According to its site, Gigster is the fastest and easiest way to build custom software solutions. The company has amassed the largest network of exceptional developers, designers, and product managers and augments them with data, artificial intelligence, and a rich working environment.
Black Enterprise caught up with Co-founder and CTO Debo Olaosebikan to talk about why he started the company, its growing user base, and how you can get involved if you’re a freelancer.
Tell me about your background.
I am a physicist and entrepreneur based in San Francisco. I was born in Nigeria but came to the U.S. to pursue my graduate degree at Cornell. Now I’m focused on building a platform for better software development as CTO of Gigster, the company I co-founded in 2014.
Tell us about Gigster and why you decided to start.
I’ve always been driven to find a way to help a large number of people. I felt like technology was the most scalable way to make this kind of impact, so in collaboration with my co-founder, we created Gigster to address the problem of access to quality software development.
Gigster is a smart software development service that provides on-demand access to the best talent. For most businesses, building software and hiring full-time engineers is incredibly difficult. Simultaneously, software developers who try making it on their own get frustrated by the framework (or lack thereof) around freelancing.
For developers, we wanted Gigster to be the solution we wished had been available to us earlier in our engineering careers. It takes the pain out of contract work while offering flexibility and access to cutting-edge projects. For organizations, we’re providing a reliable resource when they aren’t able to find or afford their own in-house development team.
How many users do you have?
We have worked with over 1,000 clients across a variety of industries including financial services, travel, and hospitality, manufacturing, consumer, and more. We leverage data from all of our projects to streamline and automate the process from end-to-end, enabling us to work on hundreds of projects at once.
Our Gigster network is comprised of about 1,000 freelancers, highly skilled in software development and design.
How did you scale so rapidly?
The value proposition of consistently great outcomes delivered by exceptional talent resonates really well with clients. This is especially true for enterprises. On the freelancer side, the idea of working flexibly with excellent teammates from anywhere in the world while earning a Silicon Valley wage is very appealing. We have scaled by focusing on building a great product and delivering great outcomes for clients and freelancers.
What makes it different from the other freelance platforms?
What differentiates Gigster is that clients aren’t just hiring freelancers, but rather an entire engineering department—expert talent with a project management layer that guarantees price and quality. We provide a concierge experience for a fixed price, agreed upon before the project even begins. It’s more Uber than Airbnb in that you are not burdened with selecting engineers, piecing together a team, and managing it. The Gigster platform handles all of that for you and guarantees you great outcomes.
For freelancers, we wanted to build the best place to work. Members of our network work in specialized areas and so all they have to do is write code and get paid. They no longer have to deal with the frustrating elements of freelancing, such as marketing themselves, doing sales, or chasing down payments. We have found that this specialization and approach allows us to attract truly incredible talent that typically would only be accessible to the likes of tech giants like Google and Facebook.
How do freelancers access the platform?
Freelancers interested in working with Gigster fill out an application to join the network, which is followed by a rigorous interview process. Once admitted to the network, freelancers are onboarded and able to access projects and the rest of the Gigster community through the Gigster platform. We work with each person in our network to customize the type of projects they work on and their schedule based on availability.