In terms of results, could you share any statistics, metrics, or user feedback that would demonstrate the quality of their performance?
It’s difficult to say because this website, 12 or 18 months ago, was in quite a bad place. It had a bad reputation, both internally and externally, for going offline quite a lot and for the transactions being complex. We’re only just now getting into the position where we’re starting to get that confidence back.
I would say that in terms of a website, it’s still very much in its infancy. We’re still dealing with a lot of support calls as a result of developments that weren’t tested properly by CTI. That wasn’t really their fault as we had put them under pressure to deliver and deploy solutions that maybe weren’t tested properly. As a result of that experience, we have built in a QA [quality assurance] and testing process, so things are a lot better now than they were. We still get quite a few support calls, and we use CTI Digital more for support than development right now.
When working with CTI Digital, is there anything that you would consider unique about their strategic approach or development methodology that distinguish them from other vendors?
The support is really great. The team that deals with support is absolutely brilliant. They understand your business very quickly. They understand and are sympathetic to the fact that when something goes wrong you want it fixed as quickly as possible. You can very easily build that trust in the working relationship. For example, I will not demand something be fixed the same day if I know we can wait a couple of days or a week. We have a very good two-way working relationship.
In terms of my all of the suppliers I’ve worked with, CTI would definitely come in second. The support is really good, and it’s all down to the way we got these working relationships and the communication.
In retrospect, are there areas in which you think they could improve as a service provider?
It wasn’t a user-centered design approach that they used. I think that might be different now because they’ve learned a lot of lessons through the work they’ve done with us. A lot of the developments that were made were done without any consultation with the end-user community. As I said before, that isn’t just CTI’s fault. As an organization, we were at fault there. I think if we were to do this scale of project again, it would be more user focused at the beginning.
The development side is solid, and it’s a lot better than it was, but it tends to be very heavy on the processes. So, it’s all about the process, not about what the customer wants. I don’t think that my needs are taken into consideration. It’s more about CTI and their processes.
What advice, if any, would you give a future client of theirs?
I would recommend being more conscientious of the end user when moving through the development process. It’s the most important part because you just never know how the end user will interact with a solution. The only way to figure that out is to incorporate them into the process deliberately.