Moving UP the stack
If you missed the first part of this blog you can find it here > So … A year and a half - part1
As I mentioned, Arctiq is focused on the software and automation aspects of technology. Infrastructure-focused projects are still very important, but the applications that run on that infrastructure are the real effect on how the business runs. This certainly introduces many critical aspects when automating your infrastructure and applications lifecycle. Automation tools enable the concept of integrated security into your infrastructure and applications. You can read about a real world example from our Practice Safe DevOps Event.
One example of moving up the stack is working directly with the development organizations. We spend a lot of time in the containerization space, so this generally starts with designing the platform. There are many aspect to this stage including: whether or not it will run in the cloud, sizing, networking, security, access controls, storage, self service options, and HA/DR capabilities–to name a few! Soon after we finish this stage of the architecture and build, it’s time to move up the stack.
What makes change?
A container service is only going to catch on if the development community finds it useful and it makes their job easier. As we work with more development teams we start to see the true power of automation. This is achieved by automating the business process to gain greater velocity, generally by moving to Continuous Deployment and Integration. I can say one thing for certain: developers love containers, self services and automation frameworks; they don’t want to be working on the infrastructure aspects of the environment. They want to focus on writing code…
Positive recognition is always a good omen
Over the past year and a half Arctiq has been fortunate to work with many great customers. We are fortunate to continue to deliver projects for many of these same customers today on new and exciting initiatives. It’s always a positive sign when you are able to retain happy customers and it’s even better when your customers and partners recommend Arctiq to their community. Receiving awards was not something that Arctiq was focused on, but they continue to be a pleasant surprise and provide positive reinforcement that our model is working. We continue to work with our customers the way they want to engage; this does mean doing things differently and being willing to continuously change our game plan. It has proven to be a refreshing way to run our business.
Staying customer focused
As I mentioned staying customer focused has been critical to our success and continues to bring positive results in many aspects. We are discovering new partners based on new challenges we are seeing in the market and what our customers are identifying as gaps. We were able to have a amazing customer & partner appreciation party in May to celebrate our first anniversary. As Arctiq continues to grow we will be sure to keep in mind what drove our success and so many new opportunities
Eating our own dog food
This is one aspect that we continue to get better at. Every day we are helping customers understand the potential and opportunity when using today new tools and frameworks. The best way for Arctiq to learn and master these new tools and process is integrate them into our business. It allows us to learn exactly what effect they can have on our business and how we need to change to gain greater value from automation and continuous feedback. We have many stories the team plans to blog about; one of my favourites is how we completely re-wrote our web platform, enabled continuous integration and migrated to our partner Github Pages. Today we all make our own changes to the website and post our own blogs (enabled by a complete automated workflow). Keep an eye out for this blog coming soon. It’s starting to look a lot like a platform we can soon offer to our customers.
Listening to customers and filling gaps
One thing we started to hear from our customers is the lack of real-world training related to new software technology they were utilizing. Not the “how to install / configure” training but what we tend to call “Day 2.” This was part of our original business plan but as we listened to feedback we were able to build our the program. It’s focused on real world use cases, for example: how to operate and utilize this new tool or platform, troubleshooting aspects, and integration with other tools. We run them as hands on workshops and attendees get a lot of real world experience to do their job more effectively.
A whole new space
As I wrap up this blog series some cool things are about to happen. We are in the final stages of designing our new office and moving to a much larger space. One important aspect of this new space will be having a great place to run our workshops as well as starting to bring the community into many of our projects. We attend a lot of tech meetups and run as many events as possible and notice it’s always hard for the community to find a great events space that is cost effective. Our new space will be designed to host great meetups, events and tech talks as well as a place for our partners and customers to collaborate with us. Stay tuned for a launch event we plan to host in Toronto.
Not a surprise but our blogging and sharing technical information with our community dropped off quite a bit this summer. I can attest that we have a long list of topics that we want to document and share. Keep an eye out for new blogs and signup for our Expedition Newsletter at the bottom of any page to receive notifications. Please share them with your community as it helps others learn about Arctiq and hopefully encourages them to share their own information and learnings. Many new customers found Arctiq via a web search so a quick share is very appreciated.
My next topic will be way more technical but this was a nice way to reflect on the past year and a half and provide some context of how we run and scale Arctiq.
Interested in learning more or discussing any of the technology we utilized? We would love to hear from you.