What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?
Just as we started with BEON Tech Studio, we took a different approach to development, going from a two-week development cycle to releasing code twice a week, It’s an incredibly agile approach. We also moved the methodology to Kanban, which supported this constant release methodology. Through BEON Tech Studio, we get developers to develop code, and a lead tester to test it. When it works well, we can release lots of code very quickly. The testing doesn’t slow us down at all.
Overall, we’re churning out more code, allocating more projects, and progressing development at a faster speed. We have three times the code output today than when we had another 2–2.5 developers on the project. BEON Tech Studio plays a role in that, and so does our new methodology. The tester was also a critical part of our ability to output development. We’ve launched more projects and improved the technology more in the last 10 months than within the whole of last year.
As the CEO, I spend one hour every week doing training with a developer. That’s very unusual, but this way, they get to ask questions as we’re building their understanding of the platform. I believe that the team at BEON Tech Studio has bought into the purpose of our development. Because of that and their fluency in English, I can have a solid conversation with them about what we’re doing, and they will advise me on better ways of doing it. We have an unusual and exceptional relationship with the development team they’ve provided so far.
How did BEON Tech Studio perform from a project management standpoint?
They’ve had some challenges in this respect. The original project manager was one of the founders, but that wasn’t working, so they brought in another project manager. The project managers we’ve had, who were very good very quickly, were historically project managers in the organization. BEON Tech Studio has had to hire new project managers, have them learn their system, and then have them learn ours. There’s a slight language barrier with our current project manager.
The project management could be a bit better, but because I’m so heavily involved in the project as a project manager and the CEO, it’s quite hard to take over my role fully. I’d love to step back and give them more project management ownership, but, at the same time, having someone spend 15–30 minutes every week, project managing a team, they’d struggle to project manage the team with the visibility that I have. I’m probably part of the reason it’s not as good as it could be—I have an overbearing role in the project. They’re still doing a good job.
In terms of tools, we use an Excel sheet for general team and project management. That works against tickets and tasks inside Jira.
What did you find most impressive about them?
What I like about BEON Tech Studio is that they hire interesting, talented, and thoughtful developers. They contribute back to the plan, as opposed to just coding. That’s very valuable.
Are there any areas they could improve?
I told Damian (Co-Founder, BEON Tech Studio) that BEON Tech Studio is nothing without their ability to hire competent developers. If I get a bad developer, then BEON Tech Studio is a bad service. His first two hires have been exceptional, which means that my opinion of BEON Tech Studio is outstanding. If he goes and hires the next developer, and they’re terrible, it will change my opinion of that agency.
To date, he’s provided me very good development, and it’s had a massive impact on our business. It’s a combination of methodology and good, reliable individuals who enjoy working. I hope that the next two developers they deploy in January come with the same skillset. It’s been very good so far.