How & Where to Outsource App Development – Complete Guide

In today’s digital age, having a mobile app is no longer a luxury but a necessity for businesses of all sizes. Mobile apps provide an excellent opportunity to connect with customers and offer them a seamless user experience. However, building a high-quality mobile app requires specialised skills and expertise.

Hiring a full-time app developer may not be feasible for small businesses and startups due to the high cost.

Thus, outsourcing your app requirements to professionals can be a great way to save valuable time, resources, and money.

But outsourcing app development is a complex process that requires careful consideration. Finding the right team of experts who can deliver a high-quality app that meets your business needs is essential.

This outsourcing guide will explore everything you need to know about outsourcing app development and introduce you to some of the best places to find quality app developers for your business.

Post a job and wait for experienced freelancers to respond or search for freelancers in Upwork’s database.
Free to post a job.
Approval of freelancers by Upwork’s team, access to a pool of quality performers.
Hire talented designers for a wide range of tasks for just $5.
Starts at $5 per task.
Access to a broad selection of digital services and top-notch graphic design services at an affordable price.
Contact designers directly, post job postings or start a contest to allow designers to demonstrate their skills.
Free to post a job, 3% processing fee for each payment to freelancer.
Access to talented freelance graphic designers, ability to check freelancers’ portfolios and assess their capabilities.
A premium talent marketplace that specialises in connecting businesses with the top 3% of app development freelancers.
Membership starts at $8.95 per month.
Access to over 3 million professionals worldwide, ability to find freelancers for a wide range of projects.
Post a gig and connect with the relevant developer within minutes.
Custom pricing based on project requirements.
Access to talented programmers to create software, apps, or any other tech product for your business, ability to discuss estimated cost and timeline of the project with the developer.
Post a job advertisement and receive offers from talented individuals. Select the “Freelance” job type to ensure only experienced freelancers come forward.
Basic membership is free, premium membership starts at $29.99 per month.
Access to a large pool of professionals across the globe ability to find experienced freelancers for specific job types.
Facebook Groups
Come across job boards on Facebook groups devoted to app development.
Access to specific job boards and groups for app development jobs, ability to advertise vacancies for freelance app developers.
App Development Agencies
Work with an agency to find experienced app developers for your project.
Varies based on agency and project requirements.
Access to a team of professionals to help you with your app, ability to take care of the entire process, giving you more time to focus on other aspects of your business, and access to multiple options to examine portfolios, fees, and reviews.

Outsourcing App Development – What Does It Mean?

Outsourcing is all about entrusting a task or job to someone else who is not an employee of your organisation. This person is hired to do the work you require on a contractual basis and isn’t part of your payroll.

Thus, outsourcing app development means hiring a third-party vendor to create a customised app that meets your specific needs, requirements, and objectives.

It means that the specialised app developer or the developer team handles the entire app development process, including design, programming, testing, and deployment for you.

How To Outsource App Development?

Before outsourcing your app development,  you must be sure you’re dealing with a professional who can create your app with a professional touch. You don’t just pass your app off to anybody.

Next, you should ensure your vision is communicated to the developer.

Above all, it’s essential to clearly understand your expectations of the end product before starting. Once you have a clear picture of your need, you outsource your app development needs only then.

Hence to help you outsource your app development needs, we’ve devised a list of measures that you should take to meet your requirements:

Define The Scope Of Work

One of the essential steps in any app development project is defining the scope of work. It involves identifying the project’s goals, target users, features, and functionality, as well as the timeline, budget, and any other constraints.

To begin with, look into the following questions:

  • What is the purpose of your app?
  • What is the problem that the app will resolve?
  •  Who will be the target users of your app?
  • What kind of user experience should your app offer?
  • What would be the features of your app?
  • What is the timeline for your project?
  • What is your budget for your project?

You can craft a precise and thorough brief for your app developer by answering these questions. It will guarantee that all people engaged in the project have a shared understanding of the objectives and that the developer can give you an exact quote and timeline for the job.

Remember that the more precise you are about your necessities and specifications, the better the end product will be.

Additionally, keep in contact with your developer throughout the project to ensure everything moves along and meets your expectations.

Understand The Contracts

It’s not possible to take a one-size-fits-all approach to outsourcing. Every company has different needs, so the contract for your app development project should be customised to meet those needs. Before signing, it is essential to comprehend the agreement’s details to avoid unforeseen issues and ensure everyone knows what is expected of the project.

You can enter into a variety of contracts with your app developer. It can be the following:

  1. Fixed-Price Contract: It is an agreement that establishes a set amount for a given project before work begins. It is beneficial to have a clear understanding of the scope of the job and how much time it is estimated to take to complete.
  2. Hourly Contract: An hourly contract is one in which you pay the developer for the time they spend on your project. It is more adaptable than a fixed-price contract, especially if the project scope is expected to vary.
  3. Retainer Contract: A retainer contract pays the developer a fixed monthly price to work on several projects. It is an excellent alternative if you require continuing app development work but want to avoid engaging a full-time developer.
  4. Pain Share/Gain Share Contracts: An exciting and uncommon opportunity where the service provider and client join forces to reap the rewards or bear the risks of a project. It’s an excellent option if you’re working on a project with enormous potential but require additional funds to cover regular rates.
  5. Task-Based Contracts: Task-based contracts might be a decent solution if your project has a defined aim. In this type of contract, you pay a specific sum for each accomplished work. It’s a great approach to guarantee you pay for tasks completed with no hidden fees or costs.

Above all, regardless of the contract used, it is necessary that the parties properly describe and agree on the terms of the agreement. It will aid in ensuring that everyone is on the same page and that the project works smoothly from beginning to end.

But picking the right app developer for your job is essential before committing to the deal!

Find Freelance App Developers

Finding the right person to work on your project might be difficult, but don’t worry. There are several outsourcing platforms where you can find excellent app developers.


Upwork is the spot to go if you seek an expert freelancer. You can post a job and wait for experienced pros to respond or look through Upwork’s database to identify the right app developer for you. The platform’s team approves all freelancers featured on Upwork, so you can rest assured you’re getting quality performers.


Fiverr is an incredible platform offering the most extensive selection of digital services. What makes it so great is that you can hire talented designers to do a wide range of tasks for just $5! It’s the perfect resource for anyone looking for top-notch graphic design services without blowing their budget.


Freelancer is an established platform for talented freelance graphic designers. You can contact designers directly or post job postings. You could even start a contest to allow designers to demonstrate their skills. Further, you can check freelancers’ portfolios for more information and take tests to assess their capabilities.


Toptal is a high end freelancer platform hosting only the top 3% freelancers who excel at the service they provide. Freelancers go through rigorous screening process just to get into the Toptal marketplace.

If you’ll go with Toptal, you’ll have to pay more than other freelancer platforms but the quality will definitely be higher than any other platform.


Gigster is the perfect platform for you if you’re looking for a talented programmer to create software, an app, or any other tech product for your business. You can post a gig and connect with the relevant developer within minutes.

Further, you discuss the estimated cost and timeline of the project, and the developer will email you a comprehensive proposal.


LinkedIn is a renowned platform for professionals across the globe. By posting a job advertisement, you will receive offers from talented individuals.

However, select the ‘Freelance’ job type to ensure only freelancers experienced freelancers come forward and submit their proposals.

Facebook Groups

These days, Facebook does more than post photos and connect with your friends. There are a plethora of Facebook groups devoted to almost any theme imaginable. You can come across job boards on these groups where you can advertise vacancies for freelance app developers.

To find the appropriate groups, type “app development jobs” or “freelance app development” in the search bar.

Find Agencies

Looking for an experienced app developer can take a lot of work. To make it easier, working with an agency can be a great solution. They have a team of professionals who will help you with your app and take care of the entire process, giving you more time to focus on other aspects of your business.

Do an online search using terms like “app development agencies” or “app development firms” to locate a suitable agency. You will come across multiple options, so spend time examining their portfolios, fees, and reviews to pick the one that best suits your requirements.

Assess Your Candidates

Once you’ve placed the job listing, you must assess applicants’ qualifications once they submit their applications. Take the time to carefully scrutinise their portfolio and pay close attention to the following key aspects:

Previous Work

When choosing an expert rather than a student for your work, you should see their portfolio of previous work.

If they cannot provide one, that’s a red flag you should be aware of.

Quality Of Work

When deciding whether to interview a candidate, assessing the quality of their work samples is essential. Reviewing work examples can provide valuable insight into a candidate’s abilities and potential fit for the role. If they don’t demonstrate a strong set of skills, it’s likely not worth investing your time in an interview.

Scope Of Their Work

When seeking an app developer, it’s wise to prioritise those with relevant experience in creating the type of app you need.

For example, finding a developer with a track record in gaming can be immensely beneficial if you’re looking to develop a gaming app.

However, if this is challenging, consider someone with a diverse background, as developers who have worked on various apps tend to bring a wealth of knowledge and creativity.

Communication Skills

While looking for a freelance app developer, your communication must be clear. You must be able to communicate your app concept to the designer, and they must understand it. If there is a mismatch, the application may turn out differently than you intended.

To ensure you’re on the same page, ask your developer about their approach and see if they can describe it to you in a way that makes sense. Otherwise, it would be best if you search elsewhere.


It would help you to consider your developer’s price before deciding anything. Describe your desired agreement and see what they can accomplish for you.

Feel free to negotiate, but don’t undercharge them. It would be nice if you could agree on a reasonable pricing that works for both of you.


While working with a freelancer, punctuality is vital. It would help if you ensured that your developer could adhere to your timeframes; otherwise, you will be left in the lurch.

To test this, start with a small paid task that is more achievable to see whether they can complete your work on time.

Referrals And Testimonials

One of the perks of using online platforms to find freelancers is that you may read reviews and testimonials of freelancers before hiring them. It will help you understand their previous work and determine whether they meet your needs.

You may also ask for a recommendation from somebody you know who’s previously worked with an app developer.

Benefits of Outsourcing App Development

The ever-expanding gig economy has now opened opportunities for individuals to find top-notch app developers without spending a fortune.

Thus, outsourcing your app development needs has several benefits that include:

  • Cost-efficiency: It is cost-efficient since you don’t have to purchase expensive hardware or software.
  • Adaptability: Working with a freelancer allows you to scale your requirements according to your needs.
  • Access to worldwide talent: Posting your project on a freelancing platform enables you to access a global pool of talented designers.
  • Getting the job done quickly: Hiring a freelancer ensures speedy completion of your work since they are motivated to meet deadlines and receive positive reviews to secure future opportunities.

Challenges of Outsourcing App Developers

When delegating your app development needs, you should be mindful of possible challenges that may arise down the line. They are as follows:

  • Language Barriers: Language barriers may occur if the freelancer is in a different country. You can give clear and specific instructions and convey your expectations to your developer to minimise them.
  • Time Zone Differences: Time Zone differences can affect communication between you and the developer. However, setting communication expectations and giving detailed instructions can help overcome this challenge.
  • Work Quality: Quality assurance is also a risk when you entrust creative control to someone else. Reviewing the freelancer’s portfolio to ensure their work meets your standards is essential to minimise the risk of disappointment.
  • Data Security: Data security and breach are a concern when working with freelancers or remote teams outside your organisation. The developers you work with may also work with your competitors and share your business secrets or intellectual property. Thus, working exclusively with freelancers or teams you trust and who have signed a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) is advisable to mitigate this issue.


Outsourcing your app development requirements to a freelancer is a smart decision that ensures experts create your app without exceeding your budget. However, doing your homework and thoroughly evaluating the freelancer before entrusting them with your project is essential.

Before beginning the project, it’s crucial to understand your requirements and budget clearly. It will enable effective communication and ensure that both parties are on the same page.

By taking the time to research and communicate your needs clearly, you can increase the chances of a successful collaboration with the freelancer and ultimately achieve the desired results for your app development project.