Turning 9: As Time Goes On, Tiempo Development Gets Even Better

This month, Tiempo Development is nine years old. I would like to thank each of our customers, all of our employees, and everybody who has provided encouragement, inspiration, guidance, and criticism along the way. It’s interesting to look back and think about what that journey allows us to say about the future of the company. I feel that we are still in the early stages of this effort, with a lot of great accomplishments to come as we continue growing.

Leaving the traditional outsource model behind

As an entrepreneur, I have developed and led a number of successful companies. What is different for me about Tiempo is how much it is about people. We are not just about talented software engineers and tech leads and creating the software our customers need to achieve their goals. From the beginning we hoped from to achieve a positive impact on people’s lives—customers, employees, the communities we belong to, the individuals and companies we touch as we go about our business

When Tiempo started, I was the CEO of a company where we provided CRM consulting and deployment services. We contracted with a software development provider in India, many time zones away. They used a traditional waterfall model of building software. The more our customers looked to become agile, innovative organizations, the less effective that approach became. I felt there had to be a better way to collaborate with developers and create best-in-class software.

A beginning with four software engineers and a vision of opportunity

I knew outsourcing was an effective and affordable strategy to accomplish this, but I wanted to avoid the inefficiencies and delays that can plague intercontinental engagements. At that time, there were very few technology companies in the state of Sonora, which borders Arizona, my home state. Much of the workforce was in manufacturing and assembly jobs, and the few high-tech businesses mostly served local customers. I hired four software engineers in Hermosillo—the beginning of our development center there. The team and I were certain that, if we could be successful and efficient at creating the software our customers required, we would be able to bring opportunity to professionals in the area, where very few well-paying, worthwhile jobs were available.

In those early days, we were very conservative in terms of spending. We drove from Phoenix to Hermosillo instead of flying, a close to six-hour round trip that I must have made hundreds of times. Most of the time, Tiempo software engineers or business executives traveled with me, and we got to know each other very well at a personal level. Many of these relationships have lasted, and that particular flavor of closeness with colleagues and enjoying what you do and who you do it with, has never left the organization.

It takes a community to grow a company

Ever since then, as the development center has grown to over 200 employees, we have created opportunities for people—including high school students who may go on to get a technical degree and end up working in the software industry. As people move into homes, make purchases, and pay taxes, the jobs Tiempo creates help create additional jobs and economic benefits for the region. What’s more, because Tiempo actively supports causes our employees care about in the local communities, our success has a ripple effect on the lives of many other people and the results of nonprofits in the Hermosillo area. The story is similar in our two other development centers in Monterrey and Guadalajara, but it is very dramatic in Hermosillo, because the employment scene there was relatively bleak when the other areas already offered more and better opportunities.

The State of Sonora as well as the Federal Government of Mexico have made large investments in high-tech education, business development, and infrastructures, and the help we received through their programs was invaluable. We also were very lucky in connecting with customers who gave us an opportunity to prove our value, even when they were used to creating software on their own or with outsource providers in other countries. They helped us mature our approach to agile software development, which led to the Tiempo Quality System. It was a huge professional and emotional milestone, for Tiempo as a company and for me personally, when a customer told us that we had become better at building software than they were. Customer input also helped us create a successful strategy in how to recruit, hire, retain, and develop the best talent.

Surviving, thriving, and pursuing our mission

We began the company shortly before the Great Recession and lived through it by working very hard and getting to the depth of our individual and collective resources and creativity. As companies closed and people lost their jobs, Tiempo carried on growing. When we emerged from the economic crisis, we introduced agile methodology into the way we ran the business in addition to writing software. We also took the time to define our core values and what the company was really about. We understood then that making lives better was our core purpose, for which best-in-class software development and delivery was a very effective vehicle. Together with our core purpose, we defined our core values—Delighting the customer, People, Collaboration, Integrity, and Discipline. As you may know, every month we dig deeply into one of them. To me, they are all equally important and an unending source of good ideas and improvements in how we work.

What all of us at Tiempo do today is still in pursuit of that original dream of benefiting people, companies, and communities. All experiences of the last nine years are a part of how we support customers and run the company. Every customer interaction, each daily stand-up meeting, every new hire, every team activity that highlights our values, determine what happens next. I know that some of the best talent in the industry is at Tiempo and defining our future. We are now seeing much more innovative initiative from bright people at all levels of the company, not just from the executive team. That is enormously valuable in serving customers, effectively adopting new development tools, and growing the company. It’s that personal engagement with work as a mission that will enable us to build powerful software for high-value, visionary businesses that can transform industries and value chains. Plus we enjoy what we do and each other’s company—that, too, has not changed.

 


About Tiempo Development

Tiempo offers a unique and very successful combination of a nearshore business model, agile methodology, deep expertise, and advanced talent management. We build for you the powerful software that fits your vision and strategy, no matter whether you rely on it to run your own business or whether it is a product you provide to your customers. When time matters, we help you accomplish software releases that deliver the business value you look for with great velocity and most cost-effectively. To learn more, visit www.tiempodev.com or contact Tiempo Development.