Achala Weerasooriya of LiveRoom and Render Island tells us how they provide software development services.
Tell us about yourself, your career, and how you founded or joined LiveRoom and Render Island.
Achala Weerasooriya: I joined at the early stages of the company, a few months after its incorporation (2016). I was doing my higher studies at that moment at the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology. I joined the company with a background in Software Development and engaged in the software development process. It would be correct to say that my career and myself grew up together with LiveRoom. Because the company was a Startup, I gradually got the opportunity to take part in other processes aside from its development, including client meetings, pitching sessions, etc., which brought me to the stage where I am today, at the C-level of the company.
Do you have small habits that made a meaningful impact on your life and business?
Achala Weerasooriya: There are quite a few. The main thing is having a thorough understanding of the end-to-end process. Having to make business decisions in a tech company, the tech background that I came from comes in very handy. The most important thing in the tech business is staying up to date with the technological advancements, changes, and improvements, as well as what possibilities the new tech changes bring in. This can create much more opportunities.
Thinking from the client’s perspective will provide you with a broader view and idea of the development’s output and what new things we can introduce and improve. Understanding their field of work, background, and culture helps connect with them and deliver a quality software product.
How does LiveRoom and Render Island market their product/services online?
Achala Weerasooriya: We have categorized our expertise areas as a company providing software development services.
We provide services in the Blockchain domain ( ex., Metaverse, NFTs, etc.), Computer Graphics related software development ( ex., Computer vision, Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality, Game Development, etc.), as well as 3D content related services ( ex. 3D modeling, Rigging, Animations, etc.)
We maintain social media channels to connect with our audience.
For example, we have our own brand called Render Island ( https://render-island.com ), under which we provide the 3D content-related services from. For this, we maintain Facebook, Instagram pages, and a Reddit channel, A YouTube channel, and a Discord Channel. As we maintain our presence in the Games and App development communities, we are releasing Asset Packages and Plugins to platforms such as Unity Asset Store. We create and release video tutorials using the plugins and packages on different possibilities to platforms such as YouTube, through which we get more leads and connections.
Apart from that, the community networking happening online and connections happening through platforms such as LinkedIn are also helping us in generating new businesses and getting us new and exciting projects to work on.
What specific tools, software, and management skills are you using to manage your online marketing?
Achala Weerasooriya: Tools and software-wise, we mostly use social media channels and websites. The most important thing in securing a deal in the tech business is seeing the potential development project from your clients’ eyes. As long as you see from their eyes and show the possibilities of what can be done and achieved, it will be successful.
You need to know the technical capability, what they require to get done, the terminology used in their field or discipline, and the background of the person you are speaking with. You have to plan your discussions. You have to have stats, facts, and figures to back your claims and know their processes and requirements inside out.
If I am to list, Planning, Being Punctual, Being open and understanding the other person well, and clear communication are the key skills you need.
Tell us about the culture within the working environment.
Achala Weerasooriya: We do have a very open working environment. We are a team. Even Though we have different designations, job roles, etc., we love working together as a single team. The flexibility our team members get in their working times, vacations, and personal time give all of us the upper hand in having a perfect work-life balance. This also makes us friends on and off work which is a really good thing.
The openness in our working environment allows anyone to talk about their problems and issues without feeling bad. The whole team is always ready to help each other, support each other and grow together. This is a journey we all go on together as a single team.
What we always say is that we do not have employees. We have a TEAM.
How do you make sure that you stay in business?
Achala Weerasooriya: Being in the technology business, it is important to keep up with the changes, improvements, and cutting-edge advancements that come to light. Expansion of services and products is what keeps this running.
Metaverse NFTs are the highest spoken topics now and major areas that have attention on a global level. So as a company in Metaverse Technology, we make sure that our team is up to date with the technologies, our service offerings are up to date with it as well as our marketing and business strategies are also in line with those.
Even if you’re not in the tech business, it is important that you adapt and include technological support in your business. There are enough global examples that show that if you neglect the new technological changes, they will hit you hard.
What ways do you follow to make sure you stay in the game?
Achala Weerasooriya: The major thing is that we create constant content to ensure that we are on par with the changes, improving tech, and the new avenues and possibilities that are opening up with those changes.
This is one such thing: https://www.youtube.com/c/renderisland
The major thing is getting experience and improving the prototypes, samples, and demos we do and have based on the technological changes that happen. This makes us already have something very similar to what they require to showcase to our customers. This builds the value, this builds confidence, and in turn, a successful business deal.
Why should customers come to you?
Achala Weerasooriya: The major thing is our technical expertise and adaptation to new technologies quickly, easily, and smoothly. The next thing is our competency in research and development/innovation. Even though the customer has a clear understanding and an idea of the requirement, our know-how and research help us start the project and continue the developments in a more efficient, novel, and most suitable method, technology, algorithm, etc., to get the best output. Another thing is transparency. In our development pipeline, we open it up to our clients to talk with the team leader and the team regularly and have regular updates sent to the client along with access to the required information, etc. This makes the customer confident in what we are doing and to be on the same page on the next steps and path we take so that the final output does not deviate from the exact target set initially.
Apart from the above, we have a fully-fledged team, including designers, developers, domain experts, content creators, etc. We can handle the whole requirement in-house, making the process easy, more reliable, and smooth.
These are the major points that I would say.
Your final thoughts?
Achala Weerasooriya: It does not matter which field or industry you have worked in. Compare the situation of the impact of technology now with five years before. You will definitely see that technology has changed the way that your customers behave, it has changed the market drastically. It has introduced many competitors that you need to consider within a few years.
At this moment, the most spoken topics are related to Blockchain, specifically Metaverse, NFTs area. This could turn out to be a huge area combined with Immersive Tech areas such as Augmented Reality & Virtual Reality.
So don’t be late. Try to get the maximum use out of the situation to ensure that your business is future-proofed in the most effective way.
Talk to us, and we can support you in finding the best solution for your business.