What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?
We’ve had a very positive reception to the app. One of the key things in the early stages of a startup business, when it’s establishing product market fit, is to quickly iterate the app. While Accedia allowed us to release an app to the store in April 2017, we continue to release new features every month, which is amazing.
We continue to release products, which is amazing. Fixing bugs is one thing, but it’s something else to listen to the user community, and provide enhancements and differentiated features, based on their feedback. I’ve never had such a high-productivity team.
How did Accedia perform from a project management standpoint?
I’ve had a personal relationship and direct contact with everyone on the team, which was vitally important. I’ve worked with businesses which operated as black boxes, which I found disconcerting. What was great about Accedia was that they were an extension of my own team, with no differentiation between my employees and theirs. I knew each one of them, and spoke to them every day.
What did you find most impressive about them?
I’ve worked with much larger companies than Accedia, as well as with smaller companies. What a client looks for is dependent on the size of their own business. If I had a huge company, I may have very different requirements than if I were a small startup. Personally, I want a company which appreciates my business, and which views the revenue as a large-enough aspect of what they’re doing. This was a part of my choice when going for a group the size of Accedia, but I equally didn’t want a company so small as to not have the professional attitude and support required.
When outsourcing, we’re not just outsourcing 2-3 developers, a tester, and a project manager, we’re outsourcing all other parts of management. Accedia clearly has great competencies, between the technical side, the commercial side, and the project management. Each of these is done professionally and efficiently.
I’ve dealt with companies in the past which, although great technically, didn’t invoice on time, or didn’t follow things up properly. Accedia has been great, from the NDA agreement to the invoicing, project management, and issue-handling. I know it can be tough for small, growing businesses to do, but, whatever Accedia is doing, they’re doing it right.
Are there any areas they could improve?
From a customer point of view, I would like to see more evidence of a mentoring culture within their company. Like any business, Accedia will have very experienced people at the top, but, as they grow, they will have to bring in more young and inexperienced members, and train them. I believe this does happen, but it’s not transparent from the customer’s perspective. I would quite like to know if, for example, they have a weekly triage of my project with the gurus within the company, perhaps producing a report on what they’ve thought about. I’ve never come across a company with this approach, but, if anyone could do it, Accedia would be the one.