Case Study

How Tree Stones Partnered with Adeva to Source Elite Tech Talent with Zero Trade-off between Quality, Speed-of-Hire and Cost

Based in Zurich, Switzerland, Tree Stones is a full-service digital agency. The company specialises in finding the right technology solution for every requirement, delivering technical and creative services including software development for clients around the globe.


We have been using freelance developer talent for many years, but the quality is incredibly hard to measure...with Adeva, not only has the technical quality been really, really good, but the developers have outstanding communication, dedication and English proficiency.


Tree Stones relied on platforms such as Upwork and Fiverr to find external developers but were struggling to evaluate candidates for quality.


Tree Stones partnered with Adeva to find engineers with extremely high technical and concepting skills; who could hit the ground running with new projects and add value to the idea exchange.


  • Much more systematic and efficient approach to hiring external developer talent
  • Time to hire of less than two weeks – with quality proof built in
  • No longer have to make a trade off between speed, cost and quality of staffing


Treestones needed to source, screen and evaluate external developers, and ramp up quickly for mission-critical client projects, while keeping code quality very high.

In the world of digital solutions, customer experience is everything. When a customer has a bad experience with a digital agency, especially with something as important as their app or website, they are much less likely to conduct business with that agency again. This leads to a tarnished brand image and lost revenue.

For digital agency Tree Stones, finding developers who could deliver high quality and actually fit the project’s needs has been difficult. The company has worked with freelance developers for many years, sourcing talent through platforms like Upwork and Fiverr. Tree Stones likes the freelance model as it allows them to act on the market, scaling up or scaling down their service delivery in line with client demand. But there’s a limited number of developers with the tech stack needed, and evaluating quality is tough, making it hard to form an all-star team.

“We need the agility of the freelance model, but the quality of external resources is hard to measure at the beginning,” explains Simon Funk, the founder and CEO of Tree Stones. “We’ve had a lot of bad experiences where the pilot project was really well done, but later work did not match up to those early experiences. The front end might look good to the end user but on the back end, it’s poor architecture.”

“We build our reputation on embracing new and creative solutions to solve our clients’ problems, so low quality code is not something we can stand behind.”


Using Adeva’s quality-first solution for hiring elite developers, Tree Stones was able to hit the ground running on major projects with the very best remote engineers.

Simon was actively searching for a quality staffing solution when a fellow Laravel enthusiast mentioned Adeva, who had recently presented at Laracon. Coincidentally, Tree Stones had just landed a big client project and needed experienced developers quickly.

“Our client wanted to develop a little Facebook for neighbourhoods, a place where local communities could host and share marketplaces and events,” Simon explains. “The project required a fully-functioning custom solution built entirely from scratch. We needed highly skilled developers who could really think about the concept, and not just the coding.”

Effective sourcing is as much of an art as it is a science, especially when evaluating the subtle dimensions of a software developer’s skills and abilities. “I wasn’t confident that I’d find the right resources through the usual platforms, but Adeva just made it happen,” Simon says. “The developers we hired asked really great questions about the concept and when we set a task, the developers didn’t just do it – they got to the ‘why’ behind it.”

“Communication was outstanding compared to our previous experiences. The developers were highly proficient in commercial English, so we avoided the misunderstandings we had with non-native speakers in the past. It’s really hard to compare developers but quality-wise and culturally, the engineers Adeva found for us were a really good fit.”


With immediate access to a high-quality, reliable and scalable talent pool, Tree Stones can focus on building their momentum and delivering even more leading-edge technology innovations for their clients.

Speed of hire had never been a problem for Tree Stones, since they’d always dealt directly with their freelance engineers. This also allowed them to align resource costs with the project’s budget. But with Adeva, Tree Stones enjoy the triple benefit of speed, cost and quality assurance.

“The process was really fast,” Simon explains. “After describing what we were searching for, Adeva sent us two or three really relevant CVs. Within two weeks we had conducted interviews, chosen our developers and started working together. Only this time, we didn’t lose any time checking the developer’s work or trying to vet for quality. All the screening and assessment was done for us, including the concepting, creativity and problem-solving skills that are extremely difficult to evaluate. That saved a tremendous amount of time.”

Tree Stones is in the process of launching a new website which they hope will accelerate growth and help them win more work from high-budget clients. Their new partnership with Adeva supports this ambition, allowing Tree Stones to be nimble and responsive to customers’ requirements, increasing the efficiency of their resourcing significantly.

“Adeva consistently ensures we have the best talent,” Simon says. “We’re so happy to keep working with them.”

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