I have a reasonably successful SaaS which is pretty much a one-man show; I always wanted a co-founder but never found the right person. It's been running for a number of years now, growing consistently (if a bit slowly).
I've decided that I'd like to assemble a small team of programmers to continue building the product so I can focus on strategy & marketing - two areas which have, in all honesty, never received any attention so far. I also hope such a move would help combat the burnout I feel having been a solo operator for so long.
The challenge is that I'm unlikely to be able to hire great programmers for 2 reasons:
- Great programmers don't want to work for a tiny bootstrapped company in a small niche.
- Great programmers cost more than I can pay.
So it seems likely the best I can hope for is 1-3 programmers working remotely, likely from lower cost countries, and probably of a somewhat average standard.
The question, of course, is it worth it? Do you think it's possible to marshal average programmers to add sufficient value to a product whilst retaining quality? If I can build a great process/system perhaps can they add value within it? I intend be very hands on in trying to build this team, I certainly don't intent to "set and forget".
To summarize: I'm seeking to increase the speed at which the product can iterate/innovate and free up my time for other, up to now neglected, aspects of the business.
Is that possible for a software company when you can't hire great programmers?