Ergo hits out at high prices for software development


13 Jun 2005

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Ergo, a Dublin-based technology provider, has claimed that software development projects are often overpriced and some large consultancies in the market are trading on their reputations in order to win business.

According to John Purdy, Ergo managing director, the comfort factor of engaging a well-known supplier is often offset by the large fees involved. “There are people paying over the odds for software development – rates that are astronomical on the basis that it’s a name company,” he said.

Purdy added that new software development techniques were removing some of the mystery from the business, making it possible to deliver bespoke applications to customers in a transparent and cost-effective way. “I think it’s around flexibility and the ability to deliver on time and on budget. More people are becoming disenchanted with the typical provider who sees a project as a gravy train,” he said.

“For organisations in corporate Ireland, there is a very real alternative to the big four,” Purdy told siliconrepublic.com. “Other than them, there is a layer of providers here who will do [software development] at an affordable price, so the customer isn’t paying daily rates for vapour and a name.”

Purdy added that for software, a functionally sufficient application will often meet a client’s requirements. “It doesn’t always have to have bells and whistles. It gives the customer what they need and delivers functionality at a price. It takes out the black magic and customers are buying into that.”

Ergo is in the process of expanding its own consultancy division, more than doubling the headcount. The company plans to recruit 40 software developers; 20 initially with 20 more to be employed on a phased basis over the next six months.

The vacancies are for experienced developers in several technology fields including Java, .NET, J2EE, JSP, EJB and XML. Other roles involve skills such as quality assurance, database, business or systems analysis. Purdy said he did not anticipate having difficulty in finding skilled candidates to fill the positions.

This expansion will bring Ergo’s software development team to more than 70 full-time consultants. According to Purdy, the expansion comes on the back of some “very substantial” business the company has won, including several projects for Bank of Scotland (Ireland).

By Gordon Smith