As part of our series about the “5 Things You Need To Know To Create a Successful App or SaaS”, CodeRiders' business development specialist, Srbuhi was interviewed by Authority Magazine: a popular Medium-based magazine, that provides in-depth Interviews with Authorities in Business, Pop Culture, Wellness, Social Impact, and Tech.
Srbuhi Avetisyan is a business development specialist currently working at CodeRiders software development company. She has been in the international IT industry for a half decade. Helped various professionals achieve their business goals through cutting-edge, digital innovations.
- Thank you so much for joining us! Our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’ and how you got started?
- Thank you for the interview. I’m a business development specialist and I currently work at CodeRiders software development company. I have been in the international IT industry for a half decade now. However, if someone told me earlier, that I would work in an IT company, I would doubt that. I was very interested in the English language, Cross-cultural communication, and Journalism in my high school years. I was obsessed with English because I thought it was the key to bigger opportunities aside from my small country, Armenia. So, my first step toward my goal was winning a scholarship and having a chance to live and study in the USA. After returning to Armenia, I continued my studies in Journalism and Cross-cultural communication. I was very active during my university years and I accepted any opportunity that crossed my way. From a journalist at local press companies to an English teacher and art gallery guide. Eventually, I ended up in a travel and tourism company as an incoming tour manager. I worked as a tour manager for a year and a half and this was my first stable, in-house job. I was doing pretty well actually. I was traveling across the world and inside my country, as well as attending various international fairs, exchanging knowledge, and finding business partners. I discovered a lot of interesting things and became a professional in my work.
However, I was still in search of a “perfect job” for me. A job and industry that is rapidly evolving and never lets you stay stagnant. I was sharing my thoughts with my friend who worked in a software development company as a business development executive at that time. She offered me to join their business development team because they needed more professionals. I was first very hesitant because I was a little afraid. I did not know anything about software development and information technology. She encouraged me and, besides, working with my friend sounded quite exciting. So, I left my job and started everything from scratch at CodeRiders. That was in 2019. 4 years passed and I am still at CodeRiders.
I love working in the software outsourcing industry. My work is very flexible plus there are endless opportunities. You will never feel stagnant. There are so many things to explore. I started with digital marketing, and content writing, carried on with business development, and now I continue with IT project management. Time seems so insufficient because there is so much to do, and I love that.
- Can you tell us a story about the hard times that you faced when you first started your journey? Did you ever consider giving up? Where did you get the drive to continue even though things were so hard?
- The beginning of my career was very stressful. I did not understand the concept of information technology. I knew basic things but I did not know what is SDLC and how software developers work. I was also out of their world if that makes sense. It was very hard to fit in. I would succeed in a certain thing then I would just stop because I would not know what to do next, or whom to turn to for questions. Who is responsible for what. Is it appropriate to ask this question? Will I look silly if I ask this question? There came a time when I was certain to quit. I thought maybe it is better to change the industry and work somewhere I relate. Then I stepped back and decided to give it a last thought.
I wrote down all the great and not-so-great things about my current position, and I realized that there are so many positive things to be grateful for and I actually liked my job. I also did an objective analysis of my growth as a professional and understood that quitting would be just a silly mistake. So, I got rid of these hindering thoughts and concentrated only on my growth.
If anyone reading this interview finds themselves in such a situation, I highly recommend stepping back and looking at your situation as an outsider. Analyze your growth, write down the advantages and disadvantages, and if positivity prevails then quitting is not an option.
- So, how are things going today? How did your grit and resilience lead to your eventual success?
- Things are very good these days. I am only elevating and exploring new opportunities. Besides my responsibilities, I try myself out in different fields, for example, applying for international tenders, and exploring business management in IT and there is no lack of motivation so far.
- It has been said that our mistakes are our greatest teachers. Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lessons or ‘takeaways’ you learned from that?
- I do not remember an exact event but for me, patience and calmness are the keys. At the beginning of my career, I was impatient to learn more and I was worried that I am not elevating. I am a perfectionist in my nature (I think). I constantly need to challenge myself and ensure my “multifunctional” skills. However, as experience shows, you do not become a skilled and qualified professional within a night. Professionalism takes time, consistency, and permanent hard work. You should just keep consistent work and trust the process.
- What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?
- I think our team spirit. We all truly care about the company and its reputation. We do not spare effort in delivering high-quality software development services, customer support, and business solutions. Honestly, this is a gigantic advantage for anyone looking for a software vendor.
Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?
- The digital world changes within a second. Today’s innovation rapidly becomes tomorrow’s archive. So, it is important to not forget about learning and keeping up with the new trends and concepts. Also, networking is important. Meet with similar professionals from other companies. Exchange knowledge and ideas. Also, have hobbies outside your work. That helps to refresh and come back with more energy.
- None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?
- For me, anyone who crossed my way for a specific period during my career is a lesson and help. Some people helped me clarify what kind of person and professional I certainly do NOT want to be. Others empowered me to go further and not give up. My friends and family were and still are a huge support system for me as well. Just having people with good intentions to talk with and share their thoughts is everything to me. If we speak from the technical/material point of view, then of course my parents and scholarships were of huge help. They gave me a chance to first of all receive an education and chase my goals.
- Ok, thank you for all that. Now let’s shift to the main focus of this interview. Approximately how many users or subscribers does your app or software currently have? Can you share with our readers three of the main steps you’ve taken to build such a large community?
- At CodeRiders, we currently only offer software development services. However, we are planning to release an app soon. However, I still think I can answer this question because even as a service provider, we still have managed to create our community. We run a blog that helps us create and maintain a relationship with our potential partners or just people interested in software solutions. This is a very fun way to connect with the customers, find out their pain points, and become a support system for them.
- What is your monetization model? How do you monetize your community of users? Have you considered other monetization options? Why did you not use those?
- Our software development blog is a powerful tool for our company’s self-expression. It helps us create a bond with our potential customers. We do not earn anything directly from our blog, but it is a huge platform for us to speak out. It helps us create trust and also prepares our potential customers in working with us (to catch our vibe). Anyone who follows our blog will know what kind of company we are, our values, working models, and expertise and it will be easy for them to make a decision. As I mentioned, we are constantly looking for diverse opportunities. We filter out the best ones and think of what benefits we can get from them.
- Thank you. Here is the main question of our discussion. Based on your experience and success, what are the five most important things one should know in order to create a very successful app or a SaaS? If you can, please share a story or an example for each.
-Explore the market: Releasing an app or SaaS without exploring the market is a shallow move. You should thoroughly examine the market you’re about to enter. Market analysis is critical before releasing a new product. Risk management and market segment identification measure your chances. On the other hand, market analysis helps you understand the perspectives. It helps you concentrate on key values.
Recognize your users: How can you succeed in releasing a popular app or SaaS if you do not know who your end users are? User identification and feedback are extremely important
Analyze users’ needs and expectations/identify your stakeholders: Your app or SaaS should have the features and functions that are important for your end users and not just for you. Because you make a product for that specific segment. User experience is critical for the popularity of your product. Your product should be designed and built in a way that is comfortable for its end users. Benchmarking is a very interesting approach for both market research and user research. It is the process of analyzing your competitors and then comparing their solutions and approaches to yours.
Clarify how your app is different from all the other ones in the market: Hundreds of apps are released daily. Each industry or market has superior products that pretty much rule the industry. So, your app or SaaS should have something new or exciting to offer. This is a very effective way to gain attention from the users. Maybe you offer a feature no other app offers but is extremely important for the end users. This is the power of correct market/industry research and user analysis.
Update and upgrade: You should always get feedback from your customers. Learn their opinions, concerns, and suggestions to stay in the market. Besides, technical issues arise sometimes, and in this extremely competitive digital world, you will not survive if you have technical issues. For example, no user will stick to your product if its loading time is much longer than expected.
- You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. :-)
- Concentrate on you and your life. Mind your own business. The power of self-discipline and peace is mind-blowing. Create a community around you where everyone has goals and takes action. Be around people with good intentions and help them achieve their goals if you can. If you can not do that, never interfere either. Let everyone find their way through life. Chase your purpose. Do not copy others and understand that the world is full of millions of opportunities, so instead of living someone else’s life, create yours. The one that you genuinely want not just because it is impressive or fits someone’s expectations.
You can contact CodeRiders here and get to know our business development team. We provide qualified software developers, software engineers, UI/UX designers, and other IT-related specialists who have proven experience in working on various complex tech projects for companies from various cultural and industrial backgrounds.
Interview source: Authority Magazine
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