From London to Leeds and Portugal...
Having a presence in London has been a crucial factor in our steady growth. Being based in the city has afforded us with an abundance of clients and partners (massive thanks to all that are reading this and have helped us out over the years).
With growth comes the need to scale your teams and this presents a big challenge to tech agencies like us, that are based in London.
A shortage of top-notch tech talent is choking the capital, as agenices, consultancies and companies brawl to find, hire and retain the best staff.
We're probably all too familiar with the reasons why London commands such an inflated salary. The chart above shows the house prices and therefore living costs going through the roof. Quite simply having a large team in London is paying the majority of salaries into servicing the debt of the housing market - doesn't sound like value for money to us.
Despite having a natural hiring advantage - by offering superstar engineers exciting project opportunities with a big impact (we recently built PayPoint global corporate site) - we had to accept that scaling up profitably in London would make it hard to compete against an international market for software services.
So, five years ago, we looked for alternatives outside of London and settled with Leeds, which also has an abundance of strong tech talent, fuelled by several universities and a good foundation of technology led businesses, including: First Direct, SkyBet, BskyB, Emis, BJSS, TPP, William Hill and Call Credit to name just a few.
It's a move we're proud of and one we've invested into. We have just exchanged on a new premises with 6,000 square feet of office space in the heart of the city - where we plan to continue to expand the team of 16 and contribute to the growing tech community. Our move has been featured recently in Leeds Living, to promote the Leeds Digital Festival.
A peek inside...
The office is split over two floors:
The first floor during renovation
An auditorium for events and company presentations
The second floor during installation
Two large meeting rooms per floor yet to be fitted
Blended agile teams
Over the last few years we've been offering agile delivery split across our locations in London, Leeds and Portugal. "We have a team working across different locations?" Yup, and it works amazingly well. UML diagrams drawn on virtual witeboards, code reviews, project management and team leadership are enabled through a mature communications infrastructure, continuous integration, dedicated dev-ops, developer and project management tools.