Freelance/ remote work

quick question for everyone. Has anyone found work while doing the web development course? I want to freelance eventually and I know I’d have to gain some experience, but how is it during the course? And how many have found jobs with just this course alone?

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You are more likely to find and internship than a job, it is very rare that a company has the resources to pay someone so they can learn. There are a lot more things you need to learn aside from writing the code and making an app work.

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Hi @corerunner25892, I’m planning on starting a career freelancing after the course, so I can definitely let you know how it goes! You might find this article useful: https://blog.stoneriverelearning.com/how-to-make-money-while-you-learn-to-code/

@peachesmotorsports could you be more specific please about what other “things” one would need to learn to start freelancing?

If you’re going to be a freelancer, most likely you’re going to be working by yourself so you need to learn how to do everything required to successfully complete and maintain a project (you don’t want your customer to go away when you’re done).

Project Management
This is greatly underestimated, people in this profession don’t pay enough attention to this. You need to take ambiguous requirements from your customer and turn them into something they want, which most of the time they don’t know or they can’t convey it properly.

  • Wireframes\sketches\designs are a must. The customer says they want something, you code it and say it’s done! The customer sees it and realizes that’s not really what they wanted. You have to do it again. You’re wasting your time, and you’re wasting their time. While you’re at it, your losing money because you gave them a quote based on an estimate, and now it’s going to take longer because you have to redo half the app.
  • Proper effort estimation. You will give them a quote based on your estimated effort to complete a project, if you don’t estimate properly you’re going to lose money and potentially not have a good reference from said customer. The effort needs to consider QA, rework, deployment, etc.
  • The Agile framework is very powerful, but just because you put sticky notes on your wall doesn’t mean your Agile. You need to learn how to use the framework properly to optimize your work and give visibility to your customer.

You also need to review the whole project with the customer: what is their end goal, who is their customer, what is the best platform for the intended purpose? Just because you learned how to do an app with Angular doesn’t mean you can do every single project handed to you with Angular. Some projects require a mobile app, even if it’s an app you need to decide if you need network connectivity or not, analyze device requirements, bandwidth requirements, 2-factor auth, sync with other services, data backup, Android vs iOS, etc. Some projects need Angular, others need Python, others can be done with just Node. If it’s an app you’ll need JAVA, XCODE, maybe ReactJS. If it needs to support Android, iOS AND a website, maybe Vue is the best option.

You need to be flexible with technology. Otherwise, you’re limiting the projects you can take on or you’re potentially making your life very difficult by only using 1 framework.

Environments
You finished the app and the customer approved. Great! Now what? You need to deploy it.

  • Where? Azure, AWS, Heroku, Wordpress, your own server?
  • Are you setting up a Windows server? Linux server? Or do you want to use Kubernetes?
  • Who is going to do that, you?
  • How much does all of that cost to do and maintain month to month, year to year? Did you tell your customer about it?
  • You need to deploy an update, V1.3. Did you properly plan the downtime? Did you test the updates to the db schema so you don’t affect the existing data?
  • You launched the app, it crashed. Who’s going to fix it and when? Can you do that while you’re on vacation in Europe?
  • Your customer’s client found a bug you missed, when do you fix it? Did you include that in your budget? You’re working on another project already, do you have time?

Code Quality

  • Do you have a QA resource? Can’t afford it? Then you need to learn how to properly QA your code.
  • The regression cycle takes to long? You need to add automation to the pipeline. Who’s going to write it?
  • The app started to run very slowly after a few months of being in production, can you analyze the load on the service? Does the server need more CPU? Do you have a memory leak? Do you need to optimize your API calls?

This is not all there is to it, there are other things to consider.

This post is not meant to scare you away, all these things can be learned but it takes time and experience. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen or heard of a course that teaches you any of this. My guess is because most companies do a half-■■■ job and don’t care because they make it work, even when they lose money. I have seen bad practices, and I have seen good practices. Companies or people that have good practices are few and far in between. I am by no means an expert, I’ve have to deal with a lot of bad practices and try to do the best I can in my position.

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Absolutely amazing post! Thank you for sharing such a detailed post . I am sure it has given perspective to many people like me.

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I am working with Alyssa on a Q&A session for questions like this, I suggested we can use freelancing as the first item to discuss. Like I said, those are only a f ew items.

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Just to ask further if suppose we want to enter into freelancing what should be our action plan?

I can make some notes on this specifically

We are having a Q&A on freelancing, discussing this in more detail. Sign up here: https://www.codecademy.com/events/codecademy-and-you-freelancing-pablo-chois

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