What I’ve learnt
- There is plenty of work out there, for someone who knows what they’re doing.
- There are a lot of web development companies looking for full time developer roles.
- It’s hard to say no to full time employment when you’re starting out.
- Most companies will try to bid you down on price, don’t accept straight away. Reach a compromise that works for you both.
- There are a lot of companies making money producing bad code, there’s money to be made fixing bad code.
- There are a lot of failed companies with legacy code which now needs to be maintained.
- Debugging and finding a solution to a customers problem despite having to wade through bad code is fun.
- It takes time for people to get back to you, to get contracts sorted, to get feedback on work.
- Waiting is frustrating. Have a side project to work on whilst you wait.
- Getting payment terms down to 10 days is impossible for some companies, but not for all.
- If you don’t ask you don’t get.
- People want to pay you hourly/per project, convince them it’s better for both you and them to pay you daily. I’ll explain why in a future post.
- Get the specification of work nailed down as thoroughly as you can, it’s mutually beneficial to you and your customers.
- There’s a lot more to learn.
How I found work
- Created this blog, hosted it on Rackspace, made it run fast.
- Emailed web design companies in and around the local area using this Blog as my CV.
- Posted adverts on Gumtree. ( a free classified ads service in the UK )
- Posted on web forums for those technologies which I used in their advertisement section.
- Getting in contact with friends and telling them I’ve started freelancing. ( A big thank you to all my friends who have been incredibly supportive so far).
- Entered a programming competition, this hasn’t directly lead to work, but I’m hoping might work well for me in the future.
What tools/software am I using
- http://www.siwapp.org/ Free opensource invoicing software.
- http://www.rackspace.co.uk For hosting and fanatical support.
- http://git-scm.com/ Git for version control because it’s awesome.
- https://github.com/Alan01252/receiptstracker A simple YII based application for tracking receipts written by myself.
- https://one.ubuntu.com/ Providing my backup needs.
How much money have I made
What’s my plan for next month
- Continue to satisfy my existing clients producing quality/maintainable code.
- Branch out and try to find some hosting/long term contracts with monthly recurring revenue.
- Continue to work on my start up ideas.
Any thoughts or advice you’d like to share for someone starting out would be greatly appreciated.