Tech knowledge required?

ayjayayjay subscriber Posts: 7
Hello,
I don`t think my question quite fits here, but this forum seems to be informative and active, so I`m crossing my fingers that someone has some advice for me. 
 
Very briefly, my conceptual idea is a business that helps other businesses outsource their work to [local?] highly skilled employees who would otherwise leave the workforce.
 
I think that it could involve a fairly technical website (maybe something similar to sologig) or possibly developing software. As you can see from my total lack of jargon, I know nothing about websites or programming. I am coming at this idea from being in the mechanical engineering field and thinking of how something like this business could be used to retain employees in a different way than what we typically consider "retention."
 
So, as a complete non-techie, I`m asking how do websites & software ideas get implemented? Should the person starting the business have some IS knowledge so that it can clearly be communicated to the web/software developers what is wanted? I did take a C++ class and develop a primitive website over 10 years ago, but I sure have no current knowledge. Would it be recommended to take some community college courses, or at least read up on web developing/programming on my own? I have no desire to really become a programmer or anything, but I don`t even know who does what - developer, programmer, engineer????
 
If you would recommend learning some new computer-related skills, what specifically would you recommend?
 
Thanks a million!
AJ

Comments

  • vwebworldvwebworld subscriber Posts: 40
    If your concept is to connect business that need engineering services and businesses that have excess engineering capacity... then a freelance type site woud seem to be appropriate. There are a bunch of freelance site scripts available to use to create the platform/basis for your site.
     
    The key then is to get the word out to the target businesses (buyers an sellers) about the site.
     
    ~Roland
  • spungeyspungey subscriber Posts: 2
    I have a lot of experience turning needs into specifications for software and/or web sites.  Vwebworld is absolutely right.  You (probably) can`t afford to pay a guy like me to turn your idea into a specification, find the right software talent, and manage the months-long job of developing a custom solution. 
    Google and clusty are your friends.  Try keyword phrases like "site script freelance html javascript php"  and various combinations thereof.  Find some freelance sites you like and look at their page source.  Talk to your friends and find out who knows html or who knows someone who knows html.
    But don`t give up! 
  • Xsd01Xsd01 subscriber Posts: 0
    I have to partially agree with spungey, that your best bet is to hit the search engines. Check out some places like www.hotscripts.com and www.sourceforge.com (may find an open source solution to your needs).
     
    One of the biggest things I can suggest though is putting down in writing exactly what the process should be from start to finish for a business looking to hire someone and from the start to finish on the user being hired or being turned down. You need a good rough idea how you want the system to work for the user (step 1, sign up, step 2, make a profile, step 3,....) so that you can design your code to make this possible. Granted, what your putting down on paper now isn`t the final version, but that will help a programmer out greatly, and more importantly, lets you compare some of the other options (open source or purchasable scripts) and see if they at least have the functionality you require.
     
    Another thing I`d suggest, if you haven`t already, figure out what you need for site hosting for now and how easy it will be to expand/upgrade to better servers as needed, then start looking at your server options, as there are many out there and some support languages others don`t (some servers don`t support ASP.net for example).
     
    That`s just a quick response because this could get really long, but if there`s anything I may be able to shed some more light on or assist with, please don`t hesitate to contact me directly.
  • ayjayayjay subscriber Posts: 7
    Thanks everyone! That`s the kind of info I was hoping to see.


    CampSteve, knowing you`re doing something similar does make me feel like I`m not totally crazy to want to do this without being a web guru.
     
    I did not know that there was free scripts that can be used to build a site like this. (thanks roland, spungey, robert). I also have a sense that I can`t pay for the exact top talent I need. Still, I have seen some freelance sites that look freshly-launched that are pretty bad. I don`t want to do that because it would not jive with my concept. . .I`d like to be more "premiere" than "low-budget" but maybe I can`t afford to be high-end yet. I will definitley start researching what you all have shared with me & figuring out what I need. (server options! Oh man.) That`s the fun stuff anyway.
     
    Craig - I feel that I have the vision. . .if anyone wants to hire a freelance visionary, those are the opportunities I`m really looking for.  I also appreciate your success stories. . .you always seem to have one that fits the bill.
  • Xsd01Xsd01 subscriber Posts: 0
    Ayjay,
     
    On the aspect of being more "premiere" than "low-budget" to me that can rely more on design and content than the backend scripting you use. Take a look at GetAFreelancer.com versus GetACoder.com. The basis is the exact same, in fact the systems work very similar, but the layout and content on GetACoder.com just makes it nicer and more professional to me.
     
    I have used about 20 or so freelance sites over the years, and really to me, its always about how you present yourself more than your code (as long as the code is functional). It`s like going to a meeting with a potential client, if they are a multi-million dollar company, you want to go dressed to the 9s, but if your dealing with a local business that`s just starting, dressing that way can give them the impression your to expensive for them. If you know your target audience on both ends (buyers and providers), then you can tailor the look and words of the site to fit exactly what you need.
     
    Even if you can`t afford an expensive custom scripting, you can still dress the site as a million dollar business, because your site is pretty much the first impression people get of you and what you have to offer, so you have to make a good one that lasts.
  • sddreamweaverssddreamweavers subscriber Posts: 5

    Ayjay, On the aspect of being more "premiere" than "low-budget" to me that can rely more on design and content than the backend scripting you use. Take a look at GetAFreelancer.com versus GetACoder.com. The basis is the exact same, in fact the systems work very similar, but the layout and content on GetACoder.com just makes it nicer and more professional to me. I have used about 20 or so freelance sites over the years, and really to me, its always about how you present yourself more than your code (as long as the code is functional). It`s like going to a meeting with a potential client, if they are a multi-million dollar company, you want to go dressed to the 9s, but if your dealing with a local business that`s just starting, dressing that way can give them the impression your to expensive for them. If you know your target audience on both ends (buyers and providers), then you can tailor the look and words of the site to fit exactly what you need. Even if you can`t afford an expensive custom scripting, you can still dress the site as a million dollar business, because your site is pretty much the first impression people get of you and what you have to offer, so you have to make a good one that lasts.

    My $.02 about Getafreelancer.com...
    You get what you pay for.
  • Xsd01Xsd01 subscriber Posts: 0

    My $.02 about Getafreelancer.com...
    You get what you pay for.

     
    I agree with you on that. I`ve actually bid on only a handful of projects on there, and only ever got one, and its because I did it for real cheap and explained it was going to be used to test the effenciency of a particular link building strategy, as the person`s site was a good fit for it. But yeah, when you see people bidding on "Make a complete clone of Myspace" or maybe Ebay, or anything else, and the bids are all between $100-$500, most people should realize you`re not going to get exactly what you want.
     
    I actually try to stick to Guru and Elance, because companies with realistic budgets go there to find what they need. This all goes to the point that I was trying to make though, would a site like this rather resemble GetAFreelancer or something better.
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