We Change Ideas Into Amazing Digital Products

DeSmart is an Agile Software House. We Change Ideas Into Amazing Digital Products People Love. We Partner With Digital Agencies, Startups and Brands.

We work for companies all over the world - Berlin, NYC, London, LA and many others. We always put the Stakeholders in the center of our project. With the Design Thinking methodology, we try to understand business goals and then fit the product to it. We use Business Model Canvas, Product Canvas, Evenstorming and User Story Mapping.

We use agile methodologies, work in weekly periods called sprints, and we're trying to deliver an MVP within 2-3 months of creation.  

We are a team of almost 30 people and we build products from scratch. We've successfully delivered over 106 projects for companies from various industries. Our products improve the business. Moreover, we've created our own Startups: a prototyping tool UXPin and event mobile app Conventica.

Working with Desmart:

  • 15+ years of software development experience
  • Time and materials contract
  • Accurate time logs for the work done
  • Constant contact with the team over video and Slack
  • Agile software development
  • Collaboration in different time zones
  • English speaking team

We build Digital Products (Web/Mobile Apps) in following technologies:

  • React, React Native
  • JavaScript
  • Vue.js
  • PHP (Laravel mostly, Symfony)
  • iOS (Swift)
  • Android (Java)
  • Node.js
  • MySQL, PostgreSQL, MongoDB, ElasticSearch

We know that building an online software is not a piece of cake, but it might be fun! If you want to craft some web or mobile app trust our experience and have a look how the efficient process should look like.

     
    $10,000+
     
    $50 - $99 / hr
     
    10 - 49
     Founded
    2003
    Show all +
    Gdynia, Poland
    headquarters
    • DeSmart
      Abrahama 37
      Gdynia 81-366
      Poland
      +48 588 810 530
    other locations
    • DeSmart
      Poland

    Portfolio

    Key clients: 
    • IBM
    • Oriflame
    • Haz-Trac
    • Salary Genius Ltd.
    • UXPin
    • TagVenue
    • ThinkApps
    • Garden Compass Inc
    • Appy Ventures

    #tagvenue

    Our client is a startup developing an online event planning service which helps people find the right place for any occasion. Artur and Maks (Co-funders of Tagvenue) were looking for someone to build a high-performance web app that users will enjoy. Our scope of work included web development and UX as well as secondary services: testing and project management.

    Conventica

    Conventica is a complete solution to create a site and a mobile event app your attendees will love!

    It's three tools, seamlessly intergrated into one intuitive and easy-to-use platform for event professionals:

    • Personalized mobile app.
    • Responsive event website.
    • Online CMS.

    Conventica is our own startup made by our whole team.

    Tendence. Impulse

    We had a great opportunity to develop a solution that helps traders to optimise preparations and presentation for a venue.The tool is frequently updated, providing detailed schedules, checklists, product recommendations and expert contacts.

    Shoplo

    Shoplo is an E-commerce hub that offers three powerful tools designed for multichannel online sales.

    It helps digital entrepreneurs:

    • craft an online store that perfectly reflects a brand.
    • manage their business from one place: a store, products, clients, orders and multichannel selling.
    • support their clients and easily managing their messages from different platforms.

    Shoplo is a startup that is constantly extending its services to make E-commerce even easier for all entrepreneurs. They needed to add a mobile edge to their successful business and invited Desmart to collaborate on a project.

    Entrack

    Our client is an American company Encore Technology Group.

    The main aim of the project was to help administrators and teachers handle all kinds of evaluations they are obliged to complete during the academic year. We have built easy-to-handle digital forms, dashboards, and report creators for the teachers, their supervisors school principals, and other interested parties.

    WHERE

    WHERE APP lets people see where other like-minded people like them are can be met, and what are they - doing. The App is ideal for those people who are keen to find a buzzing venue for drinks or a local game to play or watch.

    Our challenges

    Our client was looking for a software team to create a social app which allows users to find out where people of the same interests are hanging out or planning to go.

    It was not the first attempt for the WHERE team and with the lessons learned from the first iteration, they have decided to start the second iteration with a clean slate.

    The client challenged Desmart with the delivery of the second iteration in a limited time of 9 weeks, while a typical time to market for mobile apps is about 15-20 weeks. On top of that, the app was supposed to not repeat the mistakes from the first iteration, and the idea was to release a version of it after 8 sprints to test assumptions made during design with help of...

    Reviews

    Sort by

    Custom Dev Improvements for Learning Platform

    “...[W]e finally feel in control of both our goals, execution and budget.”

    Quality: 
    4.5
    Schedule: 
    5.0
    Cost: 
    5.0
    Willing to refer: 
    5.0
    The Project
     
    $50,000 to $199,999
     
    Jan. 2018 - Ongoing
    Project summary: 

    DeSmart provides custom software development that addressed the scalability, UX and functionality of a pre-established education platform.

    The Reviewer
     
    11-50 Employees
     
    Indiana, USA
    CEO, Educational Services Company
     
    Verified
    The Review
    Feedback summary: 

    DeSmart has already exponentially improved a previously complicated system. Their transparent and efficient approach produces effective project management.

    BACKGROUND

    Please describe your company and your position there.

    I am the CEO of a company that provides a learning platform and educational services.

    OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

    For what projects/services did your company hire DeSmart?

    We have needed custom software development for our learning management system (LMS).

    What were your goals for this project?

    We want to dramatically improve the scalability, UX and functionalities of our LMS. We specifically have looked for experienced developers who understand the needs of the education space.

    SOLUTION

    How did you select this vendor?

    A colleague of mine recommended DeSmart.

    Can you go into detail about the services they provided and the scope of the project?

    They executed project management and full stack development.

    What was the team composition?

    We worked with one senior developer, one junior developer, one QA tester and one project manager.

    RESULTS & FEEDBACK

    Can you share any information that demonstrates the impact that this project has had on your business?

    DeSmart has improved our system exponentially; thanks to their software development, we finally feel in control of both our goals, execution and budget.

    How was project management arranged and how effective was it?

    DeSmart managed the project effectively.

    What did you find most impressive about this company?

    I found their transparency, competence, and efficiency particularly impressive.

    Are there any areas where they can improve?

    None; they’ve been a breath of fresh air.

    5.0
    Overall Score They are the best software team I have worked with.
    • 5.0 Scheduling
      ON TIME / DEADLINES
      Their time estimates have been on target.
    • 5.0 Cost
      Value / within estimates
      They are cost effective—despite a high unit price—because of their competency.
    • 4.5 Quality
      Service & deliverables
    • 5.0 NPS
      Willing to refer
      I would very likely refer them.

    Platform Rebuild & UX for Talent Recruitment Platform

    "They’re forthcoming and honest when it comes to timelines, budgets, and complexity..."

    Quality: 
    5.0
    Schedule: 
    5.0
    Cost: 
    5.0
    Willing to refer: 
    5.0
    The Project
     
    $200,000 to $999,999
     
    Oct. 2017 - Ongoing
    Project summary: 

    DeSmart designed and developed a website from scratch, focusing on the UI/UX. They used Node.js and React.js for the back- and frontend respectively, and used Algolia to empower the search function.

    The Reviewer
     
    11-50 Employees
     
    Dubai
    VP of Product, Recruitment Platform
     
    Verified
    The Review
    Feedback summary: 

    Search return time was significantly reduced and old customers have returned. DeSmart flexibly managed changing project requirements and was highly-responsive to bugs. Their wide-range of technical knowledge, as well as their transparency about potential challenges, make them an ideal partner.

    BACKGROUND

    Introduce your business and what you do there.

    I’m the VP of a talent recruitment agency. We cater to youths, helping them locate and apply for internships and entry-level jobs. We see ourselves as a connector, between them and regional employment opportunities.

    OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

    What challenge were you trying to address with DeSmart?

    We didn’t have too many problems with our initial site, but we didn’t have the budget to create something we were completely in love with, so it wasn’t really up to our standards in terms of design, speed, and functionality. We approached Desmart to start over from scratch. We wanted a platform that would work like we wanted to, wouldn’t have any issues, and could be developed as fast as possible.

    SOLUTION

    What was the scope of their involvement?

    The collaboration started off with a three-day workshop, in-person, where we got to know them, had a few ice-breakers, and discussed exactly what we wanted from the project. DeSmart handled the UI/UX work, but we provided the logo design and branding. I believe that the backend is Node.js, and the frontend is React.js. Employers can search for candidates, and vice versa, through a search feature powered by Algolia.

    What is the team composition?

    We had 10-11 people working on our project, including a dedicated project manager.

    How did you come to work with DeSmart?

    We ended up finding them on Clutch, but we interviewed around 10 different companies, trying to find one that matched our company culture.

    How much have you invested with them?

    We’ve spent $200,000 so far.

    What is the status of this engagement?

    We’ve been working together since October 2017, but the platform went live in April 2018.

    RESULTS & FEEDBACK

    What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

    We now have the fastest platform in our current market. On the old platform, searches took an average of six–10 seconds to return results, but the current load time is 6–8 milliseconds. We don’t have any traffic statistics yet, given that the platform has only been live for a month and a half, but in general, feedback from our current users has been extremely positive. We’ve had users from three years ago come back to use the new platform.

    How did DeSmart perform from a project management standpoint?

    They may have planned on doing more initially, but our needs kept changing throughout the development process, so, at the end of the day, we’re happy with their deliverables. Sprints were primarily planned through Jira, but we’re constantly in touch via Slack. We’ve also had multiple weekly meetings through Zoom. Critical items are fixed within a couple of hours, at most, and non-critical bugs are usually delayed until the next sprint.

    What did you find most impressive about them?

    They’re technically-gifted, and we can approach them with any questions about what we’re trying achieve. Our team works in the capacity of a remote CTO for the company. They were forthcoming with any challenges they foresaw, and they were quite open in terms of processes. They didn’t say yes to items that would be impossible within our budget and time. They’re forthcoming and honest when it comes to timelines, budgets, and complexity, which helped us plan the entire project.

    Are there any areas they could improve?

    The initial workshop could have been extended beyond three days, in order for the project manager to get to know the team they would be working with, but that’s not something they can control. It would’ve been nice to get to know the team we would be working with during the workshop too.

    Do you have any advice for future clients of theirs?

    I would take complete advantage of the workshop. They know what they’re talking about. Use the time to ask them any kinds of technical questions you have.

    5.0
    Overall Score
    • 5.0 Scheduling
      ON TIME / DEADLINES
    • 5.0 Cost
      Value / within estimates
    • 5.0 Quality
      Service & deliverables
    • 5.0 NPS
      Willing to refer

    Software Dev for Higher Ed IT Provider

    [T]hey pay incredible attention to detail. Everything they make is well-developed and tested.”

    Quality: 
    5.0
    Schedule: 
    4.5
    Cost: 
    5.0
    Willing to refer: 
    5.0
    The Project
     
    $50,000 to $199,999
     
    Mar. 2017 - Ongoing
    Project summary: 

    DeSmart works with the internal dev team to build and test new software. A rapid methodology and transparent communication are top priorities.

    The Reviewer
     
    51-200 Employees
     
    Greenville, South Carolina
    Ronald Smith
    Director of Product Management, Encore Tech Group
     
    Verified
    The Review
    Feedback summary: 

    DeSmart makes minimal programming mistakes, and clients are highly satisfied with their work. Adhering to document specs and adaptability make them a convenient and reliable partner.

    BACKGROUND

    Introduce your business and what you do there.

    I’m a director of product development for Encore Technology Group, which specializes in servicing K-12 learning institutions. They do a lot of provisioning of technology; everything from furniture to whiteboards to Smartboards. They also provide two proprietary pieces of software. One is a single point sign-in management application called Enboard, and the other is called Entrack, an educator evaluation data management system that provides the districts with the ability to manage the workloads and the evaluation processes for all their employees. I work on the Entrack educator evaluation side of the business.

    OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

    What challenge were you trying to address with DeSmart?

    We needed to expand our development resources to meet the workload of the projects, and we needed to do it as efficiently and economically as possible.

    SOLUTION

    What was the scope of their involvement?

    Entrack is a very complex piece of software. U.S. school districts are burdened with a requirement of conducting highly involved employee evaluations, and there’s all types of regulations (federal, state, district, and local) depending on funding. On average, a school district that employs 7,000 people can equate to conducting 18,000–30,000 evaluations.

    Everything in the Entrack application is digital, allowing the evaluations to be tracked and managed down a productivity process. Having all of this automated and managed within an application is an incredible advantage opposed to doing it through individual applications or even doing parts of it with paper documents or trying to manage those in a Google Drive environment.

    The initial aspect of the project was to bring DeSmart up to speed with what we were building and planning to build, and allocating to them the first portion. We build and deploy products quickly, and we go through an elaborate initial discovery and design, storyboarding of the HTML design pages, all the way to the product being signed off and ready to build. We built in one-week sprints, each with their own set of requirements. The client is involved in the design all the way through development. They see the week-to-week progress on the project, and they make tweaks and edits as we go along, which gives us the ability to successfully deploy early stage software across a user group of about 7,000 people with high client satisfaction.

    DeSmart is a PHP shop, and our database is IntelliKeys.

    What is the team composition?

    We had a team of 4­–5 people fully dedicated to the project. Their development team and our internal development team and development managers were tightly integrated and worked as if we were one team.

    They have a project leader who takes care of everything from the budgeting of the team, the billing and invoicing, and the assignment of the team. The team leader is the senior technical resource.

    How did you come to work with DeSmart?

    We were looking at increasing our internal development resources because of the workload that was associated with building out custom aspects of Entrack for Charleston. Encore’s president had a friend that had done some development work through another Polish firm, but when we first reached out to them, they weren’t a good fit because they had an agile methodology and our programmers are Laravel and PHP developers. They referred us to DeSmart, who we met with and appeared to be a good fit. They provided us with the bandwidth on the development resources and the talent levels at an economic value that made it practical for us to work with them.

    One of the reasons we selected DeSmart is because their development methodology is the same as ours. We’re an agile-based development team, which means we build aspects in software and very quick components. We only build what we need to have immediately, and they also build on the same technologies.

    How much have you invested with them?

    We’ve spent between $50,000–$199,999.

    What is the status of this engagement?

    We started working together in March 2017, and the work is ongoing.

    RESULTS & FEEDBACK

    What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

    Choosing DeSmart was a great decision. They’re professionals and do an incredible job. Much of the software that we’ve developed over the past several months is brand new, and we’re in full deployment, but the end result for the client is still premature. However, we have some indicators that the client is satisfied, and we have high user compliance and acceptability. Our trouble tickets related to programming mistakes (such as bugs) are low, and changes are usually made within five business days.

    Sometimes we run into consistency issues of things not going through the correct process, but for the most part, the efficiency and accuracy of the development has been exceptionally well.

    How did DeSmart perform from a project management standpoint?

    Their project management is absolutely great. A lot of times, developers don’t think beyond what they’re being asked to build, but DeSmart is constantly coming back with pointed questions and suggestions on different ways to approach something. Every meeting is well-structured, and they always have their questions ready.

    They use Jira, which made for really easy integration between our business processes and theirs. We have three meetings a week: one to plan for the upcoming sprint, another to discuss the development production that they had completed on the current sprint, and a retroactive meeting for what we learned and what we’ll do differently going forward. These were regularly scheduled calls, and we had online meetings through Skype.

    What did you find most impressive about them?

    Their time tracking and budgeting is always spot on, and they pay incredible attention to detail. Everything they make is well-developed and tested, so the first generation of the product is usually quite close to the documented specification.

    Are there any areas they could improve?

    We had to change gears when another priority came up, and we’d move DeSmart to a different aspect of the project, and they were always responsive to that. The overall improvement for their performance is more of an internal issue with us, though.

    5.0
    Overall Score We haven’t had any problems. It’s been a great experience.
    • 4.5 Scheduling
      ON TIME / DEADLINES
      They let us know if they're not going to meet a deadline.
    • 5.0 Cost
      Value / within estimates
    • 5.0 Quality
      Service & deliverables
    • 5.0 NPS
      Willing to refer

    Custom Web Dev for International Account Provider

    "Based on the ideas we provided, they came back with an improved solution."

    Quality: 
    4.5
    Schedule: 
    4.5
    Cost: 
    5.0
    Willing to refer: 
    5.0
    The Project
     
    $10,000 to $49,999
     
    July 2017 - Ongoing
    Project summary: 

    DeSmart built a web-based admin panel that provides APIs, stats, and other functions. AWS, Node.js, and other databases are part of the technology stack, as well as a jQuery engine for reports.

    The Reviewer
     
    1-10 Employees
     
    Helsinki, Finland
    Topi Tuominen
    COO, Glome
     
    Verified
    The Review
    Feedback summary: 

    Pre-launch users are impressed with the platform's usability. There were some growing pains in the beginning, but the team proved to be hardworking and responsive, and they produced a high-quality product.

    BACKGROUND

    Introduce your business and what you do there.

    Glome provides a Platform-as-a-Service anonymization API that allows our customers, mostly e-commerce providers and event organizers, to serve their own customers across different social networks, browsers, and devices, without registration or downloads. I am the COO.

    OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

    What challenge were you trying to address with DeSmart?

    We needed an external team with more flexibility. We did have a solution, but it required logging into a server with an SSH client.

    SOLUTION

    What was the scope of their involvement?

    We've worked on 2 projects with DeSmart, relating to our product environment and website. They built a new admin panel with functionalities for onboarding clients and providing API keys for them, as well as usage statistics. We provided high-level specifications to their team, and they translated our business needs into actual stories and chunks of work, which they also implemented.

    We set the technology stack, which included Amazon Web Services, Node.js, and MongoDB and PostgreSQL for our operational and statistics databases, respectively. We also implemented their recommendation for a message-bus service, called Redis. They used a jQuery statistics engine for creating graphs and visualizations for reporting.

    What is the team dynamic?

    Their team consisted of 2 developers, a tester, and a UX designer for the platform development side, and there were a couple external advisors involved as well, on an on-and-off basis.

    How did you come to work with DeSmart?

    I asked acquaintances in Poland for a software house that could provide a team for a set period, and found DeSmart. They were reasonably priced, and we were able to visit their team.

    How much have you invested with them?

    The project size was around $20,000.

    What is the status of this engagement?

    We started working with DeSmart in July 2017. The first project ran for 2 months, across 5 2-week sprints. We’re finishing up as we speak.

    RESULTS & FEEDBACK

    What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

    We received a great deal of effort for our money, and I’m happy with our collaboration. The quality of work was professional, and their team identified any bugs by themselves most of the time. There were a few details that required figuring out during the first sprint, related to our way of working, but after that, there were no problems.

    The solution is not open to the public yet, but we are moving in that direction and will launch in 2018. The people who have access to the tool are happy with it. The platform allows them to do everything they need to.

    How did DeSmart perform from a project management standpoint?

    We handle project management using the Scrum methodology, with 2-week sprints, reviews, and retrospectives. We have daily 15-minute planning and scrum sessions via Skype or other videoconference tools, during which we tackle any issues. We also have a Slack channel that we use daily.

    We didn’t specifically have a project manager on their side, although the senior developer handled the team. We found a way of working together and of managing expectations on both sides.

    What did you find most impressive about them?

    Based on the ideas we provided, they came back with an improved solution. They also gave us extra product functionalities.

    Are there any areas they could improve?

    It'd be great to work with their senior developers all the time, but this is a matter of budget and resourcing. We have a senior dev and a couple of juniors, whom I haven't had any problems working with, and they handle communication.

    Do you have any advice for future clients of theirs?

    I’ve been working in the software and internet business since the '90s, and my evaluation is that DeSmart’s team is good. I plan to keep using them.

    4.5
    Overall Score After we got it going, it’s been a solid collaboration.
    • 4.5 Scheduling
      ON TIME / DEADLINES
      The one missed deadline was due to a scope change and mostly because of our side.
    • 5.0 Cost
      Value / within estimates
      They gave us what we paid for and more.
    • 4.5 Quality
      Service & deliverables
      There were a couple of usability bugs, but we found and fixed them fast.
    • 5.0 NPS
      Willing to refer
      I’ve recommended them to friends and colleagues.

    Outsourced Agile Development for Digital Agency

    "They're by far the most adaptable and professional out of the 20–30 teams I’ve used in the last 3-years."

    Quality: 
    4.5
    Schedule: 
    4.0
    Cost: 
    4.0
    Willing to refer: 
    5.0
    The Project
     
    Confidential
     
    Apr. 2016 - June 2017
    Project summary: 

    DeSmart's subcontracted team of Agile developers built custom web and mobile apps. Several engagements required joint efforts with other agencies without undermining success or productivity. 

    The Reviewer
     
    11-50 Employees
     
    Hamburg, Germany
    CEO
     
    Verified
    The Review
    Feedback summary: 

    DeSmart can rapidly change project specs and adapt accordingly. The engineers made important contributions and rarely made mistakes under pressure. 

    BACKGROUND

    Introduce your business and what you do there.

    I work for a sub-contracting agency. We’re developers, but we don’t hire developers internally. We have development teams, software houses, and agencies in all these worlds where you need Agile projects running.

    OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

    What challenge were you trying to address with DeSmart?

    We have customers here in Germany, and they come up with ideas. They forward us some other customers' ideas, and I concept with them or have initial talks. Then I go to my development teams, ask if they are available and the resources they have, and that’s where DeSmart comes in. They build the functional aspects of the products that come to us for, but we deal with the design and the business side.

    DeSmart does the technical solutions, although I know they have UX people as well. When we sat down to talk about our latest project, we had some aspects of UX that weren’t covered yet. They just asked someone from their UX department to provide input. I know they have UX skill, and I’ve used it for other projects, but in this specific project now, we do not use those services. I do it here with German labor.

    SOLUTION

    What was the scope of their involvement?

    We’ve done two projects with DeSmart so far, covering different aspects of their work. The first was an app that was in the concept phase. The intention was for it to be developed as a web app and a mobile app both. We had a workshop together, and we made concepts [unintelligible, audio break-up 03:25] necessary for that, so we had front and backend developers. We had app developers there, UX people, and a tester. Then we concepted the new app for the customer. The development actually did not happen, as the investors didn’t come through. The concept was finished, but then they turned back on bringing it to market. We did the concept part and some UX screens, then the development did not take place.

    In the other current project, we’re basically done, but we need to do change requests, etc. We had a concept and designs, and we just started to develop and do testing. All this stuff happened as a normal Scrum, Agile project. This is a web app, but there are plans to have a mobile app later. They advised us not to do the mobile app first because it would be very costly and take a lot of time. We didn’t have the time, as this was for a trade fair, so it’s a web application only. We worked with two frontend developers, two backend developers, one tester, and one Scrum master. They were flexible at the later stage when we needed other resources. This project was of crucial importance for me, so we had no junior developers working on it. It was a good thing that they could deliver on that. We had one senior and one mid-level developer for both frontend and backend.

    How did you come to work with DeSmart?

    I work with Polish developers because I am Polish. I believe I searched for software houses and development teams in Gdansk and the tri-city area. DeSmart came up on Google. I selected them because of the location, which was a crucial part for me, as I lived in Gdansk at the time. I’m now in Hamburg, and it’s a straight flight to Gdansk for me when needed. Another deciding factor was their professional appearance.

    The first time I called them, I realized that they all spoke perfect English, which was pretty important. You can’t operate with a customer without it, and they were professional about that. They had six processes, so it looked like they were experienced. They were a rather big agency, with 16–20 developers, and they looked modern. All of that turned out to be true. They work in a modern and Agile way. They are strict on that, which is important.

    How much have you invested with DeSmart?

    I’m not allowed to speak about that.

    What is the status of this engagement?

    We started working together a year and a half ago, and our relationship is ongoing.

    RESULTS & FEEDBACK

    Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

    The expectations were to get it done within a short time. We only had two and a half months for a specific list of must-haves. This list was very soon obsolete because, in discussions with them, we basically flushed the expectations of the customer and made something much better. On the way, we decided what is must-have and what isn’t, where we could go by quick and simple methods and where we needed to ensure quality first. This is where DeSmart delivered because we are practically done.

    On the day of the event, all the users were able to register and access the information they needed without any interference from the solution itself. As an Agile project, expectations are changed every week, so I can’t really say anything about that. We had a stable version on the day of the event, and that is of the most fundamental and crucial importance ever for us. The project was completed on time and before the event, and we’re now working on nice-to-have features that weren’t crucial to the launch. We have a bucket list, of course, and you’re never finished.

    How did DeSmart perform from a project management standpoint?

    I would say that our experience in working on an Agile project with them. They're by far the most adaptable and professional team out of the 20–30 teams I’ve used in the last 3-years.

    What did you find most impressive about DeSmart?

    Their English skills are impressive, and they’re very good in Agile development. Those are the most important points for me. They have quite a big team, and they’re able to be flexible. For example, if we need one or two senior developers right away, they could deliver. They’re not so big that they have all these stuffy structures. This is a plus in comparison to all the other teams. They are able to work on a variety of different projects, and they offer skills in different areas, which lets them make valuable suggestions.

    Are there any areas DeSmart could improve?

    I can’t think of anything.

    5.0
    Overall Score
    • 4.0 Scheduling
      ON TIME / DEADLINES
    • 4.0 Cost
      Value / within estimates
    • 4.5 Quality
      Service & deliverables
    • 5.0 NPS
      Willing to refer

    Agile Development for Consumer App Startup

    "Quality-wise, the work produced by DeSmart has been very good."

    Quality: 
    4.5
    Schedule: 
    5.0
    Cost: 
    4.0
    Willing to refer: 
    4.5
    The Project
     
    Confidential
     
    Feb. 2016 - Ongoing
    Project summary: 

    DeSmart is designing and developing an app to connect users with horticultural experts. The team works on Android, iOS and web versions simultaneously. 

    The Reviewer
     
    1-10 Employees
     
    London, United Kingdom
    Founder & COO, Mobile Application Startup
     
    Verified
    The Review
    Feedback summary: 

    The team employs an agile methodology and produces good quality work. Most development deadlines are met within 2-3 days. DeSmart is responsive and quickly provides answers and suggestions to any questions. They have made the product better as a result of their expertise and recommendations.

    BACKGROUND

    Please describe your organization.

    We have developed an app called Garden Compass, which acts as a connection between users and 50 horticultural experts from across the globe. Users can identify and ask questions about plants, while also getting access to a monthly care calendar for the plants in their garden.

    What is your position?

    I am the founder and Chief Operations Officer of the company.

    OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

    What business challenge were you trying to address with DeSmart?

    We needed development resources for our application.

    SOLUTION

    Please describe the scope of their involvement.

    They do contribute with concepts for the app, but DeSmart has mostly been tasked with design and development for our product. Our software has been developed as both Android and iOS apps, as well as having a web version. We're currently developing further features for the iOS version.

    DeSmart has assigned a team of 10-15 people for our project. We worked on a time-and-materials basis, employing an Agile methodology. We interacted directly with the developers.

    How did you come to work with DeSmart?

    We were introduced to DeSmart through our Chief Technology Officer and also through two offshore developers which we use. I met with DeSmart in order to see how well they'd receive our project. In my eyes, DeSmart was the only contender. I believe they were initially selected through their previous work.

    What is the status of this engagement?

    We've been working with DeSmart since February of 2016. Our relationship is ongoing.

    RESULTS & FEEDBACK

    Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

    We've had few bugs and most development deadlines have been met within a margin of 2-3 days. Quality-wise, the work produced by DeSmart has been very good.

    How did DeSmart perform from a project management standpoint?

    We have weekly calls and know what is going on all the time, which is great. The engagement has been done from a resourcing standpoint. Any unexpected resource unavailability has occurred only when we hadn't fully booked DeSmart yet.

    We used Pivotal Tracker and Slack as collaboration tools. These were part of DeSmart's preferred way of working.

    What distinguishes DeSmart from other providers?

    The recommendations contributed to the process by DeSmart, coupled with their questioning of our decisions, have made them stand out. The quality of their work is extremely good.

    Is there anything DeSmart could have improved or done differently?

    DeSmart could improve their design capabilities, but this is a minor point.

    4.5
    Overall Score
    • 5.0 Scheduling
      ON TIME / DEADLINES
    • 4.0 Cost
      Value / within estimates
    • 4.5 Quality
      Service & deliverables
    • 4.5 NPS
      Willing to refer

    Custom-developed Events Platform for Internet Startup

    "I was very happy with the project manager that we were assigned. Any clients ...would benefit from his leadership."

    Quality: 
    5.0
    Schedule: 
    4.5
    Cost: 
    5.0
    Willing to refer: 
    5.0
    The Project
     
    $50,000 to $199,999
     
    May 2015 - Sept. 2015
    Project summary: 

    DeSmart built a web application to facilitate event location booking. The team worked on backend and frontend development, QA, and UX/UI.

    The Reviewer
     
    1-10 Employees
     
    London, United Kingdom
    Co-founder, Event Venue Marketplace
     
    Verified
    The Review
    Feedback summary: 

    Every function that DeSmart built works well and has gotten good feedback. The team was conscious of deadlines and organized. The project manager assigned was communicative and responsive overall.

    BACKGROUND

    Please describe your organization.

    We've built a venue marketplace allowing users to book locations for events. The service works through a web application.

    What is your position?

    I am a co-founder of the company.

    OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

    What business challenge were you trying to address with DeSmart?

    We were looking for a team that could build our application. We have limited technical resources in-house, so our only real option was to find an external team with the skills to build the functional solution.

    SOLUTION

    Please describe the scope of their involvement.

    DeSmart developed our solution using three back-end developers, one front-end resource, one tester, and one UX/UI [user experience/user interface] designer. In the beginning, we were assigned a project manager, but a senior developer took over that responsibility along the way, which worked out well.

    They used PHP and other frameworks for the work, too. The front end is a simple HTML, CSS, and JavaScript solution.

    How did you come to work with DeSmart?

    We researched a number of companies that we discovered online and through various business referrals. DeSmart seemed to be the best fit for us. They reacted quickly to our inquiry, made a nice introduction, explaining what they could do, and their pricing was very reasonable. We considered four other companies, three in Poland and one in Austria. After we had reviewed all the proposals sent to us, it became clear that DeSmart would likely be the best fit.

    Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

    Overall, we spend around $57,000 for the development.

    What is the status of this engagement?

    The project took four months to finish. We completed the work officially on September 14, 2015. We've continued to have a relationship with DeSmart, using two part-time developers – one back-end and one front end – for additional tasks and fixes that became necessary as we learned the market an received end-user feedback. We maintain an hourly contract with them, and we are considering using their company again for other short-term projects.

    RESULTS & FEEDBACK

    Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

    We hired an external CTO whom I trust in order to review their code. He has given very positive feedback for it continuously. Everything that DeSmart has built has worked as expected. We made a number of changes, given that we were going through a learning process. Our internal staff had no problems in using the code. Most components were written in a clean, sustainable and scalable way.

    How did DeSmart perform from a project management standpoint?

    In terms of deadlines, they performed well. The original timeline was for 15 weeks, and the project was completed in 17 weeks, given that we increased the scope along the way, I would say that's very impressive.

    The project manager assigned to our project is currently the CTO [chief technology officer] of DeSmart. He was well structured and organized, running our team well. We learned much from him in terms of how an agile project can be monitored, managed and adapted.

    We used Pivotal Tracker for project management and UXPin for prototyping. Communication was done through a Slack channel and we had biweekly Skype sessions, which they never missed.

    What distinguishes DeSmart from other providers?

    I haven't personally worked with other development agencies. I have heard of worse experiences from acquaintances, but the process was very smooth for us. There were no major changes or obstacles in the work that they have delivered. The software was delivered exactly as requested.

    I was very happy with the project manager that we were assigned. Any clients looking to work with DeSmart would benefit from his leadership.

    Is there anything DeSmart could have improved or done differently?

    The only aspect that we would have liked to see improved was their UX [user experience] expertise.

    5.0
    Overall Score
    • 4.5 Scheduling
      ON TIME / DEADLINES
    • 5.0 Cost
      Value / within estimates
    • 5.0 Quality
      Service & deliverables
    • 5.0 NPS
      Willing to refer

    iOS & Android Prototype Development for IT Startup

    "Their team is exceptionally capable and they invested a lot of time and effort into the project work."

    Quality: 
    4.0
    Schedule: 
    4.0
    Cost: 
    4.5
    Willing to refer: 
    5.0
    The Project
     
    $50,000 to $199,999
    Project summary: 

    DeSmart simultaneously developed iOS, Android, and Web application MVPs for task-sharing and social networking. The team performed some backend MySQL work and QA. 

    The Reviewer
     
    11-50 Employees
     
    Berlin, Germany
    Co-Founder
     
    Verified
    The Review
    Feedback summary: 

    Users have congratulated the app for its smooth functionality. The project took longer than originally envisaged but is also better quality than expected. DeSmart was proactive in terms of project management and gave regular project feedback and reports. 

    BACKGROUND

    Please describe your organization.

    We are a startup located in Berlin. We've built an app for iOS, Android, and the web, which is meant to connect people with peers in their location who can help them do tasks and vice versa.

    What is your position?

    I am one of the founders of the company.

    OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

    What business challenge were you trying to address with DeSmart?

    We needed the three versions of our app to be built at the same time. Finding the resources to build them in-house would have proved difficult. The next possible alternative was finding a development shop to handle the technical work under our supervision. That's when we decided to go searching for one. 

    SOLUTION

    Please describe the scope of their involvement.

    DeSmart developed the three versions of our app and provided some back-end MySQL work. We were assigned one project manager, one iOS developer, one Android developer, one quality assurance tester, and two back-end developers. We worked closely with them to refine our specs and improve some of the features and designs. 

    How did you come to work with DeSmart?

    One of our founders had prior experience in working with DeSmart. They were one of three companies considered for the project. They offered a large team, and their pricing was quite competitive. Those factors combined led us to choosing them. 

    Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

    The total development cost was close to $90,000.

    What is the status of this engagement?

    The work has been concluded. We are thinking about using DeSmart for additional development because we haven't found in-house resources yet, but nothing has been finalized.

    RESULTS & FEEDBACK

    Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

    So far, many people have commented on how well the app is running. DeSmart has done a fine job. The project ran for much longer than it was meant to, but we've reached a good conclusion. It is now in its minimum viable product stage for all versions. 

    How did DeSmart perform from a project management standpoint?

    There were a couple of wrenches thrown into the gears, but this wasn't entirely the fault of DeSmart. It could have been a case of underestimation on their part, but our team was equally under-informed. We were all too optimistic regarding timelines and everything going smoothly. Our relationship has been complicated but, overall, it was a good experience and we ended up with a great solution. DeSmart suggested we use Pivotal tracker, so we used that tool for project management. I would say it was definitely helpful in terms of getting immediate feedback and status reports. 

    What distinguishes DeSmart from other providers?

    Their team is exceptionally capable and they invested a lot of time and effort into the project work, even at a personal level, despite them simply being contractors. 

    Is there anything DeSmart could have improved or done differently?

    Much of the research and technical elements came from me. Because my advice is not an expert opinion, I may not have given them the best directions. Everything was drawn out and accountability was a bit shaky at times. Overall, DeSmart did a good job, but we would have appreciated having better estimates in terms of the time and scale of the project. Now we know better for the future. 

    4.0
    Overall Score
    • 4.0 Scheduling
      ON TIME / DEADLINES
    • 4.5 Cost
      Value / within estimates
    • 4.0 Quality
      Service & deliverables
    • 5.0 NPS
      Willing to refer

    Custom Web Development for Business Services Startup

    "They strive to understand what their client is trying to achieve within a project."

    Quality: 
    5.0
    Schedule: 
    5.0
    Cost: 
    5.0
    Willing to refer: 
    5.0
    The Project
     
    $10,000 to $49,999
     
    Feb. 2015 - Dec. 2015
    Project summary: 

    DeSmart developed a custom web platform for health professionals to compare salaries. The team worked with existing designs in this project and is expected to perform further development in the future.

    The Reviewer
     
    11-50 Employees
     
    London, United Kingdom
    Greg Chodkowski
    Founder & CEO, Salary Genius
     
    Verified
    The Review
    Feedback summary: 

    Project feedback has been very positive, with 95% of users reporting the site is useful. The team understood the business and product goals from the beginning, which inspired confidence. DeSmart has a good price-to-quality ratio and were communicative throughout the project. 

    BACKGROUND

    Please describe your organization.

    Our company is called Salary Genius. We have created a global health care salary comparison website.

    What is your position?

    I am the founder of the company.

    OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

    What business challenge were you trying to address with DeSmart?

    The purpose of our website was to create a global platform where health care professionals would be able, based on the data they provide in an anonymous way, to get a comprehensive report on salaries, working conditions, and benefits for their domain.

    SOLUTION

    Please describe the scope of their involvement.

    DeSmart executed the project from scratch, in terms of designing its functionality, programming, and deploying the final product. The site was custom-built. DeSmart does have their own content management system called DMS [DeSmart Management System], which they use for various projects. We have only used this proprietary management system as a backup. A different company that was recommended to us by DeSmart executed the visual design.

    The work was overseen by a dedicated project manager on our side. The team DeSmart provided us consisted of eight people, including an assigned project manager liaising with the manager on our side, programming leads and quality assurance testers.

    We worked on a few IT [information technology] projects in the past, using different companies on different stages. Historically, I have had an issue with the fact that, even though we may spend a considerable amount of money on a project, the result is not something we would consider finished. Another gripe is the developer not being able to see the work with the eyes of the client.

    DeSmart were not like this. During our initial meetings, they understood well what our business purpose was. Based on this, they made many recommendations that we hadn't thought about. This is useful from a business perspective. When working on an IT solution, the ultimate aim isn't to create a nice, fancy website, but rather to create one that serves a purpose. This is exactly what DeSmart did.

    How did you come to work with DeSmart?

    Our project manager sent requests to various companies that she was previously aware of, based on our project needs. DeSmart made the best offer in terms of price-to-quality ratio. Quality is always an unknown in these situations. Each product is unique and, even if a company may have worked on a similar item in the past, they might execute yours differently.

    Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

    The total development cost was in the range of $30,000 to $35,000. This includes the VAT [value-added tax] applied in Poland. If they were to work for a company outside of our country, the cost could be up to 20 percent less.

    What is the status of this engagement?

    We started working on the project in February 2015. The site was delivered for beta testing in October, and it was launched in December. We're planning to start another project, and we will use DeSmart again.

    RESULTS & FEEDBACK

    Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

    We consider the site very successful. An important metric we have is the feedback received on social media from users. The comments are 95 percent positive in terms of its usefulness. The reports generated on the site are another way of evaluating its success. We're happy with those numbers.

    We are impressed by our collaboration with DeSmart. Through this project, they proved that they can deliver a 100 percent ready-to-work and well-thought-out and designed website. We don't need to worry about changing it or fixing non-functional elements. I know that, if we embark on a new project with them, we will get the same result. They approach projects from a commercial point of view – what advantage each feature will bring the customer. This is something unique about them. In my experience, developers tend to be more reactive than proactive.

    Until now, there hadn't been a website for globally comparing salaries, working conditions and other parameters within the healthcare industry. There are similar services, such as Glassdoor, but they offer information for thousands of different professions. They also don't gather information aimed at answering the specific questions and parameters of the healthcare industry. On top of this, even though those sites have millions of users, there are few health care professionals among them.

    How did DeSmart perform from a project management standpoint?

    We had regular meetings, at two-week intervals, in their headquarters. We interacted both with their project manager and with the programmers. We could resolve issues much easier and get answers to questions regarding what would be possible to implement, and what wouldn't be, by having programmers face to face with us.

    We used Slack for keeping track of our project. DeSmart are familiar with many types of project management software because their clients have different preferences. I know that they also use Asana and Basecamp.

    What distinguishes DeSmart from other providers?

    They strive to understand what their client is trying to achieve within a project, which is apparent if you look at their previous work. They're just extremely organized in terms of project management. Every correction or alteration made to our website would come with proper tracking and documentation.

    Their cost estimation and goals were divided into weekly sprints. We knew exactly what task we were paying for, and knew exactly how much DeSmart would be able to accomplish of the total workload, within a timeframe. We paid what was agreed upon. The budget was not increased along the way.

    Planning and professionalism are important. If the right procedures are in place, tasks can be planned out and exact estimations can be made.

    Is there anything DeSmart could have improved or done differently?

    Whenever something needed to be improved on the website, DeSmart was fast to deliver. Otherwise, their customer relationship was excellent.

    5.0
    Overall Score We are extremely happy.
    • 5.0 Scheduling
      ON TIME / DEADLINES
    • 5.0 Cost
      Value / within estimates
      There are less expensive alternatives...but getting a cheaper solution that you're not happy with equates to wasting that money. DeSmart offer a very good ratio between price and quality, delivering professional work that leaves no need to be changed...
    • 5.0 Quality
      Service & deliverables
    • 5.0 NPS
      Willing to refer

    Development Partnership with Boutique Web Development Firm

    "They're very well-versed in terms of agile development and they have exceptional project management."

    Quality: 
    5.0
    Schedule: 
    5.0
    Cost: 
    5.0
    Willing to refer: 
    5.0
    The Project
     
    $50,000 to $199,999
     
    May 2015 - Ongoing
    Project summary: 

    DeSmart partnered with a website developer to create custom applications and websites, including UX/UI designs. The team also helps with general project management. 

    The Reviewer
     
    1-10 Employees
     
    Guildford, United Kingdom
    Founder & CEO, App Development Startup
     
    Verified
    The Review
    Feedback summary: 

    As a result of this partnership, the overall project management has improved. DeSmart increases and decreases resources as needed, and all their developers have great English. They are independent workers, requiring minimal supervision, and creating good quality products. 

    BACKGROUND

    Please describe your organization.

    We're a website developer focusing on startups in the United Kingdom.

    What is your position?

    I am the founder and CEO [chief executive officer].

    OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

    What business challenge were you trying to address with DeSmart?

    We were mostly working with outsourcing companies in India. Our business grew in terms of complexity, and we found that the developers we were using no longer had the right methodology in terms of project management and quality control. It was costing us time and money.

    We spent a long time searching for suitable developers closer to the U.K. We were impressed with DeSmart in terms of their attitude and the way in which they worked.

    SOLUTION

    Please describe the scope of their involvement.

    DeSmart develops custom apps and websites for us. We've expanded their scope to include UX [user experience] design as we became more trusting of their talent.

    They provide us with around 12 developers. They have free reign in terms of selecting resources. We communicate with developers directly. They all speak perfect English, so this is not a problem. The size of the team varies depending on resources availability, but they've all been very good.

    How did you come to work with DeSmart?

    We found them through their blog. I had heard their name before and started going through their content. I became curious and started a conversation.

    Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

    The total cost for our development so far has been around $73,000.

    What is the status of this engagement?

    We've been working together for nine months [since 2015].

    RESULTS & FEEDBACK

    Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

    We keep track of strategy, product UX, and our product management relationship with clients. Before DeSmart, our product management time was exponentially higher. We've come from three internal management resources down to one. In terms of time spent managing developers, we've come down to a third. How much time we need to spend holding their hand is very important to us. With DeSmart, it's very little. The feedback we've received from clients in terms of build quality, stability, and delivery time has been excellent.

    How did DeSmart perform from a project management standpoint?

    A project kickoff involves a workshop with their entire team, from developers, testers, UX designers, business analysts, and so on. As we proceed with the project, we will have thrice-weekly calls for refinement and scheduling tasks. These calls also tend to involve the entire team for the project. We communicate directly with the developers through Slack and use Pivotal Tracker for project management.

    What distinguishes DeSmart from other providers?

    They're very well-versed in terms of agile development and they have exceptional project management. Their project manager [Bartosz Rozan] calls himself an agile coach. When we did the initial workshops on the project, he coached the entire team, including us, in terms of best practices. He did this throughout the project, and we've noticed that the team has become as agile aware as possible.

    Also, their founder [Piotr Duszynski] has been part of creating a platform called UXPin, which enables rapid prototyping. This is something they use throughout the organization, saving time and money.

    5.0
    Overall Score I am pleasantly impressed.
    • 5.0 Scheduling
      ON TIME / DEADLINES
    • 5.0 Cost
      Value / within estimates
    • 5.0 Quality
      Service & deliverables
    • 5.0 NPS
      Willing to refer
      Although, I wouldn't want to share DeSmart with anyone else.