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Hiring + recruiting | Blog Post

Andela vs Toptal vs Turing vs vs Terminal: the Best Contract Developer Marketplace

Todd Adams

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As engineering teams have weathered the ups and downs of the past few years, flexibility and resilience has become critical. The need to hire skilled contract developers has skyrocketed in recent years to ensure teams can retain the flexibility they need while finding elite talent to accomplish their goals. In this competitive landscape, five companies stand out: Andela, Toptal, Turing,, and Terminal. Each of these offer contract developers in some shape or form, but not every option will fit your needs. We’ll dive into what each does and how Andela vs Toptal vs Turing vs vs Terminal stacks up.

Terminal: the Smarter Global Platform to Hire Contract Developers

Terminal logo

Terminal is a full-service contract (and full-time) developer hiring platform that blends smart technology with human expertise to ensure hiring managers and developers receive a stellar experience.  Terminal has worked with fast-growing startups and tech powerhouses like Calendly, GoPro, Grindr, Nextdoor, hims&hers, and more.

Developer Talent

Terminal’s expansive global network of developers focuses on Canada, Latin America (Colombia, Mexico, Costa Rica, and Chile) and Europe (Spain, Poland, Romania and Hungary).  These regions were chosen to ensure time-zone alignment and tight collaboration between your teams while reducing your costs by 40 to 60% over domestic US hiring.

Terminal’s always-on recruiting pipeline ensures that the developer marketplace has in-market, ready to start developers for all your roles. Terminal screens thousands of developers each month, only accepting the top 7% of developers, so you partner with only elite developers. Screens include vetting for English proficiency, experience and technical proficiency, and partner with you to interview to ensure your technical bar is met.

Developer Contract Terms and Contract to Hire

Contracts with Terminal developers start at 3 months but can extend to as long as 12 months. Each contract is eligible to be renewed beyond its original term.

One of Terminal’s key differentiators is it is one of the only hiring platforms that supports and encourages contract to hire engagements. Because Terminal also offers full-time employment options, it’s an easy transition to shift a contractor to a full-time team member.

Cost and Pricing

Contractors set their own rates within the Terminal marketplace, but typical rates range from $4K per month to $12K per month, depending on the seniority and experience of the developer.

If you decide to bring on a contractor full time, there’s only a small onboarding fee of a few thousand dollars

Interested in exploring what Terminal has to offer?  Get started browsing talent for free or contact the team to get started.

Andela: A Platform to Co-create a Healthier, More Sustainable Way of Working

Andela focuses on exposing underserved talent markets like Africa to companies hiring developers. Andela vs Toptal is a frequent comparison given their freelance approach.

Developer Sourcing and Vetting

Andela primarily sources talent from Africa, with a selection process that includes coding tests, soft skills assessment, and interviews. They focus on creating a bridge between African talent and global companies.  They also offer talent from other regions around the world like Latin America.

Developer Contract Terms and Contract to Hire

Andela only offers 12 month contracts that automatically renew in one month increments. Andela does offer contract-to-hire, but with some stringent terms.  If you decide to bring an Andela technologist onto your team as a full-time employee, there is a $50,000 fee associated with that direct hire and you must replace the talent with another Andela technologist. Direct hire of talent who have provided less than one year of services is not permitted.  Andela does not offer full-time employment options, unlike other developer marketplaces mentioned here.

Cost and Pricing

Andela operates strictly on a contract basis, with pricing varying depending on the level of expertise required and the duration of the contract.  Andela states typical contract developers run between $60 and $100 / hr.  

Toptal: An Exclusive Network of Top Freelance Talent

Toptal focuses on primarily short-term project work from freelancers around the world. They do not specialize in only developer talent, offering other roles like finance, project management, and more. Toptal vs Turing is a frequent comparison given their scale, though they have dramatically different approaches to talent.

Developer Sourcing and Vetting

Toptal promotes a global pool of developers, selecting the top 3% through a 5-step screening process that includes language and personality tests, in-depth skill reviews, live screening, and test projects. This rigorous process ensures high-quality, reliable talent.

Developer Contract Terms and Contract to Hire

Toptal provides flexible contract terms, offering short-term, long-term, and part-time engagements. Their contract-to-hire terms allow businesses to transition freelancers to full-time roles under certain conditions. 

Toptal does not offer full-time talent options.

Cost and Pricing

Toptal’s pricing varies based on the developer’s skills and the nature of the engagement. Their rates typically fall in the premium range, reflecting the high caliber of talent they provide, with typical hourly rates ranging from $60 to $200.

Turing: An AI-powered Tech Services Company

Turing primarily focuses on spinning up teams for companies, offering on-demand teams that focus in specialized fields like cloud computing, application development, and more.

Developer Sourcing and Vetting

Turing uses AI to match companies with developers from across the world. Their vetting process includes algorithmic assessments for technical skills, English proficiency, and professional soft skills, ensuring a high-quality match for each role. Every Turing developer overlaps at least 4 hours of their workdays with PST timezone for ease of collaboration.

Developer Contract Terms and Contract to Hire

Turing offers “full time” contract work and doesn’t focus on part-time or hourly-based work.  It’s unclear if Turing offers contract-to-hire options.

Cost and Pricing

Turing does not disclose their pricing model on their website. Helping Employers Find Developers for Remote Jobs is a hiring platform that grew out of Codementor in 2019, focused on hiring globally.

Developer Sourcing and Vetting focuses on connecting developers with remote opportunities globally. Their vetting process includes code reviews, technical interviews, and English language proficiency tests, ensuring a high standard of talent.

Developer Contract Terms and Contract to Hire offers various contract terms, accommodating short-term, long-term, and project-based needs. They also support contract-to-hire agreements, allowing businesses to transition freelancers to full-time positions under specific terms.

Cost and Pricing offers various pricing models, including hourly rates and fixed-price contracts. Their pricing is designed to be flexible, catering to different project sizes and durations, with rates generally ranging from $60 to $100 per hour.

Andela vs Toptal vs Turing vs. vs Terminal Has Clear Leaders

Though each contract developer marketplace offers a variety of options, Andela vs Toptal vs Turing vs vs Terminal has a clear leader: Terminal is the best contract developer destination for product and technology companies. Terminal offers:

  • Best mix of time-zone aligned elite talent in Canada, Latin America, and Europe
  • A rigorous screening process so only the top 7% of candidates are submitted to customers
  • Both contract and full-time employment options, ensuring each customer can flexibly manage all their employment needs
  • Contract-to-hire option so hiring companies can bring on great talent full-time with no friction

Turing is another option to consider if you’re more interested in a project that requires an entire team.  Their expertise is in spinning up entire teams focused on certain disciplines and can be helpful for well-defined short-term projects.

Terminal, with its comprehensive approach to building and scaling remote engineering teams, exceptional global talent network, and full-stack hiring and employment solution, is the best choice. If you’re looking to grow your international talent team, 40% faster and 40 to 60% cheaper than domestic U.S. hiring, contact our team or start browsing talent for free!

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