Interview with Ankit Dhir, CEO & Founder - Habilelabs Private Limited

Ankit Dhir Interview on

Ankit Dhir  linkedin

CEO & Founder, Habilelabs Private Limited

Give us a quick overview on Habilelabs. When and how did you begin this journey and what were your motives to be successful in web design and development?

Habilelabs focuses on providing quality software development and maintenance services around Modern JavaScript based Frameworks such as Node JS, React JS, Angular, Vue JS, React Native, Flutter, Meteor. We provide services majorly across USA, Europe and Canada. We started in June 2016 with a handful of developers and now our team size is 100+. There has been a huge gap between the requirements of application development using modern frameworks and available resources in the market, the inspiration behind starting this company was to reduce this gap and provide efficient and smart solutions around JavaScript technology with the utilization of available resources, that too, within reasonable budget.

What is your role in the management and development of Habilelabs?

I bore the role of CEO at Habilelabs Pvt. Ltd. My role is to discuss with the end customers and administer new policies to promote organizational growth. I am responsible for building a working system where all the departments and teams can work in collaboration without having any inconsistencies. 

Tell us about your biggest achievement in the industry.

With help of our vision and good team we are able to build a business which is profitable from day one without looking for any external investor that we consider our biggest achievement. During last year when corona was on peak and most of the MNC were firing or at least cutting down salaries of employees and putting up all appraisals and bonuses on hold, we as Habilelabs did not get into such need, we had a normal year with no firing, no salary cuts and with normal appraisals.
In the short time as Habilelabs we are fortunate to work with customers from 20+ countries including few of them from Fortune 500. One of our in-house products has got a position in the top 2000 according to Alexa Traffic Rank. Also, we were recently placed at 5th rank in the list of top 10 start-ups in Jaipur.

How do you schedule the development phases of the web design and development projects to promise the timeline to your clients?

In most of the projects, we implement tailor made agile methodology which suits most of the customers. We follow these three steps to ensure timely development-
•    Planning
We align our preferences with the client-side and pick the priority features first for development. Priority feature will be based as per client’s requirement structure, i.e., the most crucial or important feature will be delivered first. Product Owner will create stories in JIRA and align them as per priority.
•    Designing
In the next step, we create a mock-up design of these selected features. Once approved, we start working on the coding part.
•    Implementation
Coding starts right after the design gets finalized. We divide the product into small features and start working on them. We generally keep clear expectations with clients to avoid rework.

Which framework, programming or scripting languages do you prefer for web development? How do you convince your clients for the same?

As our strength is in Modern JavaScript based frameworks, we prefer working with JavaScript based frameworks for both back-end and front-end. We keep exploring new frameworks and libraries and keep adding them to our expertise.

We share our insights for choosing them with clients and describe their advantages. Also, we explain our approach and ideas regarding these frameworks in the project and make sure that they align with the client’s interests.

In most cases, the client is all too happy to hear our suggestions and obliges them as long as it provides them with the best end results. However, the clients can also select a framework of their choice which is easy to start with and can maintain code in the future.

What would you suggest for a successful and profitable business progression, when it comes to web design and development? How do you define the factors that influenced you make this choice?

Providing innovative and quality solutions will always be the success key for IT & Software firms. We provide software consultancy, emphasizing high performance and quality in mind, and follow a robust development process that minimizes bugs and delivers productive results. This process includes the following factors-
•    Automation: Bringing automation to development adds quality to the process and rules out the possibilities of common errors. We configure all of our projects with git hooks so we can scan them using tools like sonar cube, linting, and semgrep that help in delivering consistent code quality and sidestepping through errors.

•    Focusing on Limited Technology: We offer software solutions around JavaScript only which is encouraging because the field is vast and has ample of opportunities to offer. In addition, being focused on limited technology helps our team to gain expertise in the field with continuous training and sharing knowledge with co-workers. We are working on JS for the last 5+ years.

•    Peer Code Review: We also review each other’s code using pull requests. We define a checklist to make sure the code meets required quality checks. Also, we follow up the entire software development process with a separate detailed document and share it with our peers to promote transparency.

•    Budgeting Tasks: We work on agile and plan tasks for two weeks ahead that need to be completed in a given sprint. We ensure efficient working sprints.

How do you scheme your pricing model? How do you fix your budget?

We work basically around two models-
•    Software Consultancy: We take over the entire software development cycle from initial research to production deployment and deliver the results.
•    RAAS (Resource-as-a-Service): Under this model, we outsource our team members to work offshore at the client site.

How helpful are the web design and development made by Habilelabs for your clients in enhancing their business?

We have worked with the top companies like Vodafone, Diehl, iSEEit, RevBits, 8Out, OHS, Azym, etc. and they are growing consistently throughout the years.  
For Vodafone, we built a sophisticated and modern Self-service Kiosk (SSK) application that they are utilizing to scale up their business in the global marketplace. We have been working consistently  for  few years and developed a fully-fledged, large-scale, and centralized ERP platform for the management of both business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-customer (B2C) operations.

We have been an offshore development partner of iSEEit for many years now and have played a prominent role in building world-leading solutions for opportunity management for sales teams in complex and top-notch B2B environments.

What according to you are the best practices to attain client satisfaction for web development?

Providing satisfactory solutions and customer experience is the foundation of building long-term relationships with the clientele. Some of the best practices to attain this are-
•    Setting clear expectation
•    Providing timely iteration of software
•    Quality Code
•    Budget-friendly Solutions
•    Productive results
•    Collecting customer-feedback

How do you update your business system to be in pace with the technological advancements?

For regular updates on technology, we set up an internal LMS (Learning Management System) and keep updating it with the latest courses and internal training. We keep track of everyone’s knowledge progress and provide feedback and training whenever required.

Our work environment follows a learning culture. We learn new technologies and frameworks and share that knowledge with everyone around us. This learning atmosphere helps us build a baseline for the team members to collaborate with each other and grow together in the long run.

What are your thoughts about material design, progressive web apps and Internet of Things (IoT)?

Material Design
Material design is a brilliant design system that takes cues from the real world and presents them in ways that can be implemented in digital products without being considered skeuomorphic. It uses color, typography, iconography, layout, and animation to bring out the best in your website or application. The effect is quite awe-inspiring and really captivates your users.

Progressive Web Apps
The one thing I like about them is they don't need app store, you can just 'install' a website. However, they lack that speed and feel, you can just tell it's not a native app. But having a single codebase is easy to maintain and can cover most devices.

IoT (Internet of Things)
IoT will reshape the future of not only technology, which is not an end in itself but also of our lives from different perspectives. It will create new business models for companies, it will change how consumers interact with these new models, and it will modify our daily behavior as consumers, citizens, patients, and other roles we have in modern society. In fact, it is one of the pillars of digital transformation.

What do you think will be the future of web design and development technology?

The future of web development lies with IoT, AI/ML, and automation. We have dedicated a small team to look for upcoming tools, libraries, and frameworks to ensure we are making use of the best industry standards for battle-ready solutions.

We are working on tools that can easily covert UX to a working website. With the integration of AI and IoT, we will see automation on the next level where machines will be taking over most of the manual work.

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