Gaining knowledge and confidence step by step: 8 years of partnership with a Fortune 500 company
This client is a Fortune 500 company that developed a desktop and application virtualization product. The solution includes back end servers and various connectors providing remote access to the back end from a number of different platforms. Besides OS-specific components, the product also includes a number of advanced technologies for overall platform management and user experience delivery.
This company has worked with Rabota Source teams for about 8 years.
The Initial Contact
This company was interested in finding an engineering provider to cut the costs and improve delivery times of their software development. The task was the development of mobile connectors for the Android and iOS platforms. This company found our mobile development skills and significant virtualization experience as the perfect match.
The project was started with a fixed price scheme for the team of two developers working for four months. According to its operating standards, Rabota Source included the minimal required QA work at no additional cost to meet our corporate quality standards for deliverable.
The First Big Task: Complicated Step to Success
After the first two months of work, the company got familiar with the Rabota Source processes, communication standards and complete competence profile. After reviewing the remote access and redirection technologies in the provider’s portfolio, the company decided to start another project with Rabota Source: advanced multimedia redirection for Windows devices.
The project had a number of technological risks and required significant research activities. A number of formats had to be supported with the highest performance available.
Nevertheless, the client insisted on using the fixed price model. The company’s strategy included project-based work with a third-party software engineering service providers, especially on the first stages of partnerships. The project was estimated for a year and a half for one developer. As usual, Rabota Source provided the required amount of QA work free of charge.
The project was not predictable enough because of amount of research needed, and some of specified risk finally impacted the work. In a year, the team already could state that the solution would not be stabilized within the schedule and budget.
At the end of the scheduled term, the team still experienced performance problems with some media formats and there were still a few formats, which remained unsupported.
Rabota Source fulfilled its commitments according to the fixed price contract and conducted the solution stabilization at its own cost. Nevertheless, not all problems were fixed – some were discovered to be unsolvable with the designed architecture and selected technology approach. The solution was acceptable but not the best one.
As the problems were reported before the project deadline, the joint team started early discussion about how to resolve them. Observing the team dedication, the client asked Rabota Source experts to do additional research and design a new architecture from scratch to resolve all possible issues.
Step 2: Success
Excited with the challenge, Rabota Source engaged several of our senior experts to develop an efficient and smart design. Inter-team knowledge sharing and fresh set of eyes from our other teams finally helped us come up with the perfect design.
Shortly after the stabilized first version was delivered, the Rabota Source team presented this new designto the client’s project team. It was approved, and the next stage started with the our two developer team and we signed a fixed price contract for six months. Free QA activity was delivered as a part of the engineering contract.
Taking into account the previous research and first version experience, the Rabout Source team successfully developed the new multimedia redirection solution within the estimated time and budget. It met all performance and support requirements and was quickly delivered to the market. This team continued on doing the technical support of the project.
Step 3: Expansion
Shortly after the start of the second media redirection project, Rabota Source received another request from this company. The new project was a logical expansion of the previous project and covered flash media redirection technologies.
The team was augmented by one developer signed for 8 months with a fixed price project contract.
They developed a smart approach and proved its efficiency. This new solution was successfully developed and delivered to the market.
Learning the product from within: step by step
As the work moved on for the redirection technologies, the cooperation around connectors also developed.
Mobile connectors were delivered on time, and the client’s specialists made special mention of the resulting quality. At that time, the client was evaluating the work of four different R&D providers and decided to stay with Rabota Source team.
During the next year and a half, the team received four different assignments for Mac and Linux connectors and thin clients. This team was formed according to the particular project requirements; all projects were developed on a fixed price contract.
With the project-based cooperation, the Rabota Source team got only a limited context of a particular task, sometimes missing the whole picture. At the beginning of our cooperation, it impacted the efficiency of our work, but with a variety of projects, the Rabota Source specialists got familiar with more and more aspects of the global product.
QA and Testing Project
Since the Quality Assurance engineers did such good worked on the previous project. Rabota Source received a new project for the client.
This project was planned for two months of work of two QA specialists. They had to perform independent product research, plan and estimate testing activities, prepare the full set of testing documentation, and set up test environments.
It was a very important and interesting assignment for these two Rabota Source leading QA specialists. The team performed the global product research and applied a number of best practices to create the final documentation and estimates.
The deliverables were later reviewed by the client’s experts and got their approval. The client contracted with us for the recommended team of four dedicated Rabota Source QA specialists to perform testing activities according to the presented plans and strategy. The Rabota Source team was also supported by the client’s Test Automation specialists and QA leader.
After a year of cooperation, the team was augmented with two more QA specialists and one developer responsible for building advanced emulation environments for loading and stress testing.
Combined dedicated team
After two years, it became clear that the team had enough knowledge and had well-established communication with the client’s specialists to switch to a dedicated contract. This team received regular assignments for different components of the global solution, technical support and feature updating. This new scheme gave the global view of the product to Rabota Source engineers, allowing for the proper task prioritization and evaluation of the impact of developed tasks and technical decisions.
A dedicated team started with seven developers, six QAs and a dedicated project manager, who previously supervised the fixed-price contracts. This team was eventually augmented up to 18 specialists for major releases.
After 5 years of dedicated team work, the product moved to the maintenance stage because of some competitor acquisitions. The team returned to the a 12-person size and switched to system support and maintenance.