ShakaCode Client Engagement Model

about usApril 01, 2020Dotby Justin Gordon

ShakaCode is a software development agency focused on high-performance mobile and web applications built with React (with JavaScript, TypeScript, or ReScript), Ruby on Rails, Gatsby, Rust, and related technologies. Delivering an exceptional user and developer experience, ShakaCode offers "React on Rails Pro," a subscription-based service including a React-on-Rails Pro license for accelerating client- and server-side performance along with ongoing optimization and support.

Typical client engagements

1. Technical optimizations & developer environments

Leveraging our extensive React and Ruby on Rails expertise, clients often initially engage ShakaCode to resolve challenging performance issues. Complementing your core development team with the required skills and experience, many of these projects have expanded in scope to include feature development.

ShakaCode's technical expertise includes:

  1. Front-end React performance optimization (based on Google PageSpeed scores)

  2. Back-end Ruby on Rails performance optimization (often based on Scout APM metrics)

React-on-Rails Pro

Available on a subscription basis, React-on-Rails Pro includes built-in code-splitting, caching, and highly efficient React server-side rendering, simplifying development and guaranteeing server response time improvements of up to 90%.

  1. React on Rails Pro optimizations: Working along with your in-house team, we'll set up and configure the optimal development and deployment environment for React with Ruby on Rails projects, increasing developer efficiency and productivity while improving application performance.

Technical optimizations with proven results

Initially engaged in optimizing development and production environments, ShakaCode enjoys a successful, long-lasting relationship with numerous happy clients. Read their stories by clicking on the links below:

  • Datacenters.com: A high-density colocation, enterprise cloud, managed services, and connectivity solutions provider.

  • Go Get Em Tiger (GGET.com): A subscription-based coffee club service with great coffee delivered right to customers' homes.

  • Printivity.com: The fastest growing digital print company in the USA, recognized for its 100% satisfaction guarantee.

  • Popmenu.com: A startup SaaS platform providing a dynamic, supercharged consumer experience for restaurant clientele.

2. End-to-end web app development or maintenance

Delivering complete lifecycle development projects---often initiated by CTOs or non-technical founders---we'll turn your ideas into reality, enabling you to focus on your business priorities. Offering turnkey development with experienced developers, competitive prices, and full transparency, ShakaCode's team includes designers, frontend and backend developers, user experience (UX) specialists, and project managers.

Turnkey development for CTOs and non-technical business founders

Supporting CTOs and one-person development teams, ShakaCode has successfully delivered complete lifecycle development projects for the following companies:

  • Blue Moon Digital Inc.: A digital consultancy helping clients leverage the power of data to drive digital transformation

  • Datacenters.com: A high-density colocation, enterprise cloud, managed services, and connectivity solutions provider.

  • Go Get Em Tiger (GGET.com): A subscription-based coffee club service with great coffee delivered right to customers' homes.

  • Printivity.com: The fastest growing digital print company in the USA, recognized for its 100% satisfaction guarantee.

3. Staff augmentation for flexible team scaling

Augmenting and complementing your existing development team with experienced developers at competitive prices, ShakaCode helps get your project completed faster without your having to add full-time hires. ShakaCode enables you to quickly scale development resources while providing ongoing expert knowledge-sharing and mentoring for in-house developers.

Scalable expert resource pool for accelerated development

Complementing in-house development teams, ShakaCode has provided frontend and backend developers and user experience (UX) specialists on an ad hoc or project basis for the following projects:

  • Blue Moon Digital Inc.: A digital consultancy helping clients leverage the power of data to drive digital transformation

  • Jilt.com: An email marketing platform recovering lost revenue from WooCommerce, Easy Digital Downloads, and Shopify stores.

  • Popmenu.com: A startup SaaS platform providing a dynamic, supercharged consumer experience for restaurant clientele.

What to expect: Project onboarding & engagement

As ShakaCode's founder and CEO, Justin Gordon is the primary contact for all new projects. You can book a free, 30-minute consultation with Justin to discuss your project and explore the possibilities. If required, Justin will provide references and introductions to other ShakaCode clients relevant to your project type.

Once the scope is established and agreed upon, Justin will send you a template of the standard ShakaCode Master Service Agreement and a project proposal. After the contract is confirmed, you will receive an invitation to e-sign along with an invoice for the initial retainer fee.

Once the paperwork is complete, Justin will provide a team of highly skilled experts according to your project milestones and technical requirements. Communication, collaboration, and project protocols will also be established, generally utilizing Slack for instant messaging and Clubhouse or Jira for agile project management.

ShakaCode team members

All team members participating in your project have been carefully vetted by ShakaCode's founder Justin Gordon, participating in rigorous coding discussions and tests before being onboarded. While ShakaCode\'s developers reside worldwide, all have good written and oral English communication skills and fast Internet.

The majority of ShakaCode's team has been with the company for several years, working on internal projects---such as the revolutionary HiChee.com price comparison site for USA vacation rentals---to learn new skills and participate in open source initiatives when not engaged on client projects.

Hourly-Billing vs. Fixed-Price Bids

ShakaCode is open to both fixed-price contracts and projects based on hourly billing. However, we find hourly billing to be more cost-effective for our clients since it eliminates the need for extensive upfront scoping and built-in contingency buffers. It also allows for scope creep---which is generally inevitable---without requiring time-consuming negotiations and contract addendums where many software agencies make up for low, upfront bids. Moreover, ShakaCode's hourly billing provides high-quality, peer-reviewed code with weekly time-tracking reports for full transparency. Time estimates per task and negotiated hourly caps ensure there are no surprises, resulting in a win-win situation for both ShakaCode and our clients.

Rates and Billing Policies

ShakaCode's standard rate is $125/hour, while "lead" developers are charged out at $150/hour. Clients receive advance notice of any planned involvement of developers categorized as "lead."

Large, long-term projects may be eligible for significant discounts negotiated during the definition of project scope.

Typical ShakaCode/client weekly workflow

Recurring 15-30 minute meetings are scheduled every Monday or Tuesday for clients to meet with Justin and the lead developer to discuss project status. In general, the weekly project meeting covers:

  • Work to be completed and potential issues for the current week

  • Project tracking (progress and budget) against client expectations

Additional discussions are scheduled as needed to discuss strategy, technical architecture, and UI and UX design.

Weekly billing reports

Weekly reports detailing billable time for the prior week are sent out every Sunday for review and approval. Before sending the reports, Justin meets with each team member to review the time tracked for each client project and ensure time spent is correctly allocated and billed.

For additional details of how ShakaCode uses tracks and reports billable time, please see the article Clubhouse (Jira/Trello/Github) Toggl Time and Task Tracking.

Are you looking for a software development partner who can
develop modern, high-performance web apps and sites?
See what we've doneArrow right