Know what you’re looking for.
You don’t need to be an iOS developer to have some idea of what makes for a good pick. You’ll want someone who has both general software engineering experience, as well as experience working specifically in iOS. You should see if they have a blog, twitter, or website so that you can check out some of their past work and get a read on their personality and the types of projects they choose to work on. You also want someone who fits into your office culture – ideally someone creative, dynamic, and motivated, so as you browse their past work and begin communicating with the candidate, keep asking yourself if they’re really a good fit for your team. Finally, you should know what you want them for. Are you looking for an app developer, or a systems engineer? Something else? Make sure you know what specific sort of iOS developer you’re looking for before you start hiring. You should also be familiar enough with the problem you’re trying to solve to ask them to float a couple of potential solutions by you during interviews.
Gain access to a good talent network.
Odds are that you won’t bump into a standout iOS developer on the street. There’s a chance, especially if you’re not a developer, that you’ve literally never met an iOS developer in your entire life. Because of this, it’s crucial that you find a site that will help you identify solid iOS developers and match your request to a particular engineer’s talents. Some simple, basic matching sites are Upwork and Guru, both of which allow you to connect to engineers with a variety of background. The issue with most of these sites is that your only way of verifying an engineer’s skills is often prior reviews; the sites themselves have no quality assurance. If you’re looking for a topnotch site that has its own highly rigorous screening process, you should check out Toptal’s iOS developers.
Don’t jump the gun.
Maybe you just met with a potential iOS developer and he or she blew you away. Even so, you’ve got to remember that you’re looking for the best possible engineer or engineers for your particular project. You might have a genius on your hands, but if she doesn’t specialize in building apps and that’s what you’re trying to do, you’ll have a problem. Same goes for the first point on fit; if the candidate doesn’t share your company’s core values, move on to the next candidate.
Solid iOS developers tend to know other solid iOS developers. After you’ve found a few good developers to start your project off, you can turn to your team for some recommendations. Hiring straight from your team offers a couple of advantages: you’re almost guaranteed to get people who work well together, you’ll get more high-caliber talent, and you’ll encourage your developers to stay on longer, assuming they enjoy working with their friends.
iOS developers tend to be creative, inventive, and motivated workers. One of the best ways to attract such people is to offer them a challenge. Got a problem that might not be solvable? Find an iOS developer looking to push some boundaries, and they’ll give it their best shot. If they end up solving it and know you’ll give them equally challenging work as long as they stay on, there’s a good chance they’ll keep working for you.
Give them some space.
Right alongside challenging your developers is another important maxim: don’t breathe down their necks. If you just handed off an extremely complex task to your new engineer, don’t check in with him every hour. Of course it’s important that you make sure he’s not wasting any time, but that’s something you should settle in the “fit” part of the interview process. By the time you’ve made a hire, you should be certain that your developer as a great work ethic and strong integrity. So, now is the time to step back and give him enough space to attack the challenge as efficiently as possible. Let them work from home a few days a week if they’re facing a two hour commute and work best at their local coffee shop. You should also consider hiring remote developers who aren’t in your specific locale. If you only hire local developers who are willing to come into the office everyday, you’re missing out on most of the world’s talent pool and the talented freelancers who want to set their own schedules.
Agree on a price.
This should be standard by now but, for some reason, people tend to forget this rule. You should always agree on a price before your developer begins the job. There’s nothing worse than having your developer fix the problem you’re trying to solve, and then having them bargaining with you over the price. You’ll be pretty stuck. Also, make your expectations regarding failure clear. Will they get paid part of your price even if they don’t perform up to your expectations? Will you only pay them if you’re 100% satisfied? Some online hiring platforms will arbitrate such disputes for you, or even allow you to get a complete refund for incomplete work. This is a double-edged sword, though: remember that developers who are willing to take the risk that they might not make any money at all might be more desperate, i.e. less talented, than developers who are unwilling to come to such an arrangement.
Author: Irina Papuc