At IJYI our core values are:
- We have no hidden agendas
- We inspire change
- We master our trade
- We love IJYI
When approaching a bespoke software development project, we ensure that these values are front and centre to driving the success of the project. This blog is not here to persuade you that it works, we know it works because we have a 100% record of delivering on time and on budget in the last three years. This blog is here to tell you why we like to work this way and how we achieve it.
We have no hidden agendas
At IJYI our software development teams use the scrum methodology which is designed to provide open access to the development process for the customer. Loads of places use this but not everyone makes themselves truly vulnerable to the ups and downs of a project. Sometimes stand ups are sanitised so the team can’t be honest, or retros are cancelled because no one wants to talk about the problems again. Add to that the absolute classic of cancelling demos because progress is not up to scratch and you get something that doesn’t really represent the Agile Manifesto at all.
At IJYI we don’t do any of these. For better or for worse we are honest with our customers and we are honest with each other. Every interaction is done with a view of solving the problem and improving the situation. There is no judgement just encouragement, there is no punishment just progress and there are no regrets just rewards.
Bad things happen, it is what you do about it that counts. Do you hide and pretend everything will be OK or do you front up as a team alongside your stakeholders and make the very best of every situation? By fronting up you will often find a sympathetic customer and a team that is absolutely determined to fix the problem regardless.
At IJYI we solve a hundred small problems a day and we don’t care how it makes us look while doing it.
We Inspire Change
Change is inevitable and change is great. Without change we live in caves and denying change is the project equivalent of being a flat earther.
At IJYI we don’t just embrace change and roll with the punches we encourage it, we ask “why not?” rather than “why?”, we go looking for opportunities to make a change to what we and our customers are doing.
When applying this approach to software delivery you end up with a team and a customer that is solely focussed on business value. We all know the time and resource constraints that we operate under, but this doesn’t mean you can’t be flexible. Giving a little here and taking a little there while being focussed on the maximum value based on those constraints not only gives you a great customer outcome but also a great commercial outcome for IJYI.
Now I’m not going to lie and say we don’t raise change requests in projects because sometimes you have to, but they are used very sparingly and come way after the negotiation of scope has been exhausted. By the time we get to that point the customer agrees that it is the only way so no one is taken by surprise and everyone appreciates the necessity.
We Master Our Trade
In IJYI software delivery this breaks into two areas:
- Technical Excellence
- Process Discipline
At IJYI we love tech as much as the next software firm, but we understand tech for what it is. It is a tool to allow our customers to achieve their business goals. It is not something cool for us to play with and it is not something expensive and difficult to understand that we can sell. It is an enabler and a large part of our teams Technical Excellence is understanding the right tech for the job and what the minimum amount of complexity is that has to be applied to put a big grin on our customers faces. Luckily having said that, most of the time we get to apply the fun new tech to our projects because the technology tools available are improving so rapidly every day. The opportunities are huge, and we spend our work and spare time investigating them to get this right.
While we are having all this fun with tech, our project managers and scrum masters are constantly reminding us that this is not a coding club and that we are a professional commercial software house. We have deadlines and we have to make a buck to keep things going. Fortunately, they also realise that being overbearing and controlling stifles creativity and damages progress, so we have become experts in resolving this paradox. One of our customers recently said that working with us was a perfect example of disciplined chaos. Everything appeared to be up for grabs and could be changed at any time, but the reality was the variables we allowed to move were quite limited. We flex where we need to, but we stand by our core principles of delivering a quality product, on time and on budget. On this, we will not be moved.
We Love IJYI
The core value behind “IJYI Love” is that everyone who works with or for IJYI should be a brand ambassador. They must exude the company’s values and they should actively seek out opportunities to tell others about it. (Its not a cult, honest!!)
Applying this to software delivery means doing a great job for our customers. Our work speaks for it-self and we punch well above our weight next to our larger competitors. By producing high quality software in the timeframe we promise, for the price we promise, means we buck the trend in the industry time and time again. This makes our team proud to work with each other and for our clients.
To sum up, we have found our way to this approach through hundreds of years of combined experience trying to deliver in an agile manner in various environments including big corporates, government departments and small businesses. It’s not easy and it relies heavily on having the right mix of talent in the room along with a management team that understands the value of autonomy and prioritises the customer outcome over short term commercial gain. We buy into “The IJYI Way” lock, stock and two smoking keyboards and that’s why our delivery record is spotless.