In this new Chat we feature an External Guest. Pedro Morgado is the founder of BytePitch (Home | BytePitch – Software Lab), a company Decision Lab have built strong partnering relationships right at the height of the COVID pandemic.
A born entrepreneur, Pedro loves developing people, teams and scalable software solutions. Besides his daily job with the company’s partners and clients, he’s always looking to find spare time to get his hands on to the code.
In our Chat, Pedro talks about many interesting topics. He is not only a great expert in software engineering, but a very nice guy and we truly enjoyed having him as our first external guest.
Tell us a few key things about BytePitch
We are a software engineering company based in Porto, Portugal. The key areas BytePitch are working in are: data, e-commerce, fintech and blockchain (recently). But we are not a classic bodyshop at all. We do things differently: we build the solutions for the challenges that our clients give us and assume the responsibility for the result. We work together with our clients and we partner with all of them.
What’s it like at BytePitch?
Our culture is important.
The transparency that we have internally and externally is a strong pillar of our culture. We don’t try to sell things that are not real. If we know of a person or a partner who is a better fit than us, we’ll openly recommend them.
We don’t shy away from looking at our own errors and mistakes. We try to have open and constructive conversations to figure out the improvements that we need to do. It is simple, but it can also be hard, as we take the responsibility.
Our company finds the solutions for the complex problems; and there are no similar clients or problems. Trying to dive into the challenges to figure out the best way to solve them is our passion.
We inspire everyone in the company to answer one simple question: “What would I like to do for the project to be a success?”
What defines a BytePitch person?
A typical BytePitch person will be a self-starter and be able to work in a self-managing and autonomous style. This can be tricky and hard for some people, but we rely on people to have self-motivation, to be able to research things themselves.
We spend effort and provide a nurturing environment for people to grow, particularly applying the techniques of Chade-Meng Tan “Search Inside yourself”.
Of course, the technical abilities of a person applying with us are very important, but we look at a person from many different angles (holistically), including their interest in developing themselves and their personal fit to our culture is very important.
What interesting trends or challenges do you observe?
Consumers, the end users are changing drastically and one of the biggest challenges the industry is having is data. Data is the future. 90-95 % of the data that the companies process can’t be used.
Right now businesses are looking at their data, but there is so much data that is lost. There is a lot of data in spreadsheets and in the minds of experts, but it’s not on computers, so the biggest challenge is to grab it and digitalise it and then optimise. We can optimise all type of things. There will be a data revolution in the future.
How did you start working with Decision Lab?
I met Dom and Dave in 2019 through a friend of mine in a business meeting. I had a very good conversation with them. They invited us to help them to work on Decision Lab products and after about 3 months the COVID happened [laughing].
Gradually we have started working on more and more projects, having daily calls. So both sides invested a lot into this collaboration in the hope to have a healthy partnership for the many years to come.
How have you benefited from this relationship?
We’ll benefit from your side from a data science perspective. For example, for any work we do for BBC, since we managed to get on their supplier list, which we had to work very hard to do.
What new things or lessons have you learned since working with Decision Lab?
It’s not always simple to work with a domain, particularly as complex as Decision Lab’s. Understanding the domain is important because we do the software application of the models, which means we essentially turn Decision Lab’s work into products.
Now, we are working on learning about Decision’s Lab domain better. We’re having regular calls and sessions to learn more and deeper about each of our companies’ expertise areas, so we could build a bridge from a modelling perspective into software engineering.
What is the single biggest thing you like about your company?
I think now, it’s transitioning into a company where everyone has the space to be what he or she wants to be. This is evident on a daily bases and the people who joined us 3 years ago are still with us.
What helps you to cope with the challenges of running a business?
The thing that I ask from the guys every day is do your best and be yourself. We don’t have 100% productive days. Nobody does. The guys are given freedom. Let them be happy and at the end I am happy if they are happy and I think if they are happy, they’ll provide good solutions and good services. And their partners will be happy too. Of course, this is like the perfect world with a lot of dots in the middle. But this is our approach, and we are all working together to make it happen. And it’s not just me. BytePitch guys are all part of creating this environment.
How did COVID impact the industry and what impact did it have on BytePitch?
What we all miss is the human touch. Drinking beer together. I miss this so much!
Last summer we actually organised dinner, in the masks. But we did it and it was great! Maybe sometime in September, December [laughing] drinking beer with the guys and maybe discussing something that your colleagues can relate to better than your wife and kids [laughing].
I don’t care about working from home, but it’s about being with the guys, giving them a hug and celebrating the achievements together… It’s so important!
Are there any positives resulting from the current situation created by COVID?
I believe nobody managed to avoid some sort of negative impact of the pandemic – a huge worldwide effect. But it was more about how quickly the companies adapted and came out of the initial shock.
COVID is speeding up things for data digitalisation. Right now, we need all this data to be able to make decisions. Even from the lockdown perspective, you need to look at the data to make decisions.
What are your aspirations for this year?
I think BytePitch will grow. As will Decision Lab. We are hoping for healthy growth and for both companies to continue our partnership and create the tools for the next 10 years. Now Decision Lab has aspirations to start turning the capabilities they have built over the years into products and we are excited to be supporting Decision Lab in this and being part of this goal.