Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?
That's difficult to frame. What we're building is more dependent on us and the product for the market. From our perspective, we're putting the wireframing together, and we're adjusting to the needs of customers. They're executing everything that we need. From a results standpoint, we have a decent user base that we're happy with.
From DoggyBnB's perspective, we'd like to get our user base way more active in terms of creating an organic growth and networking effect. We are learning on the fly that there's things that users want up front that we haven't provided for them yet, and there's ways users wanted us to communicate with them that we didn't have. We're adding features and tweaking from the feedback that is coming back from our users.
Results are to be determined. We haven't started marketing in growth yet. We're still looking at our product and the users as beta users who are helping us perfect the entire flow process so we can go out and market and bring in a large user base. We're very satisfied with the results so far. We're haven't had our a-ha moment yet. That is being ironed out as we speak.
How did Simform Solutions perform from a project management standpoint?
Simform Solutions makes suggestions that help us think about things a different way so we're not creating redundancies or poor ways of executing features. I appreciate that about the situation because our other experiences were terrible. When you have one versus the other, you have a relative framework of understanding what's a good situation and what's a bad situation.
I think that's been one of the things that I've enjoyed the most in terms of working with them is that I don't feel like I'm getting scammed by a contractor who may disappear. We see results, and we know exactly where we are and the building stages – we have a really good framework for fixing things and creating project managements systems. I feel like that kind of relationship since I am not technical in background so they give me a supreme amount of confidence. I feel very fortunate.
What distinguishes Simform Solutions from other providers?
Before we worked with Simform, we worked with a few other development firms. From our other experiences and other friends' experiences using contract developers, I feel very lucky that we found a team that communicates with us on a daily basis, speaks very clearly, understands our goals, and is very easy to translate our logic.
Our system is all remote. They're in India. They've created an environment that has extremely favorable continuity. They give us a sense that they're inside our heads. They understand what we're trying to achieve.
Is there anything Simform Solutions could have improved or done differently?
There's two things. One of the two has already improved. A lot of things that we were trying and doing is completely new. As we were learning and trying to build it, they were learning, too. Because we got so deep in the technology side of what we're doing – we are building a complex communication logistics platform and social network based on three degrees of connection like LinkedIn. There's all these layers and logic being built into it. Within our app, we have 10 SDKs [software development kits] of other services that help power our app in different ways.
Simform has found errors in other company's work which is an interesting testament. In the beginning, we were trying to figure out what is the best practice here and what was going on. Early on, we had some growing pains together. They warn us about third party services, which ended up being something that benefitted us in the long run because from we've gotten discounts and credits back because of Simform finding errors. In a weird way, it all worked out well. It might have taken us longer but, down the road, they ended up providing us leverage with companies that we are purchasing services from that have been massively grateful to Simform for understanding their product better than they did.
The other thing I would say they could have done better is they could have been a little more aggressive in terms of things we were designing. We provided all the wireframing and the design work. I think in some areas we just didn't think some things through and, early on, they were tentative in terms of telling us that wasn't the best practice.
In time, they've gotten comfortable. Early on, they were afraid to push back. I think they could've done that better early on. As a development firm, they should have a little authority to do that for a client. It's more beneficial for a client to be told what is right.