FAQs


Who are you?

Gun.io was founded in 2011 by Free and Open Source software developers who wanted to build a place where Professional Freelancers™ could work with excellent clients to build awesome products in a way that didn't scrape the bottom of the barrel on quality and didn't break the bank on price.

We've been improving our model and service ever since, and have worked with hundreds of companies — from recently funded startups to Fortune 50 companies. We have over 50,000 hours of development logged in recent years and are constantly striving to improve the quality of our service offering, which we strongly believe is best in the industry.


Who are your freelancers and where do you find them?

We call them Professional FreelancersTM because they are super-senior pros in their craft who have at least 10+ years of experience. They're the kind of people who would charge you huge hourly rates if you could even find them on your own. They won't work on other platforms, through recruiters, or through agencies. They're self-employed and they like it that way. We've earned access to this elite class of worker through years of diligent service to the open source world and through simply taking excellent care of developers. There's no magic and our reputation attracts them.

85% of our workforce is US-based, with Canada, South/Central America, and a smattering of other excellent talent. We do not discriminate against fantastic professionals outside of our timezone, but we do insist they work client daylight hours.


What is a Professional FreelancerTM?

Professional FreelancersTM are individuals who make their full-time income as freelance crafts(wo)men. We do not work with side-hustlers seeking “some hours” after their day job. We perform a rigorous qualitative and quantitative review process with four levels of interviews, code reviews, and live reference checks.


Can you find me a developer?

Yes. All of our engagements start with you working one-on-one with a Technology Lead ("Tech Lead" aka senior developer) who will move you quickly to development.

Unlike most freelance platforms we don't just match you with a developer, say 'good luck', and send you a bill. We're there with you to make sure you're project is a success with real support.

Unlike agencies and dev shops we take care of setup and discovery with our Ignite Package. No one in this industry invests more in client relationships than Gun.io.


How much does your service cost?

Most freelancers at Gun.io have reduced their rates to work on our platform. We pass these savings on to you — allowing you to access top tier talent for less than half of their normal rates. Why would freelancers do that? Read their stories to find out.

Our typical engagement is priced at $150 per hour, but will vary based on the size and duration of your project.


How am I billed?

Clients pre-purchase freelancer capacity in one of three packages:

Ignite — Receive 50 hours of product development from our freelance workforce, with an additional 50 hours contributed by Gun.io in any mix of staff or skills at $150 per hour. The Ignite package takes most clients one month to work through. Your Tech Lead will suggest additional team members (if any) who they recommend are necessary to meet your product goals.

Accelerate — Receive 200 hours of product development from our freelance workforce in any mix of staff or skills for $150 per hour. Each 200-hour Accelerate Package typically takes clients one month to work through.

Orbit — Receive 500 or 1,000 hours of product development over the course of 3 months (1 quarter) from our freelance workforce in any mix of staff or skills. Orbit Plans are our most popular package, and have a 91% renewal rate among Gun.io clients. Clients receive $10 per hour discount for each 500 hour commitment, and Orbit plans can stack for greater discounts.

Clients are free to invest in as much or as little team capacity they need: you control your total dollar investment. You set the priority of the usage of your investment through a fully transparent view of every dollar invested relative to your priority items, with fidelity and reporting down to 15 minute increments.


What type of projects have you done?

We've worked on hundreds of projects across dozens of industries. Our teams have built everything from simple web applications, APIs and mobile applications to highly complex HIPAA-compliant medical machine learning/AI clusters and data processing pipelines, international payment processing systems, high frequency trading algorithms, embedded systems and elastic critical infrastructure.

No matter what your project is, we can build you an experienced team to make your launch a success.


What type of clients do you work with?

We’ve helped hundreds of businesses — from Fortune 500 companies like Cisco, NBC and SolarCity, to high-potential small businesses who just made their first $100,000 in revenue. The majority of our clients are small, revenue-positive firms operated by owner teams with $1M+ of revenue or $1M+ in financing. Many more are enterprise VPs utilizing Gun.io to augment their existing product teams.


How do you work?

Every project starts with a senior, highly-trusted Technology Lead (Tech Lead) from our Professional FreelancerTM community. These are not just "developers" or "product managers," but are senior professionals whom we've specifically selected to kickstart your project. They not only possess a strong technical background across a variety of disciplines, but have a demonstrated ability to get abstract goals out of clients' heads, into a product backlog, and eventually, into code.

Once this core role is filled, we allow your specific needs to dictate the work to be done and the roles to be added over the length of your engagement with Gun.io.


How do you hire Freelancers?

The way Gun.io staffs freelancers can be thought of as a set of two concentric circles:

2nd circle: The outermost circle is our broadest group of interested freelancers. Every day we field dozens of applications via Gun.io. We filter out at least 80% of these based on English competency, demonstrated proposal and code samples, activity in Free and Open Source software projects, and reviews of their social and engineering (OOS) online footprint. We maintain an email list and Slack community of all of the people who make it through this filter.

1st circle: We post open roles for client project teams to the 2nd circle to accept applications to join teams on active projects. These applications are for specific roles such as "Backend Django Developer," "Product Manager," or "Front-end React Developer." Team members who are selected join the 1st circle using a specific project and role-based application as well as interviews. This is our private Slack team where we're actively working with and serving clients. These hours are specific billable contributions to project teams. Once a freelancer's in the 1st circle he or she can stay there as long as they perform and we will continue to staff them on new projects, allowing them to achieve income stability as a member of Team Gun.io.


Will I communicate with the freelancers directly or through Gun.io?

You will collaborate directly with your Tech Lead via a private Slack channel, video conferences, calls, private Confluence documentation, and private Jira board, against which all time will be logged and reported. You won't have to work through an intermediary Project Manager, Account Manager, or anyone else. You work directly with your technical talent.


What if I don't like my freelancer(s)?

We're prepared to address these contingencies efficiently, making sure we always have backup in place. We take full responsibility for this on the cost and process side. You will not be charged for any additional onboarding required by a personnel shift.


Can I have Gun.io Professional Freelancers work in my office?

While the vast majority of our Professional FreelancersTM work very successfully from remote locations, there may be some circumstances where we can discuss your specific needs and determine how we can help. It is, however, rare that we do onsite staffing as the majority of our workforce and systems prefer and are built to manage a remote scenario. If you haven't worked with a remote team before, give us a chance to show you all of the benefits and don't be scared of the change. You will find it fast and effective.


How do you ensure quality?

Each freelancer is thoroughly vetted:

They are screened algorithmically for general technical competency and contribution to open source work upon their initial application

Then, once they apply for a specific role, each freelancer is:

1) interviewed for cultural fit;

2) interviewed for the specific technical demands of the project by one of one of our senior technology leaders;

3) and personally interviewed by our CEO.

Each client project is thoroughly managed:

1) On a day-to-day basis by a senior technical member of Gun.io's freelance team;

2) Fully equipped with robust QA processes and documentation as the project's budgetary requirements allow;

3) And monitored by a member of Gun.io's executive team to ensure that overall results-per-dollar are inline with the company's standards of delivery.


Do you offer a guarantee?

We have a 2% documented "defect rate" over the recent year of billable work. That's calculated as a percent of revenue given back to clients (in the form of hours) when/if we make a mistake or misallocate a segment of our client’s budget.

We now preempt these mistakes in the following manner: every time you buy a package of hours, we add an additional 5% of your purchase (out of our own pocket) to act as an insurance policy to deploy against mistakes.


What happens if I run out of money?

We recommend using the first 5-10 hours of your engagement to work with your Tech Lead and make sure what you have in your head is feasible given what you have in your bank account. If so, great. If not, we'll help you make good decisions before you go forward.


Will I own the code? How do you handle intellectual property?

You will own all of your hosting (even if we manage it) and all of your code repositories. You will accrue your intellectual property in real time as it is developed, with no risk of “code escrow” or its more insidious cousin, “code hostage”. Our model does not incentivize holding back quality and deliverables. You own everything the instant we write the code because of our unique billing model that protects you and aligns incentives for everyone involved.


How quickly can we get started?

You can get started right now! Fill out this form and schedule a call with us. We will discuss your project in more detail and talk about your options. If you choose to engage with us we'll send you our simple agreement and you'll be up and running within a few business days.