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It’s hard to believe that another year has come and gone, but here we are at the end of 2022. We have had a fantastic year at Twin Sun, and we’re excited to look back at some of our accomplishments.
2022 Awards and Honors
Several organizations honored Twin Sun as a top software development company in 2022. In March, The Manifest named Twin Sun as Nashville’s Best Recommended Design Company for 2022. Expertise.com honored us as one of the Best Mobile App Developers in Nashville that same month. We also made Clutch’s annual list of the Most Highly Recommended Companies in Tennessee.
These awards and honors were decided based on client interviews conducted by third-party vendor review sites and research firms. Thank you to all of our wonderful clients who made these awards possible!
The Process of Continuous Improvement
We’re big proponents of the Theory of Constraints (TOC), which is a business philosophy that focuses on identifying and alleviating constraints. We’ve been applying this philosophy to our own business for years. A key tool of the Theory of Constraints is the Five Focusing Steps, which we recently blogged about.
Applying the Five Focusing Steps and other TOC tools, we have made adjustments to our development process to improve our team’s effectiveness. Our client partners have seen some of these changes in how we manage and review work. We introduced an internal review process to ensure that we’re delivering the best possible work to our clients, all while maintaining transparency into our latest work product.
You can still review our latest work at any moment, but now we will have a Twin Sun team member review every feature before asking for your review. We identify edge cases, test the feature on different devices, and make sure that the feature feels good, looks good, and works well. This frees our clients to focus on the business utility of features rather than the technical details.
Tools and Practices
We have also increased our focus on documenting useful tools and best practices. Instead of keeping these practices to ourselves, we’ve begun sharing documentation with potential clients and other developers through our blog. The hope is that these blog posts can help other developers level up their skills and show potential clients the depth of our expertise.
That’s why, if you’ve been following our blog, you’ve likely seen some recent posts that describe how the sausage is made. We’ve written about automated testing, developer checklists, and how to estimate hosting costs through load testing. Some of our client-centric writing has also gone further in depth. We’ve covered considerations for your mobile app budget and how to save money on AWS hosting costs.
Fully Embracing Flutter
We’ve been heavy Flutter users for years, using the Google-authored mobile framework for most of our clients’ Android and iOS apps. This year, though, we’ve started using Flutter for more than just mobile apps. We now use Flutter for desktop and web apps. Flutter makes our apps available on more devices with a consistent user experience. That means your app is accessible to more users in less time (and for less money!).
No tool is right for every job, but we’ve found Flutter to be a great default choice for most new products. Of course, we will maintain our expertise in native app development and traditional web development frameworks for those times when a different tool may be a better choice.
We launched an updated website this spring, with more information about our services and a new blog. The blog shares our thoughts on software development, design, and business. It’s a great source of information for both new and existing clients, and we hope you find it useful!
We went with a completely custom design and implementation for the new site. Instead of WordPress, the new site shows off some of our design and development chops with Jekyll, a static site framework. We’ve even taken the opportunity to contribute back to the Jekyll community with our own plugin.
We honestly never planned to hire people when we started Twin Sun. The partners had been down that path before, managing a rather large team of software developers at a previous company. Our plan in our early days was to have partners do all of the work. We wanted to only work with the clients we enjoyed, and to ensure that our work was always top-notch.
As we’ve grown, though, we’ve realized that we can’t do everything ourselves. Our clients brought more work to us than the partners could do themselves, and we didn’t want to let them down. This led to us hiring our first employee, and then another, and another. Now we are an intentionally small team of 13 developers and designers.
While our plans changed, our ideals have stayed the same. We still love working with all of our clients, and we trust that every team member is committed to delivering excellent work.
As part of our growth, we have recognized the need to be very intentional in how we coordinate, plan, and complete work. Coordinating work with a dozen other people is much more complex than coordinating work among four partners.
With that in mind, we promoted our first two lead developers: Jack Parsons and Zak Raymer. Lead developers are responsible for technical guidance on client projects. Since their promotions in August, Jack and Zak have led technical efforts on multiple projects, helped their teammates level up new skills, and contributed to several of our internal process improvements.
Looking Forward to 2023
Part of our work this year has led to new ideas for the future. Our focus on continuous improvement has yielded an internal tool that will become Twin Sun’s first product (more on that soon!). Though, our biggest focus for 2023 will continue to be our clients. After a year focused on internal improvements, we are prepared to deliver even higher quality work for our clients in the new year.
We’re excited to see what 2023 brings!