In an interview with CIO Applications, Tyler Jenks, Very’s SVP of Solutions Architecture, shares his insights on how the company utilizes their new, unique remote workplace approach and deep expertise in technologies like machine learning, IoT, and blockchain to build scalable products for today’s fast-paced, fiercely competitive world.
Overcoming Blockchain Challenges while Developing Products
One of the major aspects of blockchain is the large number of evangelists—people who believe blockchain can do everything, from solving global financial inequality to enabling businesses to solve any operational setback. I believe it is the over-promotion of the technology which is damaging its long-term prospects. That’s why our efforts always center around understanding if blockchain is the right solution for the problem our clients are facing. While, we are primarily a product development company, our extensive subject matter knowledge in blockchain, IoT, and machine learning helps us provide comprehensive consultation services to our prospective clients.
Because blockchain technology is relatively new, there are serious concerns to keep in mind when building an effective blockchain solution. More often than not, the development frameworks and tools surrounding different blockchain technologies are weak, underdeveloped, and inadequately documented. To top that off, because the technology is ever-growing, it is unpredictable. On top of those challenges we see the industry facing a huge shortage of talented engineers who specialize in blockchain development.
Emerging Trends for Blockchain-Based Products
When it comes to the implementation of blockchain-based products, supply chain is one area where we’re seeing stability. Blockchain is facilitating supply chain operations to become more transparent and predictable. However, to ensure the success of blockchain-enabled supply chain operations, IoT devices play a pivotal role.
The core of what makes us successful is our engineering culture. While we intend to scale our team and offering, making sure we protect and enhance the integrity of our culture is paramount. It’s what makes us effective at delivering high-quality solutions in the first place
It is not possible to tokenize physical objects unless we have the right IoT devices to scan those objects and track their live location.
This kind of transformation calls for a product development strategy that brings together different technologies (in this case IoT and blockchain), and that’s where we are strong. In order to build relevant blockchain products, we implement the technology alongside a variety of other applications. Sometimes we might use RFID tags and NFC sensors in order to bring supply chain data into the blockchain. As a full-service firm, we are able to evaluate these needs and build an effective blockchain solution to meet the requirements.
Privatizing and Securing Blockchain
The privacy element of blockchain can be quite challenging. By definition, a blockchain is a distributed public ledger. However, keeping all of a business’s data public can be impractical. Thus, we assess which pieces of data can remain public on a blockchain solution and privatize the rest of the components in order to safeguard critical business information. On the other hand, it is also crucial to determine whether a centralized or a distributed database is more beneficial to solve the business problem.
The next big step is securing the blockchain solution. Blockchain tends to be secure in itself, however, integration of multiple applications along with blockchain can open the solution to certain security vulnerabilities. Our team of talented engineers is well-versed in security best practices to tackle the problems efficiently.
Implementing a Tailored Blockchain Product
Having a well-defined and well-articulated business problem statement is foundational to developing successful products. A strong proponent of this philosophy, we employ a process called ‘release planning’ to gather all the necessary information describing client’s problems. Our team of engineers, user experience designers, and product managers ask clients a series of questions to get a holistic view of the problem they are trying to solve. Once they’ve gathered that information, clients are ready to start the iterative development process, prioritizing all the agreed-upon requirements.
Very’s Success Trail
The accomplishments of Very’s thriving product development approach are illustrated through our success stories. In one instance, a large financial institution was facing difficulty in managing seven and eight-figure transactions and contract processes through their traditional fax-machines—not an uncommon sight among financial institutions. The company wanted to manage these processes through software, leveraging blockchain and smart contracts to complete the transactions more efficiently. Working with us, the financial institution was able to install an end-to-end blockchain solution that handled their processes faster and more accurately.
The Path that Lies Ahead
The core of what makes us successful is our engineering culture. While we intend to scale our team and offering, making sure we protect and enhance the integrity of our culture is paramount. It’s what makes us effective at delivering high-quality solutions in the first place. As the market evolves, reinforcing the importance of multi-faceted products, we are confident that our appetite for innovation will remain a driving force behind our thriving success in the product development marketscape.