Top 10 Things To Avoid When You Hiring A Web Programmer

Hiring a web programmer can be complicated, since most people don’t know what a web programmer does, let alone how to find one. A web programmer is someone who writes computer code to build websites.

Hmm, that doesn’t help much. How about this: If you think of a website as something like a house or building, the person who designs and builds it is the designer/architect (this could be anyone), while the person who builds it is the contractor (a web developer). The person who creates all of the small bits and pieces in your building and puts them together is the carpenter (the web programmer).

A good analogy for explaining how all of these different roles are related to each other would be to consider Legos: You can create pretty much anything with them like Barbie houses, buildings in Minecraft, even robot dinosaurs! As you’re designing your thing with Legos, you can imagine each piece being built by someone else before you get your hands on them. That’s what happens with websites and their different components.

Now that we’ve got our analogy out of the way, let’s talk about hiring an independent contractor (or freelancer), which may also be referred to as a “freelance web developer.”

10 Critical Factors to Consider Before Hiring a Web Developer
Key Takeaways
A successful website requires a skilled and knowledgeable web developer
Hiring a web developer is a complex process that requires careful consideration
Avoid common mistakes when hiring a web developer by researching their experience, skills, and communication style
Clearly define your project requirements and expectations before hiring a web developer
Ensure that you have a written contract in place that outlines project scope, timelines, and payment terms
Regular communication with your web developer is crucial to ensure that the project stays on track
Don’t rush the hiring process – take the time to find the right web developer for your project
Building a positive working relationship with your web developer can lead to long-term success

Don’t Use Confusing, Over-Technical Language

You want your web programmer to understand what you’re looking for from the project, and that can’t happen if you’re using confusing, over-technical language. If you’re not sure how to explain your needs in a way the other person will be able to understand, ask them to help you find the right words. It might feel awkward at first, but everyone’s going to benefit in the long run.

Similarly, don’t be afraid of saying “I don’t understand,” or asking for clarification or examples when you need it. You don’t want to take on tasks and responsibilities that will later turn out to have been miscommunicated so if anything is unclear, address it immediately so everyone is on the same page.

If you’re considering hiring a freelance web designer, there are many benefits to doing so. As we explore in our article on why hiring a freelance web designer may help you, freelancers often offer greater flexibility, lower costs, and specialized expertise in certain areas.

Don’t Assume That Everyone Can Fix Every Issue

  • It is important to keep in mind that not all programmers are exactly the same. They can be specialized, just like any other profession. Some developers may be better at some tasks than others. You may need a full stack developer who is capable of handling both front-end and back-end development or you might want to look for someone with experience in specific programming languages or environments.

  • The bigger and more complex your project is, the more specialized your programmer should be. Eventually, they become so specialized that they can only fix a small portion of issues that come their way so don’t assume that every programmer is capable of completing every task you throw at them!
  • Programmers aren’t magicians; it will take time for them to learn about your business, its requirements, and its needs before being able to develop an effective solution for you

Keep these things in mind when hiring a web programmer so that you know what to expect from him/her/them!

Don’t Assume The Process Will Be Fast (Or Slow).

It’s hard to say exactly how long it will take for a web developer to create your website from beginning to end. It may seem like a simple project, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll be quick. Many factors can influence the time it takes for your site to go live, including:

  • The scope of the project; if you want a large site with many pages and features, it will likely take longer than if you want a small personal site with fewer pages and features.
  • Your web developer’s schedule; if there are many other projects on their plate that need attention first, yours may have to wait longer than expected.
  • Your responsiveness; if you’re slow at providing feedback or making decisions about what you want or don’t want on the site, this can cause delays in development and make it take longer than expected.

An experienced web developer should be able to give you an approximate timeline based on your needs, but generally speaking, websites can often take anywhere from 3-8 weeks depending on the above factors. The more experience you have with hiring developers and planning projects out, the better sense you’ll have of how long certain things might take.

When hiring a web designer, it’s important to do your research and avoid scams. Our article on how to hire a web designer without getting ripped off provides useful tips for avoiding common pitfalls and finding a reputable designer who can meet your needs.

Don’t Assume It’s All About You

In this new age of the gig economy, many web programmers work with multiple clients. If you are one of them, you may be tempted to think your project is the most important thing in their lives. You may even assume they have no other clients and that they will drop everything at a moment’s notice to meet your needs.

But as obvious as it sounds, you’re not their only client. And just because you are able to pay a full-time salary doesn’t make yours the only project on his plate. He has other obligations—even if he works for your company full-time, he still has a life outside of work and it’s probably not any less busy than yours.

So make sure you have realistic expectations when working with your web programmer; don’t let him know that anything less than 100% will be unacceptable—because it won’t always be 100%. That’s not practical or possible for anyone, so don’t treat him like he should be some kind of superhuman who’ll never make mistakes or ever let anyone down.

Don’t Underestimate The Complexity Of The Task If You Actually Understand It

Don’t underestimate the complexity of a task just because you understand it.

We’ve all been there. Someone comes up to us and they tell us they need a new website. They say something along these lines, “It’s pretty simple – all I need is an intro page, an about page and a contact form.” Then we start talking about their vision and how they see things working and very quickly you realize this is going to be pretty complex:

There will be user accounts with one of 3 levels of access that can only view a restricted set of data for certain types of products.

The ordering flow needs to integrate with multiple third-party services including inventory management, logistic fulfillment, and e-commerce billing.

There are multiple workflows that need to be supported depending on what product has been ordered (e.g., physical goods vs digital downloads).

These pieces need to come together into an interactive experience that is highly visual and engaging while also being lightning-fast and reliable (so the CEO doesn’t have yet another heart attack).

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Don’t Expect To Be Able To Sit With Your Programmer And Ask Questions

Most of the time, one person should be doing the programming and another person should be asking questions. Coding is a solitary activity; it requires thinking and concentration. Your programmer can’t listen to what you are saying and think about code at the same time, so don’t expect him or her to be able to do both things at once. You need someone who can focus on understanding your requirements while you ask questions.

If you must ask a question, make sure it is related directly to what your programmer is working on right now. If you have any other questions, wait until he or she has finished the task at hand before asking for an explanation about something else (don’t interrupt).

Don’t Expect Code Comments Or Documentation

  • It’s a common misconception that good programmers should add comments to their code, but the reality is those good programmers don’t need to add comments. In fact, a programmer who has taken the time to write nice and clean code won’t have any use for them in the first place, while a programmer who has written sloppy and messy code will tend to clutter it with irrelevant comments.

The fact is that most of these comments are either outdated or inaccurate, and they only serve as an extra burden on you when you try to understand what your program does at some later time. A lot of companies also have a policy against employees adding any kind of personal information into their work, so if your programmer is employed by another company he won’t be able to include his name or contact info in his comments either

Don’t Tell Your Contractor How They Should Do Things, Or Even Why You Want Them Done

One of the biggest mistakes people make when working with a professional is trying to tell them how to do their job. Don’t do this. It is insulting, and it doesn’t work. Trust me on this one: the person you are hiring knows more about what they do than you ever will. Sure, in the short term it might seem like your way is better and faster but that’s because you don’t understand exactly what goes into doing it “the other way.”

A good contractor will have their own ways of doing things that are faster for them and for testing than yours; as long as they get done what you wanted (and got paid), then who cares? You should remain focused on your business rather than worrying about how someone else does theirs. The worst thing you can do is try to put restrictions or limitations on them so that they can only use certain functions or approaches that happen to be familiar to you, the non-programmer.’

Choosing the right web designer is crucial for the success of your project, but with so many options out there, it can be difficult to know where to start. Our article on 15 tips to help you choose a freelance web designer offers valuable advice on what to look for in a designer and how to evaluate their skills and experience.

Expect To Pay Them Well. If You Don’t, Don’t Expect Good Work

It boggles my mind that some people seem to think it is OK to offer an unrealistically low price for a job that can take months of someone’s time, but it continues to happen again and again. It seems like the majority of ‘work from home opportunities on websites like craigslist are for programmers who are asked to make a full-blown software package for under $10,000 or even less in some cases.

You can hire a programmer cheap through outsourcing companies or even in other countries where workers are paid far less than here in the United States, but you will likely end up with a poor quality product and not much customer service afterward if things go wrong with it.

A good web programmer should be paid at least $80K per year (and probably more if they have been working on their craft for many years), as this is what they would need to spend on tools, continuing education, and living expenses while they work full time on your project (or multiple projects at once).

Freelancing as a web designer can be a rewarding and flexible career choice, but it’s important to approach it with the right mindset and strategies. Our article on 22 expert tips to improve your web design freelancing career offers insights from experienced freelancers on how to stay motivated, find clients, and build a successful career.

Final Thoughts

As we’ve seen, there are a variety of ways you can approach hiring a web programmer. It’s important to pay attention to the details of your project and specifically choose someone who fits the job. In conclusion, here are a few things that might surprise you when working with a web programmer:

  • The process is usually faster than expected! If you’ve never worked with web programmers before, it can be hard to gauge how long something will take but in most cases, it’s actually quicker than people suspect. This is because many people overestimate their own abilities and assume that everything they want done must necessarily be complex.
  • There are some things you won’t be able to do yourself on the site after working with a web programmer. While you would want to be able to ask questions and go through all the changes together if possible, this may not always be an option. Some changes are so small that it’s more efficient for your programmer to just change them quickly without bothering you about it first.

Further Reading

11 Mistakes to Avoid When Hiring a Web Developer: Learn from these common hiring mistakes and ensure you find the right web developer for your project.

The Biggest Mistakes to Avoid When You Hire a Web Designer: Avoid these common pitfalls when hiring a web designer to ensure your project is successful.

Top 10 Mistakes That Web Developers Make: Gain insights into the common mistakes that web developers make and learn how to avoid them.


What are some common mistakes to avoid when hiring a web developer or designer?

Common mistakes to avoid when hiring a web developer or designer include failing to properly evaluate their skills and experience, not establishing clear communication channels, and neglecting to define project requirements and expectations upfront.

How can I ensure I find the right web developer or designer for my project?

To find the right web developer or designer for your project, be sure to conduct thorough research, evaluate their portfolio and experience, and ask for references and testimonials from past clients. It’s also important to establish clear communication and expectations upfront to ensure a successful partnership.

How do I avoid communication breakdowns with my web developer or designer?

To avoid communication breakdowns with your web developer or designer, establish clear communication channels from the outset, such as email, phone, or project management software. Be sure to communicate project requirements and expectations clearly and provide regular feedback throughout the development process.

What should I do if I’m not satisfied with my web developer or designer’s work?

If you’re not satisfied with your web developer or designer’s work, it’s important to address the issue promptly and professionally. Be sure to communicate your concerns clearly and provide specific examples of what needs to be improved. If necessary, consider seeking outside mediation or legal assistance.

How can I ensure my web development or design project stays on track and on budget?

To ensure your web development or design project stays on track and on budget, establish clear project requirements and expectations upfront, communicate regularly with your developer or designer, and use project management tools to monitor progress and track expenses. Be prepared to make adjustments as needed to stay within your budget and timeline.

How Do I Find A Good Web Programmer?

Word of mouth is the best way to find someone. If you have friends that have hired web programmers, ask them for recommendations. If you don’t know anyone who has hired a web programmer, go to LinkedIn and search for “JavaScript programmers” within 40 miles of your zip code and see what comes up.

Look at their profiles and see if any of them look like they might be a fit for the work you want done. If so, send them a message through LinkedIn to start building a relationship with them. You can also try finding people on Twitter by looking through javascript-related hashtags or by starting conversations on GitHub by opening pull requests on other people’s projects (click “fork” in the upper-right corner of any GitHub repository page).

How Do I Know If They’re Any Good?

Ask for an example project that demonstrates their skills in action. Ask about specific features that are relevant to your project; i.e., if your site needs user authentication, ask how they would implement user authentication given certain requirements (you can give fake requirements).

If they know what they’re doing, they should be able to talk intelligently about their past projects and explain some of the challenges involved in completing them and how those challenges were overcome. They’ll also be able to explain how the code will handle edge cases (i.ebugs) so that it doesn’t break when things don’t go according to plan (because things never go according to plan).

Do I Have To Give My Programmer Access To My Site?

No, you don’t. You can simply tell them what you need, and they’ll make it. Some programmers prefer this method of working; they like to be given a list of instructions and then left alone to do their work without any interference. But if you want to check in on the progress of your project regularly and ensure that it’s going well, having access is a good idea.

How Much Should I Pay My Programmer?

The amount you spend on your programmer will depend on the type of job they’re doing for you, as well as their experience and expertise level. For example, if they’re building a website from scratch, then it will cost more than if they’re just fixing bugs in an existing site or making small changes here or there (like adding a menu).

How Can I Make Sure My Programmer Is Doing His Or Her Best Work?

The best way to get the best work out of your web programmer is to set up a system of rewards and consequences, as well as establish open lines of communication. In other words, if you ask your programmer to do something and they do it, give them a compliment. If they don’t do it, have a serious talk with them about why they didn’t do it and what you can do together to make sure that doesn’t happen in the future.

What Can I Do If The Web Programmer Does Not Use The Right Programming Language?

You should communicate this with the programmer. They might not know that you wanted another language used. If they are unwilling to change, then perhaps you should find someone else to complete your project.

What Should I Do If The Programmer Is Asking Me Questions That I Don’t Think They Are Supposed To Ask?

The programmer will probably need some information from you in order to complete your project. If you think a question is too personal, then you can ask them why they need that information from you. If they can’t give a good reason for needing it, then you have every right to be wary of answering their question.

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