Michele and Francesco Moretti tell all on the business IT consultancy and integration firm's current and future movements
CTG: What are the common weaknesses of nearshore IT contracts? How should they be avoided in your experience?
FM: Typically, traditional nearshore IT contracts will deploy staff with little business experience of how the particular sector the client operates in works. This leads to a disconnect between the developers and the client who find their processes and sensitivities are not immediately grasped. Another common issue is a lack of regular contact between project managers and developers. This means problems are spotted much too late, increasing the costs of understanding and then resolving issues. At Fincons, we use agile work methods in addition to our smart shore centre. Agile workflows enable effective remote working as there are numerous contact points between developers and managers, resulting in more frequent interfacing and therefore more frequent checking. This means problems are detected earlier, saving time and resources.
CTG: What are the advantages of having your delivery centre in Italy?
FM: The Fincons Delivery Centre was set up in 2008 in Bari, a port and university city in southern Italy. We now have a team of 370 dedicated, highly qualified staff - 90 per cent are graduates. A key characteristic of the centre is the negligible level of staff turnover. Clients greatly appreciate the consistency we provide, as our staff can ensure that operations continue to run smoothly. Our clients can also be rest assured that, as the centre is based in Europe, it will be fully compliant with the new GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) when it comes into force next year.
CTG: As promoters of innovation what do you think are the key traits of innovative firms?
MM: There are several factors that keep Fincons innovative. We constantly look out for new technologies and solutions from different global vendors. This vendor-neutral approach is key to remaining innovative as we are not limited to who we can work with. Secondly, working across a range of sectors constantly presents us with new challenges - inspiring new ideas and solutions. Thirdly, as we expand to different locations, we actively invest in scouting out innovation and inspiration elsewhere. And lastly, we strongly believe in the importance of continual training and research, including regular exchange of ideas with academia, and ensuring our staff is cross-functional, meaning they gain experience across different stages of the software development process.
CTG: What type of institutional promotion of an innovative culture do you think helps businesses and which would Fincons like to see more of?
FM: We often work with universities and research institutions to generate new ideas and nurture talent. We take full advantage of all the opportunities available, for instance, by taking part in EU-funded projects alongside major players in key industries, technology companies, universities and research institutes. One example is the Multi-Platform Application Toolkit (MPAT) project, under the EU's programme for Leadership in enabling and industrial technologies - ICT. As a participant, we were able to develop cutting-edge engagement-experience solutions that have proven very useful to advertisers such as out-of-live-flow interaction, appointment booking over TV, second-screen interaction and many more. In fact, we were developing solutions in the broadband and broadcast convergence arena long before HbbTV became a standard in the UK.