Going Independent - making it as a freelance web professional
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Going Independent - making it as a freelance web professional

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Presentation on starting off as a freelancing web professional (designer or developer).

Presentation on starting off as a freelancing web professional (designer or developer).

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  • Fanurio was cross-platform (java). freshbooks and quickbooks are online. billing mac-only - same for ichat, but skype and others are cross-platform. fogbugz/jira are commercial - bugzilla open source - explore and find what works best for your workstyle <br />
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  • If you&#x2019;ve not tried these sorts of tools, investigate before you continue to not use them. They can and will generally save you loads of time. Test driven or test focused will help a lot as well. <br />
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  • If you&#x2019;re considering a smartphone, determine what sorts of activities you need to use it for. Time tracking, mileage calculations, invoicing, note taking, presentation management - even making voice calls! While not a vital necessity, a modern smartphone has made keeping in touch with clients via email much much easier for me. <br />
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  • If you&#x2019;re looking for work, be contactable. That means having a phone or at least email number. Yes, you&#x2019;ll get some spam, and some unwanted calls. You&#x2019;ll also get some wanted calls. <br /> <br /> Keep site professional - keep wacky personal stuff for other networks or other sites. <br /> <br />
  • Designers understand portfolio - developers not as much - have code samples ready. Open source projects even better - link to project contributions. <br /> <br /> Depending on who&#x2019;s hiring you, they may not be able to judge the code itself, but often just *having* some is indicative of being on the ball. <br /> <br /> <br />
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Going Independent - making it as a freelance web professional Presentation Transcript

  • 1. GOING INDEPENDENT A Developer’s Guide to Making it Solo
  • 2. INTRODUCTIONS Michael Kimsal Web since 1995, PHP since 1996, ASP, Java, etc Solo developer since 2007 (2nd time around) Podcaster, publisher, author, blogger, developer
  • 3. CONFUSED ABOUT GETTING STARTED?
  • 4. IT CAN BE SCARY! Not sure where to begin? Too stressful? Not enough savings? Too many things to do?
  • 5. RELAX!
  • 6. WHY ARE YOU GOING INDEPENDENT? Extra part time income? Be your own boss? Enjoy new things? Freedom / flexibility? Recently laid off? Bootstrapping other idea?
  • 7. TIME FRAME? Already independent? Near future? (<6 months)
  • 8. TODAY’S TOPICS Getting set up Finding work Doing the work Getting paid
  • 9. GETTING SET UP • Organization / structure type • Legal / financial issues • Contracts • What are you selling? • Work environment • Hardware, software, tools
  • 10. TYPES OF STRUCTURE • LLC •C Corp •S Corp • Sole proprietor • Other?
  • 11. FIND A GOOD LAWYER
  • 12. FIND A GOOD ACCOUNTANT
  • 13. WHAT TYPE OF WORK? • Services • Hourly or fixed price? • Products • Software As A Service • Desktop Applications
  • 14. CONTRACTS Using your own vs Using the client’s
  • 15. CONTRACTS Have clear definitions of work to be done and how to determine when you’re “done”
  • 16. CONTRACTS Consider accepting or offering changes
  • 17. TOOLS getting the job done
  • 18. HARDWARE Laptop Multiple monitors Printers Fax? Extra batteries Cables / adapters Carrier bag
  • 19. SOFTWARE BASICS Invoicing Time tracking Screen sharing Ticketing / issue system
  • 20. DEVELOPER SOFTWARE Are you still using Notepad? :)
  • 21. DEVELOPER SOFTWARE IDEs Debuggers Version control
  • 22. DESIGNER SOFTWARE Adobe still rules Photoshop Dreamweaver GIMP still works for some :)
  • 23. SMARTPHONE? Time tracking Invoicing Presentations Voice calls!
  • 24. FINDING CLIENTS
  • 25. NETWORKIN’ Local events Regional events Chamber of Commerce User groups
  • 26. JOB BOARDS Monster / HotJobs Craigslist Authentic Jobs Indeed.com SimplyHired.com
  • 27. WORK SITES ODesk Elance Guru.com
  • 28. BEING FINDABLE
  • 29. MAIN SITE Profile site - main hub Contact information Link to portfolio, resume, blog
  • 30. PORTFOLIO Designed sites, samples Code samples or links to projects
  • 31. SOCIAL MEDIA LinkedIn Facebook Twitter StackOverflow etc
  • 32. GETTING PAID What we’re all doing this for :)
  • 33. RATES Will vary by region Don’t forget taxes! Keep competitive
  • 34. RATES US Example Original rate $50/hour -15.3% SE Tax $42.35 -20% Income Tax $33.88 1200 billable hrs $40,656
  • 35. INVOICING Terms
  • 36. INVOICE LIKE CLOCKWORK! Weekly? Bi weekly? Never get too far behind
  • 37. MAKING IT EASY TO PAY PayPal, Google Checkout, paper checks
  • 38. COLLECTIONS! Arbitration, small claims court Should you hire a collections firm?
  • 39. REPEAT! Keeping the cycle going
  • 40. MULTIPLE STREAMS OF INCOME Multiple clients Multiple projects Recurring revenue (hosting, content sites?)
  • 41. BUILD A SUPPORT NETWORK Find like-minded people to support you
  • 42. QUESTIONS?
  • 43. THANK YOU Michael Kimsal @mgkimsal michaelkimsal.com 919.827.4724