Over the past few months, clients and partners in New York and London have asked my opinion on the situation in Eastern Ukraine, and how it has affected DataArt’s operations, client projects, and development teams there. I was touched by the legitimate concerns about the wellbeing of our employees, and impressed by genuine interest and support of DataArt as a company that brings Western values and unifying opportunities to our employees across Russia and Ukraine.
While we have ensured that all client projects have maintained momentum and business has continued ‘as normal’ (see updates on our site) DataArt’s management team has been focusing on the immediate question of staff safety in our Kharkiv, Kiev and Odessa offices, as well as on the delivery of a comprehensive business continuity plan to safeguard the future of the business. We just issued a major announcement about our expansion to Western Ukraine and Poland, but today I wanted to focus on something else.
I believe that DataArt represents the best Russia and Ukraine have to offer. Since 1997, we have established a thriving technology solutions business, helping to design, build and implement mission-critical systems for businesses around the world. More than 1000 families, many of whom are in Ukraine and Russia, depend on DataArt’s continued success. Extrapolate these business connections to the broader industry, and there will be tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of people who are exposed to similar direct, non-political connections to this crisis. Despite calls for further isolation of Russia, we believe such business ties must be preserved for the sake of the future.
Since the crisis in Ukraine began, not a single client has stopped working with us. While a few potential new clients postponed the start of their new projects, the general tide has been to ‘keep calm and carry on.’ We have signed 12 new clients and received client contract commitments for more than $4m in new revenue during this time.
We did address every concern that has been voiced by our clients: since Western Ukraine to date has remained calmer and more stable, DataArt reacted quickly and efficiently by opening a new office in Lviv, away from the unrest in the East. Outside of Ukraine, DataArt will shortly be opening a new office in Poland, and we are now looking even further afield at the possibility of an offshore centre in South America or Asia. In addition to diversifying our offshore locations, we are expanding our on-shore capabilities in both NYC and London.
We have also taken steps to strengthen our existing infrastructure, our internal processes and client relations. All our offices are now equipped with satellite internet connections in addition to ground-based ones. We have invested significantly in staff training and in defining an expanded set of services – from Product Management to Managed Services, due to be rolled out this summer. To ensure the best customer service, we have also expanded our Engagement Management teams so that a dedicated team takes care of each of our five industry practices.
Client satisfaction and reassurance is everything to us. The future of DataArt and the personal financial security of our staff and their friends and family rest on us doing the right thing – to ensure we continue to offer the very best in technology solutions for our clients. I am thankful that our efforts to ensure this future is being accepted and indeed welcomed by our growing client base. Our dedication is such that while this is no iron guarantee, it is at some level an extra reassurance that we will do all we can to keep everyone safe, operations moving along and client delivery of the highest quality, on time and to budget.