It's been a busy year for us at Monsoon Consulting. From new faces to new places, and some awards in between, 2016 has been good to us. Here are some of our best bits.
1. Our Growing Team of Digital Experts
In 2016, we welcomed 10 additional full-time team members to our new office in Terminus Mills, Clonskeagh. Our new colleagues come from diverse backgrounds and are specialised in various disciplines: Drupal and Magento Development, UX Design, Technical Support & Infra, QA, Business Development, Digital Marketing & Ecommerce Optimisation. We've experienced rapid growth over the last couple of years and we look forward to expanding our team even further in 2017.
2. An Agile Journey
This year we continued to transform our work processes to a fully agile methodology. Our team of Product Owners attended the Agile Tour in Dublin, which featured workshops and talks from international experts in the field of agile software development. Check out the team's highlights from the conference here.
In tandem, we've invested in creating a really strong company culture, where open communication and transparency are key. We run weekly planning and review sessions, as well as daily company stand-ups to report on the progress of our project work. Our 'Panchayat' leadership group meets openly to discuss strategy, performance, and our improvement board.
3. London Calling
We strengthened our UK presence with the opening of our new office in the heart of London. Paul Kelson was appointed UK Commercial Director of Monsoon Consulting and currently heads up a small, but growing team to drive our expansion in the UK market. We've got some exciting projects in the pipeline for the coming year.
4. Becoming a Silver Certified Magento Solution Partner
Back in April, we announced that we are now Magento Silver Solution Partners for the UK and Ireland. This accreditation has further enhanced our reputation as Ireland's leading provider of Magento design and development services and will help us to further establish our expertise in the UK, and further afield. We have a growing team of certified Magento Developers and Solution Specialists who are committed to Magento 2 in 2017. We have launched many successful ecommerce projects for our clients, with plenty more going live in the coming months. It's great to be recognised by Magento for the work we do within the Irish community, such as our regular Magento Meetups hosted here at Monsoon HQ.
— Monsoon Consulting (@monsoonconsult) April 25, 2016
5. Magento Imagine in Las Vegas
In April, Monsoon went stateside as we attended our first Magento Imagine conference in Las Vegas. This event connects the international e-commerce ecosystem, bringing together over 2,500 global Magento experts. It's the biggest Magento conference in the world, attended by e-commerce agencies, merchants and technology providers. From the launch of Magento Enterprise Cloud to developments in M2 B2B modules, there was plenty to get excited about and lots of learnings to apply to our projects in the following months.
Check out 'Magento Imagine 2016: The Monsoon Diary' for more highlights from our Las Vegas trip.
6. DrupalCon Dublin 2016
Back in September, DrupalCon 2016 was held at Dublin's Convention Centre. DrupalCon gathers thousands of international Drupal community members in one city for a week of informative talks, training sessions, sprints and social events. As Silver Sponsors of DrupalCon Dublin, Monsoon's team of Drupal experts attended the week-long conference.
— danielalbro (@danielalbro) September 26, 2016
Check out the team's highlights and key takeaways from DrupalCon 2016:
— Monsoon Consulting (@monsoonconsult) October 17, 2016
But while our proposed talks for DrupalCon were not accepted for showcasing at the event (of course this made us sad), we channelled our disappointed into a creative pet project: drupalconrejectedtalks.com.
7. Monsoon Season...
In October, we featured heavily in the press thanks to an interview with our co-founder Stephen Kenealy in the Sunday Times, and our plans to create 40 new jobs in the UK and Ireland over the next 18 months.
— Business World (@BusinessWorldIE) October 26, 2016
8. ... Followed by Awards Season
We've built some excellent websites that have achieved great results for our clients this year. So, it's always nice to be recognised for the work that we do.
Many of our clients were shortlisted across multiple categories at the inaugural Realex Payments Ecommerce Awards. We accepted the award for Best Ecommerce Medium on behalf of our client Molloys Liquor Stores.
9. 'Content is King' - Daniel Alb at UX Ireland
In November, our Design team attended the inaugural UX Ireland event in Dublin. Our designers enjoyed engaging with the wider community and learned a lot from expert speakers.
— Monsoon Consulting (@monsoonconsult) December 13, 2016
One of the highlights from the conference was a case study presentation by our Head of Design, Daniel Alb. 'Content is King: The the DNA of designing a citizen-centred local authority website for dlrcoco.ie' provided an in-depth account of the design processes involved in the digital transformation of Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council. Check out Daniel's full presentation on SlideShare:
10. The Anatomy of Success in B2B E-Commerce
In November, we partnered with dotmailer and Magento to host an event in central London on the 'Anatomy of Success in B2B E-commerce'. This event featured some really insightful sessions on the opportunities and success factors associated with the B2B e-commerce opportunity and outlined the strategic approach required when considering a next-generation platform.
The event concluded with a live interview between Paul Cooling, E-Commerce Manager at Uniphar Group, and Stephen Kenealy, CMO and Co-Founder at Monsoon Consulting. This discussion gave some great insights into how Uniphar's B2B e-commerce journey developed in practice.
11. Welcoming our Indian Teammate to Dublin
Back in autumn, Vanita Sharma from our development team in Jaipur, spent a period of 2 months at our Dublin office. A certified Magento Developer and experienced software engineer, Vanita got to work on some exciting client projects, while expanding her digital knowledge and getting to know her colleagues here in Ireland. Read Vanita's highlights from her stay in Ireland here.
12. Woodies goes live on Magento Enterprise
We helped well-known DIY store Woodies develop its omnichannel retail offering when we launched Woodies.ie on Magento Enterprise. Woodies.ie boasts enhanced user experience features such as improved Store Locator, Inspiration, Tips & Advice. A key feature of the new Woodies site is the newly designed and integrated workflow for Click & Collect. Implementing the availability of stock across 32 Woodies store locations, Click & Collect conveniently allows customers to check stock availability, pay for their order online and collect once ready from the selected store.
We look forward to working with Woodies on the future development of their platform and helping them grow their e-commerce channel in 2017.
13. Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council goes live on Drupal 7
Monsoon Consulting partnered with Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council to deliver the next generation of local government, events and libraries websites. The launch of dlrcoco.ie in the summer of 2016 sets the standard for Enterprise Content Management solutions and local government digital presence.
Our agile project team designed a user-centred, easily managed, responsive public service website to better showcase and promote the wide range of services and activities offered to DLR residents, visitors and businesses, and established an architecture for future distributed content publishing.
14. SESS.ie - Our first project on Drupal 8
SESS.ie functions as a valuable resource hub for educators in the field of special education. The website features a vast amount of downloadable templates and documents about important topics such as teaching methods, inclusion, and assessment.
The website had outgrown its existing Drupal 6 CMS and required an upgrade to a new platform that could easily support a large content backlog. Monsoon Consulting delivered this project by providing Design & UX consultation, Drupal Development, Hosting Services and internal content team training.
The new responsive website is now accessible to all and marks our first project completed on Drupal 8. SESS.ie represents our commitment to delivering best-in-class enterprise content management solutions using the very latest Drupal technology.
15. Pallas Foods: Click & Collect and B2B Online Ordering
Pallas Foods is one of Ireland's leading food wholesalers and distributors. Monsoon Consulting has worked with Pallas Foods to design, build and commercialise new digital platforms to cater to its broad customer base in the foodservice industry.
Pallas Click & Collect is a new online order and collection facility that has allowed Pallas Foods to expand the brand into a new vertical The site provides a convenient e-commerce solution to smaller, non-account customers in the foodservice and retail sectors. Users can select a pick-up time that suits their business, while making great savings on a wide range of food and non-food eseentials. Pallas Foods B2B Online Ordering has revolutionised the company's core Business to Business offering. The migration to a B2B e-commerce solution for ordering processing has greatly improved efficiency for Pallas Foods.
16. Going Global - Expanding our International Client Portfolio
While we had previously completed hundreds of projects for clients in Ireland and the UK, 2016 really amplified the scope of our global client base with the completion of several international projects. These platforms presented our team with new challenges and opportunities to learn and develop, as we integrated diverse user journeys with localised features, such as currencies, languages and fulfilment processes.
Notably, we worked with DITA Eyewear, a premium brand of designer sunglasses and luxury eyewear, to create localised, transactional e-commerce stores on Magento Enterprise, targeting customers in new markets in Europe, Canada, Australia and Asia. The creation of multiple sites involved decoupling WordPress and Magento, implementing a large product catalogue, extensive 3rd party integration and configurations. The resulting websites are an excellent example of how a premium brand can effectively expand digitally and internationally. So much so, DITA.com was shortlisted for Best Ecommerce - International at this year's Realex Payments Ecommerce Awards.
Our most recent completed project was FMF - the Moldovan Football Federation. This brand new responsive website features the latest news and updates on leagues, matches and tickets, and is available in several languages.
We look forward to growing our network of partners and clients across Europe and beyond in the new year.
It's been an eventful year for Monsoon Consulting, with lots of highlights along the way. Here's to our continued success in 2017!