questions and answers

Why do projects succeed with h.com?
Projects with h.com succeed, because we are experienced. It is of course possible to gain knowledge from books, classes and so on, but experience cannot be replaced by anything. The only chance to get experience is to make it.

Based on experience we have 5 basic principles:
  1. Listen to our customers to really understand them and what they need
  2. Be precise and do not stop asking until everything is 100% clear
  3. Plan the software properly. During the planning phase changes are cheap, once programmed they may become expensive.
  4. Not choose the first solution that comes into our mind for a problem. Keep searching for other options until all are on the table and then make a rational decision.
  5. Size it right. Too small means to have changes early. Too large means to have an unnecessary complexity.
There are many traps in software development, which need to be avoided for project success. The main factor is a good team. Everybody at h.com is a team player showing responsibility for the goals of the team. Everybody has a passion for great software. We all love our work.
What is h.com’s primary field of business?
h.com is a software company specialized in web-based software – or in other words apps running on a web server and using a browser.  

We are not bound to any specific fields of business of our customers. Whether it is automotive, insurance, chemicals, health or any other field of business does of course make a difference, but our well-proven processes to successfully develop software do not change. 

Typically, we work in the more challenging type of projects. We set up internal processes over many years and trained our team to be able to optimally handle these projects. Of course, the methods we apply are perfectly suited for smaller projects as well. 

h.com can support you from the very first steps in a new project: thinking about the goals, revamping some internal processes before getting a software project started, strategic thinking and finding a general approach. 

The web software may be integrated in a website, intranet or extranet. If it makes sense we can bring our own communication system Octaved. Maybe some parts of the projects are already covered with it, which would reduce the overall effort. It is of course not a must. We are happy to start “one level down” as well and it may make more sense going that way. 
Does h.com make websites?
h.com makes web software not websites. We are not a web agency, but a software company. We can provide the technology for websites, intranets and extranets. But we leave the process of web design and copy text writing to those who are specialized in web marketing. 

In other words, we provide software that others may use to create websites. Also, the software we create is often integrated in intranets or extranets or opened from there. 

Learn more about Octaved, our system which is excellently suited to create also larger websites.  
What is h.com’s specialty?
h.com typically works on the more complex projects. We not very proud of that. It happened to be that way and now our processes are designed for the not-so-easy challenges. The resulting software is despite the complexity in the background smart, easy to use and it is fun to work with it.  

With our experience we create easy-to-use, reliable, extendable and long-life-cycle software – in-time and in budget. This applies to more complex projects and to smaller tasks.
How long is h.com on the market?
h.com networkers was founded in 1997 as a software company by Christian Haag, who is today’s owner and CEO. Very early, right when it was technically possible to develop software running over the web, we started developing such software. Since then we have always been at the technological edge. Client relations last for a long time as h.com is able to create software that is maintainable over a longer period of time. 

Today 20 highly skilled people work at h.com being the “networkers” team. From our customers we heard that they think we are a way larger company than we actually are. They expect it needs more people to get those not-always-easy projects done. Many hands do not necessarily mean that a lot of works gets done. We have worked all the time hard on ourselves and streamlined our processes to be as efficient as possible
Does h.com make expansions for content management systems like WordPress?
With Octaved h.com has its own communication system, which includes a high-end content management system for demanding applications. We have good reasons why we prefer our own and of course had good reasons investing all the time to develop it. 
What kind of people work at h.com?
h.com is a software company and most of the people at h.com are directly involved in the process of creating software. The majority are software developers plus user interface designer, software architects and people responsible for quality assurance. 

Many have an academic degree (bachelor, master) in computer science or related sciences like electrical engineering and physics. We also train developers in a 4-5 years program. 

We consider internal trainings as important factor for quality and reliability. Depending on the current skills each networker has his or her own training program. There is daily supervision and training group meetings every other week.

Every networker has different talents, which makes the team a very good mix of different specialists. We consider it as the root of our success that we are able to give each individual person tasks matching with his or her talents. 

What unites us is our vision and unstoppable will to create great software. 

There a no web designers and copytext writers at h.com. We do have external partners, but are happy if our customers bring their own. 
Can h.com make progressive web apps?
h.com realized very early that web-based software is the future. Initially the goal was to create web-based software that looks and feels as close as possible as “traditional” desktop software. Now we are far beyond that. With the browsers adding more and more functions we can now build web-software that offers more features and is superior. 

“Progressive web apps” is just a new word in that context. The movement towards software being web-based primarily started a long time ago. 

h.com creates web-software looking and working equally good on all devices, from smartphone over tablets to large screens. And if your internet connection is down, why not continue working offline? h.com is experienced in the technology allowing that.  
How important is quality for h.com?
Quality saves money. Not from the start, but after very short time. h.com uses comprehensive tests simulating lower level technical aspects of software as well as user interactions. 

Quality begins in the head of the developers. It is a goal of the team (and not individuals) to program high quality software and avoid mistakes before they find their way into the software. 
Which programming languages does h.com work with?
h.com mainly uses PHP and JavaScript.
Which tools/programming languages/technologies does h.com use?
What we use shifts from time to time as a) the world is turning fast and b) may depend on specific requirements on what we areprogramming. Here are some that we frequently use, in alphabetical order:
 
Ansible, Amazon EC2, Apache, AWS, AWS Cloudformation, AWS RDS, Babel, CSS, Composer, Docker, Doctrine, gulp.js, JavaScript, Jest, Knockout, Memcached, MySQL, MySQL Workbench, Nightwatch.js, npm, Node.js, PHP, PhpStorm, PHPUnit, progressive webapps, Redis, Redux, REST, Robot Framework, Sass, Service Worker, Stored Procedures, SOAP, SonarQube, SVN, Symfony, UML, Visual Paradigm, VMware, webpack, WebSocket
We have not heard much about h.com so far…
We prefer to get our job done well and make not too much noise about it. However, you may have been in touch with software madeby us without actually knowing it.
Does h.com make apps for iOS and Android?
h.com is able to create apps for both platforms. In many cases it makes more sense to create a progressive web app (see above). With this strategy only one programming is required, while 2 or 3 times programming the same for different platforms is required for apps. Today, a web app can look and feel the same as a native app for iOS/Android. 

If it makes sense to program a native app, we follow that route. 
What are h.com’s favorite projects?
h.com typically gets the more complex projects. We love if it is not too easy and needs a bit of out-of-the-box thinking to find a smart solution. Other than that we have no real preference. Having a good relation to the customer and really cooperate makes projects run smoother and that is a big plus too.  
Does h.com host apps? Are you a hosting provider?
Technically h.com has no own servers to provide hosting services for customers. With the DevOps approach developing software and defining the infrastructure gets closer. 

h.com can develop apps to run on Docker and define the infrastructure as code to be executed on cloud services like Amazon Web Services.

The answer is “no” in a traditional way and “partly yes” for a Docker/cloud services approach. Getting your software started in a dynamic infrastructure on for example Amazon Web Services is definitely in the range of our services. 
Does h.com software require latest browsers?
It depends on what you need and what computers your target audience has. 

If you need advanced features in your web-based software it will definitely require a newer browser. In the world of web-based software browsers are the “operating system” or “fuel”. Any web-based software will be limited by the requirement to support older browsers. With today’s automatically updating browsers it makes sense in most cases to create web-based software with advanced features requiring a newer browser. 

If you want the web app to be state-of-the-art, the people using it will need state-of-the-art browsers. 
h.com networkers GmbH
Schäferstraße 4
40479 Düsseldorf
Germany
Contact us
+49 (211) 233942-0
info@hcom.de
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