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Technology Consultant: With Codementor, No More Project Delays

–  Sep 05, 2014

Bruce SchatzmanStudyManager is a successful Life Sciences software company Bruce Schatzman built from scratch, and after growing the company for 18 years, he sold it to Merge Healthcare in 2012. Afterward, Bruce started another company, Path9, which does custom consulting with a primary focus on the healthcare field.

One day, a large health system in New York asked Bruce to take over a project that was originally written in PHP. About three months into the project, the team decided the code was going in the wrong direction, since the health center used Drupal for all of its projects and wanted a Drupal app.

The Challenge

I’m a PHP developer with years of experience, but I have never worked with the Drupal framework. After contemplating whether or not to drop the project, I decided to continue on, since I don’t like leaving things unfinished. However, this meant I needed to learn Drupal in order migrate the project from a straight PHP app to a Drupal one. Eventually, I realized I have underestimated how tough this process would be. Although Drupal is also PHP, it had some drastic difference with the conventions I was familiar with, and its steep learning curve was only making things worse. I ended up running into walls all the time, and it was driving me nuts.

One day, I was so frustrated with an obscure error code I kept getting, I googled something like “online coding support” and found Codementor. The first thing I noticed was that Codementor had some Drupal experts, so I was intrigued. After comparing Codementor’s services with other competitors, I found it the best match for my needs, thanks to the combination of technologies I used and the reasonable price some mentors offered. I decided to pick one of the Drupal experts for help and see what happens after I connected with one of them. I didn’t have any expectations for Codementor to be of any help, but after I tried out the services, I was blown away.

Enter Codementor

My first session was with John, who goes by the name NanoDano. This guy was so unbelievably helpful and knowledgeable about Drupal, he helped me breeze through walls that I would have spent weeks just trying to get through. In an hour I was way beyond where I would have been without him, where it would have taken me months just to conquer the Drupal learning curve, much less migrate my client’s project to a Drupal one.

A great example of the things he helped me with was building data entry forms in Drupal. In HTML, there’s a set methodology where you just put the form tags in. In Drupal, there’s a form API you’d have to code to, and it’s not HTML, so you’d have to learn a whole new paradigm for building data entry forms. Although every PHP and HTML developer can do this, it would take them about 2 weeks to learn the nuances on their own. John, for example, could answer this question in fifteen minutes. All in all, it would be much easier to just get a Codementor and have them walk you through how to do what you want to build.

The Impact

Codementor is a great time saver and also prevents you from experiencing the usual frustrations when you code.

Ultimately, I make much more money whenever I do consulting work because I don’t have to dilute my project fee over dozens of wasted hours trying to figure new things out.

Every developer has days where they just totally hit the wall: some error happens, they’re asked to do something they’ve never done before, etcetera. You have a choice: grind through all by yourself, or find and pay for help. Most developers will choose the former option, and maybe they will taking hours up to days to solve their problem—you have no idea how long it’s going to take. In the meantime there are a lot on your plate to do and you really can’t afford to be bound for a day dealing with this one thing. In contrast, the amount you pay on Codementor is a fairly reasonable fee that will save you an entire day of development.

My customers are happier because project delays don’t happen whenever I hit a wall.

So, instead of beating my head against a wall for hours whenever I get stuck, I just connect with a mentor, who usually helps me solve my problem in less than 30 minutes. Rinse and repeat, and pretty soon I realized that I could complete projects weeks before I normally could by coding in an isolation chamber. It’s a great model.

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