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If we think software quality is important ...

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  • Casey Charlton
    Do you think that ten of us alt.netters getting together and forming a consultancy would: 1) Take the consultancy world by storm by producing massively better
    Message 1 of 38 , Mar 18, 2008
      Do you think that ten of us alt.netters getting together and forming a consultancy would:
       
      1) Take the consultancy world by storm by producing massively better software than our competitors
       
      2) Find ourselves producing comparable solutions to top end consultancies such as Thoughtworks
       
      3) Find that we can't make a case to clients as to why we are so much better than everyone else
       
      4) Spend all our time arguing over which design pattern is best for X problem ... and having intellectual debates over coffee for hours on end, never producing anything
       
      Alternative suggestions also welcome ...
       
       
    • Casey Charlton
      I would enjoy reading it too. A few years back I did run my own consultancy, with myself and a partner running it, and at the peak a staff of fourteen. The
      Message 38 of 38 , Mar 24, 2008
        I would enjoy reading it too. A few years back I did run my own consultancy, with myself and a partner running it, and at the peak a staff of fourteen. The amount of work we put in was immense, the pay was far worse than being a contractor, and despite well over half a million in funding, we found it nearly impossible to differentiate ourselves from every other code monke offering to do someone a web site for £50 and a bucket of peanuts.
         
        We found our biggest problem was that in software sales, you can promise anything, and at any price, and there is no way to prove you (or your competition) can do what they say they can till the end of the project.
         
        The clients we did have loved us - we were doing "agile" before it really hit, and they thought it worked for them being involved on a daily basis. Their recommendations were solid gold. But there was never a critical mass that got it rolling on automatic, as the number of competitors promising 10x more for 1/10th the cost was just too overwhelming.
         
        Most of our real successes were on taking on projects other consultancies had already screwed up, and delivering them on time and budget.
         
        Partly due to the dot com crash, partly due to investor concerns, and partly due to the repeated problems with having no way to create any unique selling point we could prove (and disprove our competitors claims) we folded the business after a year.
         
        I now earn 30% more, work 50% less hours, and still watch consultancies promising the earth and delivering a big pile of mud over and over.
         
         
        And ... I still dream of that perfect job where I can be allowed to deliver high quality software day after day ... but in nearly 20 years in this game, and probably 30-40 solid contracts under my belt, I haven't found it yet.

         
        On 24/03/2008, nickgieschen <nickgieschen@...> wrote:

        That'd be great. I'm just starting something along the same lines
        myself and would love to read about your experience. I've also
        encountered and am trying to figure out what to do about the fix
        budgets issue, since I've been burned badly by it before.

        --- In altdotnet@yahoogroups.com, "Christopher Bennage"
        <christopher@...> wrote:
        >
        > Well, I have yet to post anything about my business experiences.
        > Though it sounds like I should.
        >


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