Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?
Octobot has built 4 different versions of our software. The first version, which was released in February 2016, increased our performance by at least twofold.
How did Octobot perform from a project management standpoint?
We use Pivotal Tracker and Trello for product management, as well as Sketch for designs. I track our feature performance, as well as bug count and expenses. One of the reasons for choosing Octobot was that we didn't want a developer that worked hourly, but rather one that worked as an in-house tech team. We needed the ability to track their work as if they were employees. This information is kept transparent within both companies and used to improve everything that we do. Octobot used to have a different development process, more adapted to normal shops. They also used different processes for bug tracking and fixing. We improved Octobot's system and made it more efficient and faster. We focused on splitting different parts of the process in terms of coding and design. Everyone in the team was made aware of what their involvement was. They had their own deadlines and specific templates of information which needed to be filled out. We test the code that Octobot writes using engineers in our team, making sure that it is up to our standards. We have implemented many processes to make sure that we are fast and efficient. These processes also help us achieve good quality.
What did you find most impressive about Octobot?
The fact that Octobot was willing to adapt to what we wanted is a unique feature. It was hard for us to find someone who could adopt our processes and methodologies, tracking the metrics that we wanted to track. Each company has its own way of working, which makes it hard to change a partner's mind. Octobot put every issue into discussion, determining the best way we could achieve something.
We used to track bugs in a specific way. Then we found out that we needed to get more information from the user’s perspective in order to make the process more efficient. We now have a template which we send out to users. We gather information like device type, software version, print screens, and video captures, along with descriptions of the bugs and other user information. This decreased the fixing time by a factor of 5. The fact that Octobot was able to accept this process is quite unique to them.
Are there any areas Octobot could improve?
Anything that needs fixing will be addressed by sitting down with Octobot's owners. We found solutions to our problems either in the form of a piece of software or increased communication. We are also very transparent. Any issues we encounter with our own clients are related back to Octobot. When they have an issue in terms of development, they'll also come back to us. There hasn't been something which needed improving which wasn't nailed by our teams.