Interview with Alexander Feldmann, Co-CEO Of EdgeCase Technology
Give us a quick overview on EdgeCase Technology. When and how did you begin this journey and what were your motives to be successful in software development?
EdgeCase Technology GmbH is a fairly young company from Berlin, whose founders are Germans, whose parents once emigrated from the USSR to Germany. In fact, the company exists since 2015, providing projects to German customers by the best technical specialists from Ukraine.
Our motivation is that we are engaged in our vocation - IT. We overturn the excessively conservative market in Germany due to the most flexible approach in the business model.
These are not just words. Here are only 4 areas that we are successfully developing:
1. Remote web development
2. Creating remote offices for customers by out-staffing model
3. In-house out-staffing when we find the right specialists for the client, arrange a blue card and provide employees with a permanent position in the client's office.
4. HR-model, when we simply select serious specialists from the countries of the former USSR, where we have strong ties and contacts.
What is your role in the management and development of EdgeCase Technology?
Specifically, my role, as CEO, is business development and sales. It extends a bit as a HR too, because our specialists are the best in the industry. All our success depends only on them.
Tell us about your biggest achievement in the industry
I want to believe that our biggest achievement is yet to come. It's hard for me to single out one thing, it's trite to say, but every project was not easy and we coped with it well. We did self-learning algorithms to increase cognitive ability of the brain, internal CRM-systems for property management, increased by 20% the conversion of one of the largest online stores. Of course, we have something to boast about and we are pleased to talk about our projects in negotiations with customers.
How do you schedule the development phases of the web and software projects to promise the timeline to your clients?
Yes, this is a classic question.
Everything depends on the level of elaboration of requirements from the client and the scale of the whole project. If we see that the requirements are not worked out at all (and so often happens), then we work by the hourly rate, having previously worked out the terms of reference and coordinated it with the client. If we see that the project is pulling for 1.5-2 months of development, then we are ready to work at a fixed cost, which is also often comfortable for the client, since he knows in advance the final cost of the entire project.
How do you help your clients in choosing the right yet profitable platform for development?
It’s very simple. We honestly tell the client which frameworks we are working with, and with which less often. We tell in advance all the pros and cons of each platform. The final choice is always for the client, but we always try to recommend one platform that is most suitable for this project, providing an explanation of why it is. As a rule, the client trusts us and agrees with our offer.
I note that unlike most developers, we never use our own CMS systems in projects, so as not to put the customer in a position of dependence on us.
What would you suggest for a successful and profitable business progression when it comes to web and software development? How do you define the factors that influenced you make this choice?
I would recommend not saving on IT and at least every six months consult with an independent development agency regarding the web or software products used in the company. It's like a visit to the dentist, if you do not go to him for a couple of years, then you will spend a lot more nerves and money than if you were doing health on an ongoing basis.
Of course, today everything depends on mobile, while in Germany today 80% of sites do not have a mobile version, not to mention mobile applications. This is very risky, because the German economy attracts many foreign businesses, which, opening branches here can take a significant share only by using more modern technologies in their business processes.
How do you scheme your pricing model? How do you fix your budget?
I will say directly - we do not look at competitors. We do not care how much the cost of an hour of work or other services is from our colleagues. We know for sure that we provide high service - higher than it is accepted by the market in Germany. We do not work from 9 to 6, we work around the clock and therefore we are effective. Yes, our cost is not cheap, but the investment of our regular customers always pays off.
Well, we estimate the evaluation of specific projects, like everything else, based on our own rules of marginality, the necessary resources - there is nothing unusual here.
How helpful are the web and software developed by EdgeCase Technology for your clients in enhancing their business?
As a rule, when a customer calls us to develop a project, it is implied that there is a problem. Most often this is due to money - to increase the conversion in the purchase in the online store, to reduce part of the staff, to automate the work, to reduce the level of theft or damage to products, etc.
There were no cases when the created project would not help the company. Another issue in customer expectations, sometimes they are excessively overstated. But, if we notice this, we always try to help the client more realistically to see the state of affairs even before the development begins.
What according to you are the best practices to attain client satisfaction?
The answer is very simple - to meet expectations, both in terms of time and quality.
How do you update your business system to be in pace with the technological advancements?
We invest our funds in testing new technologies - programming languages, frameworks. We do this at our expense, and not at the expense of customers, as it often happens. For example, now the main trend is the cryptocurrencies and today we have several such large projects in development.
What are your thoughts about AR, VR and Internet of Things (IoT)?
Frankly, AR, VR and IoT are not the focus of our professional interests. All three industries have a clearly defined own specificity and require full immersion, which does not correspond to our plans and capabilities.
What do you think will be the future of web and software technology?
Globally, everything will be the same. There will be even more exit from the market of outsourcing companies that are not able to make their business model flexible and up-to-date.
Also, I express the hope that the number of customers wishing to work on the Agile methodology instead of the waterfall model will increase.