Alex Kholodenko, Founder CEO of CodeIT, describes their journey of humble beginnings in an apartment to a global app development brand today.
It was in 2007 when the IT industry has not been that big of a deal. My business partner and friend Yuriy suggested that we start creating websites and software solutions. At that time it was a rather new area of business and we had to learn on the go. And to be honest at first it sounded like something that had very little chances to work out as expected. Besides, both of us were working in different companies and had our own goals & perspectives there.
But we took the risk. With the right investigation and right people, the dedication of time and resources, and learning from our own mistakes we have built our company step by step. I took over the business aspect and Yuri the technological one. A week or two later we met an exceptional tech-savvy guy, who joined us as our Solutions Architect. The whole thing just began out of pure interest and enthusiasm! Some companies started in garages, we started in an apartment, just the three of us. But we were driven and motivated, pushed through like there was no stopping us, learned everything we could, took any opportunity that came our way. That gave us an incredible baggage of experience and developed an understanding of what we want CodeIT to be. In a year we were already renting an office, had a team of about 10 people and several ongoing clients. Looking back - I’m glad that I trusted my friend's gut and we created our company.
I am proud of the path we have come and what we have achieved. Of course, there were lows, but they were necessary and brought some valuable lessons, so I have no regrets. CodeIT has lived through several economic crises, and is still going strong - that means we are making the right decisions.
As I said before - there were certain lows, some of them connected to the events happening in the world. It is always challenging to keep your business running when you do not affect the circumstances. But I have some of the best people in the CodeIT team that I trust and can rely on, and we went through a lot together. And this is one of the “highs” - building the right team and seeing the result of that cooperation. Another thing I would like to mention is, of course, gaining the trust of our clients, seeing them come back for other projects, and referencing us to their friends and colleagues.
We treat each project as our own, simple as that. This is the mindset we nurture in our team. If you care about something, you will put your effort to achieve the best possible results. Same here - we don’t want to view our projects just as work, a clock-in assembly line. We want to engage our team, make sure they are interested in what they do, and deliver outstanding results. And I can proudly say - so far so good! The majority of our clients see for themselves how much we care for their projects, how we handle unexpected risks, how fast we come up with different solutions, combining our experiences and skills. CodeIT’s positive reviews and client loyalty ratio can back it up :)
The world becoming more digitalized has both its benefits and detriments. The opportunities to create a digital presence and reach out to people, clients, and business partners are endless. To spread the word, see the reaction, interact with comments and reviews is now easier than ever. But of course, other companies do that as well, so the competition is tight ????
Plus we travel a lot. This is one of CodeIT policies - for our clients we are just a flight away. We are open to personal meetings, we can meet in almost any part of the world if it is necessary - at any time.
The world of technology is changing, rapidly. Everything around us becomes mobile, the biggest industries like IoT, Automotive, eLearning, etc. move to the apps more than ever. Mobile apps have become an essential element of our digital ecosystem. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, Beacon, Chatbots, Ecommerce, Wearable tech - this is our new reality and I believe it will only grow further.
The COVID changed our lives and some of the industries drastically. Some had to adapt rapidly to the new remote-and-from-home kind of life. A lot of mostly offline services made a huge switch to digital technologies. I believe this would happen anyway, the pandemic just speeded things up by several times.
We have built CodeIT in 2007 and of course, since then our employee count grew as well as the number of the tested strategies. Our company must treat people right. Our workers have flexible hours, competitive salaries, we try to take into account their interests when assigning to projects. I know how important it is to be human towards your team. To ensure senior-level support, Individual Development Plans, and 360-degree feedback sessions. Provide resources for learning and professional growth. In CodeIT we make sure that everyone is heard, ideas and innovations are appreciated, anyone who needs help - any kind of it - can find it. I mean, the company consists of everyone involved, working as a well-coordinated mechanism, not just the top management.
Of course, I am not saying we are perfect, and not everyone was happy with CodeIT during this time. But it is a good motivation to improve as an employer. Who can show you what can be improved in the company, if not your team?
To me, success is not only a goal achieved, but also a process. Being able to do what you love every day, making an impact, taking on challenges - big and small - and appreciating all of your milestones. I don’t measure it in the amount of money earned, rather the difference I make, the help I can provide, the changes I can bring. And of course by how happy I am ????
Well for starters CodeIT invests in self-education so we always have a bench of developers engaged in tech and business expertise improving their professional skills. We do meet deadlines and have no hidden costs. Our team is result-oriented, working to meet business goals of our clients.
Also, the high quality of services and business reliability is a must for us. We are involved in the process, aiming to deliver results that will progress the client's business. And I guess as I mentioned before - we are open to communication, soft skills are one of our strong points. Traveling to the client to discuss business face-to-face, to give the more personal feel to the negotiations - for CodeIT it is not a problem.
Machine Learning is one of the most evolving technologies that has gained extensive exposure in the last years. We see it taking a special place in Healthcare, Business, Cyber Security, Marketing, and Supply chain. But I think the Healthcare industry is where it benefits the most when the world is finally paying attention to it. Now more than ever there is a need for computer-aided diagnosis, medical image processing, patient-doctor health records, disease predictions, clinical trials, etc. Machine learning models are designed to execute actions that only humans were once thought to be capable of performing. But of course, it should not be looked at as a replacement for doctors and healthcare professionals.
We extend our reach through our CRM by running social media campaigns and capturing leads. It has been estimated by Facebook and Twitter that on average 75% of users expect a same-day response, so in CodeIT we don’t leave our clients hanging.
We also extensively use integrations with 3rd-party tools for enrichment. Social media campaigns, sales proposals, call scheduling apps, email automation, communication tools, etc. Specific parts of sales and marketing automation that come in handy in our work.
One more trend that worked for us was the omnichannel approach - you can continue the customer’s lifecycle in each channel instead of starting over and maximizing customer engagement. CRM trends change all the time and it is a good practice just to try different approaches to find those that work for your company.
What has worked from me the best was learning from my own mistakes. Of course, it is always easier to learn from somebody else's path and blunders, but I had it the hard way. Which is great in a way, cause I gained the experience and now I am not afraid of new beginnings and risks. This led to great results, and I think it is something every entrepreneur should go through to build a successful business.
Always think about your clients - know their products and projects. What they do, why, how, who they do it for. Be as involved as possible, really investigate what you work with. Don't be afraid to make mistakes, invest in your experience. There is a good saying - fail fast. It means, the faster you make a mistake - the faster you learn from it. And I strongly believe in that. And one more thing - build a reliable team and trust them in your business.
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