6 lessons from dating to help you find the perfect developer: Part two

In the second installment of this two-part feature, discover three more essential rules to help your business find a developer that’s a ‘perfect match’

In part one of this article, I gave you my first three lessons from dating to help you find the perfect developer.

If you missed it catch up here or read on to discover three more essential tips to help you employ your very own web “hero”.

4. First impressions count

Turning up to a first date shouldn’t require a new suit or designer dress but a little bit of effort goes a long way. Similarly, the first contact with a new developer needs to create the right impression. Whether it’s an email or a Skype call or the job post you are asking them to look at online, first impressions still count. Be friendly (people always prefer to work with people they like), be professional and, crucially, be excited and passionate about your business and what you’re trying to achieve.

Getting any collaborator (developer or not) engaged in and enthused about your project is half the battle.

5. Don’t get hitched on the second date

Marry in haste, repent at leisure works just as well for dating as it does for recruitment. When you first start working with someone start small. You wouldn’t suggest a three week holiday for date #2, equally don’t launch into an enormous technical project with someone you’ve never worked with. Break the job into component parts, set milestones and review as you go. Trust me, this prevents much heartache (not to mention unnecessary expenditure) down the line.

6. You get out what you put in

As in relationships and in life, you’ll get what you give. Make an effort. Communicate clearly and frequently, although not every second of every day – no one likes a micro manager (or a stalker for that matter). Check in regularly and don’t leave your developer wondering what they should do next or whether you’re happy with what they’ve done. This is even more important when you hire online – there is an art to distance management and communication is the key to mastering it.

All-in-all when hiring a developer, try not to be too prescriptive. While you should always have a clear idea of what you want, be prepared to be a little flexible too. You may think you need someone full-time, in your office 24/7 but perhaps your ideal match can only give you three days a week at the moment. Better to have the right person and compromise on the other stuff. Prioritise your wish-list into “must-haves” and “nice-to haves”. And be realistic. You can’t build a rival to Amazon with a £1,000 budget. And you wouldn’t write “must look like Brad Pitt” on a dating profile now would you?

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Hayley Conick is Country Manager for oDesk in the UK



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