How much have you invested with Erbis Cloud Services?
The primary differentiator of Erbis Cloud Services' work has been technical expertise. They've proven to understand not just Java, but also more current technologies like AngularJS and Ember.js. Erbis Cloud Services has also been very resourceful in bringing on new development resources. Since the project started, we've brought on a full-time testing and QA automation person, a DevOps resource, a full-time UI designer, and a part-time database administrator. Erbis Cloud Services has become our complimentary offshore partner, working in tandem with our US team.
How did Erbis Cloud Services perform from a project management standpoint?
Erbis Cloud Services' communication has been exceptional. We require not only good English skills and understanding of our requirements, both in written and verbal form, but also being proactive. One of the more difficult things about managing offshore teams can be the fact that, when not understanding requirements, teams won't be proactive in expressing it before starting the work, or, in the worst-case scenario, they won't do anything. I credit Erbis Cloud Services' leadership team for managing our team proactively, helping us evolve the daily scrum process and making sure that resources are fully self-sufficient and knowledgeable on the development process and product objectives. We're not losing any time due to lack of communication and understanding.
As with anything, our product scope evolves. Erbis Cloud Services has done a good job of meeting deliverables. We don't have hard-and-fast feature enhancements, but rather we have one big team effort, working on one platform. We have continuous improvement around projecting story-points, understanding functional requirements and making sure that we're not changing the scope. I don't isolate Erbis Cloud Services' team as having specific tasks. They're working in concert with our team; we're collectively responsible for delivering new features and enhancements to the platform in our sprint cycle. I've been pleased with Erbis Cloud Services' quality of code. With them, we've refined our process, making sure that the pace of development is slowed down enough to increase the QA process, now that we use 2 full-time automation engineers. We focus on the sharing of information around our platform and its features by doing demos and code review.
What did you find most impressive about Erbis Cloud Services?
We've worked with around 10 shops over the last 15 years. I'm most pleased with Erbis Cloud Services' ability to be proactive and good communicators. They have proven to be a trustworthy partner. The biggest surprise was Erbis Cloud Services' good understanding of technical resources. Anyone being interviewed and brought to our team is evaluated very well, which is critical. Erbis Cloud Services isn't simply trying to bring in resources that would maximize their profit margin; they've scrutinized resources and candidates before introducing them to our team. It was a surprise to find someone take so much pride in building a team. The result is having a long-term partner.
Are there any areas Erbis Cloud Services could improve?
As with anything, we've learned that, when managing a growing team on the partner's side, we must make sure that all resources are kept happy. There's a balance between part-time resources working out of the office or remotely, and full-time ones. We have lost a few part-time people after the work deviated from their expectations, or because they were too isolated, and didn't feel like a part of the team. I wouldn't hold this against Erbis Cloud Services exclusively. It's a challenge which anyone managing a team will have. The pros far outweigh the cons.