5 Qualities to Look For before You Hire a Freelance Software Developer

Qualities To Look For While Hiring Freelance Software Developers

The popularity of freelance development has skyrocketed over the last decade. As the number of freelancer websites grows, it becomes more and more difficult to hire good freelance software developers. Companies are increasingly paying attention to freelance developers because of their benefits. This includes the ability to onboard them quickly and adopts skills that are highly relevant to project requirements. In this blog, we discussed the top qualities you need to look for before hiring freelance software developers.

Freelancers can save a lot of hiring costs. In fact, companies can save even more if they don't have to pay for the company overheads. However, using the term "freelancer" is not as free and easy as you might think.

Hiring freelance programmers can be risky as well. They may not be able to meet the deadline because the project priority is at the bottom of the list. Or they may do a poor job because they are doing many such projects at the same time. So it's wise to hire only freelancers who know what you want and don't ruin the project.

This means you need to know what's there, what types of developers are available, and what you're paying for their services.

In this post, you'll learn why you need to hire a freelance software developer, what kind of specialists you need, what to consider when looking for the best candidate, and more.

Why should you hire a freelance software developer?

There are a couple of reasons why a company should hire freelance software developers. The following are the 4 reasons why -

Cost savings

The first reason is that freelancers are more affordable than full-time employees. Companies usually have to pay for offices, equipment, and other such expenses.

Therefore, freelancers are more cost-effective than full-time developers whom companies have to pay in addition to the benefits. Also, if the project requires specific specialists and you don't want them to be included in your payroll forever, freelance is best.

Cost incentives are one of the main reasons companies choose freelancers. They hire them only for the duration of the project, which means they don't have to pay their salaries and allowances all year round.

After the project is over, they are no longer part of the company's salary and can be rehired.

The flexibility of work hours

Another reason it's wise to hire freelancers is that you can hire them for a project and don't care about their time.

Freelancers are usually self-employed and do not have fixed working hours. They can complete the project on time and they don't have to take a vacation or report.

Therefore, by hiring them, you can save yourself from the headache of having to approve their vacation request or monitor work timings.

Increased productivity

In the past, recruitment managers and business owners have been concerned about freelancer productivity. They were worried that freelancers might not be as productive as in-house employees who could "continue to monitor."

However, this is no longer the case. Freelancers are as productive as their employees in the company and can achieve the same results. In fact, freelancers can be more productive because they focus on the project and don't care about the office environment.

Also, working in a relaxed environment, such as at home or in a coffee shop, can help increase the productivity of freelancers. Many freelancers report that working from anywhere increases their satisfaction and productivity.

Therefore, hiring a freelancer can be a beneficial move for business owners who want to increase sales while minimizing costs and overheads.

Determine the type of developer

Knowing the type of developer you need is important for customizing your search for developers for the project you are thinking of.

There are many types of freelance software developers, including front-end developers, back-end developers, full-stack developers, and mobile app developers.

Each of these developers has its own expertise in specific areas, so it's important to know exactly what you need.

Front-end freelance developer:

Front-end developers are people who think about what a website looks like to users. Create layouts and graphics and use HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

They also work on one of the most important aspects of a website which is the user interface that users see when they visit it.

Therefore, if your project requires a visually appealing and user-friendly website, you need to hire a freelance front-end developer.

Back-end freelance developers:

The back-end of the website is where all data and information are stored. Typically, there are servers, databases, and other methods used to store data on a website.

Back-end developers are responsible for website safety, speed, and data. They should be considered to ensure smooth operation from the beginning to all aspects.

Full-stack freelance developer:

A full-stack freelancer is a developer with the skills and knowledge to handle the front and back-ends of the website.

This gives them the freedom to handle all aspects of development, from project planning to website coding to summarizing for smooth operation.

This is a great option if you don't know which aspect of development is most important to you.

Mobile app developers:

If your business or product requires a mobile app, you may be looking for a mobile app developer.

You can also hire a freelance developer based on the technology stack. For example, if you need a NodeJS developer, a PHP developer, a Python developer, a Ruby on Rails developer, and so on.

By hiring a freelance developer who specializes in the area of ​​the project, you can get exactly what you want.

Qualities to look for before you hire a freelance software developer

Technical skills

The most important quality of a developer is knowledge of the various technologies required for a project. Make sure the developer has experience working with multiple technologies, preferably similar projects. In this way, they are familiar with industry standards and will also find appropriate solutions to their problems.

Key qualities include knowledge of development and task management software, version control tools, full-stack, and deployment processes. For example, hiring a Drupal developer who can't use PHP can harm your project. To ensure that the selected developer has the required skills, you can:

  • Ask for previous work samples
  • Conduct a technical interview
  • Check online reviews
  • Conduct live simulation tests
  • Check the work portfolio and experience

Punctuality and reliability

It is imperative that freelance developers must be punctual. This applies not only to the timely delivery of the required code but also to team meetings and stand-ups. If not done on time, it will affect the productivity of the entire team. This is even more pronounced where interaction options are already limited.

They must also be reliable and keep their promises. Insights from past customer references can be very helpful, as it is difficult to objectively assess a developer's punctuality and reliability.

It can also be evaluated based on interactions during the interview process. This includes responsiveness to replies, reliability of delivery of non-work-related items, and more. Before you start engaging, it's a good idea to have a short-term trial project. This is useful for both parties to evaluate practicality.


In addition to technical knowledge, developers need to be flexible in their work. They need to adapt to the project requirements, schedule according to deadlines, and change work patterns based on the project requirements.

A rigid attitude towards work can lead to collaboration issues and the inability to receive constructive feedback, which can adversely affect the development process. Developers must invest equally in the success of their apps and websites and take responsibility for their work.

Ability to work independently

As mentioned earlier, freelancing is primarily a remote exercise and has few opportunities for F2F interaction. Therefore, freelance developers must be able to make their own decisions about the success of the project.

In addition, remote work involves a lot of distractions and challenges. It is important to be able to overcome these obstacles and provide consistent quality. This requires getting used to tools that help developers stay focused and proactive, maintain good documentation, manage time effectively, and support their remote work.

It can be difficult to assess the ability of freelance software developers in the above skills. Therefore, using past records of other remote teams working under similar conditions is a good indicator.

Soft skills

A great freelance software developer can have good technical skills and still have a lousy attitude toward work. Look out for a person who is positive-minded and has these soft skills:

Critical thinking skills

Software developers constantly face problems that need to be resolved. The ability to critically analyze problems and resolve them quickly is an important skill for this profession. It's helpful to hire a freelance software engineer who understands the complexities of facing problems head-on. A good freelance software developer may have the following critical thinking skills:

  • Ability to break down large and complex goals into simpler goals
  • Ability to tackle several complex topics at the same time
  • Learn techniques to use existing tools

As part of problem-solving skills, good software developers need to provide solutions to their problems by relying on existing tools.

Learning skills

Compared to other professions, software developers learn new skills much more regularly to stay up to date. They can learn while using platforms such as StackOverflow and GitHub, and learn specific skills at online boot camps, seminars and conferences. Hire freelance software developers who spend a lot of time developing their professional skills, as they are likely to be more knowledgeable than other candidates.

Communication skills and team management

Good communication skills are closely related to development skills. The right developer must be able to effectively communicate goals, ideas, and issues related to the project. They also need to be able to clearly explain the hypotheses, concepts, and solutions to the team.

It also helps teams to manage their work and collaborate seamlessly. When multiple developers work on your project, they need to improve each other's work rather than discourage each other. A good team works together to make suggestions, address issues, and use individual skills to benefit the project. Therefore, you must hire freelance software developers who can communicate effectively while working independently or in a team.


Finding and hiring the right freelance software developers is not difficult once you know the qualities and software skills you are looking for when hiring. However, the work itself is complex, so you need to develop a robust and detailed hiring process that will ensure that you hire the ideal freelance developers while checking all the required qualities.


  • Author

    Aditya Sharma

    Aditya is a content writer with 4+ years of experience writing for various industries including Marketing, SaaS, B2B, IT, and Edtech among others. You can almost always find him watching animes or playing games when he’s not writing.

Frequently Asked Questions

There are various ways to hire a software developer, the most common ones being job boards like Indeed and LinkedIn. However, if you want to skip the tedious hiring process and hire a developer seamlessly, you can opt for Turing, which uses its Intelligent Talent Cloud to match you with elite software developers.

Given the number of freelance developers increasing rapidly, it's crucial to evaluate their capabilities to help you choose the right ones. You can evaluate freelancers by gauging their technical proficiency, communication skills, reliability, punctuality, and ability to operate independently. Beyond these, you can also dive into their past work, client reviews, problem-solving skills, and technical abilities to decide if they suit your requirements well.

While there are numerous avenues today to hire competent software engineers, the hiring process is still tedious. From vetting these engineers to determining if they’re the right pick, the hiring process is expensive, time-consuming, and especially difficult for non-technical hiring managers. However, Turing’s Intelling Talent Cloud enables you to skip this hassle by matching you with pre-vetted, Silicon Valley-caliber developers from a global talent pool.

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