Case Study: Ukrainian Developers For a Dutch Security Solutions Provider
I-SEC is a multinational corporation with about 5,000 employees on board at 16 international airports in Europe and Asia. Our I-SEC Advanced Systems BV is a daughter company that specializes in developing security systems to solve or improve processes that can be found in any security operation. Since 2015, Grid Dynamics has been helping I-SEC deliver digital solutions. One of the solutions, for instance, enables security agents to conduct efficient security checking processes in a professional, efficient, and effective manner.
What’s your team composition?
Two developers whom we hired through Grid Dynamics are now working from the office in the Netherlands with our two Dutch programmers. Our Ukraine-based team — two developers and one quality assurance engineer work from a Grid Dynamics office in Dnipro.
What is the contribution of Grid Dynamics developers to your product?
Grid Dynamics programmers participate in the development of 2 main products for developing two important I-SEC products. The first one is a SARA dashboard that shows the availability and location of security workers and active resources. And the second one is real-time operational management adaptive live multi-location resource planning system that allows planning security schedules.
Our programmers use a vast tech stack that includes both classical such as .Net and Xamarin, and quite new ones like .Net Core, Angular, Vue.js.
What are the benefits of hiring Ukrainian developers with Grid Dynamics?
Grid Dynamics has direct access to 250,000 tech experts in Ukraine and can help us hire programmers within our budget and list of requirements. Naturally, the average developer salary in Ukraine has risen during the last decade but it’s still twice less expensive to work with the Ukrainian programmers rather than hiring them locally.
Grid Dynamics gives more flexibility in terms of upscaling and downsizing a team. With Grid Dynamics, we can hire an entire team of programmers in one or two months and release people with one-month notice. In contrast, the employment law in the Netherlands is very protective of the employees and predicts more additional expenses such as employment taxes and payments related to releasing an employee.
How would you describe the technical expertise level of Ukrainian programmers?
The developers we’ve hired with Grid Dynamics have good expertise and capacity to find solutions for quite complicated problems. Our developers know how to use technologies to their maximum potential.
When we just began to work with fresh programmers, we needed to calibrate some aspects of communication within our inter-cultural team but with time things got much better. For instance, even though some programmers worked in Agile teams before joining I-SEC, they were used to a more hierarchical approach to resolving issues.
What value do Grid Dynamics developers bring to your business?
Expertise: On a daily basis, the Grid Dynamics developers use their knowledge to refine and develop new functionality for the company’s major product — our platform for security checking. The developers use their expertise to make the development process more efficient and save up on additional manpower.
Innovation: Grid Dynamics developers can learn new technologies and gain the necessary skills quite fast. With the help of our Ukrainian developers, we were able to implement .Net Core and Angular which are quite new technologies on the market.
How did a recent crisis affect your cooperation with Grid Dynamics?
I-SEC’s clients (airports and airlines) were severely affected by the COVID-19 lockdown during the spring of 2020. Grid Dynamics found out about the effects of the lockdown on our business and met us halfway in financial terms. As a result, we managed to fully retain our development team and continue developing new features.
Could you share your advice on making work with a remote team successful?
- I think that the most important thing is to have continuous communication with all your team members. We schedule daily stand-up meetings where we share our progress and discuss challenges.
- Set up group chats for exchanging quick information and moderate communication between the programmers in a distributed team.
- Also, we installed cameras so that anyone could see that their colleagues are available and not to feel detached from their team. This simple trick helped the members of my team communicate freely and reach out for help whenever needed.