Basically i am talking about projects like website development. Not only you have to do a lot but you have to do it in different mindsets. In a dream world you would have to do only one thing and than you can just take your sweet time doing it and perfecting it. But in reality you most of the time have to take on many roles for example...in developing web alone i have to

think of features, customers, trends, usability, aesthetics, flow of website. What would users want..what else to provide...what library to use to minimize work...are there any requirements of technical kind from client...

So how do i as new lone developer take on projects that are full.


While it's unusual to be given this kind of work to a freelancer... i am interested in knowing because there are some personal projects that i want to do. And having ability to do these will also help take on bigger projects. Yes subcontracting is possible too.

  • Hi Muhammed, has someone actually approached you with a project of this scope? Generally, most of the time existing businesses look for freelance consultants to solve a very specific need, not run their entire business...
    – jmort253
    Mar 28, 2014 at 3:25
  • Not really but also cause i am avoiding them as well...suppose if i could give it some time...how would i approach it..for me it seems to jumping back and forth coming up with more ideas, walking into obstacles, and then in the end giving up. I would like to know how to be my own manager better..because i've some of my own projects that i want to do and also i want to take on bigger projects. Mar 28, 2014 at 3:58
  • I personally feel like it's hard to be a generalist as a freelancer, although others may certainly have different experiences. Is there some reason you don't market yourself as someone who specializes in X rather than someone who does marketing, content writing, programming, design, etc... seems like a lot to take on by yourself.
    – jmort253
    Mar 28, 2014 at 4:13
  • 1
    If I were to answer, I'd say you'd almost need a team. Consider updating your question with an edit to clarify if subcontracting some of the work would be an option, as that may influence the answers you ultimately get from our community. Hope this helps!
    – jmort253
    Mar 28, 2014 at 4:15

3 Answers 3


As a solo freelancer, in order to take on larger projects, you will need to build a trusted team you can work with.

This will take time and effort.

One way to begin, is by joining and participating in local user groups, attend the workshops and social evenings. You will get to know other freelancers, what their strengths/weaknesses are.

Assume that if you are going after larger-scale contracts, you are also taking on some responsibilities, including

  • Account Management / Project Management
  • Requirements Analysis
  • Quoting and setting Payment Milestones
  • Ensuring your clients are happy and your designer/developers are happy

Consider where it leaves you if either a) the client doesn't pay, or b) your freelancers don't deliver as promised? This going to happen from time to time - how will you handle it?

Going after large-scale projects is doable as a solo-freelancer - but make sure you know what you are getting into when you are assembling and managing project teams.

When it works - it's a dream - and can be very profitable.

When things go south - look out - it can be a world of pain.

I worked for a web firm first, managing large scale projects - that gave me the experience to do it on my own.

If you don't have that experience, then be frank with with the freelance team you put together about your goals and ambitions - make sure they are the type of people you can rely on - and that they are willing to work with you to go after the 'big fish.'

It can be done! (But it's not without its risks).

  • how do i find people locally and online...there seems to just extreme atmosphere of distrust and lack of interest each time i have approached. Basically, i am more business minded, i used to be i need to learn that language completely mental state but then i read some inspiring and deep things that changed me and reminded why i am doing this. Other devs (the ones ive met which are few) are not as adventurous as i'd like them to be. Basically my goal is try to hit big and keep trying if fail...but i get feeling others want just keep biz as usual and enjoy it. Jul 18, 2014 at 8:58

In my experience, projects that in depth and involved are taken on by studios or agencies and companies looking for that scope of work are not looking for one individual unless that individual is perhaps a project manager, not web designer/developer.

Think of it as building a house. You don't hire the electrician to do everything. You hire the electrician to do the electrical work. If you are looking for a one-person contact, you hire a contractor who then manages other various specialty workers.

If you are seeking steps to project management, there are a great deal of reasources on the web already. There are books, blogs (2), and articles which all will help lead you in the proper direction. Ultimately it takes experience to find the workflow that makes sense to you and serves your desires the best.


One other thing that the other answers have not dealt with is how to handle time commitments. Large jobs, if you don't throttle them, can be very damaging to your business because they can take you out of circulation for a long time.

So in addition to building a trusted team you also need to make sure you have time to continue to be involved in all the things you do to build your business including taking on other jobs. This can require a larger trusted team too....

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