My experience with Toptal – 5 month review

It’s been I while since I’ve last posted here, but you can be sure that there is a good reason for it now. For the past 5 months, I’ve been working for Toptal and I really need to share my experience.


First of all, Toptal is a marketplace for top developers and top companies as stated on their home page, and they pretty much stand by that. To enter the network, as a developer, you have to pass their 4 level tests and interviews, starting from a simple English test – interview, BeatMyCode or Codility challenge, followed by a one-on-one test interview with a senior developer from the network, and ending with a full application development which later is reviewed by Toptal engineers. It’s a fun and challenging process, and I’m glad to have passed it.

After the initialization process is over, you can create your public profile, which stands as your CV, and start browsing the jobs feed with positions chosen for you (of course you can browse and search through all the job postings.) Here’s the great part – you can’t find a company that wants to build the next Facebook in just 2 weeks, with a budget that can only cover the coffee expenses. The companies are also interviewed and carefully filtered by Toptal recruiters, so we only get the best. Startups that are in need of great developers to create the next big thing, big companies that want to expand their existing development teams, tech savvy entrepreneurs with big ideas and understanding. And since I’ve entered the network as part of a Toptal talent partner, I don’t even have to worry about the bureaucracy of payment, which is handled by my employing company. All I can say is that the paychecks are large enough, and on time.

The best part? You always get to work with the latest technologies and tools, to build the perfect product. You can almost forget about supporting 10 year old devices/browsers and libraries. The quest for knowledge is what motivates us to do great things. Since I’ve started working, I’ve been part of 3 projects, for all of which I can tell this same story.

Overall, a great community, with great opportunities. I do recommend you give it a go…

8 responses to “My experience with Toptal – 5 month review

    • Hey Antonio. Of course there are system administration positions. I have a college from Toptal that works in the same office as me, and he has been a part of the same sysadmin position for over a year now.

      And I’m more of a GNU/Linux guy myself 🙂 You could check out for the top SysAdmin engineers that we have, and you could see the available positions as soon as you join the network.

  1. Hi

    Cheers for the review. I’m currently waiting on stage one of the invite process myself.

    Couple of questions

    – What length of time are the contracts normally for and are these negotiable?
    – How does the pay compare to top paying in house contracts


    • Hey Simon,

      The contracts depend on the project itself, it could be a 2 week bug fixing deal, or a 6 months application development – talking about Android projects, since I’ve only worked with those. Web projects or sysadmin projects could go on even over a year. Project length is given in a time range, for example 2-4 weeks, and it is negotiable with the client. The contracts are pretty flexible and you can extend it or shorten the period, depending on the actual job.

      For the second question, I can’t really talk about the actual rates, but I could say that they are higher then the next best competitor (developer networks) 🙂

  2. How long does it take before you are placed in a position and expected down times between projects? Is it a viable option if you wanted it to be your sole income source? I’m a full stack developer and have an interview with toptal tomorrow. Also, do you normally have mock-ups to work with and all artwork provided? I’ve done a lot of consulting and this is a necessity for me (have color blindness so my palette choices aren’t typically the best). Thanks!

    • Hey…

      So, it’s been almost 2 years since I’ve started working with Toptal clients, and I’m still working full time, so that would answer a part of your question 🙂

      I can’t talk much about full stack development projects, since I only work with Android, but I know that the web development projects usually last much longer then the mobile projects, and there’s always another project waiting in the job posting list. Downtime could be as much as a month, but you could always ask the recruiters for help with getting a new client.

      Mock-ups and artwork are usually provided, but it depends on the actual client if they would hire a designated designer, or they would choose the colors and let you use some kind of a frontend framework, like Bootstrap, but anyway, you should definitely tell the clients about your condition, it would only make it easier for you.

      Hope you learned everything you need. All the best and good luck with your interview.

      • Thanks, I’ve heard it is not an easy place to get into but I’m hopeful. Been spending hours prepping on codility in an attempt to prepare myself. If nothing else comes of it the time on codility has been fun doing all their complex excercises.

  3. Hi,
    Thank you for the sharing your experienced with people. It would be helpful for those people who are going to join or some of thinking about to join like me. Even earlier i too have used one website where i had been great experienced and got decent clients and projects there which was grateful for mine career growth( So, i would suggest you that you should give it a try once might be you would find great place to work out there.

    Thank you for the article

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