Author: Simon Forshaw, CEO
At Polar Cape we love to work with Start-Ups, and from what we can tell they love to work with us too. Big words you may say! Well – as an example we have worked with four different start-ups in the past four years and each time we have managed to get great feedback and repeat business.
And these have been some of the most exciting projects for our consultants too – they learn lessons that can be brought to much bigger clients later on.
So what is it that makes Polar Cape + Start-Ups into a good match? Here are four success factors.
Being a relatively young company ourselves, driven by an entrepreneurial spirit, then we know exactly where start-up companies are coming from. We know they have a passion for their idea. We know they need to keep costs low – really low. We know they hate wasted time, every minutes spent must count. And finally we know that they want a partner who has their best interests at heart – so that success becomes shared success.
2. Business Focus
Understanding the business idea in it’s simplest form is something that is key to success for start-ups. For example not getting carried away on technology solutions which may be cool and exciting but don’t deliver core business value in the earliest phases. This is something we have learnt ourselves in regards to our own business, and our entrepreneurial consultants are constantly asking questions about the core business – both to make sure we understand the business requirements but also so that we can play an advisory role.
At Polar Cape we also know that delivery matters. Delivering what the client needs, with quality, and on time. Delivery matters even more for Start-Ups when a successful launch can make such a big difference regarding initial traction and success. Of course, sometimes things don’t go according to plan. Requirements can change, unforeseen challenges arise. In the same way as Polar Cape has learned to spend time on the critical things, and prioritise with business focus in mind when building our own business – this is something we can bring to the table and help our Start-Up clients to do as well!
3. Technologically open
For us it is a given that we have excellent developers and testers who are broad in their knowledge and can quickly get up to speed on new technologies. This is a key enabler for success for us, and a reason we get client recommendations. We would not be who we are without our fantastic development centre in Macedonia. A specific success factor here is that we hire all-rounders. This means our developers and testers can quickly learn new technologies, and we do not have to push technology preferences onto clients just based on what specialists we happen to have. We can instead make the best technology choices for our clients. Even if there is a technology constraint from the client’s side – we know we can handle it and have shown this time and time again.
4. Agile – but with cost control
At Polar Cape we use agile software delivery methods. We are by no means the first or only ones to do this. But what we do that is appealing to Start-Ups is that we estimate project or activity cost up front, and use agile methods to be as flexible as possible within the high level constraints. The price estimation is crucial for cost control, and the flexibility is crucial to convert an initial idea into a working solution. We have different contract types too, including agile contracts (sprint based), so we know we can find a model that will work with our Start-Up clients.
Curious who we have helped so for? Check out:
We are really looking forward to working with even more Start-Ups in the future!