2023 in Retrospect: Reflecting on a Journey of Highs and Lows
27 Dec 2023
The post-COVID era has not been one of the easiest and 2023 is not an exception. As we bid farewell to another turbulent year, it’s time to pause and reflect on the incredible journey we have shared with our partner-clients and team members.
Being a highly dynamic and ever-evolving industry, software development outsourcing, as all the other business sectors, has been greatly impacted by the ongoing global events. The endless wars, the recession, and the geopolitical turbulence didn’t pass by VOLO either.
However, despite all the hardships, 2023 has also been a year of learning, innovation, and growth for VOLO. We not only reinforced our ongoing partnerships through organizing face-to-face meetings and sharing moments together, but also gained several new global partners.
Software Development Outsourcing in 2023: Key Highlights for VOLO
Below we will walk you down the memory lane, celebrating the milestones and looking back at the challenges that all contributed to our continuous success and resilience as a team.
1. Our Partnerships
Our partners, their trust and loyalty, and lasting collaborations are the lifeblood of VOLO, the driving force that keeps us going. We are beyond proud that thanks to the invaluable contributions of our expert tech team, the companies that entrusted their software development to us, have been able to reap the benefits of technological innovation. From streamlining operations, cutting costs, automating daunting manual processes to enhancing their user experience and delivering optimized tools for their clients - it’s been all a result of teamwork, dedication, and commitment to the goals we set together with our partners.
Another reason to call 2023 a success is the visit of a few of our long-term and valued partners to our head office in Yerevan, Armenia. Back in May, VOLO hosted the Chief Product Owner at TradeCloud, Matthew Botell. TradeCloud has been our partner from the commodities industry for many years and we were beyond happy to meet the team here in Armenia and share beautiful moments together. At the end of the visit, we shared the insightful conversation that our CEO, Armen Kocharyan had with Matthew Botell with our local and international community.
Later in the summer, another valued and loyal partner of VOLO, Gap International, came to Armenia to meet its remote tech team.
Another important guest we happily hosted in our head office was Lynn Platow, COO of Skipti, our partner offering a SaaS platform to automate the sustainable commerce experience. She was kind enough to give us an interview where she reflected on the journey of Skipti and VOLO, how we helped them optimize their online marketplace, enriching it with new features and building a delivery management app from scratch.
We did not just host our partners though. Some of our team were lucky enough to visit them as well. In July, our tech specialists flew to Germany to pay a visit to our long-term client Finance in Motion.
Conversely, we are not afraid to mention the challenges and hardships of our international collaborations as well. It’s beyond natural that things don’t and can’t always work smoothly and perfectly. Doing software development for businesses from different industries (commodities, healthcare, logistics, agriculture, etc.) is not for the faint of heart. We take our challenges and difficulties as lessons learned and experience gained, and move on.
2. Embracing Technological Evolution and Adapting to Change
The tech landscape is evolving at a faster pace than ever. What this means for businesses, especially IT companies, is that if you fail to keep up with this evolution, you will lose in the competitive market and be overshadowed by organizations that embrace the change.
The concept of agility has always been a fundamental truth for VOLO. It is thanks to our agile and flexible approach to work, that we have come this far, building partnerships that last an average of five years. We always adapt to changes, be it a technological change or a change in our partners’ project requirements during the implementation process.
Our openness to change followed us throughout the year of 2023 as well. Our team delved into the latest innovations in the tech industry, from AI/ML to IoT and blockchain, gaining new skills and knowledge. This helped us ensure that our partners are not falling behind the competition in their respective industries.
3. VOLO’s Achievements and Recognitions in 2023
As proof of our team’s commitment to continuous learning and growth, as well as to delivering excellence, VOLO managed to hit several milestones and gain official recognitions:
- We earned the Kubernetes on Microsoft Azure Specialization, a testament to a solution partner’s invaluable knowledge, extensive experience, and proven expertise in implementing and managing production workloads in the cloud using containers and managing hosted Kubernetes environments in Microsoft Azure. The Kubernetes on Azure specialization can only be earned by partners that comply with stringent criteria around customer success and staff skilling, as well as pass a third-party audit of their container-based workload deployment and management practices.
- We were recognized as an ISTQB Silver Partner. Being recognized by the International Software Testing Qualifications Board is a testament to VOLO's unwavering commitment to adhering to the highest standards in the field of software testing.
- We were named a top B2B company for software development services, as well as a top IoT company and Top Wearable App Developers in Eastern Europe by Clutch.
Official recognitions by well-established industry experts and marketplaces are always a bonus for software development companies that help build a brand name and boost reputation.
4. Community Engagement
Beyond the daily hustle of doing business, VOLO prides in its effort to give back to the community. In 2023, we took part in initiatives that promote education, diversity, and sustainability.
We started the year by joining the IT4SOS initiative to raise funds for children in need. Together with other Armenian companies, we walked, ran and cycled all the while reducing CO2 emissions. We are happy that our simple actions worked for the greater good, raising a significant amount of money for unprivileged children and reducing our carbon footprint.
Well into the middle of the year, our tech experts expressed their willingness to spice up the summer holidays of children by teaching them programming, covering HTML, CSS, and even JS. Our team helped the kids gain new knowledge and unique experience, giving them a taste of the coding world.
We believe that such initiatives are not the mere responsibility of educational institutions, NGOs, and charity organizations. They should be an integral part of the identity of businesses and corporations worldwide.
5. Knowledge-Sharing and Growth
The VOLO team regularly participates in various tech summits and seminars to stay updated on industry trends and make valuable connections with thought leaders, driving continuous growth for our company. Additionally, our experts also share their knowledge by taking part in similar events as valued guest speakers. Here is an overview of our 2023 journey across the industry events:
- The year kicked off with our team visiting the MWC 2023 (Mobile World Congress) conference in Barcelona. The conference covered all things tech - from AR/VR to sustainability.
- We participated in DigiTec Expo, representing our HRMS digital platform, Raiser. The solution helps effectively manage all HR-related processes, automate corporate workflows, and transform employee experience.
- As part of our company's commitment to learning and development, our Business Development department took part in the Ad World Conference, the world's largest advertising event.
- In April, we participated in the seminar "People Analytics: Why Analyzing People's Data Matters" organized by the Deutscher Wirtschaftsverband - DWV Armenien. During the session, we again had the opportunity to showcase our HRMS solution, Raiser.
- Later in May, our CEO, Armen Kocharyan, took part in the MIT Venture Advancement Program to jumpstart the further advancement of Raiser.
- First in May, then in August, we invited the co-founder and CEO of Stratoplan, Aleksandr Orlov, to hold intensive sessions with our team leads to help them hone their leadership competencies, mindsets, and skills.
- May was quite eventful. Our team also participated in the Worldwide Software Architecture Summit 23, organized by Geekle.
- Armen Kocharyan, our Co-Founder and Managing Director, and Diana Kabajyan, our HR Director, attended SHRM 2023, the largest gathering of HR professionals held in Las Vegas. They came back armed with the latest HR insights and industry knowledge.
- In October, VOLO's CEO Armen Kocharyan and our Director of R&D, Suren Hajyan, participated in a discussion titled “Cybersecurity for Business Leaders: How to Stay Ahead of the Security Game." The forum was organized by the British Embassy and Startup Grind Yerevan. The key topics discussed were the setting of country-level standards, the development of robust cybersecurity standards in Armenia, boosting investment, going global, and making sure that software solutions outsourced by Armenia are compliant with the international cybersecurity standards.
- VOLO became the General Sponsor of DevFest Armenia held in October. The event hosted the local tech community becoming a source of shared knowledge and networking.
- Armen Kocharyan, our Co-Founder and Managing Director, joined the panel discussion on "Work Arrangement Dilemma: In-Office vs. Remote?" at Buissup Conference 2023 held in November.
- We wrapped up the fall season by participating in WebSummit 2023 held in Portugal.
- Our CEO, Armen Kocharyan, shared his knowledge and perspectives at the Agile Ninja workshop organized by the Business Development Group. "Agility moves us forward. At VOLO, we continuously deliver valuable software to meet the demands of a changing world through customer feedback, technical excellence, open communication, and early issue identification based on data gathered to guarantee product success. We acknowledge the inherent risk of failure in any project and invest maximum effort into keeping that word away from our clients!"
- We capped off the year with our final internal training at VOLO – a focused Business Analysis program led by expert Victoria Cupet, EdD.
As you can see, we do our best to stay abreast of industry trends to propel continuous company growth and development.
6. Our Webinars
On the note of knowledge sharing, we cannot help but mention how successful 2023 has been in terms of organizing and hosting webinars with our tech experts as well as guest speakers. Here is a quick summary of the tech talks we have had this year:
- Cloud Adoption Strategy: What’s Right for Your Business? - Speakers: Davit Khachatryan, Head of DevOps/IT infrastructure at VOLO, Levon Hovhannisyan, Senior Technology Strategist at Microsoft
- Legacy Applications Modernization - Speakers: Nune Darbinyan, Head of Engineering at VOLO, Ani Mehrabyan, Senior Software Engineer at VOLO
- Mobile App Development for IoT Projects - Speakers: Andranik Hayrapetyan, Senior Android Developer, Team Lead at VOLO, Arman Hovsepyan, Android Developer at VOLO
- Powering Your Software Development Project with Python - Part 1: Demystifying Python - Speakers: Ruben Ghafadaryan, Python Team Lead and Architect at VOLO, Tigran Danielyan, Senior Python Developer at VOLO
We look forward to many more new and insightful webinars that we hope to be of value for our existing and future partners as well as the tech community in general.
As we are approaching the new year, our hopes and excitement for the future are almost tangible. We believe that our achievements and the challenges we faced in 2023 will serve as solid foundations for upcoming opportunities of growth and development.
Before we go, we want to extend our heartfelt gratitude to everyone who has been a part of our journey in 2023. It is thanks to your trust, loyalty, dedication, and collaboration that we have come this far, delivering excellence and helping businesses worldwide through software development. Here is to many more years of growth, innovation, and success.