The Dutch owners are a big plus for us because that means that when we have business meetings with the owners, we can really talk in our own language and they understand our culture, our habits, and what we value, so it’s important that we can speak to them about it and they can transfer that back to their company and the people working there in Odessa.
I actually really like coming here because, of course, it’s a bit of a different world from the Netherlands, but it’s really Western. What I really like about Odesa is that it’s a beach city so it has a really relaxed atmosphere and nice restaurants, and if you want to go out there’s also a possibility to do that.
Yes, It’s nice to get to know people here and know about their habits. I’ve never felt unsafe here. I’ve always been treated very well by HYS, being picked up from the airport and being guided by people. Also, we have a dinner together. So yes, I like coming here. It’s really nice.
Development and connection
We’re working according to an Agile methodology, so we have a big influence on what the HYS team works on and we try to manage them ourselves as much as possible. We agree on that also with the owners of HYS.
We wanted it to be like they were in the room next to us, so we have video conferencing set up in our office. We have our own room, which is actually, like this one, completely with glass. So it feels like they’re in the same room with us. We have set meetings, of course, we do our standups, and we have our refinements and sprint reviews. It’s really easy to just set up a video conference (we use Zoom) with the team and they’re all there at a table so it feels like one big table.
And for other moments we always have Slack as a communication tool, so we have separate channels with all the teams so they’re working together. If I need someone from the HYS team, it’s just as simple as dropping a line on Slack and seeing if we can work it out there or maybe set up a Zoom call, where we do screen sharing. It’s actually really easy to talk with people here.
HYS has lots of experience with CRMs and big data because of other projects they’ve done, and I think that’s the part that will really become much more important for retail companies in the future. That knowledge also helps us to come up with new ideas together and new roads to follow in the future.