According to a report from Gartner, there will be 50 billion connections to the internet by the end of 2020; the majority of these will be machine to machine. In the age of digitization, organizations are constantly being challenged by the explosion of data, apps and devices. Companies are innovating through digital transformation programs in order meet rapidly changing market dynamics and the demand to introduce new products to market faster, while delivering a seamless customer experience across all channels. In order to achieve these goals, companies are realizing they must integrate their data, and business processes with on-premise, cloud and mobile applications. Meet WhiteSky Labs, a Premier Partner of MuleSoft with the mission to be the number one, full-service Partner, delivering a complete range of integration services to their customers.
In an interview with Insights Success, CEO, Steve Wilson described the journey of WhiteSky and how they are adding value to the customers they are working with.
Below are the highlights of the interview between Steve and Insights Success:
Give a brief overview of the company and its vision?
WhiteSky Labs are specialists in the Enterprise Integration domain. Many of our executive management team have worked together for the past 20 years in the UK, Europe, US and Asia Pacific. We specialize in strategy, architecture and the delivery of outcomes using the Mulesoft AnyPoint Platform. When I say specialize, to clarify, we are 100% focused as a business on MuleSoft. This is all we do and we provide a complete range of services across the entire MuleSoft solution delivery lifecycle. To use a medical analogy, the vast majority of system integrators could be described as general practitioners offering services across many different technologies, whereas at WhiteSky we are the specialists.
WhiteSky continues to win awards including the MuleSoft 2017 APAC Delivery Partner of the Year and the 2018 MuleSoft APAC Solution Delivery Partner of the Year. We have over 100 staff working from our offices in; Sydney, Melbourne and Singapore, while our large MuleSoft engineering team is based in Manila, Philippines.
Our blend of on and off-shore delivery provides our customers with a very attractive commercial solution. This is further augmented by MuleSoft related IP that accelerates and de-risks our customers outcomes. All our consultants are MuleSoft certified and a large number also have advanced certifications. To put it simply, this is what we do for a living.
Our vision is not just to be the best MuleSoft services partner worldwide, but also to challenge our people who have built WhiteSky to where we are today, to continually innovate and constantly seek to improve our systems, processes, IP and the value we provide. The benefits of being a 100% dedicated specialist, when combined with the network effect or Metcalf’s Law, means our combined corporate knowledge and level of practical experience continues to grow exponentially.
What services do you offer?
WhiteSky works with customers throughout all stages in their adoption of MuleSoft, as well as potential customers, by helping to define pragmatic and cost effective integration strategies and implement them rapidly.
Specific services include; Strategy and Architecture, MuleSoft Project and Programme Delivery, MuleSoft Software Upgrades, MuleSoft Performance Tuning, MuleSoft License Capacity Planning, 24/7 Managed Services for the Anypoint Platform and full enterprise wide MuleSoft Centre of Excellence enablement when required.
How do you deliver benefit to your customers?
Our experience over many years of specialization in the enterprise integration space, working with hundreds of companies, we have gained a deep level of insight into what customers need to do to be successful and drive measurable competitive advantage.
Companies tend to focus more at the beginning of the cycle on technology selection, rather than how they will actually live with the software once it is purchased.
We continue to see the same issues and while it is easy to buy software, to be successful and realize a return on investment, companies must have a robust operating model in place. Typically the business case supporting the selection and acquisition of enterprise integration software is put in a drawer once the software is purchased and not actively managed or reported on to ensure the business benefits are actually delivered.
Without the correct architecture, design patterns, governance, delivery processes, estimation models and tooling, they will never be realized. Enterprise integration is a more complex problem than the majority of companies realize. We call it the execution gap and we help companies bridge this and ensure they are creating truly reusable APIs, complete with enterprise wide service level agreements as opposed to project level ones.
Describe the experiences, achievements or lessons learned that have shaped the journey of the company.
The greatest achievement without doubt is the quality of the people working at WhiteSky. It is our staff who have built the exceptional business we have today. They set very high standards for themselves and are accountable for meeting them. We have been growing exceptionally rapidly over the past three years; in 2018 alone we have grown from 50 staff at the beginning of the year to over 100 today.
Our focus and commitment to excellence as a team and ourdesire to continually improve all aspects of the business, is underpinned by a very strong company culture and a shared vision. We actively seek the very best people we can find to work with us and as a company. We are passionately committed to ensure our staff, as individuals, can clearly see their career growth and that each and every one of us are achieving our personal objectives.
Give a detailed explanation regarding the Founder/CEO/Management’s influence towards the industry and the company?
I wouldn’t say I am influencing the industry in any major way, however within the company I am responsible for defining our strategy and ensuring it is articulated and clearly understood by everyone. A clear definition for everyone of their role in the company, combined with a high degree of autonomy and accountability, ensures we are all focused on the same outcome and working together as a team to achieve it.
I am also responsible in conjunction with our leadership team, for setting the culture. I strongly believe this is the secret sauce which fundamentally differentiates us a company. Good enough is not enough. We set high standards for ourselves and hold each other accountable for maintaining them. We operate with full transparency, which is a fundamental level of respect everyone deserves. This gives us a platform of honesty and trust that we can build from. It is a huge honour and a privilege for me every single day that every single person chooses to arrive at work with WhiteSky.
This naturally carries over to how we work with customers and the obligations and responsibilities we have to them. We do not have the word “blame” at WhiteSky, it is a fact of life mistakes happen, and we are all human. So we accept this at a fundamental level and expect our employees to call any mistakes out immediately. This means they are not covered up, they can be addressed and we can all learn and improve. We operate as a true meritocracy and with a very flat structure. As a team we genuinely enjoy working together and while it may sound trite, we regard everyone as part of the WhiteSky family. We strive to embody this every day in how we look after each other and the respect we have for each other. We are a very multi-cultural company and our overall culture and ethos has been driven strongly by our large team in the Philippines. I have personally learnt a lot since I began travelling there is 2014.
We have an outstanding track record of successful delivery and continue to push both ourselves and our customers, out of a genuine desire to be as good as we can be and create a company that is truly different. I have been influenced in this by entrepreneurs such as Tony Hsieh and Ricardo Semler and it was mandatory since the day I joined WhiteSky we create a company people our people feel proud to work for.
Considering the rising number of SaaS Solution providers how does WhiteSky Labs stands out from its competitors?
We are differentiated from our competitors for many of the reasons I have already discussed. Our strong culture based on mutual integrity and respect, our high performance MuleSoft delivery centre of excellence in the Philippines, coupled with world class integration consultants locally, combine to create a unique and commercially very attractive solution for customers. The 20 years of experience working in the integration space as specialists and our 100% focus on MuleSoft, enables us to dramatically accelerate outcomes and continuously improve. Working with like-minded colleagues who are share the same values and are committed to the same goal of building a truly world class business, creates an environment that is inspiring to be part of and a lot of fun.