What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?
We haven’t gone live yet but I've been very pleased with the developers that I have worked with. They’ve been creative in coming up with ideas optimize the process, giving suggestions for how to do things more effectively. I’m impressed with their communication, their intelligence, their speed, and their honesty.
How did DevelopmentNow perform from a project management standpoint?
We communicate over Slack and have weekly face-to-face meetings. They use Jira so I was able to track the development. They gave me access so I could add tasks that needed to be completed. Their time estimates are accurate and we’ve often been able to bring more into a sprint because they were faster than we predicted. We had very few failures in the QA process.
Everyone I’ve worked with at DevelopmentNow has been US-based with English as their first language. Our project managers, developers, and QA people changed over the course of the project but the transitions were always fairly seamless. One developer, for example, had a medical issue that meant he was out unexpectedly for an indefinite period of time. They assigned a new developer quickly and brought him up to speed at their cost, which was appreciated. They communicated well what was going on and we were pleased with how well they transitioned to new people.
The thing I like best about them, besides their skills, is their level of communication. For example, if I’ve had any issues or concerns, I was able to reach out to the CEO directly who would respond quickly. They are dedicated to communication and setting expectations.
What did you find most impressive about them?
Owning, challenging, and treating us like they’re a member of our team. For example, when we were considering features to include in the minimum viable product (MVP), DevelopmentNow would challenge us about what we needed now versus what wasn’t really needed for the MVP that we could put off until a later time. They helped us as a development partner to think wisely about what to develop now and what to do later. They did a really nice job for us.
Are there any areas they could improve?
Obviously, I'd love to have the team that I started with remain throughout as you develop the relationships. However, that’s really out of their control. You’d always love them to work faster and cheaper. They’ve done a great job of communicating throughout as issues arise. I’m pleased with them. There’s nothing that’s in their control that they can improve on.
Do you have any advice for potential customers?
Ask to be included on Jira and that everyone uses Slack. That way you can be involved in the QA process as much as you want. Maybe we've been involved more than other companies have been but they've been very welcoming to that.
Work with them to set expectations. Make sure you understand what they're saying and that, when they give an estimated amount of time, it will be accurate. A lot of companies will give you estimates that are far under the time required. DevelopmentNow’s estimates are accurate. They may seem like more than other vendors but they do good work and it ends up being faster with them.
The QA person that I’ve dealt with has really shown me the true value of a quality assurance person. I would strongly suggest people not go through a project without them. If you think you can do the QA yourself, don't. A good QA person is key and DevelopmentNow has great QA.