Web development Birmingham

Meet the team

 

Andrew Ward - Scorchsoft

Andrew

A guy who’s as determined in the gym as he is in the office, Andrew is the man behind Scorchsoft. His drive and passion for computer science push the whole team forward, and the experience he’s had in the industry has been great for developing the company. Andrew founded the company over 9 years ago, helped by his degree in Computer Science with Business Management, 4 years prior experience as a freelance web developer, and working as a project manager for Rolls-Royce Plc – he's got it all! A 99% extrovert, he also brings a lively energy to the office, and his focused attitude definitely helps him out when he hits the gym, which is handy as fitness is the second love of his life (after Scorchsoft, of course). From acrobatics to weightlifting, he’s always doing something active!



Chris Scorchsoft

Chris

With a first-class Business and Computing Systems degree, there’s no doubt that Chris knows his stuff. He’s got plenty of experience delivering customised cloud-based projects in the prop-tech industry, and loves seeing software projects transform from conception to completion. When he’s not working on tech, Chris is usually jumping into the nearest pool for a couple of lengths – he’s even done a 5K swim as part of a swimathon, which certainly takes a lot of physical and mental strength! It’s not surprising that he sets himself up for challenges when you hear his motto: don’t ever become complacent. He also likes to remind us to always give 100% in everything we do, and is a very motivational character around the office.



Natalie Scorchsoft

Natalie

Natalie is always up for a challenge. She's pushed herself to the limit both physically and mentally, from gaining her maths degree at the University of Birmingham to running a half marathon – she’s no stranger to overcoming obstacles. This makes her a perfect fit as our Computer Scientist. She’s also had plenty of experience in the industry building and designing large scale web applications, and is a pro at dealing with the puzzle-solving nature of coding languages. She’s even been part of an Emmy winning tech team, which isn’t something you get to boast about every day! Her advice to how she does it all? Chocolate. She swears that it makes everything better – and we believe her.



Waqar Scorchsoft

Waqar

Dedicated, focused, and hardworking, the team just wouldn’t the same without Waqar’s passion. If we put a complex programming problem in front of him, he’ll work on it until it’s done – in fact, he loves the challenge of it, and is always enthusiastic about the job he’s doing, even if it is tough. He’s definitely a man with determination, and nothing’s going to hold him back. His advice for life? Be humble and patient. With the amount of tricky issues Waqar manages to solve, we’d definitely suggest listening to what he says!



Audrius Scorchsoft

Audrius

As the man around the office with the motto ‘Don’t take life seriously!’, Audrius is the go-to guy if anyone ever needs a little happiness added to their day. He’s talkative, always happy to help, and his positive attitude is infectious! After he finishes what seemed like an impossible task, he’s at his happiest, and overcoming challenges with clever solutions is what he does best. He’s also a family man, but that definitely hasn’t stopped his career – he's got over 5 years of commercial web development experience and an incredible knowledge to match, which he brings to every project he works on.



Thomas Scorchsoft

Thomas

We think we’d struggle to find many people who love working with code as much as Thomas. After graduating from Aberystwyth University, he’s spent most of his time knee-deep in tech, wires, and coding, and he’s got plenty of experience with all three. If you’ve got a complex problem, you can always rely on Thomas to come up with a simple solution, usually involving just one line of code, and almost certainly written on a Linux computer! When he’s bored, you’ll find him making very cool origami dragons (luckily, he hasn’t made any at work yet – code always comes first.) He’s also one of the kindest people you’ll meet, and his life saying, ‘Ubuntu’, only proves that. It means ‘humanity to others’, which we think’s pretty lovely.



Eleni - Digital Project Administrator

Eleni

Our resident fantasy geek and translator extraordinaire. Eleni is Scorchsoft’s Digital Project Administrator; she has an eye for detail, testing projects thoroughly before we release to our clients, ensuring they are happy with what we build and have excellent customer experience. With a BSc in English Language and International Relations, as well as plenty of certifications across English and French, she’s also a talented linguist with the qualifications to prove it. But, Eleni’s story goes far beyond her work - it starts over the sea in Greece. After living there all her life, our adventurous introvert decided to up sticks and leave, travelling to the UK entirely on her own, and that included coming to join us at Scorchsoft - and we couldn’t be happier with her choice!



Our process

1. The initial phone call or enquiry

For you to be reading this, the chances are that you have a business challenge that you would like to solve with technology. You might want to launch a new product or tech start-up, do more with your data, automate a time-consuming process, or communicate more effectively with your customers. Though you know your project will help support your goals, you need a ballpark quote to help you to evaluate whether the value your ideas bring commercially is worth the amount of investment.

If this describes you, then please get started by requesting a free quote, and we will be in touch via email or phone to discuss further. Respecting your time and need to make quick business decisions, if we give you a phone call, then we aim to provide a ballpark quote on that call.

2. Face-to-face meeting or video call

If our ballpark quote is in line with your expectations, and you like what you hear about our approach and processes, then we would recommend arranging a slightly longer face-to-face meeting or video call. This is a chance for us to meet, and make sure we are the right fit for each other.

3. Planning process

The planning process involves a longer meeting where we discuss your requirements in much more depth. The aim of the meeting is to agree on a plan that all parties believe in, a plan that aligns with your business objectives, including optimising to meet target delivery timescales and budgets.

After the planning day, we write up an in-depth technical specification and create the user journey wireframes (UX).

4. Itemised fixed-price quote

Now that the plan is fixed, and we have a specification, we provide you with an itemised fixed-price quote. This quote allows you to make decisions on the priority of features based on the time each one takes, without you having to deeply understand the depths of the technology behind the scenes.

5. Decide on the project phases

Now you have an itemised quote, if you want to work with us, then you can decide whether to order the entire project or to split it into phases. We recommend keeping your initial launch version as lean as possible, allowing you to launch quickly so you can begin testing your assumptions. Deciding which tasks are completed at what times might also be a factor considered in the planning process.

6. Milestones and the agreement

We wrap up the plan, specification and wireframes into an agreement document that makes it clear what you are getting, for what cost, when payments are due, and what the high-level project milestones are. Typically, we will split payments into chunks across the life of a project, where payments are aligned to the agreed milestones.

There is the option to work in a Waterfall or Agile manner, depending on which approach suits you best. To achieve budget certainty, most clients opt for a waterfall approach for their phase-1 project.

7. Project start

Once you sign the contract, we begin work on the agreed project start-date. Before we begin on the design or development, we get the team together to discuss the technology. This means planning the structure of the code and database so that your project will stand the test of time and support future extensions.

8. Graphic design process

Now we take the wireframes, optimised with user experience in mind, and make them POP! This process involves out designers creating graphically designed mock-ups that look and feel like the final end-product, in line with your logo and brand guidelines. We will provide a handful of screens to you for review before we do the rest, so you can make changes and sign-off on the style.

Once we’ve completed the graphic designs, you’ll have the chance to feedback on those designs, ensuring you are happy before signing off on them.

9. Front-end view coding

Next, we code-up the graphic designs into web or mobile-app ready interfaces. This stage is the look-and-feel without any working functions.

10. Back-end coding, and front-end functional coding

With the specification, wireframes, and graphic design signed off, we are now ready to begin the bulk of the development work. This typically involves setting up the database structure, the back-end admin panel, any API’s and functional coding. We go through the specification, line by line, making sure what we build aligns meets the plan that’s agreed.

Internally we have processes to manage quality, such as weekly masterclasses, code reviews, one-to-ones, project reviews and programming standards.

11. Testing

Internally we test the project in cycles as we complete the groups of requirements from the specification. Once the project is feature-complete, we do a large round of internal testing, checking for bugs, cross-referencing the specification, wireframes and graphic designs for accuracy.

Once we’ve completed internal testing, we will hand over to you for a period to test (acceptance testing) and review that you are happy. Should you have feedback, or identify any issues, then we will collate that feedback and action any in-spec bugs or requests.

Once testing is complete, we ask you to sign off on the project.

12. Launch

Once the project is signed-off, we go through a process of deployment and launch. For portals, web apps and websites this means putting the code live on the relevant server environments, making sure the domains point at the right place. For mobile app projects, this likely involves deploying the app to the iOS and Android app stores.

13. Post-project support and hosting

We have our own hosting infrastructure that is suitable for most projects. If you anticipate large amounts of users or resource use, then we may explore the option of configuring your own dedicated or cloud hosting environment.

We also offer options for ongoing support and maintenance should you think your project requires this.

14. Ongoing development (if required)

Once your project is launched, we can either treat new requirements as mini-projects, going through smaller cycles of planning, quoting, signoff and development. Or, if you’d like to implement a lot of new features each month, then you may prefer to engage us for a development retainer, where we schedule a fixed number of hours each month to extend your project.

Have more questions about our process? Check out our frequently asked questions page, or please contact us to ask us directly.

FAQ Our portfolio Our capabilities Free quote

Scorchsoft is passionate about developing high-quality, innovative web applications, websites, and mobile appsWe are problem solvers and solution finders, values that permeate every element of the business, from initial contact, through to planning, development, and launch. We deliver projects that look great, are highly usable, but more importantly, that help you to achieve your business objectives.

We constantly keep on top of what is happening in the business and technology world to make sure that we are proposing the best possible approach to our customers. Our MD was even interviewed on the Modern CTO podcast for insight into the tech industry. This in-depth knowledge allows us to be flexible with what we can deliver for you, and it's likely that we will have ideas for your project that you are yet to consider.

 

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