What was the scope of their involvement?
We had a mutual NDA, and they were very professional about that. Then we started off giving them an outline, a patent-pending pseudo-code for where we want this app to go. From that, they were able to give us a solid quotation. Their terms and conditions made sense to us and we went forward. They essentially developed the whole app.
They started off with a story-boarded check-in with us to confirm their understanding of our expectations. They did a sophisticated slideshow mockup to give us a good idea of what the UX/UI would feel like. It took them some time to really understand what the patent involved and all the pseudo-code. Once they had a grasp of that, we had a separate meeting on how to develop the backend, how to cloud host this, and things like that.
From there, they primarily focused on the backend, and I agreed with that. They wireframed everything and communicated with me at least weekly on where the wireframe is headed, the problems they were running into, the questions they had about the vision, and where our pseudo-code wasn’t quite clear. We also worked on a few simulations on Excel, to see if the data would work the way we wanted. The Excel spreadsheet we created for them was also a form of QC. If what they were building came out with the same outputs and the Excel prototype, then we’re good.
After that, we revisited some of the more cosmetic or UX type of issues. It was an iterative process. We’re currently four months into the development, and they mostly lived up to the schedule. I’m very happy about that.
It’s hard for me to gauge the size of the team. I’ve been working with four people directly, but I’m sure there were a lot more programmers, engineers, designers, and artists in the background, so I don’t know the full head-count. I was working directly with a project manager, who also functioned as the UX/UI designer. I was also working with a coordinator to ensure everyone was on the same page. There was a programmer with whom I interacted directly, and I’m sure he had a lot of staff under him to get all the backend stuff going. I was also in touch with Pek [Pongpaet, Managing Partner].
How did you come to work with Impekable?
I started with Google, and Clutch pages showed up on top in that search. I went onto the Clutch site and browsed around, looked at your reporting process, and it made a lot of sense. I particularly liked the bar chart that shows the primary focus of the companies; whether they focus on design or programming, more web or mobile. That gave me a good understanding of the core capabilities I was looking to match up with. I found four app developers that made sense to me. I got quotations from three of them, but one was two months too late in giving me a quote. The prices from the three quotes were all over the place, although I’d given them all the same document and outline.
I visited two offices, and I really appreciated Pek’s straightforward demeanor. He’s very professional, but also open to ideas and friendly. It seemed like it would be a good fit. I liked the way he and his staff interacted. He seemed like a very good leader, and that made a big difference. The other company I visited was very showboat-y. I had two salespeople trying to talk to me at the same time, and it was constant advertising. I couldn’t quite dive into the project, there wasn’t a lot of listening, and the price was double what Impekable offered.
What is the status of this engagement?
We started working together in March of this year, and our relationship is ongoing. We’re live testing it now, and it’s achieved the minimum viable product status.