Hire me for your next project
If you are looking for a Ruby or iOS developer, then I may be able to help. Below is an overview of what I can help with and how I work.
I've tried to be honest in setting out what kind of projects/clients I like to work with and what I charge in order to set expectations and allow you to decide up front if you think I am suitable for your project.
A quick summary
When I wrote this page, it turned out a lot longer than I had planned, so here is a bullet-point if summary if you are pressed for time:
- I offer Ruby, Rails and iOS development services through my company, LJR Software Ltd.
- I'm currently fully booked up until at least July 2013
- I charge a fixed daily rate of £600 + VAT, negotiable for longer projects
- I prefer to work from my home office; I'm not looking for full-time on-site work
- I work iteratively, according to the principles of agile development. I do not work on fixed-scope, fixed-cost projects. You are welcome to engage me for a fixed period of time.
- I don't work through recruitment agencies, except in exceptional circumstances (if you're an agent, please read the notice at the bottom of this page).
If you want to skip the rest and you are interested in hiring me, please get in touch.
I have extensive Ruby and Rails experience (over 6 years) and have worked on a variety of projects big and small.
Prior to working for myself, I worked at Reevoo.com as part of one of the best Ruby development teams in the UK. We worked on a number of different apps, including ReevooMark, Reevoo's high-traffic review service that is used on high-profile sites such as Tesco Direct, Sony, PC World and Dixons.
Some of my more recent projects include:
An in-house SEO reporting application for PartyGaming PLC, written in Ruby on Rails.
Ruby and Rails development for MyDrive Solutions; largely a Ruby project with some Rails, working on a processing pipeline for capturing, storing and analysing driving data for an insurance product.
Objective-C and iOS development
I have been writing iOS applications since the release of the original iPhone SDK back in 2008. As well as an app of my own, Squeemote, I have worked on a range of iPhone apps and Objective-C libraries commercially:
Towards the end of 2012, I worked on some internal iPad applications for Oracle.
Throughout 2011, I did an extensive amount of work for Mobile Interactive Group on the iOS front end of their mobile voting platform. Originally developed for the Sky 1 show Got To Dance, I was the lead developer on an internal Objective-C SDK for their platform. I also assisted with the development and integration of this SDK into an iPhone app for both Got To Dance and the Channel 5 launch of Big Brother.
Towards the end of 2010 and early 2011, I worked with 37Signals on their range of iOS apps, making various enhancements and undertaking some urgent bug fixes for their Highrise and Campfire iPhone apps and implementing some significant performance improvements for their iPad drawing app, Draft.
Whilst working on the TellYouGov project, I was also responsible for the implementation of their iPhone companion app.
In addition to the above, I have numerous examples of my work in the form of open-source contributions, which can be viewed on my Github profile.
Working with me
Having worked for myself (through my company, LJR Software Ltd) for four years now, I have come to discover which type of client relationship works best for both me and my clients.
As a general rule, I prefer to work on projects that give me a degree of autonomy and control over how the project is run. I am able to help you and your team take your project from inception to creation.
I have a good home office setup and prefer to work from there. I recognise that all projects require a degree of close communication and I'm happy to occasionally work from your premises (at my expense) for planning or when the project requires it.
Regarding meetings, I often find that I attend meetings at my client's request where my attendance seems unnecessary; If I think it is unnecessary that I attend a meeting, I will say so as I feel that my time (and your money) is better spent delivering real value.
Project size and budget
The length of the projects I work on varies; usually at least one month and sometimes as long as 3-4 months. I tend not to take on any projects longer than this but I will always consider doing so for the right project. Exciting new ideas and working with a great team are things that are likely to make me want to work on a longer project.
I will occasionally take on shorter projects (a couple of weeks) if my schedule allows for it. These kind of projects might include rapid prototyping, working on a critical part of your existing project or commercial support for one of my open-source libraries.
I charge a fixed daily rate of £600 + VAT for all projects. Depending on the length of your project, there is some room for negotiation in this rate.
My approach to development is that of an iterative process. I am a proponent of agile development and all which that entails, including: just enough design up-front, test/behaviour-driven development, releasing early and often and where possible, pair programming.
Please note that I always charge on a daily basis; I do not work on fixed-price contracts and can rarely give you an accurate quote up-front. I can advise you on how long your project may take but this is an inexact science.
If you need to manage your budget carefully, then the simplest way for us to do this is to agree on some fixed milestones up front, agreeing to release something on a fixed schedule (without fixing the scope) or you may simply hire me to work on your project for a fixed amount of time.
As far as iOS development goes, I am often contacted by people looking for help developing an app who have a very low estimation of the budgets and timescales involved. Generally, even the simplest of apps can take at least a month of development time once you take into account the initial planning, project bootstrapping and app store submission, so you should allow for a development budget of at least £10k. This figure does not include visual design.
Notice for recruitment agencies
I typically do not work through agencies. Only contact me via email if you have a very specific role which, having read the rest of this page, you feel is suitable, meets my rate and does not require me to be on-site. When you contact me, I'll need to know what the project is all about, who the client is and what the duration will be.
Do not contact me about permanent roles or roles that require me to be on-site full-time - these emails will be deleted without response.
Do not contact me requesting the latest copy of my C.V. - it will not be provided (should a C.V. be required for a role that I am interested in, then I will provide one at that point).
Please also do not contact me with unsuitable roles asking if I know anybody else who may be suitable for the role as I am not at liberty to disclose anybody else's contact details.
Finally, I do not appreciate unsolicited or "courtesy" phone calls from agents. If you need to contact me, please email me first.