Today we are speaking with Ilya Kislenka, the Chief Technical Officer at Mbicycle.
Mbicycle is a software development company that helps startups and SMEs over the globe launch their software projects swiftly and efficiently. In their work, they foremost adhere to the tendency to make the software product valuable for end users while supporting the bold business ideas of their customers.
Started as a small team of engineering enthusiasts, Mbicycle is a well-established software development agency with 130+ qualified experts and over 185 successfully delivered projects.
Can you tell us a few words about yourself, how you joined Mbicycle, and your career path here?
Before joining Mbicycle, I worked as an Android engineer for another software company. When I got an offer from Mbicycle’s CEO to join the company, I was first interested in the opportunity to develop projects that focused on helping people — projects related to IoT sensors, tracking activity and getting feedback from users. From the start, we found a common language with the company’s CEO. At that moment, Mbicycle was still a tiny company, and I also saw this as an advantage in realizing my abilities and ideas.
I started as an Android engineer and subsequently went through all these technical growth steps, including Senior, Team lead, Mentor & Tech Consultant, and Head of Mobile Department. As a result, today, I am the Chief Technical Officer at Mbicycle. The company has also grown over this period, and now we employ about 130 people. Currently, I am engaged in company development in terms of technology, building internal policies and regulations, and actively helping our sales department.
How does your company improve its daily operations?
When the Covid-19 pandemic hit the world in 2020, our company urgently began reviewing personnel and resource management approaches. We started much more actively than before, organizing convenient yet effective remote work, which has significantly changed the company’s business model. For a while, we were adapting to the new reality, and as the Covid restrictions eased, our company switched to a hybrid work schedule with office visits several times a week and remote work the rest of the time. We also set up a flexible working schedule in all our offices to minimize the number of employees being there at once.
How is your company doing on these pandemic occasions?
Fortunately, thanks to a quick response and a few accurate & proper management solutions, we were able to keep all of our current clients and continue our collaboration with them during the pandemic. We have also expanded the geography of our offline representations. Thus, we have launched the Mbicycle offices in Poland and Kazakhstan to access these new markets directly.
How does COVID-19 affect the working environment at your company?
Of course, COVID-19 has one way or another, affected the operation processes in our company and the majority of companies worldwide. We needed to rapidly respond to changing market conditions, come up with effective ways to work within the existing constraints, and at the same time maintain a high-end quality of services provided to our clients.
We have been fortunate in that we initially lined up our development teams with qualified and experienced professionals, which has greatly benefited our company during these challenging times. Due to their qualifications, our employees were able to quickly adjust to the new reality and maintain the quality level of our development services the same as before the pandemic.
Did you face any huge issues or tough choices during this period?
While our company has handled the pandemic successfully and favorably, we still face several major challenges. First, by the beginning of 2020, we had completed the renovation of our new branded office and were planning to move in just then. With the Covid restrictions, we had to postpone this process and organize a swift transfer of our employees to remote work. At the same time, we had no idea what to do with the new office since it was unclear how long all these restrictions would last.
The second major issue we faced was the company’s financial earnings decrease. Even though our current clients continued to work with us, their project budgets had to be reduced measurably. In this regard, we revised how to optimize software development models and reduce the number of implemented features. As a result, our company’s total revenue for 2020 was down from the previous year. However, in 2021, thanks to several fortunate factors, our company reached a regular increase in revenue again.
Are you using specific software or management skills to eliminate these issues efficiently?
To arrange efficient and cohesive work of all our departments and offices remotely, we decided to choose a new software for daily operation tasks. The most suitable option for our company became Microsoft Teams. With this software from Microsoft, we could efficiently store and edit documents, make and record video and audio calls, and conduct online meetings with clients and within the company.
Can you name a few of your company’s main competitors, and how will you keep competing in the market efficiently?
The main competition in our location is more connected with finding qualified specialists, not customers, as our clients are located worldwide with no ties to our region.
After the pandemic started, all our clients stayed with our company, for me, showing the high-quality level of our services. Another weight benefit that helps us stay in the game is that we usually find and implement the most appropriate and effective development models, team members, and the proper set of tools and technologies in each project individually.
Despite all the difficulties and restrictions caused by the pandemic, we could learn from this situation for doing business in the future. Thanks to up-to-date technologies, we can set up remote work from anywhere in the world and offer the market new products, such as applications for digital education, food, and goods delivery, online communication, and collaboration on different projects.
The market has changed, but I believe that our company was able to adapt to its new conditions successfully.
Spokesperson: Ilya Kislenka, CTO
Website link: https://mbicycle.com/
Website link: https://mbicycle.com/portfolio/