Overview
< $25/hr
2 - 9
2019
YourCTO is a boutique software and app development company in Washington, D.C. We work with all types of clients, and particularly specialize in helping early-stage entrepreneurs. Our guiding philosophy is that individuals and small businesses deserve the same level of attention and support that big companies get. That’s why we only take on as many projects as our founders can personally oversee. A lot of people have great ideas for apps or software but jus

YourCTO is a boutique software and app development company in Washington, D.C. We work with all types of clients, and particularly specialize in helping early-stage entrepreneurs. Our guiding philosophy is that individuals and small businesses deserve the same level of attention and support that big companies get. That’s why we only take on as many projects as our founders can personally oversee.

A lot of people have great ideas for apps or software but just don’t know where to start. It can be hard to navigate the process and avoid risk, especially if you don’t have any software experience. Unfortunately, some companies take advantage of people in this situation. We know, because we’ve been in your shoes before. That’s why we started YourCTO – to provide affordable, dependable, and trustworthy software development to anyone. We want to help make your idea a reality.

us
United States
YourCTO
8th St, Washington DC, District of Columbia 20001
2024176657
Focus Area
Service Focus
  • Mobile App Development
  • Software Development
50%
50%
Client Focus
  • Small Business(< $10M)
100%
Industries Focus
  • Advertising & Marketing
  • E-commerce
  • Enterprise
  • Financial & Payments
  • Healthcare & Medical
  • Information Technology
  • Manufacturing
  • Other Industries
  • Real Estate
  • Retail
10%
10%
10%
10%
10%
10%
10%
10%
10%
10%
Customer Reviews
5.0 (5 Reviews)

I absolutely recommend YOURCTO

Misty Burch
posted on 2/4/20
YOURCTO came into my life right when I was about to throw in the towel on this venture. I’d been working on this idea for sometime. I’d experienced so many hurdles, setbacks, heart break etc and one night after googling a few random things I fell upon YOURCTO. I can’t tell you how invaluable it is to have someone like them call you back, pick your brain, tug at the heart strings and then help you enlarge your vision that much more. The communication has always been on the same page, timely professional and precise.

What is it about the company that you appreciate the most?

I really appreciate that they listen, they follow through, they are professional, they expound on my vision and are so helpful all along the way.

What was it about the company that you didn't like which they should do better?

Nothing.

Project Details
Mobile App Development
$10001 to $50000
COMPANY RESPONSE
YourCTO
YourCTO
Apr 2, 2020
Thank you so much for the review Misty! We're really glad that you found us, and love working together. We are really excited about your vision, and it is a privilege to help advance it.
posted on 2/4/20
  • Quality of deliverable
  • Value for money
  • Customer support
  • Overall ratings

Very reliable and amazing customer service!

Pia Saclauso
posted on 2/3/20
There were 3 main things that I loved the most about YourCTO. First, the communication between client and the service provider was great. The owner of the company, David and I have only personally met once in the beginning to discuss my vision for the app that I wanted to develop. And then from there, we started communicating through emails during the course of the app development, which took about 1 year to make. He's very responsive with the emails and he was very thorough with updating me on the process. Communication was an ease as it allowed me to inform them on what features to be added or changed on the app. And I also liked how they pitched in some of their ideas with mines and gave me a few marketing tips on how I can start advertising my product before it hits the play stores. I found it super reliable. The second thing I liked was that he gave me a timeline of the app development stages. They gave me a calendar so I would know exactly what app features their company is working on and its expected finishing date. The last thing that I appreciated was that they let me beta test the app before it hit the app stores. I love that I am seeing the results that I had envisioned and their progression. I am looking forward to continue working with them in future versions of my app.

What is it about the company that you appreciate the most?

Great communication -- very responsive and thorough. They allowed you to see results as they progress in the app development process. They allow you to beta test the app before it hits the stores.

What was it about the company that you didn't like which they should do better?

The app is still super brand new - theyre still working on the main features of 1st version but hopefully we will change the visual part of the app in the future. I want to improve the appearance of it so it encapsulates my vision on how my product should be branded. It needs a certain graphic design that gives it a signature look.

Project Details
Mobile App Development
$0 to $10000
COMPANY RESPONSE
YourCTO
YourCTO
Mar 2, 2020
Thanks so much for the review Pia. We absolutely love working with you, and are really excited to get your app launched. We are also very much looking forward to continuing to work together as we add features, incorporate user feedback, and make more awesome improvements to the app in the future.
posted on 2/3/20
  • Quality of deliverable
  • Value for money
  • Customer support
  • Overall ratings

Excellent and Close to Home (DC Area)

Amadu Fullah
posted on 22/1/20
I am the founder and owner of GuestsParking LLC, it a digital parking pass. When I started my hunt for a web/app developing company, I ended up with a company based in Ukraine simply due to the price. After a year, I part ways with that company due to misunderstandings. I had access to Freelancers in the U.S.(West, North and South), India and other parts of the world but turned them down, based on my previous experience. I want to work with a local company that is affordable, and accessible via phone or face to face meetings.

I kept seeking for local and affordable company, it took me 2 months of research before I stumbled upon YOURCTO. I checked out their website and gave it a shot. I called the number on their website, in an instant I was on the phone with an employee explaining details of my company and my vision. YOURCTO not only listened but also execute my ideas. They helped me every step of the way ensuring my satisfaction. Their professionalism is outstanding. I look forward working with YOURCTO on future projects. I highly recommend them to any local, nationwide and international companies seeking web/app development.
Project Details
Mobile App Development
COMPANY RESPONSE
YourCTO
YourCTO
Jan 22, 2020
Thanks so much for the kind words Amadu, and for choosing us for your development needs. It's a pleasure to work with you and we very much look forward to a continued partnership!
posted on 22/1/20
  • Quality of deliverable
  • Value for money
  • Customer support
  • Overall ratings

Comprehensive Software Development (Technical Research and Development Plan), System Architecture Documentation, UI Design, and Technology Advisory Services

Destiny Drake West, M.A.S.
posted on 8/1/20
I am the founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Drake Institute of Research and Policy, a nonpartisan policy think tank based in Washington, D.C. I spearhead policy research and technology development for the institute and establish partnerships with grassroots organizations and legislators nationwide.

My company needed a comprehensive software development plan for a new web-based platform we're bringing to market this fall. It was important to have the documentation that would outline our product's feasibility, architectural design and functionality, associated costs, timeline, and User Interface design. We anticipated that the project would result in securing more funds from potential investors and donors to successfully bring this product to market.

We searched online for web developers in the Greater D.C. area and came across several service providers. We consulted with our top three and found YourCTO to be the best possible option. Their extensive experience in the field, flexible scheduling, superb customer service, and pleasant and professional demeanor stood out among their competitors.

After moving forward with YourCTO, we were scheduled to meet with their project manager and tech developer the following week. Prior to the meeting, however, we were asked to respond to a preliminary questionnaire to provide more insight into my team's vision for the project. Our feedback was used to help YourCTO assess the scope of the project more accurately in preparation of our initial discovery meeting. During the meeting, we spent an hour or two discussing every detail of the project from both a technical and design perspective. Post the meeting, YourCTO remained in constant communication with my team via email to ensure that both parties were in agreement as the project progressed from one stage to the next.They were always readily available to answer questions we may have had and to explain processes pertinent to this project in an easily digestible manner. We used Zoom when video conferencing was more efficient, which I found to be extremely convenient.

The deliverables were made available to us within budget and on schedule. YourCTO also conducted a follow-up call to discuss the functionality of the plan, the proposed design of the UI their team designed for us, and to address any questions we had!

YourCTO exceeded every expectation my team and I had for this project. I still cannot believe how well they captured our vision and developed it into a comprehensive software plan that is feasible, functional, and aesthetically appealing. More importantly, I was most impressed with their ability to deliver the product for only a fraction of the cost that other service providers offer.

Thanks to the technical research and technology advisory services we received from YourCTO, our trademark application in association with this project was approved and registered by the United States Patent and Trademark Office with no corrections required. We are now prepared to move into the next phase of our fundraising plan.

Working with YourCTO was one of the best business decisions I have ever made.

What is it about the company that you appreciate the most?

YourCTO did an excellent job capturing my team's overall vision for this project and delivering a comprehensive software plan that meets all of our needs at price we could afford.

What was it about the company that you didn't like which they should do better?

Based on my experience, as one of their former clients, their service is superb and their pricing cannot be beat. I am 100% satisfied.

Project Details
Software Development
$0 to $10000
COMPANY RESPONSE
YourCTO
YourCTO
Jan 22, 2020
Thank you Destiny! We had a great experience working with you, and it's been an honor to help bring your exciting vision to life. We hope very much to have the opportunity to work together again and of course reach out any time if you need anything.
posted on 8/1/20
  • Quality of deliverable
  • Value for money
  • Customer support
  • Overall ratings

Highly trusted and respected developer partner

T
posted on 17/4/20
I truly view them as partners in the business who are here to help us grow the business. They are trustworthy, honest, work hard to understand our business needs and match those with the right technology approach. They do everything possible to advocate for the most cost-efficient solutions without compromising quality. They certainly do NOT adopt the approach of many companies who try to get as much money out of a contract as possible. Because of that approach, they are highly valued and trusted.

What is it about the company that you appreciate the most?

They are trustworthy, honest, work hard to understand our business needs and match those with the right technology approach. They do everything possible to advocate for the most cost-efficient solutions without compromising quality.

What was it about the company that you didn't like which they should do better?

I honestly can't think of any areas of improvement.

Project Details
Mobile App Development
$50001 to $200000
COMPANY RESPONSE
YourCTO
YourCTO
Apr 17, 2020
Thank you very much for the review, Tim, it means a great deal to us. We also view our work together as a true partnership and are very excited to continue working together for the long term.
posted on 17/4/20
  • Quality of deliverable
  • Value for money
  • Customer support
  • Overall ratings
Executive Interview
David Kirk
David Kirk
CEO, YourCTO
Please introduce your company and give a brief about your role within the company?
YourCTO is a software development company based in Washington, D.C. We specialize in helping early-stage entrepreneurs by providing affordable and trustworthy software and app development, as well as strategic consulting to help non-technical entrepreneurs effectively plan their technology approach. I am one of our co-founders and our CEO.  I oversee business operations, client relationships, sales, and marketing.
What was the idea behind starting this organization?
The idea behind YourCTO is to help early-stage and non-technical entrepreneurs by providing reliable and affordable technology services that match their business needs and set them up for success.

The idea was born out of my real-world experience.  I am not a developer, and years ago had an idea for a software product but didn’t know where to start.  I found that this situation can be extremely difficult for a non-technical entrepreneur to navigate – it’s hard to find reliable talent/companies, understand how the actual development process works, and even vet and manage developers or companies.

Like many others in this position, I had a number of setbacks – I learned that it’s very hard to find a technical co-founder, often prohibitively expensive (and not always necessary) to hire a CTO, difficult to vet the work of freelancers, and hard to find companies that would put in the work to deeply understand the business vision behind the product and provide strategic guidance as well as development services.

I was very fortunate to ultimately find a great technical co-founder and successfully build out the product – but this took years and was a bit of a stroke of luck.  Subsequently, we decided to help others in the position I’d been in – and that’s why we started YourCTO.

Our goal is to help early-stage entrepreneurs by being a true technology partner – essentially stepping into the role of CTO, but at the fraction of the cost.  We work hard to understand the business vision, offer creative ideas and efficiencies, and find the most strategic and cost-effective ways to get to market.  We aim to take the stress out of the technology side so that our clients can focus on building their businesses.
What are your company’s business model–in house team or third party vendors/ outsourcing?
We build all software in-house.
How is your business model beneficial from a value addition perspective to the clients compared to other companies' models?
We are guided by the philosophy that early-stage entrepreneurs and small businesses deserve the same white-glove service that big companies get. For this reason, we are small by design – we only take on as many clients as our founders can personally oversee.

We try to set ourselves apart by focusing on two areas where software projects often come off the rails – planning and communication. We work incredibly hard to deeply understand our clients’ short, medium, and long term business objectives, and meticulously plan a technology strategy from the start that matches it. This means that we build in a scalable way – keeping future growth in mind while taking the most cost-effective approach. We also provide best-in-class communication – we are always available to our clients, involve them in every step of the project, and make sure they understand the process and approach. We never leave clients wondering what is happening or why it is happening. We also make sure that our client relationship manager is someone who has personally had experience on the entrepreneur side – having gone through the process of developing or working on a business idea. This way, they are able to better understand the needs, concerns, and pain points that our clients may have.

We always safeguard our clients’ interests and recommend approaches that are best for their business, not our profit margins. We believe that efficiency in getting to market is a win-win – and never recommend superfluous work simply to increase what we can bill. To mitigate our clients’ financial exposure, we prefer to work on a fixed-price basis – so our clients know exactly how much a project will cost.  We will never bill additional work beyond this scope without consent from our clients.
 
We are also very conscious of how important trust is in this business. We work tirelessly to earn and keep our clients trust.  This starts in the planning phase – by doing the extra work to understand the business behind the product and recommend the most efficient ways to approach a project. If an idea/feature that the client brings up may not be vital – we’ll say that, even though this reduces our rates. If what a potential client wants to do is something we don’t have expertise in, we’ll tell them and help find someone who is better suited to the task.  During development, we always communicate problems or challenges as they happen, and recommend solutions.
 
Lastly, we are designed to grow with our clients, so that if they don’t want to, they never have to look elsewhere for their technology needs. We also work with a network of partner companies to help introduce our clients to trusted organizations to help with needs beyond technology, such as digital marketing, web design, and more.
What industries do you generally cater to? Are your customers repetitive? If yes, what ratio of clients has been repetitive to you?
We work with all industries and sectors – the connective tissue with our clients is less about industry and more about where they are in the process – all of our clients are in the early stages of their ventures.  We have worked with individual entrepreneurs, startup companies, small businesses, and non-profit organizations.

We are always delighted and honored when clients choose to repeat work with us, and to date, more than 50% have engaged us beyond our initial contract. Given that our company is less than two years old, and our client base is exclusively focused on early-stage companies, many of our clients are still at the start of their journey – and we expect even more of them to continue with us as they grow.
Mention the objectives or the parameters critical in determining the time frame of developing a mobile app.
Every mobile app development is unique – and how long it will take depends on exactly what is being built. The only way to effectively estimate the time frame of developing an app is to do an extremely deep dive into exactly what features it will include. We typically work with clients to map out everything they have in mind, and through a collaborative process, work to reduce the initial build into a minimal viable product, which includes the critical features and functions to execute their vision and get market feedback.

In terms of how exactly the time frame is determined – once we’ve mapped out the specific details of what an app will contain, we design a development strategy – organizing a project into specific milestones and sprints based on the optimal sequence of development. We lump things together that make sense to build concurrently, and estimate the time needed for each. These estimates are based on real research into each feature, as well as being informed by our expertise and previous experience on similar projects.

Some general rules apply to estimating the time frame. The more complex a project, the longer it is going to take. The technology stack also factors in – if building a hybrid app (one app that works on both Android and iOS) the timeline will likely be shorter than if building two native apps (one specifically for Android and one specifically for iOS). Another important feature is if the project includes solving new problems – for example, if it goes beyond “solved problems” (i.e. development items that there are documented solutions for – such as implementing a map into an app). If we can’t find examples of how to do a development item, it will require a fair amount of research to confirm feasibility, and more trial and error during development to get things working the way they are envisioned.

It is important to also recognize that in-app development unexpected issues always arise – so time frame estimates are just that. If we run into unexpected challenges they may take time to troubleshoot, and this can throw a timeline off.  We always work to anticipate this kind of challenge and accommodate that in our estimates – but it’s important for entrepreneurs to recognize that a development timeline is a somewhat fluid construct that may contract or expand.
How much effort in terms of time goes into developing the front end and back end of a mobile app?
This ultimately depends on what will be in an app – some have more complex back-end functionalities, and some have more complex front-end features.

It is important to make sure that front-end and back-end development happens in close coordination from the start – this way it is possible to anticipate needs, and effectively match the two in the technology plan.  We have seen many examples of projects that have gone off the rails because these two critical components are done separately from one another – having a cohesive plan from the start is vital, and something that we always recommend to clients.
What are the key parameters to be considered before selecting the right platform for a mobile application?
The most important factors to consider are what features the app will have, what the long-term plan is for growth, and pairing these with budget expectations and needs.

Hybrid technology (building one app version that can work with both Android and iOS) is rapidly evolving – and many of the features and functionality of apps can now be accommodated in hybrid tech. There are, though, some limits on functionality in hybrid and in some cases it is desirable to instead do native app development (meaning specific builds for each Android and iOS). Generally speaking, native apps have more customization potential, especially when deeply integrating with the technology of a specific type of mobile device. For example, if an app is going to deeply integrate with the camera of a phone to add functionality beyond just taking photos, there will be more potential to customize if building in native technology.

In many cases, the initial development (minimal viable product) will have fewer features than the later-stage versions of an app. This could mean that to start, a hybrid app will suffice, with the understanding that in the future, if growing into specific features, it may be advisable to transition to building native apps. We typically recommend planning for the long-term from the start – if an app is likely to develop towards needing to be built in native, we will likely recommend starting in native technology to avoid the process of rebuilding into native later. However, for some businesses, budget needs may supersede this and create conditions in which it makes sense to reduce time and cost to get to market by starting in hybrid.

Budget considerations also come into play when determining the technology to build in – building and maintaining one app set up, through hybrid, is by definition usually going to require less time than building and maintaining two native apps.  
In terms of Android vs iOS – from a technical standpoint there are some differences to keep in mind when deciding which to build in (or if it makes sense to build in both). Google and Apple have different rules regarding allowable features, and different review and approval processes.  Some functionalities may be allowed by Google but not by Apple, or vice versa. It’s always important to make sure that your app’s functionality is in compliance with these platforms before making a decision.

It is also important to factor in business considerations when deciding what platform/s to build in. If an entrepreneur’s target customer base tends to use Android more than iOS devices, then it may make sense to start with an Android app and think about building out further after gaining some market traction.
Which platform do you suggest your clients to begin with when they approach you with an idea (Android or iOS) and why?
This totally depends on what the idea is and what specific features will be included in an app. We consider a number of factors when making recommendations. We learn about the business behind the idea and target customer base – if there is data suggesting that one platform is more prevalent among the desired end-customer, it may make sense to start there (for example, if a client’s target market is a specific university system, and that system mandates that employees and students use one specific platform).

We also do a deep-dive into the functions and features that the app will have, both in the short and long term.  If the app features, now, or later, will likely require native technology, it might make sense to start with that. If they don’t, it may make sense to build in a hybrid from the start.

We always deeply research every app idea and the business behind it, and layout the different approaches that a client can take – including what platform/s to consider. We will work with them to outline the pros and cons of each approach, and together land on which one makes the most sense.
Android or iOS, Native or Hybrid — which platform is best to use to build your app? What are your recommendations?
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, this again depends entirely on the specific app and associated development needs, budget, and business plan. In a broad sense, we’re excited about advances in hybrid technology and the efficiencies building in this tech can bring in terms of cost, timeline, and maintenance needs – so, with all other factors being equal, we may suggest building this way. However, we always do our homework and research to outline all approaches and the pros and cons of each. We work closely with our clients to assess this along with business needs, budget realities, and other factors and together settle on what approach makes the most sense for the business, both now and in the future.
What are the key factors that you consider before deciding the cost of a mobile application?
The reality is that there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question.  Every project is different, and how much it costs to make depends entirely on the details. The more features, and complicated features, the more it is going to cost.

Firstly, it is important to understand a bit about how software and app pricing works. The only way to estimate a project is to invest the time to understand exactly what will be in it. The devil’s in the details, as the old saying goes. To figure out what a project will cost, it is necessary to first figure out every single feature and function that will be included.

Think of it this way – could you estimate how much one bag of groceries would cost, without knowing which groceries are in that bag? Of course not, as a bag full of hot dogs is going to cost a lot less than a bag full of caviar. The same thing applies to software development.

Figuring out what is in that bag, in software terms, is called listing out the requirements. This is a detailed list of every single feature and function that will be in a project. In real terms, the way to estimate the cost and timeline of a project is to do a detailed list of requirements and then estimate how much time and manpower every single item will need.
What kind of payment structure do you follow to bill your clients? Is it Pay per Feature, Fixed Cost, Pay per Milestone (could be in phases, months, versions etc.)
We prefer to work on a fixed-price model because it offers minimal risk for our clients. With some clients, based on need, we also offer retainer-based services (if a client, for example, needs or wants a full-time development team dedicated to their project over the long term, we are happy to consider this).
Do you take in projects which meet your basic budget requirement? If yes, what is the minimum requirement? If no, on what minimum budget you have worked for?
We offer a range of services to help entrepreneurs without breaking the bank. In many cases, entrepreneurs can save time and money by getting expert advice before spending on software development. We offer affordable and impactful consulting packages to help clients do this, starting as low as $1,500. For software or app development projects, we always work to help clients find the most affordable approach and don’t have a specific minimum range – but as a general average, our typical projects tend to range anywhere from $17,500 upwards.
What is the price range (min and max) of the projects that you catered to in 2020?
Between our consulting and development offerings our project price range in 2020 ranged from $1,500 – over $100,000.
Which business model do you suggest to your clients enabling them to generate revenue from mobile applications? Why?
This is an important question and something that is vital for entrepreneurs to think through before starting development. The business model for an app depends on that business idea itself – who the target customer base is, what the long-term business objectives are, and what the opportunities are to monetize services. The entrepreneur is the expert in their industry and always should drive this decision.

As a technology partner, what we help our clients do is map the technology to the business model.  This includes outlining the rules around how app store policies impact pricing (e.g. platforms will usually take 30% of subscription fees and in-app purchases) to show the different approaches and help make sure that apps are built in a way that is compliant. We also explore other revenue opportunities and how to build to accommodate for them (for example, if a business model is based around selling data, we help make sure that our app design collects the appropriate data and displays it in the way needed to offer to customers). Diving into the revenue model of an app is a key part of the planning process that we go through with every client and an important thing to consider at the start of your journey.
Clients & Portfolios
Key Clients
  • Technology
  • Healthcare
  • Startup
  • Real Estate
  • Retail
  • Ecommerce
  • Manufacturer
  • Startups