Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?
Now, we've won Webby Awards for our designs in the industry. We probably have the best website presence in the industry by far. We allow all of our designs to be made by local designers from New York and all the places that just have really great web design.
We have 24 hour response time with them. If we ever have any websites that go down, we have an internal support app, E2logy.com. Basically, anytime one of our sites goes down or if somebody catches something, we message them. Even during the day, when it's usually nightfall on their end, they have someone there that's immediately responding and able to look at the issue. If it's something they can handle, they'll fix it. If not, they call in a developer. They wake him up, and get him over there. They've always been very responsive in that sense.
I would also say there's a couple times where we've wanted some higher level presentations to be done. We actually had some of their executives, on their own dime, fly out here and meet with us to really assure us that they are there for the long haul. I've worked with some extremely bad offshore companies and I've worked with companies like E2, which are probably some of the best experiences you'll have.
If you look at their staff, a lot of their staff are probably more educated than most of the people in my corporate office. Most of their staff have MBAs or they've come to the United States and they've gotten Master's Degrees in Computer Engineering and whatnot from the University of Chicago. I think one of them went to Cornell. They've come here. They're an extremely talented group of people. I really couldn't speak highly enough of them.
Ruchhir [Agarwal], the main man over there, is just always very receptive to any feedback we give. If there's ever any dissatisfaction with their service, or some sort of an issue that comes up, he's immediately one to jump in and make sure things get corrected. We've never, ever had an issue there.
Before I was doing what we do now with our property websites, the local designers were also developing the websites. They would charge about $30,000 for the design of the website and then they would also charge about $35,000 for the coding of the websites. By moving the coding aspect over to E2, I was able to drop that down to roughly $10,000 per site for coding, instead of $35,000. As you can imagine, the clients that we serve get the same quality product for $25,000 less than they would otherwise. Again, that makes our company look good, if you will.
How did E2logy perform from a project management standpoint?
We have two different teams at E2. I've got one dedicated team of about five developers and a project manager who work on my internal application. I think there are four coders, one designer, and a project manager.
Then for the website development, we have a project manager, and then we have about three coders at any given time. If there are a lot of projects at once, they'll pull somebody else in if they need to. Those teams are completely dedicated to us. Most companies, depending on how much work you give them, they'll give you a few guys for now. If you need some, they'll add more. They'll seesaw the amount of work based on what you give them. With us, we give them enough work where we have dedicated teams that are solely our teams.
What did you find most impressive about E2logy?
I would say the lack of a language barrier. A lot of times I've worked with offshore companies and sometimes they do extremely good work, but you have to get them on a Skype call or a conference call. You can't understand a word they say. Whereas, usually the people that Ruchhir puts on his teams, especially for American projects, are all very well spoken and very easy to work with in terms of understanding our needs and not really having to deal with the cultural barriers that sometimes you have to work with when you deal with offshore teams.
Are there any areas E2logy could improve?
No, the only thing I always hope is that they don't grow too fast. Ruchhir is committed to keeping it a family business. He's trying not to turn it into a giant corporate monster like a lot of the offshore companies are. Because he does keep it fairly small, they've got hundreds and hundreds of employees, but he's not turned it into some corporate thing.
The fact that I can contact Ruchhir, who runs the company, at any time, is such a huge win on my side. I'm not talking to a sales rep. I'm not talking to just a project manager. If I do have an issue, I can go directly to him. That's probably what I hope he doesn't change. In terms of what I wish he would change, I really can't think of anything off the top of my head. That's the reason we started with them. There are two other companies that I usually use for offshore development. I prefer not to use them anymore because it's a lot easier working with him.