Finding good programmers is not easy. There is a myth that says that you can outsource everything to poor countries and you get a lot of work done for nothing. This may work pretty well for robotic activities like data entry or something like this, but why do you think there are so many companies that prefer to work with US programmers ? Most people in those countries don’t even take time to get used with the language so they can communicate with buyers. Most of them are in for some quick cash. The truth is that there are enough programmers that are willing to do for you more than you pay just because they respect what they do, they want to do better and better so they can learn more and more. The goal here is to spot those coders.
The first place that comes to anyone mind when looking for a programmer is to got the top 2 or 3 outsourcing networks and to post a job. This is a way to do the job, but you should take care of some things from the very begining. You should know how to write that ad so you can attract the right coders.
Here is a list with things to follow when writing your ad:
- Give clear specifications
- Take time to arrange your text ( if you don’t care enough to arrange your text then a good programmer won’t care to bid for your project )
- Don’t post your ad to more than 1 website. At first you will disagree with this, but most programmers have accounts on all major outsourcing websites and if they feel that there is a chance that you will not select a programmer they won’t bid. Good programmers won’t waste their time to read your ad and to bid on it.
- Avoid any cliche. For example: “This is an easy job for someone who knows what he is doing”, “This should only take few hours of work”, “Please bid only if you are good at this”, “I can do it myself but I don’t have time”. When a programmer bid on your job, he is aware of his skills and they will bid only if they know they can do it. If you post this stuff poor programmers won’t be excluded. They just copy and paste their proposal to all jobs even some of them clearly states that are only for a specific countries. It does not matter for them, so writing such phrases will only make good programmers to go away.
- Adjust your budget accordingly. If you aim to get the lowest bid then deal with poor programmers. They will only waste your time. If you want to attract good programmers then make it to look that you don’t care and let the programmers to tell you what they think their time worth. You will find enough programmers that will do a good job for the half of the price that you may have to pay to a full time programmer that you employ.
If you adjust your job ad accordingly then you might start to get proposals from good programmers. Then you must know how to choose them. If you think that a bid is too low, then it migh really be. There are sellers that bid to every project, you can’t get away of them. They don’t even read what you wrote. If the bid looks too generic then ignore it. You have to find that programmer that took enough time to understand what you want. If you select a programmer that you were aware that the bid is too low but you try to ripe him, he will realise sooner or later than continuing the job is bad for him and will leave you with the project half completed. Try to communicate few times with the one you want to choose so you can be sure that he meant what he said in the proposal and he still wants to work with you even if you will be there to drive him and to review the results.
Where you have the most chances to find the good ones ? That depends. I’ve seen Elance a good way to find good programmers because they have a system that let them to bid only on about 20 projects every month for free. If they want to bid more then they have to buy the “connections”. This system works well enough to prevent the people that bid very low to a lot of projects and they only follow up the ones that they think their payoff is best. Since you are looking for a specific type of coders: WordPress programmers, you may want to look in dedicated places.
There is a job board website dedicated to WordPress: WordPress Freelance. You can be sure that all people there know wordpress and want to work on wordpress. Another good place to find is to post directly into the wordpress official forums, or go trough the people that advertised their wordpress work and ask them for quotes.
In the end, please remember: You get what you pay for.