What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?
The city in which both of our teams work has far too many design and development companies. It’s a very saturated market. One thing that stood out during our evaluation period is that Thence’s team members are authentic people; that feeling lasted throughout our engagement.
Thence discussed what would and wouldn’t be the right fit for me, without displaying any vested interests for the options. They educated me on why native apps would be better in terms of performance and UX, as well as what cost I’d have if I took that route. Their team provided handholding and enabled us to make the right decision for the business.
What’s more, they were always available. It seemed to me that they categorized the work between teams very well, and I never came to the point where I didn’t know who to call for what. Alok was there all the time.
There were occasions when my development team was lagging behind, and they pushed some tasks over the weekend. Alok asked his team to work on Saturday and push those designs to the development team. I consider that to be very positive behavior.
How did Thence perform from a project management standpoint?
They used some advanced project management tools, through which we could see the project’s progress at any point in time. My team and I could see new designs and screens posted on that platform at the end of every third day. The development agency also had access to the tools and could look over anything they wanted. It was a very seamless collaboration.
What did you find most impressive about them?
Thence came across as real, genuine people. They never sounded sales-like, and their business development jargon wasn’t too difficult to understand. Their team was very collaborative, and they took a lot of time to understand what we were looking to achieve. It was clear they weren’t trying to write a purchase order for themselves.
Compared to my experiences with previous projects, that sincere attitude is what really drew me to Thence. My comfort level in dealing with the people there was really high. Their design abilities are on par with other agencies, but I’d definitely give them extra marks for their client management skills.
Thence is a young team that is invested in their people. Their recruitment process is very robust. They have a well-understood, driven culture and believe in thoroughly training their people. Thence is also one of the first design agencies to start a UX lab, and they’re very forward-looking as a team. They aim to have a futuristic approach to design.
Are there any areas they could improve?
Alok and his team were there during the little hiccups that did happen during the course of our engagement. There was nothing that went unresolved. Of course, there were some operational roadblocks at times, but the team always came together.
Do you have any advice for future clients of theirs?
My advice is to approach collaboration with patience. If the future client is expecting to meet the agency for 30 minutes and come out making a decision, I wouldn’t advise that — as an entrepreneur and definitely not for design.
It’s an iterative process, and no client should base their decisions on the previous work that the agency’s done, because it might’ve been done by a different team. The size of the company is not something to be in awe of because it’s not a relevant evaluation.
Thence has a business discovery workshop, and people working with them should come with enough patience and time to make a fair evaluation.