Lessons from outsourcing software development and hiring 20+ people remotely

6 July 2015

At CityFALCON, we believe in hiring the best people irrespective of their location. Over the last 18 months, we have used eLance to work with several freelancers including developers, designers, business analysts and copywriters. We currently have people in Ukraine, India, Israel and Poland. Overall, it’s been a positive experience but there have been some disappointing experiences. I’d like to share some of things we have learned from our endeavours with freelancers, and things that you would be advised to watch out for.

One Skype account, several users

One issue can be a solitary Skype account spread across several people. You may think you have hired a senior developer, and you have an initial conversation to get him / her started. But after this initial conversation, the company may utilise junior people to do the work, even when charging for a senior developer. Regular VIDEO calls is one way of solving the problem, and even to have an initial video call when hiring.

Multiple clients

Agencies may charge for full-time work of one individual, but encourage their team to work for multiple clients. I usually ensure that my developers provide time spent on every task at a high level in order to understand how diligently they have been working.

Best technology for your product 

Most outsourcing companies will recommend the technology that they understand the best, rather the best technology for your product. Don’t simply take their word for it, research what will work out best for you and insist that they utilise it.


When assigning work to some IT companies you cannot be sure that tasks will be done in-house. It is always preferable to have tasks carried out internally by companies, rather than having them sub-contract it.

Most companies recommend junior developers

With the salaries for mid and senior level developers rising significantly, as most agencies attempt to be competitive in a cut-throat global marketplace, some companies will recommend junior developers in order to achieve higher margins. But as someone who understands coding, I’d rather hire a senior developer than a junior developer…even if the cost is double.

Quality of code and testing

While the product may look pretty and seem functional on the outside, developers may not have documented the code properly.  Also, testing is not religiously followed by most to save on costs.  Remember these things are important when companies are looking to buy you out or in some cases even partner with you.


You will struggle to identify all the tricks that some unprofessional companies may adopt, and there is always a small downside of hiring a remote team or outsourcing. But for every bad apple, you’ll find loyal, committed and highly skilled labour at a reasonable cost. 

This article was inspired from http://sloboda-studio.com/blog/12-blacktricks