I’d be really curious to hear your feedback on an idea I had.
After reading Dan Norris’s Seven Day Startup (and the story of wpcurve) it made me wonder what kind of service that I could instantly provide that could act as the foundation for a bootstrapped startup.
It occurred to me that I could offer CTO as service.
I am a CTO. I’ve been building tech startups for 20 years - managing and sourcing teams, building software, defining architectures, scaling systems, building on mobile, web, automating infrastructures etc. I’ve also built (and sold) a soloprenure SaaS startup - plugg.io - from the ground up, including coding, design, marketing, conversion funnels etc. My total revenue from the pluggio project was $250k (ish)
Anyway, CTO’s are expensive ($100k-$300k per year) but their advise and knowledge can prove to be priceless. Having a seasoned full stack CTO helping make & review core technology decisions can act as insurance and in some cases be the difference between rags and riches
So what do I mean by CTO as a service? I mean you would have a full stack CTO available to you for the following:
- Answer any question that you may have
- Help you and your team make the best technology business decisions
- Review code and architecture if required
- Choose the best technology for the problems you need to solve
Here are the types of questions that I have been asked in the past:
- What should the overall architecture be for our product?
- Should we build our mobile app native or in html?
- I hear that startups need to be built in ruby why is that?
- Should we use rackspace or AWS or bare metal?
- How can I offer 100% uptime?
- I hear node is amazing! Should we build our checkout cart using node?
- Were can I hire great developers?
- How long will it take to build feature X?
My thoughts on CTO as a Service Pricing & Availability:
$2k/month (no contract required) minimum of 1 months service (with a 1 month money back guarantee)
- 4 hours per month scheduled phone/meeting/architectural/tech review/etc. (i.e. 8 x 30 min meetings, or 4 x 1 h meetings)
- 8 hours per day IM/Slack access for impromptu questions (within reason)
- 24/7 email access for impromptu questions (within reason)
- Research & thinking time as required (i.e. to answer questions!)
Example of how it might work:
Client sends questions in advance for 2 x 30 min weekly meetings to overview core decisions. Or, client saves up face time hours for impromptu brainstorming sessions. Tech team use slack/IM as needed to make some key decisions. Email used for on-going discussions. Etc.
All thoughts and criticism welcome.