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President, Manta Ray Consulting
This is an authentic review from Clutch.co
Please describe your company and your position there.
I’m the president of Manta Ray Consulting, a consulting group that primarily provides support for large projects relating to building and upgrading particle accelerators. Our customers are Department of Energy laboratories in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, and other locations throughout the country.
What challenge were you trying to address with Arcanys?
As part of our consulting work, I wrote a project management application that we utilize in the facilities we work in. A group based in Bangalore, India built the application, but they grew to busy to manage it and give me the attention I needed. Arcanys took over the application’s maintenance and development 4–5 years ago. It’s been a fruitful collaboration.
What was the scope of their involvement?
Initially, they took over maintenance of the application developed by the Bangalore team. They learned a great deal regarding what the original design and development team did. I then gave them the green light to improve the application. They studied the front- and backend in-depth and provided recommendations to improve the app’s UI and backend performance. Afterward, they were responsible for keeping up with maintenance and adding enhancements customers requested.
As of August 2018, they’ve started to develop the second version of the application. To save money, they’re using the existing backend structure (an SQL database and .NET platform) and making mostly cosmetic changes. I’ve worked with two developers to evaluate the app’s current design and revamp it to be stylized and sexy.
What is the team composition?
I worked with a project manager in the early stages, who introduced me to the lead developer. I’m also a project manager, so I began working directly with the lead developer. She’s a brilliant woman, who, in my mind, is a miracle-worker.
How did you come to work with Arcanys?
I looked at reviews online and narrowed the choice to 2–3 companies. After interviewing the people in charge and the developers we’d be working with about their experience, it came down to Arcanys and another firm based in the Philippines. Arcanys’ younger staff won us over because they were in tune with current thinking regarding app development. Though both firms had similar development skills, we liked Arcanys’ modern appearance.
How much have you invested with them?
My average expenditure with them in the early stages was about $3,500 per month. It’s tripled since then because we brought on a design and development team. In total, I’ve spent between $100,000–$200,000 with Arcanys.
What is the status of this engagement?
We started the most recent iteration in January 2017, but I believe the overall collaboration began 4–5 years ago.
What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?
An independent cost review of our work at a facility in Berkeley, California used the app to prepare and develop their plan. Two weeks prior, we gave community members access to the tool so that they could evaluate it. They were so impressed they recommended to the Department of Energy that all projects use the app going forward. Their recommendation made it all the way to Washington, which is quite an endorsement and success story for us.
How did Arcanys perform from a project management standpoint?
I’ve developed a tight-knit relationship with my team of developers at Arcanys, so the communication is wide-open. Because they’re in the Philippines, we talk over Skype. We also use Jira to upload stories and discuss technical issues.
What did you find most impressive about them?
They have really talented developers.
Are there any areas they could improve?
They’re 13 hours ahead of us, so I would change their time zone. I have to work late but that's just the way it is.
Do you have any advice for potential customers?
It’s important to understand the cultural differences that exist between your and your provider’s locations. Empower them to speak their minds and alert you if you’re leading them down the wrong path. I told our developers this first thing, and we've been fine.
(Ontime / Deadlines)
(Services / Deleliverables)
(Value within estimate)
(Willing to refer)
President, Manta Ray Consulting