How do I find/hire a web developer for this?

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by Zauberer, Jun 28, 2012.

  1. Zauberer macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2010
    #1
    I believe this is an odd post for these forums, but these are the only tech forums I use so I'm not sure where else to begin.

    At my office, I've been slowly taking over our open data project to put out public information in NYS. If you look at our website (www.seethroughny.net), I think you'll quickly see that the technology is slow/jerky.

    I have extraordinarily little knowledge about this, but how could I find someone to develop something that actually works more smoothly/efficiently?

    Requirements:
    1. Table has to be searchable/sortable/filterable and handle data sets of about 500,000 to 600,000 (basically like the current site).

    2. I have to be able to use a CMS-type software to edit the pages themselves. Currently I can login to the site any change any of the text/images/links not within the table itself.

    3. Ideally, we'd like to be able to upload the data ourselves and have it immediately published. Currently I get the data, format it in Excel, upload it to an FTP, and send an e-mail to our current web developers so that they can publish the data. I'd like to eliminate that last step so if I ever need to update something quickly, I'm not waiting on someone else.

    What inspired me to try to find a better way was coming across JQGrid and wishing our site functioned like that. Like I said, I have no idea what the scope of what I'm requesting is, but if the price is right, I'd much rather replace our current website/designers. If anyone has idea of what I could expect my request to cost, that would be awesome too.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. NathanCH macrumors 65816

    NathanCH

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2007
    Location:
    Stockholm, Sweden
    #2
    Hey Zauberer,

    The project you've described is fairly large, as it is a complete site overhaul dealing with a significant amount of content. The good thing (from your end) about web design and development, is that you can usually find someone willing to do the work in your price range. That being said, like any service, you get what you pay for.

    The worst place to look would be a site like Digital Point Forums. Here you have a very active forum over-run by web developers from Asia (mostly India). I'm sure you can get this done by someone there for very cheap. The quality will be low, they may not do it right, and you will most likely not be satisfied with the final result. I should say, however, I started my career on this website and even though I have moved on, there are some good designer and developers there. *some* :)

    Other sites such as SitePoint, oDesk, Freelancer will find you an array of quality web developers. The prices here are likely to be much more fair, and the final result will likely meet your expectations (if not exceed them).

    Another thing you could try is looking locally. I'm assuming you're in NY, so the price of a developer there may be higher than other states, but a local guy that you could meet up with and talk face to face may be beneficial.

    So as for cost, its going to vary drastically. Expect to pay anywhere from $30 to $60 an hour for a quality developer. An important thing to note is that a good developer will not only quote you, but will also explain why it will cost what it does.

    Good luck!
     
  3. aarond12 macrumors 65816

    aarond12

    Joined:
    May 20, 2002
    Location:
    Dallas, TX USA
    #3
    Sorry, NathanCH, you are WAY low on the money requirement, especially for New York. A decent PHP developer will cost at least $100 per hour or more.

    Zauberer, the project you're describing has many technical hurdles. They're not insurmountable, but very difficult. You're also working with large datasets, which many browsers just aren't designed to handle well. What may run slowly on one computer (or browser!) may run smoothly on another.

    Honestly, what you have there is working quite nicely and is reasonably snappy on my computer. The custom tables have sorting abilities, export to Excel, etc. Unless it's truly broken, I wouldn't "fix" it.

    And I DEFINITELY would NOT outsource this to India. My company did that with one project as a test. I told my company it would take me (alone) 1 month to code. The Indian oursourcers had a team work on it and it took over 6 months, and it's a broken piece of s... Another of our company's clients outsource some of their work to India and are having similarly poor results. Just because it's "cheap" doesn't mean it's gonna be good.
     
  4. NathanCH macrumors 65816

    NathanCH

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2007
    Location:
    Stockholm, Sweden
    #4
    I realize that there are people who charge more, I was sort of giving an average. You do not need to pay $100/h for a "decent" developer. lol

    Seems like you're implying a developer who charges lets say 50/h is below decent. Lets be realistic here
     
  5. lucasgladding macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2007
    Location:
    Waterloo, Ontario
    #5
    Agreed. I'm ~$60/hour these days, and I think I was "decent" when I was charging $40/hour. I charge what I do because it brings certain clients and projects. My advice: you can get a good developer that isn't too expensive by being a good client.
     
  6. Zauberer thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2010
    #6
    So if someone is going to "beat" the current site we have for this project, how many hours can I expect? I recognize this is something I would talk about with any potential developer in advance, but a ballpark range would give me an idea of doing a redesign is within our budget.
     
  7. Albright macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2011
    #7
    Just where are these $100+ gigs? I've never seen that offered, and I've never even come close to receiving that, sadly. Are we just saying that these jobs exist so that we can charge $50-60 an hour and look like a bargain? Is that the game we're playing? I just want to make sure I'm on the same page as everyone…

    At any rate, Zauberer, it's hard to say without a more detailed RFP-like document of just what you're hoping to have built. Personally, I think it's work that looks relatively straightforward, but a lot of work regardless. I would personally say this would take 40 hours on upward, but as I said, I can only give the loosest of estimates with the info you've given so far.
     
  8. aarond12 macrumors 65816

    aarond12

    Joined:
    May 20, 2002
    Location:
    Dallas, TX USA
    #8
    If you're in New York City, $100 per hour is CHEAP. When a 600 ft^2 apartment is $2500 a month, you have to make ends meet.

    Here in Texas, things are less expensive. Sure a $40 per hour rate could be acceptable, but experience matters. I've been doing professional web development since 1995. Paying a bit more for my services may end up being cheaper than paying for a $40 per hour developer who's fresh out of college with no real-world experience.
     
  9. jtara macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2009
    #9
    You should start by assessing what your site actually needs. If you aren't able to do that yourself, hire a consultant, and make it clear that they won't be doing to actual job, and that you won't be going to any "referral" they give you. You want to find somebody knowlegable who will give you good unbiased advice.

    Since it's a public-benefit project, you might even get somebody at no cost.

    You should not assume that because the site is "jerky" that it needs a complete re-do. At this point, you don't even know what you need nor the skill set needed by whoever is going to fix it.

    At first glance, the site seems quite responsive overall. The scrolling windows are not, though, so perhaps all you need is a better Javascript scrolling solution. Don't just jump ahead to the conclusion that you need a "redo".

    I realize you have other issues you want to deal with as well, such as work flow. You need to look at all the things that are wrong, and determine what is needed to fix them. It may be unreasonable to expect one person to be able to do so. First get an overview of what needs to be done, then set out to get the right people to do it.

    I would look for somebody local to give you the high-level consulting you need to figure out what you need.
     

Share This Page