Cloud content management company Box empowers enterprises to revolutionize how they work by securely connecting their people, information, and applications. Box was founded in 2005, and today serves over 97,000 businesses globally. With offices across the United States, Europe, and Asia, Box now employs more than 1,500 workers.
With the growth in company headcount comes challenges with employee onboarding, offboarding, and account security. Box couldn’t solve problems at the speed they wanted with their internal team alone, and they lacked Laravel expertise to make it happen.
What Box gets with DevSquad:
“When a new employee gets their laptop on their first day at Box, we want them to be able to hit the ground running with little to no action on their part,” says John Allen, senior software engineer in the productivity department at Box. “That means setting up all of their access and making sure things are consistent and that information is flowing seamlessly between HR and IT.”
With the company growing, there were many opportunities for saving time through automation. Meanwhile, the security team was having to continually contact IT with the same requests. John was tasked with easing the burden on IT, but there was a lack of resources. “We were looking for a group that would be able to learn what we were trying to accomplish, adapt the same mindset, and then adjust to our needs for capacity,” says John. The goal was to find a team who could improve internal productivity, so that other teams could handle work being performed by IT.
John spoke with the team at DevSquad because of their status as Laravel partners. After an initial conversation, John was able to partially vet their Laravel expertise and was excited to see what the developers could do during their two-week trial period. “I was able to see the quality of their work within the first pull request that they did for us,” says John.
The DevSquad developers and product manager assigned to Box quickly produced something of value during that trial period. “We have a multi-factor application that we use to verify that an employee is who they say they are before they’re allowed to change their corporate password,” John explains. “We wanted to send a push notification through their phone so they could accept it and then move forward. Working in a new system they had never touched before, DevSquad was able to get that done in just a week.” John decided to move forward with DevSquad and begin work on larger, more innovative projects.
Onboarding and offboarding
There were several results achieved from partnering with DevSquad over the course of the year. John envisioned automated workflows for onboarding and offboarding that reduced manual effort for the HR and IT teams—and DevSquad quickly implemented that vision.
“We were able to move from spreadsheets and a lot of work on the systems side to everything being handled by our ticketing system and help staff,” says John. “DevSquad made it so that Laravel was pulling information from our ticketing system for both people who were joining the company and leaving the company. It was actioning on those items after support staff clicked a button to start either process, and then it would give the support staff feedback on where they were in that process.”
Onboarding and offboarding
There was another win, too. The Box security team was getting hit with emergency requests at all hours of the day when employees in other timezones lost their laptop or phone. The security team had to then contact IT and ask them to immediately move through what they call the “untrusted workflow” to make sure that no corporate data was compromised.
DevSquad developed custom automation so that the security team could handle this on their own, without having to wake up IT. “The security team is ranting and raving about how awesome the automated workflow is,” says John. “They love that they don’t have to get in contact with IT anymore to take care of this.”
Box gained immediate ROI from working with DevSquad, because of the shift of work from IT to the help desk staff and security team. “We can provide a vision of what we want without the full path of how we’ll get there, and DevSquad starts offering up how they see us achieving the end goal,” says John. “The maturity of our relationship with them in terms of collaboration and feedback is why we’ll stick around with DevSquad for the long term.”
As for why DevSquad is able to deliver quality work quickly, John has a couple of theories. “They’re not blowing smoke when they tell you that they’re experts in Laravel and PHP,” he says.
John also believes their speed comes from their management style. “I never spoke directly with any of the software engineers on their team. I would always speak with the product manager. I’m a software engineer myself. I have a lot of experience with what lack of project management looks like. DevSquad is a well-oiled machine, and the developers are shielded from customer interaction so they’re executing on their product manager’s vision and approach.”
Ongoing Laravel development with flexible capacity