Global Hiring Guide

Ultimate Guide on How to Hire Skilled Mobile App Developers From India

Mayank Bhutoria
7
min

Discover the top 10 countries to hire international remote workers with our comprehensive eBook. Learn about the best locations to source global talent, taking into account key factors.

Are you considering hiring mobile app developers from India for your project?
With a vast pool of skilled talent and a proven track record of delivering high-quality work, India has emerged as a leading destination for outsourcing mobile app development. With a pool of skilled workforce, favorable government initiatives, and a thriving ecosystem, India has become one of the preferred destinations for app development. Satya Nadella, Microsoft's CEO mentioned recently that Microsoft’s GitHub has 13.2 Indian developers who use the platform currently and is expected to overtake the US and become the largest developer community by 2027. Government initiatives like “Digital India” and “Made in India” have played a crucial role in promoting the app development industry attracting both local and international investments.
However, navigating the process of finding and hiring the right developers can be daunting, especially when dealing with cultural and legal nuances.

In this guide, we'll provide you with a roadmap to help you navigate the process. From the various hiring models to explore, to identifying the best platforms for finding top Indian talent, and the factors to consider when vetting Indian mobile app developers, we'll cover everything you need to know to make an informed decision.

Three Ways to Hire Mobile App Developers in India

When it comes to hiring mobile app developers in India, foreign employers have three options to consider. Each way offers its unique benefits and challenges, and the most suitable choice will depend on your specific business needs and objectives. 

Establishing a legal entity in India

Setting up a legal entity in India, such as a branch office or subsidiary, allows you to hire mobile app developers directly as full-time employees. This approach offers a high degree of control over your operations and ensures compliance with local laws and regulations. It’s ideal for companies seeking a long-term presence in India, allowing for deeper integration into the local market and access to top-tier talent. 

However, setting up a legal entity involves significant time, cost, and regulatory complexity. The process includes registering the business, establishing administrative functions, and adhering to Indian corporate, tax, and labor laws. Additionally, ongoing management of the legal entity requires continuous effort in terms of tax filings, compliance reporting, and employee benefits administration.

Hiring independent contractors

Employing independent contractors provides flexibility and cost-effectiveness for foreign employers with short-term project needs or specialized tasks. This approach allows you to scale your workforce based on project requirements and avoid the expenses associated with full-time employees. 

However, it’s crucial to exercise caution when you hire international contractors, as misclassifying them can lead to penalties. Contractors may also lack the same level of control, engagement, and integration into the company's culture and processes as full-time employees, potentially impacting productivity and collaboration.

Partnering with an Employer of Record

Using an Employer of Record (EOR) simplifies the hiring process for foreign employers by outsourcing legal, HR, and payroll responsibilities. EOR services offer speed and compliance assurance, allowing companies to quickly hire employees in India without the need to establish a legal entity. Also, an EOR facilitates seamless onboarding and provides ongoing support, creating a positive employee experience. This approach lets companies focus on their core business activities while the EOR handles employment administration. 

With an EOR like Gloroots, companies can confidently navigate the hiring process in India, benefiting from quick access to talent, simplified administration, and compliance assurance.

Top Tech Talent Destinations To Hire Mobile App Developers in India

India’s IT talents are largely located in top metropolitan cities housing Global Capability Centres (GCCs), which are dedicated offshore centers established by foreign companies to outsource IT and other related business functions. These cities offer strong infrastructure, advanced information technology systems, international connectivity, and a stable environment. 

The following tier-I cities are prime locations for hiring experienced app developers.

Mumbai

Mumbai is the business capital of India and home to major IT companies like IBM, L&T Infotech, iGate, Accenture, Infosys, and Polaris Software. The city boasts excellent internet connectivity and a large pool of young, skilled developers. 

Delhi

As the capital of India, Delhi hosts offices of top tech companies like Microsoft and Google. The city is a leading hub of skilled app developers and full-stack developers.

The Indian Government has identified the capital to be transformed into a smart city, further driving technological development and attracting top talent.

Bengaluru

Known as the Silicon Valley of India, Bengaluru is home to more than 22% of the IT companies in India. The city boasts a diverse range of tech companies like Wipro, Infosys, Accentuate, Capgemini and successful startups. IBM has it's headquarters in Bangalore. 

Prestigious institutions like the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) and Indian Institute of Science (IISc) provide a steady supply of skilled professionals. Karnataka’s IT policy has also boosted the growth of tech companies and startups that fuel the talent pool. 

An app developer in Bangalore gets around $752. Specialists such as senior Android app developers earn even more. 

Hyderabad

Amazon’s largest corporate building in the world is located in Hyderabad, India. The city also has other top tech companies like Microsoft, Oracle, Infosys and Capegemini. The city boasts a large talent pool, with leading institutions like the International Institute of Information Technology (IIIT) Hyderabad and the Indian School of Business (ISB) contributing to the city's talent pipeline. Hyderabad offers reasonable living costs and excellent internet connectivity, offering abundant opportunities to IT professionals. 

Chennai

Chennai, the IT hub of Tamil Nadu, has a well-established IT sector and a pool of talented app developers. Top institutions like the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) and Anna University continuously churn out skilled graduates for the industry. 

The Tamil Nadu government promotes the growth of the IT industry with policies offering incentives for tech companies and startups. Chennai also offers lower labor costs compared to other major Indian cities, making it an attractive destination for companies looking to hire mobile app developers.

While Tier-1 cities are the etablished talent hubs, Tier-2 cities like Kochi, Chandigarh, Indore, Mohali, and Vadodara are emerging as significant talent destinations, particularly for junior-level hiring.

Factors To Consider When Hiring App Developers From India

When hiring app developers from India, foreign employers should consider several critical factors to ensure a successful and smooth collaboration. These factors include:

1. Technical skills and experience

Mobile app developers should be proficient in:

  • Programming languages, such as Java or Kotlin for Android, and Swift or Objective-C for iOS
  • Technologies and frameworks for cross-platform development, such as Flutter and React Native
  • UI/UX design

Conduct rigorous technical interviews, coding tests, and portfolio reviews to assess candidates’ skills and experience, and ensure they align with the specific requirements of your project.

2. Cultural fit and time zone compatibility

Indian developers are generally well-versed in Western business practices due to the extensive presence of multinational corporations in India. However, you should still assess candidates’ communication styles, work ethics, and approaches to problem-solving to ensure cultural alignment.

Additionally, time zone differences may create challenges in scheduling meetings and real-time collaboration activities, as Indian Standard Time (IST) is typically 9.5 hours ahead of the Eastern Daylight Time (EDT).  Flexibility from both parties is crucial to accommodate different working hours and foster effective communication and collaboration. 

3. Availability, scalability, and post-deployment Support

Ensure the developers you hire are available to start working on your project and can scale their efforts as your project progresses. Indian developers are often highly adaptable, but ensuring they have the bandwidth to meet your timelines is crucial. 

Additionally, consider their ability to provide ongoing post-deployment support, including maintenance, updates, and implementing improvements based on user feedback.

4. Intellectual property protection

Protecting your intellectual property (IP) is vital when working with developers remotely. Ensure that all contracts clearly outline IP ownership, confidentiality clauses, and non-disclosure agreements (NDAs). Consulting a legal expert familiar with Indian IP laws can help safeguard your interests.

5. Project management capabilities

Given that the developers will be working remotely and likely asynchronously, they must possess strong project management capabilities. They should be able to work, think, and solve problems independently, handle client-facing situations professionally, and adhere to deadlines without constant supervision. Effective use of project management tools, such as Trello and Asana, can facilitate better progress tracking and coordination.

6. Compensation and benefits

To attract and retain top talent, offer competitive compensation packages that align with industry benchmarks in India.  

Entry-level developers typically earn between $10,000 to $15,000 per year, while mid-level developers with a few years of experience can expect salaries ranging from $15,000 to $20,000 per year. Senior developers or those with specialized skills may command salaries upwards of $25,000 per year. 

Additionally, provide employment benefits such as health insurance and paid leave. For remote workers, consider additional benefits like flexible working hours, work equipment, and internet allowances to ensure seamless communication and productivity. 

To determine appropriate compensation packages, companies can use tools like Gloroots’ salary calculator, which helps benchmark salaries based on geographical locations, ensuring competitive and fair pay.

7. Employment and payroll laws 

Companies must familiarize themselves with several federal and state labor laws including the Payment of Wages Act and the Employees' Provident Fund (EPF) Act. These laws govern aspects such as contract terms, timely salary payments, and social security contributions. Understanding these regulations is crucial for ensuring fair treatment of employees and maintaining legal compliance.

Platforms to Hire Mobile App Developers in India

Various platforms connect businesses with talented developers who specialize in creating high-quality mobile applications. Whether you're a startup or an established company, you can make use of the platforms mentioned below to hire developers as per the company’s requirements.

Name of the Platform Type of Website Description Paid or Unpaid
Freelancer Websites:
Upwork Freelance marketplace Connects businesses with freelancers for various projects including mobile app development. Paid
Freelancer Freelance marketplace A platform for businesses to find freelancers for mobile app development and other tasks. Paid
Fiverr Freelance marketplace A platform where freelancers offer services, including mobile app development. Paid
PeoplePerHour Freelance marketplace Connects businesses with freelance talent for mobile app development and other projects on an hourly or project basis. Paid
Job Portals:
Naukri.com Job portal One of India's leading job portals where businesses can post job listings for mobile app developers and other roles. Paid
Monster.com Job portal A platform for job postings and job searching, including mobile app development positions. Paid
TimesJobs.com Job portal Offers job listings for various industries, including IT and mobile app development. Paid
Indeed.co.in Job portal Aggregates job listings from various sources, including company websites and job boards, including opportunities for mobile app developers. Paid
Specialized Hiring Platforms:
Toptal Freelance platform Matches businesses with top freelance mobile app developers and other tech talent. Paid
Gigster Freelance platform Connects businesses with vetted development teams for mobile app and software development projects. Paid
X-Team Remote developer community Offers a platform to hire dedicated remote developers for mobile apps and other projects. Paid
Andela Remote developer community Connects companies with vetted remote software developers for long-term engagements, including mobile app development. Paid
Online Communities and Forums:
GitHub Development platform A platform where developers collaborate on projects, including mobile app development, and showcase their work. Free
Stack Overflow Q&A Platform Community for developers to ask and answer questions. Free
Dribbble Design Community Platform for designers to showcase their work, including mobile app design, which can help in hiring designers for app projects. Free
Behance Design Community Designers showcase their portfolios, including mobile app design work. Free
Social Media Platforms:
LinkedIn Professional networking site Businesses can find mobile app developers and other professionals through networking and job postings. Free/ Paid
Twitter Social media platform Developers and businesses can connect and share information about mobile app development opportunities. Free
Facebook Groups Social media platform Various groups exist where businesses can post mobile app development job opportunities and connect with developers. Free
Referrals:
Employee referrals Word-of-mouth Employees refer mobile app developers they know to their company for job opportunities.
Professional networks Networking Businesses leverage their professional networks to find mobile app developers through referrals.

How Much Does It Cost To Hire a Developer in India?

The cost of hiring a developer in India depends on various factors, such as years of experience, specialization, and the type of developer being hired.

According to our Global Salary Calculator, mobile app developer salaries range between $8,000 to $40,000 per annum. Here's a breakdown of the rates for different categories of app developers in India:

Category Cost Range (per hour)
Entry-level developers $10 - $20
Mid-level developers (2-5 years of experience) $20 - $40
Senior developers (5+ years of experience) $40 - $50
Freelance developers (experience and skills) $15 - $30

Another factor influencing the cost is the platform (Android or iOS) you're developing. Android apps generally take longer to develop due to the diversity of devices and screen sizes. In contrast, iOS apps can be developed more quickly due to the simplicity of coding. 

Here's a comparison of hourly rates for different platforms:

Platform Hourly Rate Range ($)
iOS developer $15-$30
Android developer $20-$40
Cross-platform developer $30-$50

The complexity of the app also influences development costs. Simple apps might require 500-700 hours, costing $40,000 - $70,000, while complex apps can demand more than 1200 hours, with costs exceeding $130,000. So, when estimating hiring costs, consider the app’s complexity and the level of expertise required to ensure the development process goes smoothly and meets your expectations.

Challenges of Hiring Developers in India

While hiring mobile app developers from India offers numerous advantages, foreign employers should be aware of potential challenges and take proactive measures to mitigate them. Some key challenges to consider include:

  • Cultural differences 

India's diverse cultural landscape, shaped by centuries of history and regional nuances, influences work behavior, communication styles, and professional expectations. Understanding and navigating these cultural nuances are essential for effective collaboration and management of developer teams in India, as it enables better communication, trust, and teamwork. 

  • Legal and compliance issues

Misclassifying Indian developers as independent contractors or freelancers instead of employees can lead to legal repercussions. This can occur when the developer is hired as a contractor yet performs work that is characteristic of an employee, such as working fixed hours or using company-provided equipment.

Employee misclassification can result in fines and penalties for non-compliance with local labor laws regarding taxation, social security, and employee benefits. Companies should seek legal counsel to ensure compliance with Indian labor regulations.

You can use Gloroots’ employee misclassification risk calculator to avoid the risk of misclassification.

  • Quality control

Differences in work practices, standards, and expectations between foreign employers and Indian developers can impact the consistency and quality of work delivered. Investing in training and continuous improvement programs can enhance the skill sets of remote developers and improve the quality of work delivered. Additionally, using collaborative tools and platforms can facilitate real-time monitoring, ensuring that the deliverables meet the desired quality standards. 

Hire App Developers in India with Gloroots 

Partnering with Gloroots as your Employer of Record provider can eliminate the legal and administrative burdens you have to navigate when hiring Indian app developers as employees or contractors. 

Here’s how Gloroots can support you:

  • Eliminates the need to set up a legal entity in India

By partnering with Gloroots as an Employer of Record,  you won’t need to establish their own legal entity in India. Gloroots serves as the formal employer for the hired app developers, handling all legal, administrative, and compliance requirements on behalf of your company.

  • Ensures compliance with local labor laws

Gloroots ensures that all employment arrangements are compliant with Indian labor laws and regulations. From contract management to payroll processing, Gloroots ensures adherence to legal requirements, mitigating the risk of non-compliance and associated penalties. 

  • Manages payroll, benefits, and other HR functions

Managing global payroll, benefits, and other HR functions for remote employees in different countries can be challenging. Gloroots takes care of these responsibilities as an Employer of Record, handling payroll processing, tax withholding, employee benefits administration, and other HR functions on behalf of your company. 

For employers who prefer to make payments in cryptocurrency, Gloroots offers a cutting-edge crypto payroll software, enabling seamless crypto payments to your Indian workforce while ensuring full compliance with local regulations. 

Book a demo today to learn more about how Gloroots can support your global hiring needs!

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