Here is a typical example of completing a project with me.
First you'll contact me and say you have a project and are looking for a contractor. Maybe we met somewhere or a mutual friends of ours told you how awesome I am and I'm just what you need, but somehow, you got my name and are making contact.
Then we will schedule a meeting to talk about your project and what is involved. You might send me some info ahead of time or ask me to sign an NDA*, which is no problem; I can keep a secret. This meeting could take place in person, over the phone, or via video chat (Skype or another tool, if you prefer). I may not be in the same city as you, so Skype is great!
*A quick note about NDAs or non-disclosure agreements, in case you don't have the legal resources to put one of these together, but are worried about your intellectual property. My signing an NDA does not magically stop me from spreading your secrets if I wanted (I don't!). It simply gives you legal grounds to come after me if I did. It's important to work with people you trust and I wouldn't want you to hire me if you didn't feel that way about me. End side note.
Based on that initial meeting we will be able to write a contract. This contract is going to be a very detailed design spec of what each of us is going to bring to this project. We will also include milestones, timeline, and costs. A larger project could require a follow up meeting to get all this straight and written down.
What about costs? I charge a flat rate for projects rather than hourly, though that rate is based on my estimate of how much time I think it will take. I think this is good for you, the client, because you know from the start what this project will cost. Plus we never have to have an awkward "are you billing me for this?" conversation at the end of a meeting. Because we set the price at the beginning, it is very, very important to get the design spec right. No features are assumed, it has to be written in the contract/spec. If you get an idea and want to add something that was not in our original contract, we just write another contract, easy!
Software development is actually 80% planning. Not understanding this is why over 60% of IT projects fail. But your project isn't going to fail because I would never let that happen! We are going to build it together and it is going to be everything you dreamed.
Once we have a final, signed contract comes the easy part. I get to do what I love most, write some code. You will probably have some deliverables for me, like written copy, graphic elements, data, or server access, but we'll have already spelled that out, too.
I'll do lots of testing to minimize the chances of bugs in the final product, but you will have a set amount of time to look it over for problems, too. Again, any new features will be a new contract, but bugs I will fix immediately. After this quality control cycle, we launch!
Depending on your project, I may be delivering you different things. For a desktop application, there will be an installer executable. A web application is just a folder of source code until it is hosted on the web for people to access it. You can host yourself on your own web servers, or I can do that for you.
Before you know it you'll have your finished software and be thinking to yourself "this was so easy, why did I wait so long to do this?!"
If over time you want any changes or other maintence, I'm here for you.
Have a software project and looking for someone to build it? Why don't you give me a call or email me so we can schedule a meeting to see if I'm your girl?
Read some more of my website.
See if we have a common contact on LinkedIn and ask them about me.
About the project?
Ask me about it. I really love what I do and even if you end up going another direction, I would still love to talk to you about yours.