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At Your Service

You can't custom-order an outside software developer, but you can still find what you need.

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This story appears in the October 2000 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Need to track customers' orders on your Web site? Or create a customized internal billing system? Unless you're technically inclined, trying to develop custom applications for your business is like ordering dinner in a foreign country-but with more risk. It's one thing to waste money on a meal you didn't realize you asked for; it's another thing altogether when your company makes the mistake of pouring thousands of dollars into a project that doesn't pan out.

No matter what software development project you want, you can make it succeed even if a technical person isn't on staff. Here are some tips for working with outside developers:

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