2019 in review
Happy New Year to all! 2019 was definitely a year we won’t soon forget, as it marked some of Agiledrop’s biggest successes to date: a significant expansion of our team, offices and technologies, topped with an even greater focus on providing the best possible experience for our employees. We are now more than ready to take on not only this new year, but rather the whole new decade.
From 40 to 60 full-time employees
In last year’s review, we announced that our team had grown to 40 full-time employees that year. Well, this number rose quite significantly in 2019 - at the end of the year, the Agiledrop family boasted as many as 60 members, making us one of the fastest-growing development agencies in the country.
Most importantly, this growth did in no way come at a cost to a great employee and workplace experience: with all the new offices opened and all the perks added to existing offices, our employees are able to work in the best possible environment while maintaining a healthy work-life balance.
Unprecedented revenue growth
In terms of revenue, we can proudly say that 2019 was a year of unprecedented growth for us. We far surpassed the goals we set for ourselves at the end of 2018, while retaining everything that was already functioning perfectly before: our major clients come from different countries, meaning that we don’t have to rely on a single client or market to keep us afloat.
Moreover, we managed to secure clients both in the agency and end client space, and we are looking forward to continuing with this trend in 2020. A notable improvement was also that we started providing more and more managed development teams to our clients, rather than single developers.
We were really happy with this as we see it as a testament to our clients’ satisfaction with our services and knowledge that they can always rely on us. The two also resulted in a number of longer partnerships that no longer feel only as mere business partnerships, but actual strong and sustainable relationships.
We plan on continuing with this trend going forward, while providing our clients with solutions and personnel that are tailored specifically to them.
One of the most significant novelties for Agiledrop in 2019 was the opening of two new offices, the expansion of our existing Maribor office and the move of our Ljubljana headquarters to a much more spacious location.
We already knew at the end of 2018 that our Ljubljana team would need a bigger office space, and we had also outlined plans to open a second office in the north-east region, in Celje. But, due to the unexpectedly rapid growth of our Maribor team, we also needed to increase the size of their office to accommodate everyone (especially during morning times when developers have their daily update calls with clients).
Another thing that caught our attention was the huge spike in popularity of IT services and development in Novo mesto, the capital of the south-east region in Slovenia, where we also saw a lot of interest in working with us.
Thus, we killed two birds with one stone with our Novo mesto office: we’re helping the local development community there to evolve more significantly, while also expanding our team to another city and greatly cutting down commuting time for employees in this region. As such, we contribute to the community in Slovenia and also guarantee an excellent employee experience.
We figured out quite a long time ago that our team performs much better when we foster a culture of collaboration and a strong team spirit - a kind of “all for one, one for all” mentality. To this end, we schedule numerous activities throughout the year where we get to better know each other and forge new friendships.
I can safely say that in 2019 we held more of these internal events than any previous year, namely:
- Team lunches (dubbed “AgileFood”),
- After-work sports activities, or “AgileSport”,
- Internal lectures organized and given by our developers, called “AgileTalk”,
- 2 larger “teambuilding”-esque events, where the entire team got together and combined several activities - you can read more about them here.
In addition to these, we also held several other internal and external events - e.g. we hosted meetups organized by the local PHP community, and one of them featured our developer Peter Kokot - one of the release managers of the latest version of PHP, PHP 7.4.
With a greater number of clients and employees come new requirements and skills. 2019 cemented an observation that we made at the end of 2018 - namely, that we needed to expand our services beyond just Drupal.
We’re proud to say, then, that we’ve successfully transitioned from being an exclusively Drupal agency to offering our clients solutions in a wide range of technologies. We’d previously worked with the powerful front-end framework Angular only as part of decoupled Drupal projects, but last year we executed a number of projects leveraging Angular alone.
Similarly with the WordPress CMS - while it is a popular content management system for smaller personal sites, we started working exclusively on enterprise-level WordPress projects where we can truly make the most use of our developers’ skills.
We plan to focus even more on WordPress and Angular, and have a larger share of our projects this year done with them. This also means that we’ll need to build larger and more dedicated Angular and WordPress teams, in order to also facilitate working more with managed teams rather than individual developers.
Giving back to the community
Of course, like each year, we didn’t fail to give back to the community - both the global open source community and the local development community in Slovenia. In 2019, we organized the highest number of our free Drupal courses so far, and we plan on taking it even further this year thanks to being present all over the country.
We also sponsored and attended more events than any previous year - the majority were Drupal events, but we also started getting more involved in other open source communities (e.g. WordPress), with an even longer list of events already scheduled for 2020.
As already mentioned, we also hosted several PHP meetups and were involved in other development-oriented events for fledgling developers. With the opening of our new offices in cities that aren’t as abundant in IT-related job offers, we also helped the local developer communities in those regions.
Last but not least, we were again very active in contributing to Drupal’s open source code, with 59 issue credits on drupal.org.
With such a successful year behind us, we now have concrete proof that we’re on the right track and we’ll continue moving in this direction. We plan on further growing our team, with a focus on having more development managers and project managers for each individual Agiledrop office.
Speaking of offices - we already have our sights set on at least one new office, so stay tuned for that. 2020 is looking to be another excellent year; we hope this turns out to be true for everyone!