In the last 8+ years, we’ve gathered a substantial amount of wisdom from building digital products, what we’ve learnt, and also where we’ve failed. This has helped us grow and become a strong group of companies with the right experience to deliver cutting-edge digital solutions and consulting according to the current crisis-driven market. Before we take up any of the projects we work on, we ask ourselves and our potential clients a few important questions. For instance, we always ask ourselves before we begin development that “do our clients trust us and our process?”
In many blogs before, we’ve listed the many ways we help clients build trust by being a hundred percent transparent and giving the right advice even if that is not what product owners might want to hear. However, here we’re talking from our experience of the three main reasons many companies do NOT trust IT companies in general and as an IT company, how we deal with each of the three points.
In B2B partnerships with any IT company, communication is often a challenge. The client is unable to control the process be it outsourcing to a product development company or buying a licence for a PaaS company. As a result, they may not feel well-protected. However, the trust here always depends on the IT company offering their service or product. There needs to be an effective communication strategy in place. For instance, it should be a standard to have an NDA contract signed when any novel ideas or groundworks are being discussed, to protect both the companies in discussion. The IT company should always be transparent and keep clients informed and in line with the details of the project. If you’re running a PaaS or SaaS company, you might need to be upfront about any updates or changes in your product, if you are providing custom solutions, you need to be sincere with your client in truly fulfilling their needs. Most importantly, you need to be very accurate when it comes to giving a quote, and other project estimates. Efficient and effective project management is key to building long-term trust with your clients.
At Thorgate, since we often kick-off our communication sharing sensitive information (like insights from our side or product idea from client side), we always have the NDA signed first. Next, during the whole product development process it is important for us to keep the client in loop, provide accurate information and reliable quotes for both time and money. This is why we say we underpromise and overdeliver at Thorgate!
An erratic website design with little to no solid information
First impressions are everything, and it is essential to adopt simplicity and ease of navigation when building a website. A common way to check if your website is optimal is the blink test, the commonly accepted 3 seconds you have to tell your potential customers what to do on your website. If you are writing for search engines instead of people, you might be able to get the right traffic on your website but you would leave them confused.
Many IT company websites try to demonstrate that the team is able to do anything and everything under the sun. This kind of an approach can easily hamper trust before the conversation even kicks off. No company is great at everything, IT companies need to be specific, just like their product or services (hopefully).
If you are a fintech company, make sure your website does not just say keywords like “blockchain based fintech disrupting banking and finance”. That means nothing to a potential user. Be specific, what services are you offering? What is your expertise? Does your website give the right information to keep your user’s attention for more than 3 seconds?
Thorgate is a digital product development company, but again, that alone means nothing. To build trust with our client and be open or honest from the very first interaction, we make sure that we communicate that we are a design and development company with expertise in the Python language. We don’t wish to claim that we can do all sorts of software development for you, and so we don’t say it. We also list out the specific industries we work in!
Not focused on value-creation
Your IT company must have a vision, when you started, you would have a goal in mind on how you’d like to create value and impact the world around you. Are you delivering that value or are you just selling a service or product for the sake of it? Money motivated advice from consultants could mean IT services that lack agility, are not lean and create the opportunity for an expensive failure for their own clients. If your clients success is not what you’re aiming for, you will have a hard time gaining their trust. An easy way to see if your company is delivering value is just by asking your own team if they believe in the product or service you offer.
At Thorgate we adopt multiple ways to make sure we are focused on creating value and impact. We question ourselves again and again if the products we build for our customers are delivering value to end users. We try to be as iterative and lean as possible to ensure our clients success. We deliberately choose to not be a software production farm where we build anything in any tech stack. We constantly ask ourselves “Why”.
A great resource to get oneself to do this is following the concept of ‘What’, ‘How’ and ‘Why’, where ‘Why’ is always at the core of what you do, explained thoroughly by Simon Sinek. Why are you building the product you are building? Why do you want the clients you are looking for? Why should a client choose you?
Gaining the trust of the client should be a priority for all IT companies. In the current times when the ‘everything-tech’ startups are booming and traditional industries are looking towards the IT industry to take a step forward, let's make sure that businesses are honest, ethical and sincere with their own clients.