Allica bank automated digital banking operations and increased staff capacity with TEAM International
Allica Bank Limited
Received bank licence in 2019
Finance & Banking
Became one of the fastest UK fintechs to achieve profitability in summer 2022
- Agile Scrum
- UX/UI Designers
- Back-end Engineers
- Front-end Engineers
- Mobile Developers
Ongoing since 2021
Awards & Recognition
- One of the UK’s Top 20 fintech companies (The Times)
- “Top Tech Team UK – Bank Financial Institution” (Banking Tech Awards)
- CASS Accreditation
- Best Commercial Mortgage Provider (2023 Business Moneyfacts Awards)
Technologies & Tools
- Spring Boot
- Spring Webflux
- SQL Server
- RX Java
Allica Bank is an award-winning fintech bank that empowers Britain SMEs with tailored digital banking services. Our customer combines modern tech tools, in-depth expertise, and local relationships to give British businesses the banking they deserve.
Their mission is to become the most-recommended business bank in the UK.
At a Glance
Allica Bank is a fast-growing fintech in the UK, having raised over £2 billion in customer deposits by June 2023 and reaching profitability a year earlier due to their successful lending offering . They continuously innovate their software products in lending processing, financial asset management, and money savings. Moreover, the company has a roadmap for creating more next-gen digital services for its clients by 2024.
Based on the expertise in staff augmentation and long-term partnerships with international leaders, Allica hired TEAM International to strengthen its in-house IT and help achieve its goals.
“Collaborating with TEAM International has unequivocally demonstrated the vital importance of adaptability and collaboration. Their unwavering commitment to high standards and ability to rapidly align with our unique processes enabled us to quickly expand our engineering team. Together, we powerfully enhanced our backend and mobile capabilities, delivering exceptional product features that our customers adore. This partnership has taught us that scaling requires nurturing talent, embracing shared goals, and driving product innovation. We are thrilled by our accomplishments and eagerly anticipate the even more promising future of this partnership”.
Key partnership goals
Digital tech is the heart of the customer’s business. And since Allica operates in a highly regulated industry, it requires high software quality and excellent programming skills. As Allica’s business has been evolving rapidly, they needed to staff more people and increase IT capacity.
So, TEAM provided staff augmentation services to meet those needs. Our engineers joined to augment Allica's in-house tech team and deliver IT automation. They were also tasked with helping complete the existing end-to-end lending platform under the guidance of the customer's CTO.
Specific objectives for cooperation included:
Optimize Allica’s platform with automation, new functionality, and quick integration of third-party features.
Streamline development processes, organize efficient cross-team collaboration, and boost the IT department’s productivity.
Help Allica’s team improve code quality and accelerate time to market.
Becoming a strategic IT partner: small squads, big results
Our recruitment department set up a transparent and mature hiring process right after receiving IT talent requirements from Allica. Consequently, we met the customer's urgent need for new highly skilled professionals within a short timeframe.
Approaching Allica’s business and technology goals without a one-size-fits-all attitude, TEAM took the following actions to ensure the customer's business continuity:
#1 Augmented IT workforce
There was a necessity to support several projects simultaneously, so TEAM provided specialists in UX/UI design, back-end, front-end, and mobile development. Meeting Allica’s work standards and sharing common values, our engineers seamlessly adapted to its development flows. TEAM experts applied all their skills to solve the customer’s software issues according to its bigger plan.
#2 Established efficient cross-team collaboration
Right from the start, there were usually 10 to 20 TEAM specialists spread across different small squads. Each squad included up to 8 people from various domains, PO, and a Team Lead. Despite our team members being assigned to different squads, we set up common communication channels to support information flow and awareness across the squads. So, all teams work closely with Allica's colleagues, product owners, and CTO to find the best solutions for every task.
#3 Accelerated Agile transition
One of the major project objectives was to boost development productivity with more effective use of Scrum and Kanban. Having deep expertise in Agile development, we were able to help our partner take its Agile workflows to the next level. Allica’s vision for business growth was presented via a comprehensive roadmap. We divided that big picture into smaller, more manageable pieces. Thanks to that, IT squads work in iterations to maintain high speed and effective delivery, so a single feature typically takes no longer than 1-2 sprints.
#4 Improved code quality
Our engineers with extensive banking domain expertise offered solutions and ideas to reduce technical debt. Next, we streamlined and optimized all development processes hand in hand with the customer. After that, we were able to perform better code analysis and QA. So, TEAM squads started improving the overall quality of existing software. Moreover, the best practices we’ve introduced will be later applied to create other services our partner plans to add to its portfolio.
#5 Automated banking operations
As Allica's business started to grow exponentially and investors expected quick results, the number of clients and banking requests increased as well. In-house bank officers needed help to keep up with the overload and reduce the growing risk of human errors. Hence, the leading software product needed higher scalability and shorter response time. That's why Allica decided to automate internal manual banking processes and feature delivery. So, most tasks TEAM engineers handle are focused on integrating automation in as many banking operations as possible to speed up the lending cycle.
Overall value TEAM International brings to the table
Our customer chose to help businesses succeed in a very underserved, narrow-focused SME segment because it's not covered well by UK's banking providers. But the finance and banking domain is tightly regulated, so the key challenge is that we must rapidly adapt to new laws and rules to remain compliant.
Nevertheless, Allica is on the right track to becoming a one-of-a-kind online bank that will transform the industry with innovative technologies and unique service offerings. And we're proud to keep helping our partner build the future of SME banking.
Some major outcomes of TEAM's engagement include:
1. Boosting the customer's engineering capacity:
Allica gained the capacity to deliver new features within extremely tight deadlines and speed up all the planned processes from the roadmap. All TEAM’s squads are scalable on-demand based on the customer’s business needs.
2. Scrum, test, then Scrum again:
More adjusted Scrum methodology enabled every squad to keep up with a fast-paced business environment. IT teams gained higher agility in making changes and adjusting the platform without delays. Moreover, Allica started implementing company-wide QA policies to prevent future technical debts.
3. Creative problem-solving and idea generation:
Working on the customer’s ambitious projects, all TEAM engineers invest much effort, dedication, and passion for what they are doing. We know that attracting and retaining Allica's investors is imperative. So, our squads always approach tasks creatively and provide innovative, fresh ideas. With the help of the TEAM squad’s active contribution, Allica received the “Top Tech Team UK—Bank/Financial Institution” award at the Banking Tech Awards.
4. Communication that was crucial for success:
The customer has multiple goals for every squad, so great communication between IT and business is the key to success. So, TEAM experts do everything to ensure that they communicate their goals, suggestions, and ideas clearly and transparently to everyone involved. The whole work process is very team-oriented—all squads are on the same page.
5. Rapid corporate growth:
Aside from making the development cycle less time-consuming and more cost-effective, the main goal for every business is to increase revenue. And it was achieved in Allica's case. The customer's revenue keeps growing, even during global crises. Recently, our partner celebrated the successful acquisition of the British SME lending book of an overseas bank, leading to thousands of existing clients migrating to Allica's platform.
6. Automation of banking workflows:
Allica's and TEAM engineers united efforts to identify areas and procedures eligible for automation. And using the tech stack selected by the customer, we then assisted in implementing the microservices architecture that allowed doing task-heavy manual banking operations in seconds and minutes by leveraging IT automation. This directly reduced turnaround time and increased the number of deals Allica could make with new clients. Plus, the proper automation of internal banking processes boosted Allica's in-house department’s productivity, freeing the workforce for more critical business tasks.