IT Side Business: 5 Things to consider

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You have a business idea which won’t get out of your head, but you don’t want to quit your job and risk everything?
Awesome, about two years ago I was exactly at the same point with a few friends of mine. We were all full-time employees and we had a great business idea. We wanted to give it a shot! And finally did it.
Within the last two years I learned a lot about starting a side business and trying out business ideas. With this article I want to share 5 things to consider when starting a side business.

1. Side business Alone or with a team?

There are a lot of arguments for and against working within a team, you have to decide what suits best to your side business needs.

A team is best suited for bigger business ideas, especially if you need different skills (e.g. IT, marketing, legal, etc.) to realize your business idea. In addition, you can enhance development speed if you have e.g. multiple developers working on your projects.

Anyhow, a team means a lot of need for coordination and discussion. Especially if the team has been newly created, the coordination and discussion effort could take a huge amount of time. Therefore, for small projects it might make sense to work alone.

2. Failing fast is a good thing

As the title says: Try to create a prototype for your product as fast as possible with a minimal feature set and test it as soon as possible with real people.

By creating a prototype as fast as possible you can already measure within an early stage of your business, if it might succeed. In addition, you’ll have the possibility to react on customer needs already during an early development phase.

3. Consider an Insurance

There are a lot of risks for IT businesses, especially because of complicated privacy, copyright as well as other legal requirements you have to meet. In addition, these legal requirements are changing very fast, which increases the risk of failing to meet these and to get sued. To reduce those risks there are multiple IT liability insurances which could make sense for your side business.

4. Register side business

At latest before releasing your side business to public or before earning money, you should register your side business:

First, you should inform your employer and get an approval for your side business. In most cases this won’t be an issue, if you don’t compete with your employer.

Second, you should register your side business. This can be easy depending on the legal form you want to use. Therefore, please inform yourself which legal form suits best to you.

5. Don’t surrender, keep it up!

This is an important one! There will be multiple situations which will make you feel to stop working on your side business idea immediately. This might be technical challenges or other unforeseen things like bad feedback or a rejected app publish request. Most of the people surrender if challenges occur. Don’t be like most of the people: Keep it up and give it a shot!

That was it. I hope that you liked this article. Feel free to leave a comment if you know more things to consider in a side business or if you have other feedback.

Thanks,

Christoph

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