Post | How We Start Successful Software Engagements With Great Energy

Aug 20, 2019

by The [e-spres-oh] Team

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It was mid-July, we had guests over. Coming from Europe and the US, they visited our Engineering Offices in Timisoara to kick-start a challenging, buzz-worthy, and complex project. No matter how eager both the client and we were to plunge into untangling UX dilemmas and technical conundrums, we knew that if we wanted to build successful collaboration, there were some steps we couldn’t skip.

For us, successful collaborations are not limited to how well our team’s technical skills match the product’s requirements. Sure, the scope of the project is the priority. However, leveling the conceptual ground is the subtle art that can make or break a collaboration.  

Luckily—conceptually and technically— our July guests and we were a match and we’ll tell you more about this hugely exciting project when the time is right. Now we want to share with you some other ideas that surfaced during our exploratory meetings. Truth be told, the process of starting a new collaboration got us thinking about how we usually tackle new projects. From our expectations to the client’s, and back to us, here’s our recipe to make the best out of every collaboration:

We’re picky.

For us, it all starts with the right fit. The main investment we can make is to find suitable clients. Having great software projects is, after all, the most significant driver that attracts talent. 

And it pays off. 

By starting engagements that appeal to highly-skilled developers and UX designers, we can further guarantee to our clients that their projects will be in the hands of people who fully commit, push through challenges, and can run on their own. 

That’s why we are picky about our clients, and we encourage clients to also be meticulous when choosing a software development team, be it from [e-spres-oh] or from any other company. 

We take the time to listen.

And then we listen some more. 

The initial interactions with a client are the basis on which we start building our collaboration. 

So for starters, we’ll do more listening and less talking. Carefully considering the client’s needs, challenges and concerns can save us a lot of back-and-forths. Plus, if we notice the client’s emphasis on soft skills, technical know-how, and passion, we can already visualize a fruitful collaboration. 

Although exploring a client’s needs is not, by any means, a groundbreaking technique, what matters is that we practice what we preach. We ask what to many seem like all the questions, and then start digging into projects to pinpoint the best action plan. Then, and only then, we start to get things rolling.

We have a product mindset.

We don’t look at projects in a vacuum. 

While the project’s technical challenges get our coding brains all fired up, we believe that a well-rounded approach that includes an exploratory phase, business analysis, and UX audit is more advantageous. Not only that, but UX is a touchstone of our success because it shows valuable product management. And that’s how we operate. 

We drill deep into the client’s business ecosystem to the point where you can’t distinguish our team from theirs. With the product in mind, we do all it takes to make sure true efficiency is achieved.

Most importantly, our teams don’t rent technical skills in a vacuum. Our designers don’t create pretty interfaces. Our developers don’t write code because they were told to. More than delivering projects by masterfully handling front-end and back-end technologies, we build products. From start to finish.

We create custom product teams.

Every time we kick-start a new project, we don’t just assign teams. 

Instead, after a thorough evaluation of the project’s requirements and challenges, we draft the solution on paper. Should the team include a UX designer? Would a Business Analyst be a plus? What about a JavaScript senior dev? Maybe it’s better to go for a different programming language? We put our brains together and figure it out. 

Once we have a clear vision of the custom product team for the job, we assign people to the roles. Most of the time, we already have the people on board, working at [e-spres-oh]. However, if we don’t, we go ahead and find the right people, making sure they share our working culture and are a great fit for the project. In other words, we are looking for people that have the right level of seniority but are still hungry to learn and don't mind the grind. 

We’re honest with the client. And ourselves.

Does the client’s perspective match ours and vice versa? 

This is a question we always answer truthfully. 

We are idealists and love to think that valuable people attract valuable projects and vice-versa. However, sometimes gaps in conceptual alignment between the development team and the client can do more harm than good. So, in the long run, we prefer to take on only those projects that we are well-suited for and suit our vision well. In this way, we can make the best use of everyone’s skills and time.

While we can technically deliver on almost any project, we know that there’s more about collaborations than just tech specs. Communication matters, and being in tune with the client is just as important. We’re sure that clients can find value in this statement as well. 

It’s a match!

Once we break the ice with a new client and we all agree that ‘it’s a match,’ we roll up our sleeves and start to do what we do best. This is when the magic happens, and great energy gets unleashed: business analysis, UX, code, spice, and everything nice. 

Now, if you’ll excuse us, we have an exciting project we must work[out]. 

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