Traditionally within the area of wealth management software applications the time that has passed between new version releases has been significant. Due to the monolithic size of these applications, and the fact that they have not been cloud based, it has been common practice to send one or two releases per year to the users.
Another problem area has been customisation, it has been common practice among suppliers of financial software applications for complex financial institutions that development of customised features for single customers has been conducted.
For a software provider with numerous customers with hundreds of customisations per customer it quickly becomes impossible to maintain any sort of release schedule for all users and that is why Bricknode has approached its platform development in a different manner.
For the first few years we head great difficulties to get new features out to our users with any great frequency. We constantly had large chunks of functionality that we had to squeeze into our releases since it took us a number of days to upload and test the releases for each customer.
Yes, we also plead guilty of doing some customer specific customisation but it was necessary in the early years of our business to gain our first few customers.
Obviously, we had to pay the price of this technical debt and spent a few years cleaning it up, who would have thought that there was no free lunch within the area of financial software development either!
During the latter part of 2016 we managed to get all our ducks aligned and finally arrived at a common code-base for all our users. We also made sure to never do any customisation again. Sure, we are happy to receive input from our customers which we can keep in mind when developing our generic functionality and with our open API, both we and our customers can develop specialised apps that are connected to our core platform. We even have a public voting area that is open to our customers where they can suggest and vote for features which we then consider for each release.
Our goal is to be able to work with continuous integration and conduct daily releases to get new features to our users instantly. We realise that we need to create value on an ongoing basis for our customers and not have great functionality sit in our development environment for months on end.
We have managed to build our platform and its various verticals, like Bricknode Broker, into a network of users. Today we have over 100,000 active consumers with accounts split between our customers who are various financial institutions. With our Marketplace we become a distribution platform for new FinTech services that would like to reach consumers and financial institutions.
For these FinTech companies the continued development of our API is crucial and they cannot sit around and wait for annual releases in order to launch their services. Our general goal is to have a new release published at the end of each 2-week sprint.
Just this past week we released version 2.08 of Bricknode Broker with some great usability features to follow up on our most recent releases which were:
Version 2.05, released on the 7th of March
Version 2.06, released on the 23rd of March
Version 2.07, released on the 11th of April
Remember, the “Big Bang”-approach is the main reason that IT-projects run off track and frequent iterations with small increments of value creation is the recipe for success! Just remember the iterative process that made iPhone into such a popular device.
We would love to get your feedback on how we are doing, if you have not tried us yet you can sign up for a free trial by clicking this link!