What was the scope of their involvement?
They mainly provide us with Java developers and 1 or 2 PHP developers. We integrate with Shopify and Magento but we are not SI [system integrators] for them. We have our own product that we integrate to engines. They take care of the integration using MuleSoft, which is all Java. They write all the Java code and run it on Mule to integrate the systems.
When we get a client, we use Specific-Group’s help in integrating our product with the frontend and backend, and normally there is more than one backend. We choose the appropriate resources from Specific-Group based on our knowledge, send them the integration guide of the third party, and we ask him to provide us with the estimate. Then we ask him to provide us with task breakdown, and then we assign him a project manager to implement the integration with the third party. They take care of the engagement starting from estimating the effort until they complete it and hand it to our QA team to confirm that it’s working well. If there is anything wrong after they go live, they always fix it.
What is the team dynamic?
We have in-house developers as well, but my department has 5 Specific-Group developers. I know other departments in our company also work with them. We interview the candidates and decide whether to hire them or not.
Our team increases and decreases, but for the last couple of years, we have only increased it.
I don’t speak with developers. I speak with the CEO only, but every project manager on my team speaks with the other developers directly either every day or every other day.
How did you come to work with Specific-Group?
One of my colleagues here met them at an event. We liked their profile and decided to start with one developer to see how it works. The work was really good, so we started to add developers.
Our deciding factor normally is how technical is the resource and what is the real cost of the development. You may get cheaper resources from somewhere else, but the overall cost of the implementation will be higher because Specific-Group can do things much quicker.
Sometimes we will get a developer in a week and sometimes it takes 3 months. It is based on the availability of their resources.
What is the status of this engagement?
We started working with them in February 2012, and we still rely on them heavily to help us with Java integrations.