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Outsourcing – is it bad when you have a little Knowledge?

I’ve just posted a job online with RentACoder for a domain name I’ve had sitting around for the last couple of years. I have the content (two affiliate feeds) and want someone to design a website with a backend facility that allows me to import them (and update the content when the feed changes), not rocket science – probably one to two days work if I had time.

The problem is I don’t have time at the minute! But ultimately it comes down to what are two days of my time really worth I guess. I hadn’t really considered it until the bids started coming in….

  • The first one was $200, I’d probably accept that to get the site done without me having to do it and up and running where it might just make some money.
    But I’ve been burnt on RentACoder before taking a low price and not getting what I wanted so I’ll work through some full-on requirements with the developer and make sure they understand what I want.
  • The upper one (so far) is $2,000 (I have told them they’re having a laugh and they’ve reduced it to $1,400).

Their are a lot of comments with no bids, detailing portfolios and the like, some have made some quite attractive sites but it’s clear their comments are a cut and paste to attract my attention before they really look at the job I’ve asked for a quote on. So I’ve duly replied to them all and asked those that have read the quote how well they understand it (for many English is not their first language) or for others to read it and provide a quote!

My Questions

  • Is a little knowledge a dangerous thing?
  • Knowing I could do this myself and how long it might take without all the little niggles and misunderstandings, has that influenced a price in my head?
  • Are other people getting absolutely ripped off putting jobs on there?

This entry was posted on Wednesday, June 11th, 2008 at 9:46 am and is filed under Websites. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.


Comments (2)

 

  1. The problem is manifold. First of all, there is not enough objective record of competition for that kind of work. I mean…go buy a plasma TV. It’s easy to find what everyone charges, so you don’t have a lot of fluctuation from a particular price point. But when it comes to coding or graphics or whatever, most individuals or companies won’t publish their rates on the site…and the best you get is a Request For Quote form.

    I haven’t been on Rentacoder, but I’ve used Elance, ScriptLance and GetAFreelancer before. And lately, I’ve been hiring people for spot work thru the forums at DigitalPoint. Dealing with people face-to-face like that (so to speak) allows you to get a sense of their responsiveness and ability to communicate…which I like.

    However, to your larger point…a little knowledge always tempts you to do it yourself…because you know that, while some people can bring to the table skills you don’t possess…elevating the overall quality of the end product…NO ONE cares about your stuff like you do. So there are almost always tradeoffs. I try to do most of the stuff I can myself…even if I have to wait until I have time. And I hire people when the work is really over my head. I wish I had good quality providers (who’d work affordably) for everything I need done. I’d be happy to pay. But most people wouldn’t know how to sell themselves to save their lives. This is a big hole in the internet market at this point. Answers will come someday, but for the most part, I don’t think they exist yet.

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