing to do. 

Are they open to learning new skills, taking refresher courses, or mentoring junior developers? If they are freelancers, then are they willing to adapt and change with your company as you adapt and change.

4. Leverage Industry-wide Certifications

One way to understand the specifics of what a web developer knows without immersing yourself in technical research or embarrassing yourself with interview questions you don’t quite understand is to ask to take a look at their certifications and coursework.

Do they have a front-end web development degree with HTML, CSS, and scripting classes on their transcript? Did they attend a back-end web developer boot camp? 

Do they have references who can vouch for their technical skills? Do they have a GitHub listing the technologies they’ve worked on in the code repo community?

5. Utilize Online Portfolios

If you have someone who understands the technical aspects of front-end or full-stack web development, you may even want to ask for source code in the form of .html documents, stylesheets, and even code snippets of JavaScript posted on CodePen, GitHub, or SourceForge.

The first item that you will want to check off the list is cultural fit because if they will not work in your team then it doesn’t really matter how much they know. 

However, correctly emulating their character takes more than one question. In order to appropriately gauge their fit, you will want to probe them about their experiences and education to find any links to current project members or project features. 

Then you will want to gauge their mentality in regards to learning and continuing education. Ideally, your candidate is willing to learn whatever skills necessary and go to boot camps whenever necessary to keep your team ahead of the competition. 

hiring freelance web developers

How to Spot an Amazing Freelance Developer During an Interview

An amazing freelance developer can truly change the tides of fortune for companies of all sizes as they are available to work on flexible schedules and contracts. Additionally, freelance developers are known to be skilled and experienced developers who have seen a myriad of development strategies and a dearth of mistakes. 

This unique perspective brings more than just skill to the development environment as experienced freelance developers can help to mentor other developers or show the team a new strategy for overall development. Finding that amazing freelance developer is all about asking the right questions and prioritizing the right people.

1. Motivation is Paramount

The first thing to ask any hopeful prospect is why they decided to join your company in the first place? This simple question will reveal a wealth of information about your candidate and will showcase their mentality when approaching new projects. 

Do they want to join the next big thing? Are they looking for a challenge? Do they simply want to pay the bills? These are important questions in determining the overall demeanor of your prospect and whether or not they will fit into your development team.

2. Values and Culture

What makes a freelance developer the perfect candidate for your business? What makes them a perfect part of your term?

While it’s hard to pinpoint the characteristics of an ideal candidate, if it even exists, there are a few tricks to spotting a talented and dependable freelance developer.

The most element of interviewing developers: the human element. Building a rapport is absolutely essential for an interviewer. Without a rapport, it’s nearly impossible to assess whether or not you’ve found a cultural match for the team.

3. Ask About Soft Skills

The business that employs motivated, dedicated employees, is the business that respects employees. One way to respect your employees is to hire well. Disrupting teamwork by making a poor hire is a major hindrance to your workforce. Manipulative and duplicitous characters will do even more harm, even if they are discovered and ejected from the team.

Therefore, you should take great stock in the character of the person you’re hiring. Not as a moral assignment of judgment; merely as a barometer for social synergy. Are they dedicated? Why did they choose to work with you? What are some mistakes they’ve made? What have they learned?

4. Adaptability Is Key

Freelance developers must be adaptable. As such, they need to be extremely collaborative as well. Have your candidates meet with the team, maybe even propose a mock project to assure that this freelance developer can easily communicate with mobile app designers, engineers, and UX specialists.

5. Consistency and Talent Can’t Be Mutually Exclusive

Most importantly, don’t forget to leverage the portfolio. There’s more than just interview questions and resumes to base your hiring decisions on. 

Take a look at their projects past and present. Have some technical people look over the source code or open-source projects they collaborate on. This will tell you a great deal about how they work and how consistent they are.

Of course, like with most interviews, your team will want to understand their education and experience level as these things can also lead to a better cultural fit for the future. Do they understand high-level and low-level technologies? Which skills do they prioritize? Which are they really best at? 

These questions will help your team in hiring freelance web developers if the answers are right. Their specific knowledge regarding development as a whole is also important to gauge as it will determine how well they understand technology at a higher level. 

Your ideal freelance developer will always be ready to learn and always searching to add new skills to their bag of tricks. More importantly, you will want to see their portfolio and history of projects as it will clearly indicate whether or not they can fit into your team. 

If their coding style is completely different and they are unwilling to change their formatting then that might be more of an issue than where they live or their education level. 

The 4 Key Components that Make Top Web Designers

web designer and web developer working together

Web design is an often underappreciated skill that requires the designers to utilize a host of artistic and technical skills to create alluring web sites that are logical and cohesive. 

Cultivating web design talent is a cost-effective way to boost your branding efforts. Why? Web design is a key aspect of your digital brand. People perceive your company to be either solid or shaky based on the appearance and ease-of-use of your landing page.

Cultivating talent takes more than simply scouting for the highest-paid designers. It takes a little bit of gusto, a lot of dedication, and some well-heeded expert advice.

Hiring freelance web developers can turn a company’s online presence around overnight which is an increasingly important thing in this always-connected world. Reinvigorating your business’s internet profile is a surefire way to produce the best results moving forward in today’s digital landscape. 

1. Work Ethic and Skill

However, not just any web designer can be picked up and do that magic for you. In fact, finding the right web designer is as much about skill as it is about effects and dedication. Finding designers that match your current developers in skill level is all well and good but if they cannot work together harmoniously then they do not have a great chance of finding a real working groove. 

It is principally important that you understand the prospect’s motivations and experiences so that you can determine if their disposition will fit alongside the rest of your team. Then it is vital that you assess their technical interests and proficiencies as these are fundamental in understanding how they work. 

2. Back-end Web Development Experience

Web technologies are quite important in this day and age. Surprisingly, only a few people are technically proficient at building, analyzing, and optimizing websites. Even rarer: full-stack developers. These developers and designers understand each layer of web design and development, including the front-end and back-end.

Before you go interviewing possible web designers, it is crucial to know the basics of these two terms in relation to web design and development.

Backend web development involves the part of the website we don’t see. This is where data is stored and information is transferred. Backend developers use PHP, Perl, and Python to make calls to certain protocols, host web content, and store data.

3. Front-end Web Design Talent

Front end web developers are concerned with the look and feel of a website, prioritizing usability, speed, and style. They work in tandem with marketers and designers to create aesthetically beautiful user interfaces that are both intuitive and intriguing. 

This is where web designers shine. While it’s possible to find a full-stack web designer, it’s far likelier that web designers are front-end specialists, focusing on drafting HTML, CSS, and scripting documents.

4. Digital design Skill

They may also be proficient in a few photo editing, illustration, and wireframing software programs, helping them create use cases, draft possible layouts, and simulate the user experience, before penning any code.

Web design is not only about implementing responsiveness, minifying stylesheets for performance, or using the best scripting platform. The user experience design behind technical decisions is the most important.

Great web design prospects will be proficient in back end technologies and these will be the first skills that you will want to assess. Many developers believe that web design starts at the back end and if your prospect isn’t familiar with any of the server technologies you use then they might not be a great fit right off the bat. The best web design prospects will be at least familiar with Python, PHP, and Ruby. What is less sensitive, but equally important, are the front end technologies like JavaScript, HTML, and CSS. 

Their understanding of these skills will allow you to appropriately gauge their overall level of web design proficiency and their general commitment to the craft. Finding skilled and committed talent is great enough but it never hurts to prove then about their experience with design software like photoshop and after-effects. 

These software tools are used by graphic designers and artists all over the world and a candidate that has a great base of knowledge with these tools would be ideal. Ultimately, the right web designer is out there for your company as long as you know the right questions to ask.

Written By
Romy Catauta is a marketing specialist who loves to write about human resources, business, interior design, and psychology.

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