Just One Developer? Your Custom Software or App Is at Risk

Picture it: You’ve hired a custom software developer to design your web and mobile applications. Executive leadership sees the results of the work from this developer in demos, but with a personal lack of knowledge and expertise in this field, they have no way to determine the quality of the work or code. This outage results in best practices being overlooked and critical information going undocumented. Now you have a developer who is the only party with the knowledge required to support and maintain applications. In most cases, they’re also the only party with access to the source code. Your developer has just become a significant risk for the business. Now what do you do?

If you’re a small to midsize business that’s invested in one trusted individual to handle the development of custom software for your company, you could have a key-person issue. Worse yet, if the application is critical to your business, you may be operating on borrowed time before issues arise. If your custom software developer is a single internal IT resource or a 1099 subcontractor, you have just turned over the keys to the safe with all your valuables locked inside.

What happens if your developer isn’t available in a time of crisis? What happens if you don’t have access to the source code? How quickly could you locate and onboard a third-party vendor to help? Do you have what the vendor needs (your valuables)? How will your business be impacted if it takes weeks to address your issues (retrieve the keys to the safe)? This happens far too often.

Teamwork Makes the Dream (Applications) Work

A strong development team is the key to success for web and mobile applications. Apps are unique and individual pieces of software. There are simple apps and complex apps based on the app developers’ intended use and the target audience that the app is geared toward.

At times, building just a single mobile app is a process best suited for five to six developers to ensure an accurate and user-friendly application. At the very least, having a mobile and back-end developer is crucial for an app’s main operational capabilities, while a designer and QA specialist are needed to provide a well-functioning product. Designers and back-end specialists are the core units of a successful app development team. These developers design the app’s functionality and ensure that all of the required data syncs to the user interface.

Despite many platforms that try to persuade app developers that one person can successfully build an app, this is simply not true. It takes a team of people to ensure that your app is not going to be a drop of water inside a bucket of competing apps on the market. Let’s take a look at the core six positions in a successful app development team:

Mobile Developer

  • Mobile developer (the glue that holds an entire project together): Source coding for apps takes a lot of skill. A mobile app developer is a type of software developer that takes their mastery of coding and applies it to application development.

Back-end Developer

  • Back-end developer (the heart of the operation): A back-end developer is responsible for the smooth and efficient integration of the app’s database and operating system.


  • DevOPS (the thought leader or brain of the operation): An app needs a successful DevOps specialist during the app development cycle’s pre-planning and testing phase to answer questions related to automation techniques that correspond to how functions can relate to the planned software.


  • Designer (the personality behind the layout of an app): A designer is responsible for providing the shiny exterior to a mass of algorithms and code. Most designers can also be referred to as front-end developers depending on how much work is required for a designer on the team.

Quality Assurance Specialist

  • Quality assurance specialist (the eyes and ears of the development process): Since developers are typically focused on the final version of the project, the QA specialist is on board to catch any issues that arise along the way and flag them for immediate repair. This role operates with the user in mind during each step of the process.

Red Hawk Can Help You Develop Your Dream

Mid-market companies face similar problems regardless of industry. You are large enough to need “something more” than a single custom software developer to spur growth and streamline operations, but not large enough to have a full-time software development and support staff. This is where Red Hawk Technologies gives you the competitive edge. We provide a fractional team so that you have the right types of resources at the right times. Let us give your organization the financial and operational stability it deserves with our leadership and expertise. We’ve facilitated growth in mid-market companies just like yours for over a decade.

Contact Red Hawk for a code evaluation. We’ll help you determine your level of risk and provide development and maintenance services. Bundling development, enhancement, maintenance and technical support services for a fixed monthly fee reduces your financial and operational risk, providing the stability you need to achieve your ROI.

Matt Strippelhoff

Matt Strippelhoff

During his career, Matt has built an expansive portfolio of work in both traditional and interactive media. He’s designed and led the development of corporate intranets, extranets, e-commerce websites, content management tools, mobile applications and specialized interactive marketing programs for large and small business-to-business and business-to-consumer clientele. In addition to keeping Red Hawk a well-oiled machine, Matt consults with customers’ IT and Marketing executives on how to use technology and data to solve their business challenges, as well as take advantage of business opportunities.

Clarify and Define Your Big Idea

Use these easy-to-follow presentation slides to facilitate your own tech innovation workshop:

  • Explore your vision for a new web or mobile app
  • Define your goals and audience
  • Outline logistics and required technology
  • Move toward next steps in making your idea a reality
Big Idea

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