JWA has been trading successfully for thirteen years both in UK and internationally. Below are a few case studies that exemplify our achievements over those years with some of the world’s largest technology companies but also some of the smaller technology niche players that we are currently helping to grow.
Case Study 1
JWA’s client, a leading telecommunications infrastructure and handset manufacturer sought an efficient solution for ensuring that vital pre-release software testing on certain products was performed as quickly and cost effectively as possible.
For several reasons, simply providing testing specialists to work under the direct management of the client was not a realistic option. However proximity to the client buildings was essential as extensive access to the client’s Testing Equipment itself was fundamental to the delivery of the testing activity.
JWA proposed a solution designed to provide an outsourced service with as much day to day contact and monitoring as the client required, without day to day responsibility. By quickly opening and equipping an office very close to the client’s development site, JWA provided a team of expert telecommunications test specialists virtually next door. The client accepted our proposal to move the testing equipment under a leasing arrangement to JWA’s own local office.
In order to maximise the testing time available on the test machine itself, JWA devised a shift system for its engineers’ access to the test equipment, including evening and weekend shifts. This ensured that JWA was able to significantly increase the productivity of testing output in relation to machine availability in a way that would have been very difficult for the client to achieve with its own personnel.
The client, whilst having reduced management and labour costs, at the same time received a managed service performed 500 metres from its own premises in a secure environment. It received a weekly progress report and could inspect the premises or activity with 24 hours’ notice at any point in the contract. On a monthly basis a meeting was held to anticipate the varying workload. The level of engineering hours were then increased or decreased according to the most productive use of the service contracted for on an annual basis.
Case Study 2
In May of 2011, a major electronics MNC (Multinational Corporation) client requested that JWA quoted for a fixed price Statement of Work (SoW). The SoW was for providing and managing a specialist verification team for the testing of wireless modem stability components and related elements of verification for its smartphone chipset division. This was achieved by hiring or replacing individual specialists from several other suppliers and forming an initial core team of four, recruited and managed by JWA.
Although some travel was involved the SoW was performed primarily from Munich and entailed the provision of service over 12 hours, staggered by the Team Lead to cover inputs and requests from five time zones around the globe as efficiently and cost effectively as possible.
JWA, having agreed the scope terms and conditions of the SoW, appointed a Team Lead (based on 3 previous successful contracts with other JWA clients) who took direct responsibility for allocating the increasing workload as more projects were directed towards the stability team (beyond the original wireless modem tasks). The project was also increased to include release testing of mobile services including many wireless technology standards from GSM to LTE.
The Team Lead became a single point of contact for the task delivery and JWA hired four more GSM/UMTS/LTE trained Test Engineers but with a priority and emphasis on using junior lower cost engineers wherever possible in order to reduce average unit cost low as the team’s scope and size expanded. JWA appointed a part time onsite Project Coordinator who managed coverage issues for illness, vacation, emergency cover alongside the team lead who liaised directly with client managers for project coverage optimisation.
By 2011 the team’s function had been increased and the team itself expanded to a headcount of nine. By August 2012 the entire contract was renewed for an additional 12 months. As projects become fewer in the final year 2013, JWA reduced the manpower on this SoW in line with required cost cutting. The expenditure range was approximately 0.9 to 1.7 million USD per annum over the three year duration. In January 2014 JWA’s involvement on the activity ended with a successful handover process.
Client reference available on request.
Case Study 3
JWA was contacted in April 2013 by a German start-up company managed by a former client. The company is a pioneer in domestic automation/ smart home technologies and had an urgent requirement to create a Graphical User Interface using the standard Open Service Gateway Initiative (OSGi) platform for Java programming. The immediate priority was to refine and develop usability and design concepts for domestic automation, and to integrate all of the elements into a complex engine.
JWA identified several routes for accessing the defined skill-set needed and presented to the client several options for designing and developing the interface. The options comprised of JWA engaging an individual freelance specialist with a strong track record in the exact architecture required, or delivering via a niche German software house, researched by JWA, to deploy one of its own specialist developers to work with the end client. A final option was offered to the client which was for JWA to employ a specialist engineer who would become a leased employee (AUG) to perform the tasks required by the clients.
The client decided the most suitable solution would be to engage the software house via JWA until the suitably qualified and motivated engineer could be recruited on a permanent basis to perform the tasks required during the latter stages of the project. The specialist software house took responsibility for the bulk of the early development within pre-agreed time-scales designed to fit deadlines and coincide with the arrival of the permanent recruit who would perform the more complex integration tasks. With progress being made on the OSGI platform itself JWA started the second phase of the agreed task which was to deliver for the client a relatively lower cost permanent recruit to take over the bulk of the development. The most suitable technical and cultural fit was a developer who was studying in Germany but was not yet eligible to work in the EU.
JWA investigated and facilitated the eligibility process with the client to ensure an immediate transition of the workload upon the arrival of the Blue Card documentation*. The handover consisted of an allocated time period in which the consultant would coach the new recruit to bring him up to speed with the existing developments and to facilitate the next stages of the software development and integration. Once the transition was effectively completed, JWA ceased involvement in the project with the client satisfied with the solution and the new recruit fully prepared to execute the remaining tasks.
*For high-skilled non-EU citizens in accordance with the German Residence Act, Council Directive 2009/50/EC
Case Study 4
In July 2011 JWA received from a major electronics multinational an invitation to quote for an outsourced work package concerning SIT pre-release software testing to be performed on location. The activity was primarily manual software testing but with some elements requiring a high level of system test experience.
The activity was at the time of the JWA offer being handled by client personnel and the objectives were to free up personnel to concentrate on higher value activity. The main objective for JWA was to gradually reduce the quantity and cost of testing expertise, without compromising the quality of service through a 15 month period. It was clear that the tasks did not require the input and costs of a senior system test Engineering team but rather a blend of high and lower cost resources for delivery.
JWA assigned an experienced Lead Test Engineer for the initial two weeks to get a clear understanding of the scope of potential detail required. The Lead Engineer had already worked successfully with JWA on a similar size project in mobile technology in the past and had successfully collaborated with John Whelan on many occasions with three other world class mobile technology companies for ten of the previous fifteen years. The Lead Engineer was the sole interface for technical liaison. JWA provided a Project Coordinator to work when needed and John Whelan visited every three months to ensure overall client satisfaction.
It became clear that for the initial phase only one Senior/ Lead and one Junior was required. JWA scrutinised a pool of options and by September added the junior to the team for the initial phase. By November 2011 it was clear that the workload would increase sufficiently to require an additional junior resource. Following a series of screenings in London, a second and third junior was deployed to Munich in January 2012.
By Spring of 2012 it was clear that the workload would diminish by the Summer. In parallel both juniors had established full competence on most projects, thus enabling cost savings by deploying cheaper resources when possible without compromising delivery. The Lead Engineer’s involvement was gradually reduced and phased out for the final three months of the project.
Case Study 5
Our client owns a portal for the redistribution of and multimedia access to global academic studies and conferences using highly innovative digital technology and new methods to achieve this. In parallel it is pioneering a digital publishing service within academia which is positioned to disrupt the current status quo in the industry to a very significant level.
During the initial phase the client developed and designed the essential back end MVC framework using a UK based Consultancy which in turn managed the software development and support via an outsourced development company in Central Europe. However following a reorganisation a key decision was made to bring all subsequent developments under the direction and control of the company using its own employees.
JWA was recommended by a previous client and following several meetings was tasked with the requirement to build a software team and help to appoint a Software Development Manager to oversee the subsequent development on an exclusive basis in exchange for a high quality dedicated account team, significantly reduced percentages on the salaries and highly attractive replacement periods.
Following the appointment of the Software Development Manager, JWA has successfully addressed and is still addressing recruitment in web development and marketing. Initially JWA recruited Frontend and Backend Developers as well as User Experience and User Interface Designers. Some of the skills required were rare due to the specific frameworks the outsourced development company had been using. Once the core of the software team had been created JWA were tasked with recruiting a number of marketing and editorial professionals for the digital publishing service the client was establishing.
The Client remains very happy with the value proposition in an extremely challenging local recruitment market where everybody is chasing the high performers and where the average recruit in the same disciplines is sometimes overpaid.
Full client reference available at an appropriate stage
Further information for all case studies is available on request.