Topic: Project Management
As I mentioned in my previous article, my back was against the wall to outsource a developer. It was the recommendation of a CIS college colleague of mine to hire a firm from his own country for cheap labor. After researching this small firm and having discussions with the owner on his price and expertise, I was more or less convinced. I was very skeptical, as I lacked security or accountability with an overseas business. My foundations were shaken a bit; to help me get over my hesitation, I reassured myself that I bargained a good price. Also, I had to write that amount as a loss to my own budget, so I felt that I should just make the best of it. I tried to replace that negativity with positivity; I got myself pumped and finally get my project done.
In hindsight, I can admit that I was adeptly prepared for this new project management experience. As a whole, most freelancers or website development firms operate in a similar manner, they want to do less work, but for more money. Even agreeing on a price was a hassle… to succeed at price bargaining you have to know the going rate for certain tasks, know your own budget, stick to your convictions, but yet be willing to compromise on certain areas. My entire outsourcing experience can be summarized by having to figure innovative ways to solve problems due to lack of resources.
”Project managers have to be problem solvers, compromisers, and obsessive”
To add to this problem, money-hungry developers are trying to squeeze more money from you in any way possible. I had to tackle inconsistencies such as the developer demanding more money since the project is more than they expected. A good way to counter that con is to find a way to motivate the developer; this will ensure that they don’t cut any corners for your product. My personal method was to stick to my budget, if you show weakness they will exploit it. Then, offer bonuses for jobs well done; this will keep the developer focused on the deadline and encourage quality work. Also, demand schedule progress reports to check on their progress per week or month. Lastly, I highly recommend to NOT pay the developer until the job is done and you are satisfied. Mention that in the terms as you begin the project.
I cannot stress the frustration and misery that is the journey that you will embark on. Language or communication barriers will impede success, tight budgets and laziness will constantly bombard you. Be prepared to feel as if the universe is trying prevent this idea from being made. My best advice is to take it one day at a time, visualize the possible success and decide to let nothing stop you.
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