Software development always starts with a problem.
“Some businesses have big problems but don’t realize that the answer is a software solution,” says Company-X director David Hallett. The Hamilton-based software specialist company has been designing, developing, testing and releasing software solutions for local and international clients since its inception in 2012. Every job has started with the prospective client speaking up about a problem of some kind.
“Many businesses, both here in New Zealand and overseas, come to us with brand new, recently discovered, business problems that they need to solve and ask if we can build a software solution that will make the problem go away,” David says.
“They know that Company-X is the first place to come and explore their options.”
The majority of Company-X projects start with this sort of conversation with either David or his fellow director Jeremy Hughes. Often both of them are in on the initial conversation. It can help, the directors say, if the prospective client has already defined the goal that the software solution will achieve in a clear and concise paragraph or two before they reach out to Company-X.
A clear and concise outcome is easy to measure and is a good place to begin the conversation.
The outcome may be an increase of profit margin, efficiency improvements, a bigger market share, better customer service, improved employee training or reduced carbon emissions.
Not every conversation between Company-X and prospective clients starts the same way.
“Sometimes prospective clients already know the solution to their problem, right down to the software specifications and user requirements, but don’t have the software development power that they need to make it fly,” Jeremy says.
“Or they already have custom software which is no longer supported by the developer that they need to update with new functionality in line with the changing business environment that their company is operating in.”
Whatever the case, prospective clients can expect lots of questions when they start talking to Company-X. The software specialists need to hear a good description of the problem, understand the workflow at the business and the different types of users who will be using the software solution. What is the problem this project needs to solve, the question it needs to answer, or the opportunity it needs to grab?
“Theoretical physicist Albert Einstein once said ‘If I were given one hour to save the planet, I would spend 59 minutes defining the problem and one minute resolving it’,” David says.
“Only once the problem is fully defined can the problem be effectively resolved.”
The next step is for David and Jeremy to put together a team headed by Company-X professional services manager Michael Hamid, a project manager, a business analyst, and a solutions architect to continue a more in-depth conversation.
This whole initial phase can take up to the equivalent of a full day, and Company-X starts billing clients once the project gets underway. Company-X’s reputation for doing what it said it would do, on time and without a fuss, leads to many approaches from potential clients.
Company-X is a multi-award winning, fast growing, software specialist with clients in both the small and medium enterprise space as well as multinationals like Cisco Systems Inc in Silicon Valley, California. Company-X ranked on the Deloitte Technology Fast 500 Asia Pacific 2017 index, listed at number 330 of the 500 fastest growing technology companies in the Asia Pacific region.