Experimental emergence – A hale and hearty, living idea

There are thousands of software consulting and services company – so why add one more to the mix in such a matured industry?

This was the first question that was asked when we were about to roll out Idyllic Software Inc in July 2009. A very valid question from a very sane business minded person – Mr. B. We did not have a pragmatic answer then which would have satiated Mr. B, nor we have the right answer now. Though we knew the answer right from the beginning, there was nothing which was pragmatic and practical.

We are choosing this blog to be the medium for us to be out with our story.

Idyllic Software Inc

A mere experiment, was started by a handful of “Good” software developers with over several years of experience. Some of the key factors that drove to the formation of our company are as below:

“Converting ideas to implementation – and what about realizing the vision? “

We firmly believe that the ideas that occur to us can be quickly implemented technically. But realizing its vision is an entirely a different effort. It is important for the team to believe in the product they are building. Hence we choose the work we take on and make sure we can employ the right attitude to get the vision REALIZED. Being technologists ourselves, we take on the responsibility to build a robust, maintainable and more importantly evolving software. However, we understand that it takes more than mere implementation to make a software successful. Hence we constantly work with building the right partnerships with the necessary adjunct skills. Below are some of our major partnerships to illustrate a few:

  • As we realize that positioning the product is equally important as compared to the aesthetic value of the product, we have partnered up with an experienced branding and positioning expert company as compared to merely getting a graphic designer in place.
  • PR plays a vital role in calling out to the right audience and we work with our PR partners to ensure justice to the task.
  • As the product kicks off, you surely need a professional support team to communicate with the end users and hence we ensure non technical services such as call centers are not ignored.

Of course we understand the budget constraints with start-up projects and hence we step up where ever we could ourselves too. We recently did a creative imaginary story for one of our client considering their budget constraints. To our surprise the story rightly attracted the target audience and created long lasting engagement with the product. It surely was a discovery for us to find out the creative skills of one of our team members.

Now that is what we call the “Right Attitude!”.

@ISI realizing the vision of the idea is of utmost importance. End of product implementation only marks the beginning of efforts towards even more important milestones.

“You have a Voice but not a Choice – Why?”

If you are a developer, you would have felt or heard this out very LOUD. Oh boy, do they think that engineers cannot think business? We know Mr. B is a bright guy and respect and learn from his gray hairs and of course we know that he is paying our bills, but you cannot neglect the fact that he has not seen it all. There are several other bright people involved in developing the idea whose experiences differ and who think differently.

Bouncing ideas and making combined thoughtful decisions on what to build defines a successful product. It is part of our job role to help the business, Mr. B, by shouting out on approaches that are not going to work and of course pointing towards things that will work based on our experience and findings. Discussing and making a thoughtful decision does not only help save money but more importantly contributes to the success of the product.

@ISI we strictly do TDD – Team driven development of our company and the products we work on.

“Take ownership of your work – And what about the revenue?”

It is vital that the developers engaged in building the software have a stake in the success of the product. Not seeing developers as product partners is unfair to the product it self and hence the client. The developer boils down to an unmotivated coding monkey who codes by requirements only. Giving a revenue share for the work, gives an inherent stake to the developer in the company and motivates her to be at her best. This is a win win situation for all.

@ISI developers and clients are partners.

“Corporate life and personal life are different – What? I thought I had ONE life”

They say 60% of your life is work, it is very important that you enjoy your work life. But I do not understand why such a hard line between the two? Why cant working be equally fun and of course share the same intensity of responsibilities?

@ISI we have one good life. We do not see Monday Morning Blues and look forward to come to work as much as we look forward to going back home.

So did it work?

All that good things being said, 2 years down the line we now ask ourselves – did the experiment work?

The answer is, the experiment is still going ON. So we cannot give a quantitative answer to that, but here are some facts about us thus far:

  1. Very pleased and happy clients.
  2. Zero attrition rate: People leave companies for other jobs, no one has quit on us yet.
  3. All our clients from day 1 still work with us. I would say we formed some really good partnerships around.
  4. Zero marketing up until this blog goes live and growing by mere references.
  5. Very very Interesting work in technologies such as Ruby on Rails, Padrino, Sinatra, Alfresco, Java, Facebook applications, Yahoo Widgets, and lately even streaming servers such as Wowza.
  6. Even more interesting involvement in the field of marketing, PR and creative writing.

More to come on this as we go. We will keep you posted.

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