Six months with GBK solved a problem that had occupied us for ten years
Role: Chief of Operations and Finance at Nelson Precast
Our small business has struggled for more than a decade to find a software solution to manage the processes of our niche industry as manufacturers of highly customized construction materials. We've spent tens of thousands of dollars testing existing products, but everything has been either totally unable to adapt to our workflow, a clunky glorified Access database with a UI so slow to work with that it's not worth the bother, or more often both. I have some background in web development, enough to mock up a few skeletal pieces of a larger application that were enough to convince me that a better solution was possible - if we had the time and money to create a custom application, which I was sure we didn't.
And then we heard about GBK. From the earliest conversations with them last summer, I was impressed by their professionalism. They asked excellent questions and very quickly grasped the complexities of our business and industry. When they quoted us a price and timeframe, the numbers were excellent - they proposed to have a minimum viable product ready in just six months, for a price competitive with buying off-the-shelf business software - but I, jaded as I was by years of sales pitches that never delivered, took those numbers with a grain of salt. When was the last time a software project came in on time and on budget, after all?
Well, it turns out the answer to that question is "January". That's when GBK completed the designated scope of work right in the proposed six month timeframe, and indeed came in slightly under budget. This was possible because their highly competent and communicative project managers and business analysts worked closely with me to work through every contingency. I have a good head for thinking through a workflow and identifying issues before they happen, but GBK's team put me to shame on that front. There were no unanticipated delays precisely because they were so good at anticipating what would delay us. The hardest thing I had to do in the entire process was just to keep up with their tremendous productivity.
I only wish our budget was unlimited, so that we could continue working with them on this project indefinitely. It's been a phenomenal experience. The new software is now being implemented and we expect it to pay for itself within just two or three years through reduced quality issues and improved productivity and morale. The user interface is elegant, attractive, and thoughtfully designed at every level; no clicking through eighteen different forms just to accomplish a single daily task, as with so many of the solutions we've seen. They even managed to implement what I'm fairly sure is an almost entirely unique in-browser PDF editor connecting PDF annotations to database objects - a feature which is, on its own, going to make an entire department noticeably more productive while also eliminating several possible sources of errors. The end result fits our business like a glove, and all for a price that was within the reach of even our small business.
In the end, it was probably good for us to search fruitlessly for a solution so long, since it forced us to think through our business logic more than most companies do. Still, I wish I could go back in time to tell myself about GBKSoft in 2010. The least I can do is make sure others know how much time and frustration they can avoid by working with such a professional, competent team of web development experts.
What do you like most about the company?
Top-notch project management and incisive analysis of business logic keep them on time and on budget. They don't bat an eye at even the most unusual ideas, and treat them as challenges instead of obstacles. And they deliver all of this at a price which is more than competitive.
What they should improve on?
There was some turnover on their business analysis team which occasionally meant I had to explain concepts more than once; it's possible that they could improve retention in that department. However, good project management meant that the disruption to the project was minimal.
$50001 to $200000