GuruHut has launched a combined project management and business analysis unit to provide solutions to their existing clients and a broader market.
GuruHut is a collective of Java developers who produce software solutions for a range of clients, from online gaming websites to large corporates. Originally, their expertise was in software development. Over time, they found themselves filling a progressively more active role in project initiation and implementation activities.
So, the decision was taken to focus the developers and architects on their core expertise and launch a new business unit to tackle the project management side of their delivery. The business unit was launched not only to support and manage existing projects, but to provide its services as a standalone function to other clients as well.
John Orrock came on board to create the business unit. He brought with him 18 years of experience in the financial services industry, spanning multiple banks and divisions, and having worked, more recently in the retail, software vendor and public sector spaces.
“We launched the unit because it was consistent with GuruHut’s strategy of providing services across the entire value chain,” says Orrock. “We had staff doing things that were outside of their core passion – writing code. We know that developers do their best work uninterrupted, so we decided to bring in complimentary skills to create a win-win situation, in which the client gets faster delivery of quality work, and a better articulation and understanding of their needs, while our developers are freed up to focus on their core activities.”
GuruHut favours the adoption of Agile methodologies in its software development, which enable the company to be flexible but thorough. The same philosophy is followed by the project management unit.
“The rate of change in business today is remarkable, and clients need to tightly manage their ability to adapt,” says Orrock. “This means that we often need to deliver faster and do more with less. Agile methodologies bring together the technical and non-technical processes of project delivery in line with the aspirations and abilities of the client and make sure that expectations are managed and met.”
GuruHut is distinguished by its recruitment policy, which sees individuals who are strong team players and self-managers being brought into a flat hierarchy. The same approach is being applied to the recruitment of project managers.
“We’re not chasing head counts,” says Orrock. “We prefer instead to upskill existing staff by exposing them to new experiences to strengthen their skills. Once we’ve grown the people on the team, we want to attract appropriate individuals in a way that isn’t short-sighted, but assesses how well they fit into our team and what experience they bring.”
The new business unit plays in the same industry verticals that GuruHut always has, but with the broadening of staff expertise, is also positioned to take on new challenges.
“We have a strong focus on financial services and telecoms,” says Orrock. “But project management is more about the process than about what is being managed. Technology is an enabler, but people craft technical solutions, so we focus on what needs to be done.”
The project management unit has been successfully integrated into GuruHut and is managing solutions for existing and new clients. With a strong team on board, backed by multiple successes with an existing client base as well as a passion for the new, Orrock is confident that his unit is ready to tackle the challenges that the future presents.