Welcome to our series of inspiring interviews with eCommerce professionals. Today we are glad to have two amazing guests from Bee IT: Zoran Tovarloza, Co-Founder & CEO of Bee IT, and Nikola Gorjanac, Co-Founder & CTO of Bee IT.

Bee IT is a Serbian software development company focused on creating high-quality eCommerce solutions for small to enterprise clients. They build automated online stores and work with advanced high-quality eCommerce platforms, such as Salesforce Commerce Cloud (Demandware) and Magento.

It was really interesting and exciting to learn about the way of such a successful company, discover what stands behind their team and values, and how Nikola and Zoran help their team grow and lead it to success. Enjoy our interview and pick up great ideas about leadership.

WEB4PRO: Zoran, Nikola, thank you for your interest in our project. We are happy to talk to you, learn your story and the story of Bee IT. Could you please tell us a bit more about your company, its way in eCommerce, and its story and strengths?

Zoran: I worked as a Java developer as soon as I finished University, and after thirteen years of development, I decided to start a company with my colleague Nikola. Bee IT is an e?ommerce agency mostly focused on Salesforce Commerce Cloud and Magento development. Most of our clients are digital agencies and big brands from Western Europe. 

Nikola: My background I also started somewhere ten years ago with development. I worked five years with Zoran in our previous company, and afterwards, we started our company. Bee IT is a fairly young company with really young individuals. We like to build our people, grow them with a company, and make developers from them as we want to see. In our theory, we are learning them with things that work, and we are training them completely from scratch if they’re fully juniors. We are not chasing a lot of seniors just because of that thing. I think our knowledge as a company is growing pretty fast because guys are catching up with development, communication, and project management. 

WEB4PRO: It’s great that you create such conditions for people working in your company. You said that you also had a development background and worked in another company, and you were teammates, right? 

Nikola: We’ve worked together for about five years in a previous company. Then we wanted to set sail and create something different. If you come to our office, you can see that we are working in a casual manner. There is no fixed policy and no kind of strict corporate culture. We don’t care how people come or how their clothing looks. We want to get them to be relaxed and don’t care about those things. Development can be somewhere stressful, so we don’t want to put those bordered standards to think about this, so leave those irrelevant things, come here, work as you wish, and give your best. That’s an idea.

Bee IT team

WEB4PRO: That’s great. Free conditions and a friendly atmosphere account for a lot of productivity for the whole team. What inspired you to take this challenge to create your own business and grow the company during these years? 

Nikola: I would say what you mention – challenge, actually. When you develop something, you have constant challenges. When you’re solving them, it’s a huge thrill. This is just the same thing in some other shape, so this is probably something that comes from development legacy. To overcome some situation, fix something, make something better, and improve it – I suppose that’s the main background.

Zoran: Yes, the challenge is the biggest driver, actually, to constant growth and happy clients and employees.

WEB4PRO: It really matters. I suppose you have great clients with interesting projects where you are fulfilling, but what is the most fulfilling part of your job? What makes you feel happy?

Nikola: It is always a challenge. At the company’s beginning, I worked on the project with different people. I’m currently also mentoring people, and I always looked at how projects were going and how projects were ending. I want to get everything to succeed, the same thing with colleagues. I want to see them grow as soon as possible to be full developers. They can work alone and don’t need anyone to mentor them. I am currently not involved in projects, but there are various things that I am still doing, so we are trying to be indirectly connected with all our developers. So we still want to give them wind in their sails, giving them good examples of how to solve some things, communicate with them, help them overcome their challenges, and learn how to do their work as best as possible. Soft skills are the hardest part for us. I think for all developers, Soft skills are a part to learn, that is something that we are trying to improve every day, and that is fulfilling when you see that someone is growing and becoming a better developer than you are. So one day overcome the master, I suppose, that’s the goal.

WEB4PRO: You’ve been together almost five years. Can you recall one of the most interesting projects or moments in your company life that you cherish and still like to remember in the team? 

Zoran: For me, the start was most interesting. We were in small apartments, 6 of us. It was all new, and we had to learn a lot about managing. That was the most exciting time.

Nikola: I would say the same things when I recall all those night shifts. That was the most challenging, but I suppose the most revolving thing I did from this perspective.

WEB4PRO: Sounds really interesting! One of the most important things in your team is values and beliefs. What do you value most of all, personally and in your team in general? 

Zoran: Three things: teamwork, open and honest communication and proactivity – in both: clients,  employees.

Nikola: Yes, it’s also reliability and responsibility of people, when they are trying to pull their strings, launch their projects

WEB4PRO: Yeah, that’s important for the whole team who works on a project. And we, at our WEB4PRO company, also share the same values, such as open-mindedness, responsibility, honest communication, as only such principles help build trust between people. That’s great to feel like we are on the same wavelength! Thank you for sharing these personal and valuable things. Your company specializes in e?ommerce, you are e?ommerce professionals. Why did you choose this industry? Why e?ommerce? Why not something other? 

Zoran: We started with various technologies, after one year, we decided to specialize in the eCommerce industry. So our idea was to focus on one niche.

Nikola: If you go to the wild, you can export to anything, so we wanted to be experts in eCommerce. When we started, we saw that there were not so many eCommerce companies in Serbia, so we saw an opportunity: Everyone is working with, let’s say, React or any other development technology, but let’s go with e?ommerce!”. We saw a lack of those things. And well, when CORONA hits the fan, I think, eCommerce exploded.

Bee IT office

WEB4PRO: Many online businesses started or switched from offline to online because of this distance and lockdowns. What do you think will be trending in eCommerce in the future? 

Nikola: For example, we can see a higher demand for progressive web apps. People want to see speed performance offline as good as you can get with progressive web apps. Also, we noticed that some clients are looking for ways to do some virtual try-ons (for example, if they want to buy glasses or dresses, and do it online). So I think those things are currently pretty in.

WEB4PRO: Many teams and companies want to help clients and customers and make their brands stronger. We understand that building trust is one of the key factors in this case. How do you achieve customer trust for the BEE IT Brand? What is your secret? 

Nikola: Things that we are pushing towards for all our employees are transparency, communication, and open-mindedness. We are pushing the same things towards our clients. We want to hear their feedback, so we are pinging our clients to get feedback for work and performance. I think that’s building a lot of trust if we listen to what they have to say and what they want to say. That’s how we learn in our company and improve our business. We are shaping how we train people and communicate with everyone, and when we wrap them together, it is the main foundation for trust. If everything is clearly communicated and everyone is notified, it’s less stressful and it builds trust. 

Zoran: Many of our clients came to us through recommendations, which tells a lot about trust and quality. 

Nikola: We don’t have to turn on the sales channel because of that.

WEB4PRO: My final question is, what is the secret of your company success, of your team’s success, because you create growth conditions and have such inspiring values, maybe there is something more that you keep secret?

Nikola: It’s a small niche, so do what you do best and don’t widen it too much. I think that the previous question is a good reference, that’s what made the biggest growth in our own company.

WEB4PRO: Thank you so much, Nikola, Zoran, for sharing so many interesting and personal things, and we are always happy to talk again, see and hear you at WEB4PRO. 

‘The challenge is the biggest driver, actually, to constant growth and happy clients and employees.’

Zoran Tovarloza, Co-Founder & CEO of Bee IT

‘Reliability and responsibility of people, when they are trying to pull their strings, launch their projects, are important and help build trust.’

Nikola Gorjanac, Co-Founder & CTO of Bee IT

Website: https://www.beeit.io/en 

LinkedIN: https://www.linkedin.com/company/beeitsourcing/ 

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch/aboutus

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/beeitoutsourcing 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/beeitsourcing/ 

 

Summary

We would like to thank Zoran and Nikola for taking the time for an inspiring interview. It was a pleasure to have a meaningful conversation about your experience in e?ommerce and Bee IT. We really hope that the practical advice and secrets of the company will help many other businesses. There is nothing but opportunity in eCommerce, and there has never been a better time to be part of the fastest growing industry in the world. That was the Bee IT company, Nikola Gorjanac and Zoran Tovarloza, and WEB4PRO for the eCommerce Community.
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