How to Hire App Developers in 2023

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How to Hire Mobile App Developers: Step-by-Step Guide for 2023

Table of contents

  1. The global mobile app market revenue
  2. What you should know to find an app developer
  3. Hire an app developer: options to choose from
  4. Steps to hiring mobile app developers
  5. When outsourcing is the best choice
  6. How much does it cost to hire an app developer?
  7. Where to hire a mobile app developer
  8. How to hire mobile app developers without tech expertise
  9. Pay attention to communication
  10. Want to hire app developers for your project?
  11. FAQ
  12. Conclusion

The global mobile app market revenue


The global mobile app market revenue


Almost every action of our life can be accompanied or solved by an app on a smartphone: wake-up alarms and multiple reminders; news and social media, navigation on maps, games, food delivery, language courses, health tracking, banking, and simply listening to music. With rushing progress, we have more advanced smartphones that instantly spread across the globe. The high-speed Internet is becoming even faster, and its coverage area is still growing. In this term, the growth of mobile application development looks natural. 2022 will supposedly finish with app market revenues of US$430.90bn. According to Statista’s report, revenue will reach US$614.40bn by 2026 considering the CAGR of 9.27%.

As the trend won’t ease up, it’s time to get your own app that will enrich your business and shorten the client’s path to you. But before that, let us accompany and guide you through the process of recruitment of a perfect developer. In the article, we will explain what pitfalls you may face and how to make app development process efficient without losing time. 

What you should know to find an app developer

We have already explained the necessity of the discovery phase, but we will briefly do it again with great love. In order to find the perfect person or team for creating a mobile app, it would be better to answer several questions for yourself first. The more clear understanding you have, the easier all the steps in the process will be. So, conduct solid research in three directions: your business, competitors, and target audience. Determine your product, its strengths and weaknesses; revise your business goals and purposes; and picture a mock-up: is your app complex enough? Decide what tasks your app will carry out and how. Try to find the applications of your competitors in the stores and see if there is space for you left. Highlight the uniqueness of your app. Then, to win your customers’ hearts, you obviously should know everything about them: age, gender, what platform they use, how they prefer to pay, etc. And try to answer from the customer’s side, what main features they need in your app.

You can always do the research yourself or entrust this work to an expert group that will provide a detailed report with further recommendations. We are happy to offer our broad experience in analysis in order to help with your expertise. 

Hire an app developer: options to choose from


Hire an app developer options to choose from


After your project outline has started to emerge, it is time to think about what kind of developer suits you best. Basically, there are three variants to choose from:

  • in-house;
  • freelance;
  • outsource software development company.

Each option has its benefits and drawbacks, but as we know, horses for courses, or every problem has its own best solution. That is why you should pay attention to your budget and think about whether you are ready to accept cultural and time differences. 

Hire an in-house team

It is probably a costly option that also requires a lot of time to be spent as you need to worry about office rent, medical insurance, and other social benefits. At the same time, you always have your team at arm's length and have full control of the process. Mutual understanding comes to a peak. But in order to reach this point, a qualified specialist needs to be hired. Unfortunately, many of them prefer working in large companies with extra perks.

+ smooth communication;

+ complete control;

– expenditures in both time and money;

– complicity in creating a team of experts.

Hire a freelance developer

Another option that comes to mind is to find a freelancer. You can choose from a thousand candidates all over the world and definitely find the one with the skills and experience you need. And, of course, stay within the budget. The cost of work is sometimes comparatively lower than the salary of in-house specialists. That makes this option very appealing. However, you cannot fully control the process here. Moreover, the time difference and intercultural misunderstanding may interfere with or slow down software development. Therefore, it is necessary to review resumes and recommendations seriously so that one day you will not have your project wrecked. In our opinion, freelancers are a good choice if you have a single-stage task or are constrained by a budget. In the former case, it is a rare avis who can do design, coding,and testing at a high level. That is why, for complicated projects, we advise having a team with assigned responsibilities. 

+ a diverse set of platforms and specialists to choose from;

+ cost-friendly;

– cultural and linguistic barrier;

– difficult to coordinate and make quick project changes;

– no guarantees of cheating.

Hire an outsource software development company

If you merge the above two options, you will get a third one: contact an outsourced IT company that specializes in software development services. For a reasonable price, you will get a pool of professionals that includes UI/UX designers, Android/iOS/backend developers, QA engineers, and other specialists. Here, each is responsible for a narrow task, but nevertheless, they are harmoniously interconnected into one strong team. And you will constantly stay relevant and take an active part in the development process. Still, there may be time difference problems and language barriers if you choose a company abroad.

  • cost-effectiveness;
  • a global range of options;
  • no additional management;
  • expertise when necessary;
  • time differences and intercultural/language misunderstandings may occur.

Steps to hiring mobile app developers


Steps to hiring mobile app developers


  1. Market research, app specs, and priorities

Write down all the app requirements, calculate the budget, and then, based on this data, narrow down your search. That will save you time. 

  1. Compile a list of candidates

You can make your personal top 5 or 10 potential developers that meet your requirements. Use reliable platforms to search for new candidates, use your friends’ recommendations, and learn the statistics on where the best developers could be found.

  1. Check developers’ portfolios and experience

Pay attention to the candidates’ previous experience, highlighting projects that are comparable or similar to your niche. Try to find real testimonials of previous clients, read users’ comments on the created app, or, after all, download the apps yourself and test them. That will most likely help you form a more complete picture of the developer you require and eliminate some candidates from the list.

  1. Interview

Be prepared for the interview: identify all requirements and set conditions; ask about their technology, previous cases, and any challenges they managed to overcome. It is crucial to gain understanding and find common ground. Moreover, you need to see strong motivation and interest from the developer's side. Make notes during the interview indicating the candidate's strong and weak points. It will help you to structure the whole picture after several interviews and come to a final conclusion.

  1. Recruit your ideal developer

Once again, make sure you both fully understand the project's goals and the methods to achieve them. Agree on security issues such as non-disclosure agreements. Check if there are enough specialists in your team to develop your app. After signing all related documents, you are ready to work on your project.

When outsourcing is the best choice

There may be cases when the situation forces you to choose outsourcing mobile app development services.

Budget constraints

The undoubted advantage of outsourcing programming lies in its pre-approved budget. Such companies can easily make an estimate because they know exactly how much it costs to create an app, having done it many times before. 

For this reason, you choose the company whose cost suits you best and discuss all details from the start, avoiding possible surprises in the future. You don’t have extra expenses in comparison to an in-house team.

Time constraints

If you are limited in time, smooth teamwork becomes one of the main priorities. An in-house team or a freelancer may require too much time for organizational questions. Finally, you have blown deadlines or half-developed apps. Outsourcing app development companies have a step-by-step plan with a clear deadline and excellent results. Effective allocation of responsibilities and readiness for force majeure is a distinctive feature of such a software development team.

Staff shortage

Even if you already have a brilliant team working in your office, there still might be technologies that demand outsourcing development, like VR and AR, for example. Such narrow-focused tasks require certain types of skills, and outsourcing companies can provide them. The staff are chosen so that the company can meet the maximum number client’s needs.

Outsourcing Software Development, what are the top 5 mistakes and how can you avoid them?


How much does it cost to hire an app developer?

The price of software app development may vary considerably, from $30 to $150 per hour, and it is therefore reasonable to wonder how much it costs to create an app for your project. Let’s consider several factors that will clear up the details of the pricing. 


How much does it cost to hire an app developer


The location of developers

The highest hourly rates are in the USA, Canada, and Western Europe, whereas in the Asian region (China, Philippines, and India), they are by an order of magnitude lower. But a high price doesn’t necessarily mean high quality. That is why you shouldn’t let app development cost your main landmark. Moreover, you balance between the price and time difference, as well as language barriers. 

The technology stack

Your application complexity directly affects the total cost. The more functions there are in your app, the more hours developers spend on its creation, and the more expensive the process will be. Moreover, if the project is difficult enough, more specialists are involved in its development. This also raises the price. 

Experience and qualification

You can also choose the depth of experience of your development team. Junior, middle, or senior? The prices will go up.

Native or cross-platform app?

Will your app be designed to work on iOS, Android, or will it be deployed across both platforms? Cross-platform creation is more expensive than the creation of one native. but it is up to 30% cheaper than if you hire two teams, iOS and Android, for two native apps. However, native apps are known for their better visuals and fewer defects.

Where to hire a mobile app developer

There are numerous platforms that specialize in recruiting IT specialists. It is a friendly service where all relevant data is gathered. For your benefit, companies’ ratings, feedback and comments, and search filters are organized. Some of them offer hiring full-time developers, such as LinkedIn, Indeed, and Dice. Others are mainly for the search for freelancers: Hired, Toptal, and Upwork. Also, do not go by developer communities, for example, Coderwall and Reddit. There you may find professionals in a lively conversation, and maybe one will impress you with his dedication to work. A similar option, but in real life, is to attend tech events. Developers share their experience, discuss new technologies and establish business relationships at such events. Each year, dozens of them take place all over the world: Mobile World Congress, Code Mobile, or DroidCon. And lastly, ask for references from your professional contacts, or even friends. Word of mouth is still working, and a perfect developer may be nigh at hand.

How to hire mobile app developers without tech expertise

History knows cases when people without technical knowledge and skills developed brilliant and lucrative apps. So, if you are only aware of applications as an ordinary user, there are still possibilities for you to create high-quality software. In this case, you need to undertake more preparatory work to acquire the necessary knowledge before conducting interviews with potential candidates. Delineate the boundaries for yourself by making a list of questions on important issues and, of course, do your research to stay abreast while your candidates are answering. If you don’t have time or desire to learn all the ins and outs of the development process, you may hire a technically competent professional who will help to assess the skills and knowledge of interviewees. However, it implies additional cost, but it surely will be compensated by the time you save and the future developer’s proficiency.

If you don't know what kind of application to make, then you can read our longrid, in which we analyze different types of applications for 2023 and ways to monetize them.

Pay attention to communication

While searching for the best balance between financial aspects and professional competencies, it is essential not to forget about cultural fit. This aspect directly affects the results of the project and the work environment. The app development process may last for several months or exceed a year, so a good relationship or even a full synergy is one of the keystones to success. Therefore, what should you focus on?

Cultural differences

There are two types of cultures: low-context and high-context. 

Low-context cultures prefer: words and facts, deadlines, solo-work, logical decision-making, changes.

High-context cultures prefer: emotions and trust, team-work, intuitive decision-making, traditional methods. 

It is not the full list of differences, but you may already notice the way culture influences subordination, decision-making, and team collaboration. You should build the correct tactics of behavior and interaction if you choose a developer of the opposite culture. In order to avoid difficulties, draw attention to your company’s values and approach to work during the interview with your potential developers.


Pay attention to communication


Level of English proficiency

Even if the English language is spoken almost everywhere on the globe, you’d better be convinced that your development team is good enough at it and that the different levels of the language won’t lead to a catastrophe. You may resort to the EF English Proficiency Index, which will give you a clue about the countries where your chances of hiring an employee with acceptable English are higher. To be confident that the development process goes smoothly, arrange regular meetings. Plan your calendar with the days and times that are comfortable for both of you, as there might be a big time difference. Frequent communication will also help you to identify a lack of understanding in advance and build compatible relationships.

Want to hire app developers for your project?

Get ready to answer a lot of questions when you decide to entrust your app development to Magora. Our dedication to detail serves us well and enables us to produce software and applications of the highest quality. We know the value of time; therefore, choose open communication and share experience of previous projects, and don’t add worthless buttons to your app just in case. At Magora, we prefer an honest approach towards the development process, mutually beneficial cooperation, and a successful outcome, including improving ROI, revenue growth, and attracting customers. Our company is ready to create an app of any complexity for the iOS or Android platforms. You may opt for both, as we also provide cross-platform development. Our high competence is proven by clients from different spheres: healthcare, real estate, medtech, logistics, education, and many others. You will have your MVP (minimum viable product) within a short time in order that it can work for you as early as possible. Our further marketing support and maintenance will unlock the app’s potential and get it into top gear.

Magora is a highly-rated mobile app development company to which you can entrust your ideas. A good example of our practice is the process of creating an app for healthcare development. The sleek and informative iOS app Doctor OTC maintains a database of over-the-counter medicines and assists in selecting the one appropriate for specific symptoms or age. We used the Yii framework and the PHP language to provide fast and secure work.


How to hire mobile app developers?

  1. Define the purpose of the app and all its characteristics: do you need app development for iOS only? Or Android? Maybe both? 
  2. Examine the list of candidates, their portfolios, and reviews of their previous projects. Write down your shoo-ins.
  3. Interview candidates.
  4. Check if you are satisfied with the level of English, time difference, the candidate’s soft skills, and the whole atmosphere of the communication. 
  5. Engage tech specialists to assess the skills and competence of candidates. 
  6. Choose the one and conclude the agreement. 

How much does it cost to hire an app developer?

The price for the app development services differs depending on the country the developers work in, the complexity of your app, and the developer’s qualifications. The average cost is $60 per hour; the lowest budget for a simple app is $13,000, and the average advanced app will start at $56,000. However, all calculations are approximate.

Where should I search for developers?

The first option is online platforms and social networks: 

  • LinkedIn
  • Indeed
  • Dice
  • Hired
  • Toptal
  • Upwork
  • The second is offline tech events: 
  • Mobile World Congress
  • Code Mobile
  • DroidCon

Finally, you may ask for references in professional communities. 

When is it better to apply to an outsourcing company?

There are three situations when outsourcing is the best choice:

  1. if you have a limited budget;
  2. if you are pressed for time;
  3. if you need a specialist with certain skills.


We believe that the implementation of your idea should start in the right way, as the wrong choice may cause a knock-on effect and spoil the whole project, disappointing you. Hiring the appropriate IT professional is no easy task. Magora is here to provide you with expert advice, proactive expertise, and, if needed, our team will guide you step-by-step through the full app development lifecycle.

If you need to find out how much it will cost to develop a web application, then you can read our current article for 2023.


Senior Project Manager
With a dash of strategy and a sprinkle of agility, Ekaterina ensures projects dance to the rhythm of deadlines while leaving clients with a standing ovation.
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