Process-driven Approach Helps in Delivering High-end Technology Solution with Great Quality and on Time – Interview with Ace Infoway
Techreviewer spoke with Amit Mehta, CEO & Founder at web development company Ace Infoway. The interview is a part of a series on web development. Learn more about Ace Infoway on their Techreviewer profile.
Please, introduce yourself and your company. What does your company specialize in?
My name is Amit Mehta and I am the Founder-CEO/Director of ACE Infoway. I started my journey at Ace Infoway back in 1999 and today in 2021 we are now a company of 250+ aspiring team members with 8 distinct business divisions.
We started the journey by offering simple websites and came a long way to offer Web Applications, Mobile Application, eCommerce Development, SaaS products, Cloud Computing, and Complex technology project management. Apart from this we also offer expertise in eCommerce Retail services, Email Marketing and Digital Marketing with Local SEO and have acquired hundreds of happy customers.
Who is your ideal client? What industries, regions or types of businesses are you focusing on?
We primarily serve small to mid-sized companies but have taken on larger clients including a few Fortune 500 in various Industries like Print & Publishing, Retail & eCommerce, Human Resource, Hospitality, Education, Insurance, Media & Entertainment. Our clients are startups to webpreneurs to established businesses. We cover both B2B and B2C space mainly in the USA & Australia and also some from the UK and Europe.
What makes you different from competitors? What are your main competitive advantages?
You have thousands of companies that provide technology solutions and more or less all follow the trends and demands of the global economy. But we concentrate on the customer business & needs and are very flexible to work out a model, team and technology that will fit our customers well.
What sets us apart is we are very proactive and honest in offering solutions that will suit their business and growth aspirations and not offer something simply because we are obsessed or it is trending. This always helps us to win our customer’s trust and they remain with us for years to come.
And additionally, we ensure that we are always on the front of new technology trends & processes and make sure learning is rewarded within the organization to extend the same innovation to our customers.
What is your company’s core business model – outsourcing or outstuffing? Do you work with subcontractors? Why do you think such a model brings additional value to your business and your clients?
We are a full services web development & eCommerce company that has all the resources working in a house and employed full time. The full-time employees working model allows us to harness sincerity, commitment and loyalty.
However, in this rapidly moving tech world, it is not possible to keep all the tech resources under the sun and our customers sometimes have a niche or short term needs that are not very common. For this purpose we do have certified subcontractors - we prefer to call them our partners, but this is restricted to a maximum of 20% of our total business. The benefit is that customers get all they want and we become their one-stop technology shop!
How has COVID-19 affected your company? How has it changed your processes?
Pandemic, in its early days, had paralyzed our mind and we were just narrow focussed on servicing our existing customers. We have seen times when everything seems to be crashing down, but the breaking point is our starting line- to evolve and be a better version of ourselves. We just kept our cool, focused on process & efforts that eventually led us to see some good amidst the bad situation. Overall in the calendar year 2020, I would say we were fortunate to register a small % of growth/increase in business.
Remote working has its challenges during the pandemic, but it was important to remain positive, keep trust in the team, and focus on process and delivery. Our managers added some extra efforts to manage, monitor and ensure team productivity by regular communication and implementation of workflow tools.
How has the pandemic affected your clients?
This pandemic is affecting everyone's health, and it’s also impacting the economy. Some of our clients also got impacted by it, reduced their IT spending, scaled-down the technology team in order to cope up with uncertainty. Till October 2020, most customers became very conscious of their spending, however, after that we see them coming back to normal and trying to work out plans to expand or sustain better. Though being in technology our team had the benefit of working remotely, not all customer teams were fully functional and their business was reduced, so we even provided services to them at reduced rates for some time, the only aim is to help them survive this unprecedented time.
Has COVID-19 influenced your marketing strategies? What are the main channels you use to promote your services now?
Covid-19 influenced almost every aspect of life and it had an impact on our marketing strategies. During the pandemic, we experienced mixed responses and requirements. Small businesses were particularly keen and wanted to make their business online and had increased need for Digital Marketing services. So we continued following our inbound and outbound sales & marketing practices, just made sure that our reach was increased, to capture maximum new customers and in fact, we secured many and witnessed the surge in new customer acquisition. For larger businesses, the decision making and spending were getting delayed so we had to stay put and continue our strategies to regularly reach out but with limited success. So overall the main channels to promote our services remained to be Social media, SEO, content marketing and outbound campaigns and attending virtual events and webinars.
Projects & Clients
What are the key factors that you consider when making a project estimation and proposal for a new client? Please, describe your process when you get contacted by a new potential client.
There are 5 key factors we consider while making a project estimation and proposal,
- Technology stack
- Skills of the specialist required to work on the project
- The complexity level of the project
- Customer budget
- Customer business, their current & future scalability needs
Whenever we get contacted by a new potential client, we always try to understand what they do, what problems they are facing or what solution they need and how we can help by utilizing our domain expertise and technical acumen. We also try to understand their expectations from a technology-driven company like us so that we can provide them with the right solution. The process steps are as defined below:
- Sign NDA (Non-disclosure Agreement)
- Understand clients need and requirement
- Inform them about our capabilities
- Analyse requirement and map them with the best technology and platform
- Create a detailed proposal and share it with the customer
- Review and analysis of submitted proposal with the client
- A signed Service agreement with the client
- Assign development team and complete project kick-off formalities and get the ball rolling
What are the top challenges you and your team face in the software development process most often and how do you deal with them?
A few of the most frequent challenges that we face are change management, keeping up the timeline expectations, getting regular client feedback & fast-evolving technology stack. But based on our 2 decades of experience we have put in place a well defined changed management process so that new changes to project scope can be properly planned and executed to accommodate the overall project timeline expectations of the client. Our project management practices take care of ensuring timely client feedback. As far as technology upgrade is concerned, we make sure that our resources are up to date with changing technology trends and also get ample opportunity for training and exploring the technology for up to date and latest solutions to clients.
What are the criteria for the success of a software development project?
Success criteria for a software development project depend on many factors like, proper project scope definition, mapping it with the right technology mix, assigned a good and skilful team to work on it, defining a project plan along with communication plan for different stakeholders, sticking to the defined project plan, communicate properly with a client and be ready for contingencies that may arise. At Ace we make sure that we put in place best practices for delivering projects with high-quality resources.
From your experience, what are the best practices to attain client satisfaction?
We believe there is no substitute for quality work, and a process-driven approach helps in delivering high-end technology solution with great quality and on time. We at Ace follow a quality first culture and have put in place best practices for project management so that we can deliver quality and deliver it on time for increasing profit, reducing expenses and bringing operational efficiency to our client’s business. By following these practices, we have made sure that we attain a high client satisfaction ratio, we have 93% client retention by just following these best practices.
How do you assess the role of research agencies like Techreviewer in bridging the gap between clients and service providers?
There is a lot of competition and it is really difficult for customers to determine who will solve their problems as effectively as possible. Third-party research agencies like Techreviewer help clients connect with qualified service providers quickly and easily. Since these agencies organize their listings to include only the best, clients don’t have to waste time checking inexperienced companies. Finding a technology partner is a rigorous process, but Techreviewer makes it easier. We find the role of agencies like Techreviewer very important and beneficial for buyers and suppliers equally.