We’ve all heard it before: breaking up is hard to do. Whether it’s a personal or professional relationship, pulling the plug on an arrangement that’s no longer working for you can be pretty tough, especially when there’s something important hanging on the line. In the case of web projects, you can feel intimidated to end a relationship with your developer for various reasons. But there may come a point when you have to fire your developer and go in a different direction. How do you know when that time has come? Keep reading.
Designers in Disguise
Hiring a developer can be tricky. In our blog, “Picking the Right Partner...When You Need a Developer, Not a Designer” we gave you some insight into what exactly you should be looking for. (Here’s a link to the blog in case you missed it) However, if you go online and search for a web developer, a long list of people with pretty impressive resumes will more than likely come up. But not everyone who says they are a developer is actually one.
A developer’s main role in your project is engineering your application once it has been designed. Designers are normally limited to design only. So, if you hire someone and they are unable to understand how to build the backend of your application, you’re probably working with a designer, not a developer. Once you make this discovery, politely tell your “developer” that you’re thinking about going in a different direction with the project. If they push back, simply say you need more time to iron out what exactly you’re looking for.
Scope creep is becoming a huge problem these days, but most people are not aware when it is happening to them. You’ll know you are a victim of scope creep if the direction of your project is not clearly defined or is continuously changing. This may not seem like such a bad thing, however constant changes in your project may lead to more money out of your pocket. To avoid scope creep, make sure your developer knows exactly what your needs are before the project starts. As the project moves forward, drastic changes should not happen. If changes do need to occur, your developer should know the quickest and easiest ways to smooth over any issues and save you on additional costs. Together, the two of you should know exactly what needs to happen next and agree upon the costs to be paid for the changes. If your developer doesn’t communicate the changes with you or charges you erroneous fees, it’s time for you to take your business elsewhere.
Lack of Progress
Once everything is set in motion for your project, you should see steady progress being made. As mentioned in a previous blog, once the goals and expectations have been set, your developer should give you an idea of what steps are to follow. Each step should have an estimated time of completion. As the project moves forward, you should see steady or consistent progress toward the completion date.
Please note: things may come up during the project that may affect the completion date. If this happens, the developer should give you a heads up in advance along with an explanation for the delay. If the developer is moving slow or continues to move dates around without a reasonable explanation, it may be time to seek another developer’s help.
Your Project Has Outgrown the Previous Scope
As your project moves toward completion, you should be comfortable with how things have developed. The functionality and look of the application should meet your needs. If your expectations haven’t been met, you should have a conversation with your developer about your concerns. In most cases, he or she will be able to review the scope of the project and make adjustments to the final product. However, there are times when the project goes beyond the developer’s skill set. If this happens, it’s okay to let the developer know you want to go with a different person.
Before You Hire a Developer…
The best way to spare yourself the trouble of hiring another developer in the middle of a project is to hire someone who has the experience needed beforehand. In our past blogs, we’ve covered a few of the crucial skills a good developer should bring to the table. But sometimes, it helps to ask someone directly. Our company has both the skills and knowledge to help you find the right person for the job. Give us a call and let’s chat more about it.