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What do you expect from someone hiring you for a project?


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I am sure everyone might be a little different on this topic, but I wanted to get some input on what you  @Programmer felt were the most important aspects you need in order to stay interested, and work on a project for a longer period of time.

What do you expect from the owner, what do you expect in terms of requirements. What organization do you feel is important?

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I typically would build out all the details of a project before I would even estimate the cost of doing the project. This is the example breakdown for programming work that I would send people before they even got a full estimate to give them an idea of the level of detail I needed before I could begin working on it. Anyone is free to use this breakdown style or example:


  • Join, login, logout, lost password - $50

  • Message boards - $150

    • Add categories and subcategories

    • Sort order

    • Pin posts

    • List of active posts

    • List of recently replied to posts

    • Upgrade only option

  • Layouts - up to 3 designs for $100

  • Horses

    • Bought from the store

    • Live from 0 to 25 years old

    • Die or retire?

    • Breed from 3 to 20 years old

    • Age 1 year every x days

    • Mate

      • horses can only breed to their mate

      • players must request/accept mates

      • Baby inherits genetics

  • Game Stores & Items - $300

    • Add/edit/create stores

    • Add/edit/create items

    • Custom store pages

    • Upgrade only stores

  • User Stores - $200

    • Buy/sell items

    • Customizable store page

    • User store item search

  • Items - see stores

    • Equippable

    • Consumable - increases health/energy/stats

    • Upgrade only

    • 4 special items (ie age change, color change, gender change, etc)

  • Moderators and Staff - $100

    • Action logs

    • Notes section on each member

    • Ban members

    • Kick members

    • Manage message boards

    • Pin message board posts to the top of the board

    • Whatever other add/edit/delete admin features you want them to have access to

  • Polls (ajax) - $100

  • Player Notes - $100

    • player can add/edit/delete notes only visible to  player

  • Members Online - $25

  • Bank - $50

    • savings account

    • send money to other players

    • interest - extra $5

    • log of money transactions - extra $25

  • Chat Room (ajax) - $100

  • Newspaper - $75

    • add/edit/delete articles

    • comment on articles

  • Message System - $50

  • Mass Message System users - $25

  • Mass Email Users - $75

  • Google Ads - $10

  • Art Depot - $125

    • add/update/delete layouts

    • sell layouts

    • upgraded only

    • apply layouts to the whole site

  • Special Value - $45

    • adding a value amount to genetics - $25

    • adding up the amounts on the genetics the horse has - $10

    • adding up the amounts on the skills the horse has - $10

  • Battles

    • Computer opponents - $100

      • Admin panel to add/edit/delete characters they can fight against

      • Display a list of all available foes

      • Stats you can edit for each character opponent to make it a stronger or weaker foe

    • Computer deathmatch - $75

      • characters will always attack back, no waiting period

      • the one to run out of health first looses.

      • player takes prize if they win

    • Computer Sparring - $25

      • adds a forfeit button to the fight

      • player takes prize if they win

    • PvP Death match - $100

      • turn based, the one who runs out of health first loses with the win forfeit to the player waiting for the other to attack after a 48 hour period if the battle is still in progress

      • Winner takes prize

    • PvP Sparring match - $25

      • add a button which allows either player to forfeit the match before their character runs out of health

      • Winner takes prize

    • 4 Additional Battle Challenge Rules - $100

  • Dynamic Images with Genetics - $500

  • Map Exploration - $50

    • So your map system is different from the one I originally quoted you for:

    • Page of territories

    • Page of herds in each territory

    • Admin panel to add/edit/delete herds and their leaders

  • Herds

    • claiming a herd - $25

    • deciding a herd mate - $10

    • increased points/stats of herd owners - $10

    • Forum - owner can add/edit/delete categories and posts

    • Forum - owner can they make sticky posts

  • Enemies - $10

    • if you lose a PvP battle to a character it becomes your current enemy

  • Hall of Fame - $25

    • Non-deceased horses top points list

    • Deceased horses top points list

Total Project Cost - $2,775

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  • 5 months later...

The more details the better. 

I like to have the project mapped out in details so I can just jump right in and program and know I am doing what they want to do. 

For my own personal projects there can be some leeway since stuff can be in my head how I want it, though writing it down does help to remember correctly. But for non personal project it definitely slows me down. I either have to guess, which is stressful and can often be wrong, or I have to stop and ask them waiting on them before I can continue which is obviously not ideal.

A specification that includes mocks ups and detailed text are ideal. And if I don't have these I do stop and ask for them at the least a detailed description of what is wanted. 

For side projects I think staying motivated is also brought on by enjoying the game or concept and owner communication. Hearing back that the updates are working or even if there are just some tweaks keeps me focused and motivated on getting it done. 

So really communication could be summed up as the biggest factor then since that does encompass telling me what is wanted along with after things have been turned in.

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