Product Studio - the Next Generation of the Software Development Companies (2023)

Railsware is a product studio. We build software solutions that users love, deliver them to market, and ensure their steady growth. How do we make this mechanism work? What is required to reach the main goal of a product studio: achieving product-market fit and growing products to multi-million dollar ventures?

Product Studio - the Next Generation of the Software Development Companies (1)

Product studio explained

Contents hide

1 Product studio explained

(Video) Transviti | Software Development Company

2 The Railsware story

3 Values and culture

3.1 Сraft evolution

3.2 Team Spirit

3.3 T-shapedness

(Video) The Next Generation of Developer-First Products - Zeno Rocha

3.4 Data-driven approach

4 Product studio hallmarks

A product studio is a platform for repeatable creation and growth of successful products. At the same time, it is a company model, which has two wings: clients’ and its own software products. They are integrally connected and complement each other. Working with the clients on the implementation of their product ideas, we act as a tech partner.

We start our involvement from product discovery. To find the right product-market fit, evaluate a product idea, and ensure it’s viable, we even created our framework BRIDGeS. BRIDGeS is a decision-making and product ideation framework designed to perform multi-context analysis, detect potential risks, find new opportunities, and shape the vision for the product users would love. One of the mainadvantagesthat the framework provides is that we get an actionable roadmap ready to be taken to work by the end of a session.

During BRIDGeS sessions, we collaborate on solutions with experts from different industries and business areas, explore various use cases and gain new experiences. With each new case, we deepen our product management and engineering expertise.

We build each product as though it were our own startup. We strive to walk in our clients’ shoes, feel their pains and as a result, make our approaches and solutions more advanced and efficient. And we use each experience to improve internal processes and advance our knowledge of the product creation craft. Then, we apply this craft when building our clients’ next project. In other words, a product studio has a continuous improvement cycle.

As a platform, a product studio can seem rather like a black box with ideas from clients, friends, Railswarians, whoever. Due to well-functioning product management, product engineering, and product design processes and polished approaches we use, we turn validated ideas into successful products.

Product Studio - the Next Generation of the Software Development Companies (3)

Last but not least, a product studio is distinguished by its values and approaches. We apply them equally to clients’ and our own products.

(Video) James Software Co In Action Studio Development Build Footage 005

But Railsware wasn’t always a product studio. Rather, we evolved into one after many obstacles overcome, lessons learned, and plain old hard work. We have walked a long and thorny path to get to today’s point.

Shift your work experience with us – join Railsware.

The Railsware story

We started as a classic outsourcing company. We were a team of software engineers writing great code to deliver features our customers requested. From this perspective, we were successful. We delivered high-quality service, and our customers were satisfied with the work of our developers. However, our team felt inefficient. Sleepless nights before releases with code commits at 6 a.m. repeated again and again. We were lacking internal project management as well as an understanding of the whole picture. We were completing the tasks requested by the customer but could evaluate neither our efforts nor the success of the product we were working on.
That’s how the transformation began. We learned a lot: from product and project management approaches to building software for our customers. In particular, we explored strategies of the most successful companies in our industry. We consulted with market leaders in Silicon Valley like Pivotal Labs, ThoughtBot, and Zurb. We analyzed the successful cases and approaches in order to apply them to our business.

We realized the difference. The approach of the teams we were learning from helped clients to understand the product goals and then implement them. They worked as a technical partner and a consultant from the very beginning of the project, whereas we had just been implementing the clients’ plans without any strategic input of our own. The transition wasn’t an easy one. It took us several years to fully rebuild the company model and to switch our role from that of an executor to a full-on strategic partner. We worked hard to gain our own expertise in business processes, product management, and design, all while continuing to polish our software development approaches.

Today, we have become a tech partner to our clients. We dive deep into the process at each creation stage – from product discovery to delivery. We integrate into the client’s business as a well-balanced team of product managers, developers, and designers who create products that solve users’ pains.

With solid product management domain knowledge, we create not what customers want, but what they need. This has helped us to build a number of successful products for Calendly, SendGrid, Philips, Google, and other interesting companies.

The comprehensive experience we gained with each case brought us to our long-term goal (and a dream): launching our own products. We started by experimenting with tools for internal use. That laid in the foundation for our paid products – Mailtrap and Smart Checklist for Jira. Now, they are used by over a half-million of people around the globe, including world-class teams like Atlassian, Adobe, Github, Yelp, and Pivotal.

Now, we are particularly focused on building own products. We encourage our team to generate, validate, and implement ideas for successful new products. This culture of innovation has paid off, and we are now preparing the launch of our third paid product. And that’s to say nothing of the dozen or so concepts that are still in their early stages.

We have lots of knowledge to share with you. Join Railsware team.

Values and culture

We believe that the company’s culture and priorities are determined by its values. Building successful products that solve clients’ pains is the main value at Railsware (except for making the world a better place, of course! 😉)

To ensure the creation of successful products as well as constant movement from good to great, we need to cultivate a distinct culture shared by all team members. Our culture has developed over the long course of our company’s evolution. Now our company stands for a strong belief in the end value of what we do along with continuous learning and improvement.

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Сraft evolution

Deep expertise is essential for building successful and efficient products or solutions. To gain it, you need to constantly acquire thorough knowledge and then implement it in practice. We improve and polish our skills and experience in every field of our activities, from engineering and development to marketing and product support. This way, we build our mastery in all we do, implement it as tailored and highly effective solutions, and then share our insights with the community.

To rephrase Ralph Marston, we believe that craftsmanship is not a skill, it’s an attitude.

Team Spirit

It’s impossible to achieve ambitious product studio goals without expertise, professionalism, and strong hard skills. However, if you invite several talented experts, you have no guarantee that they will deliver a great result (build a successful product, in particular). They have to play as a team. Just as in football, while only a few players can score goals during a match, overall success depends on teamwork.

Our product squads are well-balanced teams of product managers, developers, designers, and marketers. We are not just doing our jobs but are truly dedicated to building successful products.

That is why we foster soft skills, communication, and feedback. Each Railswarian is contributing to the company vision and its execution on multiple levels. We cultivate open feedback culture and promote collective leadership.


For the product studio model, not only the cross-functional but also the T-shaped team concept has proven its efficiency. It means strong expertise in a single field along with the ability to interact within the adjacent disciplines. This improves team communication and increases its productivity. Also, T-shaped professionals can efficiently solve some tasks lying at the intersection of several areas. For example, our designers can experiment with implementing a UI they’ve created, using their basic knowledge of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

This approach informs our hiring and onboarding process. Ability to work in a fast data-driven environment, and openness to new knowledge in different product-related fields matter a lot. Open-minded people with a wide skillset tend to think out of the box and generate exceptional ideas.

Data-driven approach

To build successful products and run an efficient business, you need to think long-term and be willing to adjust your efforts and allocate resources accordingly. Many companies chase sales goals which are not supported by facts. We use a data-driven approach, making decisions based on the data we collect rather than intuition or previous experience alone. We measure and analyze our results to build predictions and evaluate how our decisions can be used and improved in the future.

Product studio hallmarks

Driven by the team, Railsware developed its own company model. It allows us to transform our knowledge and experience into solutions for problems faced by our products’ users.

Whether we’re working on a client’s product or our own, we use the same approaches. This way, we invest in our craft and then apply it to building better solutions. It forms a continuous improvement cycle and shapes the product studio as a platform for the repeatable creation and growth of successful products.

Let’s build great products together and… make the world a better place! 🙂

(Video) James Software Co In Action Studio Development Build Footage 004


What is a product software design studio? ›

A product studio is a platform for repeatable creation and growth of successful products. At the same time, it is a company model, which has two wings: clients' and its own software products.

What is software product development? ›

Software product development is a repetitive logical process that aims to builds a programmed software product to mark a unique personal or business goal, process, or objective. It is mostly a planned strategy that comprises various stages or steps that result in the creation of an operational software product.

What does a software development company do? ›

What is a software development company? Software development companies design, develop and maintain applications, frameworks or other software components for businesses or consumers.

What are some big custom software development companies? ›

List of Best Custom Software Developers & Firms
  • Hyperlink InfoSystem. #1 Mobile App, Web, & Software Development Company. ...
  • Product & Software Development Agency. ...
  • 10Pearls. Enterprise Software, Apps and Staff Augmentation. ...
  • Fingent. ...
  • Boldare. ...
  • The Software House. ...
  • BairesDev. ...
  • KitelyTech.

What is a digital product studio? ›

Digital Product Studios are teams of UX & UI designers, developers, project managers and CTOs. They are not just software companies but teams that solve problems and take ideas from conception to Minimum Viable Product and beyond.

What is the difference between product designer and software developer? ›

Product designers determine what a product looks like and how it functions, while product developers focus on the process of bringing a product to market. If you ask a product developer whether they are a designer, they are unlikely to say yes.

What are the 5 stages of product development? ›

The product life cycle is the progression of a product through 5 distinct stages—development, introduction, growth, maturity, and decline. The concept was developed by German economist Theodore Levitt, who published his Product Life Cycle model in the Harvard Business Review in 1965. We still use this model today.

What are the 7 stages in the new product development process? ›

7 key stages of the product development lifecycle
  • Step 1: Ideation. Ideation is the first stage of the product development life cycle. ...
  • Step 2: Validation. ...
  • Step 3: Prototyping. ...
  • Step 4: Marketing. ...
  • Step 5: Development. ...
  • Step 6: Launch. ...
  • Step 7: Improvement.
Feb 8, 2023

What are the stages of product software development? ›

The six main stages of the software development lifecycle are planning, requirements elicitation, application design, development and testing, deployment, and maintenance.

What is the biggest software development company? ›

Forbes Global 2000
1MicrosoftRedmond, Washington, US
2Google1600 Amphitheatre Parkway, Mountain View, California, U.S.
3IBMArmonk, New York, US
4OracleAustin, Texas, US
43 more rows

Who is the biggest software company in the world? ›

Largest Software Companies
  • Microsoft.
  • Oracle.
  • Salesforce.
  • Adobe.
  • SAP.
May 18, 2023

What makes a great software development company? ›

An excellent software development company has rigorously vetted software developers in its development team. All the team members should have high experience and a strong knowledge of old and new technologies. They should possess great skills when dealing with different frameworks, tools, and programming languages.

What's the #1 software development tool? ›

GitHub is one of the best software development frameworks and tools to learn. It is a powerful collaboration tool and a website of repositories that enables developers to build applications and software, review code, manage projects, and host the code. This tool offers the right tool for different development jobs.

What is the most popular software development model? ›

Agile – The most widely used software development model in the industry due to the fact that it is an incredibly dynamic and flexible project management process.

Which is the most powerful software company? ›

  • #1 Microsoft Corp. ( MSFT)
  • #2 Oracle Corp. ( ORCL)
  • #3 SAP SE (SAP)
  • #4 Salesforce, Inc. ( CRM)
  • #5 Adobe Inc. ( ADBE)
  • #6 Block Inc. ( SQ)
  • #7 Intuit Inc. ( INTU)
  • #8 VMware Inc. ( VMW)

What is the difference between a digital agency and a digital studio? ›

Another distinction between an agency and a studio is their approach to managing the development of the product. Digital product development agencies tend to use project managers, where digital product studios tend to use product managers.

Do digital products make money? ›

Yes, selling digital products can be extremely profitable, and you don't have to worry about many of the overheads and costs associated with selling physical products. Providing you choose the right products and market them well, selling digital products online can be a very lucrative business.

What is the difference between product and digital product? ›

Definition of physical and digital products

The examples of physical products are table, chair, laptop, mobile and anything which is physically touchable. Digital products are the products which are not touchable, available only online and could sell only through digitally and only for digital use.

Do product owners make more than software engineers? ›

No, product owners do not make more than developers.

Both product owners and developers experience a similar range in earning from around $70,000 a year to $160,000 a year.

Is product design better than UX design? ›

The general consensus is that compared to UX or UI designers, product designers have a wider range of skills, and therefore a wider range of responsibilities within the project. This is generally reflected in the salary, with product designers often getting paid more due to higher demand.

Do product managers make more than designers? ›

On average, a product designer gets an average salary of $88,805 per year, while for a UX designer, the average per year salary is $100,080. In product manager vs UX designer salary, the former has an average salary of $102,468 per year, which is quite low compared to the latter but still a rewarding one.

What are the six 6 stages of product development? ›

The product development process describes the six steps needed to take a product from initial concept to final market launch. This includes identifying a market need, researching the competition, ideating a solution, developing a product roadmap, and building a minimum viable product (MVP).

What is the most important stage of product development? ›

The most critical step of the new product release process is research and testing. Though a product might seem like a smart idea at its conception, a deeper look could reveal major vulnerabilities. For instance, you might discover that another company tried to release a similar product with dismal results.

What is new product development strategy? ›

Product development strategy relies on developing new products or modifying existing products so they appear new, and offering those products to current or new markets. When executed successfully, it can lead to growth in sales and market share.

What are the different types of new product development? ›

There are four types of new product development, which include disruptive, radical, sustaining, and incremental.

What are the different types of product development? ›

Types of Product Developments

New product developments can be grouped into four major categories: new-to-the-company, improvement of existing product, extension of product line, and new-to-the-market.

What are the 8 stages of new product development? ›

Here are eight major steps you must follow to undertake a new product development.
  • Get an Idea. ...
  • Screen your New Product Ideas. ...
  • Develop and Test Your Product Concept. ...
  • Product Concept Testing. ...
  • Overall Business Analysis. ...
  • Product Development. ...
  • Test Marketing. ...
  • Product Launch.
Jun 10, 2019

What are the 8 stages of software development life cycle? ›

SDLC consists of various phases, such as planning, design, coding, testing, and deployment, while STLC has different phases, such as test planning, test case development, test execution, and test closure.

What are the first 5 steps in the new product development process explain? ›

Tip. Five phases guide the new product development process for small businesses: idea generation, screening, concept development, product development and, finally, commercialization.

Who is the richest software developer? ›

As of 2021, the Richest Programmer in the World is Elon Musk with a worth $158 Billion. Elon Musk developed two websites/ softwares ( and Zip2) which provided Elon enough money to venture into his engineering interests (Tesla and SpaceX).

Who is the No 1 software company in USA? ›


Located in Redmond, Washington, region Microsoft is the oldest IT company in the US top IT companies list. It primarily deals in computer software. Microsoft Office suite, Edge web browsers, Windows Operating systems, and Internet explorers are some of Microsoft's notable and globally used software.

Which is the fastest growing IT company in world? ›

From tech to ecommerce, this is our list of the fastest growing startups in 2023.
  1. Zerotier. 5-year search growth: 733% ...
  2. Cradlewise. 5-year search growth: 1328% ...
  3. OnlyFans. 5-year search growth: 9800% ...
  4. StackBlitz. 5-year search growth: 822% ...
  5. Linktree. 5-year search growth: 2150% ...
  6. Fandom. 5-year search growth: 295% ...
  7. Preply. ...
  8. Labster.
Apr 21, 2023

What is the richest IT company in the world? ›

Microsoft is the world's leading and valuble and the most visible IT company, with over $161 billion in revenue in 2022. Microsoft Corporation was founded in 1975 by Bill Gates and Paul Allen in Redmond, Washington, and is one of the world's largest technology companies.

What are the big 5 software companies? ›

Big Five logos: Google, Amazon, Apple, Meta, and Microsoft.

What makes software developers happy? ›

Similar to our recent research around what developers prioritize when they look for new job opportunities, flexibility and productivity consistently reign supreme. “Feeling productive at work plays a much more critical role in team happiness than we probably realize.

Which development is best in it industry? ›

  • Mobile App Development. ...
  • Blockchain Technology. ...
  • Cloud computing. ...
  • Data Analysis. ...
  • Cyber Security. ...
  • AI and Machine Learning. ...
  • Data Science. Data science is a lucrative career option. ...
  • Big Data. Big Data jobs are increasing every day since organizations have become data-driven and analyze data for higher productivity.
Feb 3, 2023

What can be the weakness of a software company? ›

Some examples of weaknesses that can affect your business include:
  • Employee absenteeism.
  • Low quality of technology used.
  • Lack of focus on important operations.
  • Wrong management methods.
  • Poor services quality.
  • External factors.
Sep 25, 2022

What are the three 3 types of software? ›

Software is used to control a computer. There are different types of software that can run on a computer: system software, utility software, and application software.

Which programming language is best for software development? ›

Python and C++ are two of the best programming languages for software development, though each language has its ideal uses. Python is versatile in its practical applications; developers often use it to power artificial intelligence, machine learning, web, and development.

Which Agile development is most popular? ›

Scrum is the most popular agile development methodology. Teams work in time-boxed sprints of two to four weeks and each person has a clearly delineated role, such as scrum master or product owner.

Which software model is most efficient? ›

Agile Model

The answer to the question “which SDLC model is the best?” is Agile. The Agile model is a combination of an incremental and iterative approach and is focussed on fitting in well with flexible requirements.

Which software development model is best and why? ›

Waterfall development method

Many consider the waterfall method to be the most traditional software development method. The waterfall method is a rigid linear model that consists of sequential phases (requirements, design, implementation, verification, maintenance) focusing on distinct goals.

Who is king of software? ›

Microsoft is King of Computer Software.

What is the largest privately owned software company? ›

SAS develops and markets a suite of analytics software (also called SAS), which helps access, manage, analyze and report on data to aid in decision-making. The company is the world's largest privately held software business and its software is used by most of the Fortune 500.

What is the most advanced company? ›

The World's Most Innovative Companies
RankCompanyInnovation Premium*
3Intuitive Surgical57.6
4Tencent Holdings52.3
71 more rows

What is the use of design studio? ›

Design Studio allows application developers to create and edit applications that are saved in the XML format. These applications contain interactive dashboards and advance data visualizations by using charts, crosstabs, etc. and alias of data source.

What is the role of software product designer? ›

Product Designers are responsible for coming up with new product designs that meet the needs and wants of consumers. They will have many duties, such as creating design concepts, drawing ideas to determine which one is best suited for the product, and communicating their plans effectively so engineers can execute them.

What is a design system in product design? ›

A Design System is the single source of truth which groups all the elements that will allow the teams to design, realize and develop a product. So a Design System is not a deliverable, but a set of deliverables. It will evolve constantly with the product, the tools and the new technologies.

What services do design studios offer? ›

Some of the services a design agency can offer you include:
  • Print Design. ...
  • Product Design. ...
  • Digital Design. ...
  • Branding Design. ...
  • Graphic Design. ...
  • Logo Design. ...
  • Website Design. ...
  • Reasons For Working With Design Agencies.

What is the difference between design agency and studio? ›

Simple answer – a design studio has 10 or fewer team members and an agency has greater than 10 (Source: Australian Graphic Design Association). Longer answer – an agency normally has team members with very specific skill sets which may render them harder to employ by smaller studios.

What are the main areas of design studio? ›

The Design studio has three main areas: the menu, the Server Explorer and the Work Space. The menu bar has the following menus: File: it has the following submenus: New: it has submenus to create any type of element: folders, data sources, views, etc.

How do I create a successful design studio? ›

How to run a successful design studio: 6 tips from the pros
  1. 6 tips for running a successful design studio.
  2. Give designers space to hone their own ideas. ...
  3. Empower people. ...
  4. Respect everyone. ...
  5. Keeping the client happy isn't enough. ...
  6. Don't back down with tricky clients. ...
  7. Treat every project like it'll be your best.
Jan 19, 2022

Do product designers make a lot of money? ›

Based on data we gathered from our global community of over 140,000 designers, Product Designers working in the USA make an average yearly salary of $90,000, $55,000 being the lowest reported salary and $175,000 being the highest one.

How do product designers work with developers? ›

Designers and developers work together when they create new products, but they're not always on the same page. That's because the nature of their roles are actually quite different. Designers craft the look and feel of a product, while developers code it.

Does product design require coding? ›

UI Designers do not need to code, but it is extremely beneficial if you have programming skills. Depending on the nature of the product, it's also not unusual for UI/UX design and development to be intertwined into a single process.

What are the 4 stages of system design? ›

There are four system design processes: developing stakeholder expectations, technical requirements, logical decompositions, and design solutions.

What is the difference between product design and system design? ›

Product design is when you work out what to offer and how to best meet the customer's demand. System design is when you plan and work out one of the many systems that your company (or product) needs to work well. (A product relies on many systems to be produced, sold, and supported.)

What is a design studio called? ›

Creative studios may also be referred to as a branding agency, branding design studios, creative agencies, creative branding agencies, creative web studios, brand creative studios, design studios, among many others.

How do design studios get clients? ›

8 effective strategies to get new graphic design clients
  1. Be clear on your value.
  2. Ask for recommendations.
  3. Make sure your portfolio is the best it can be.
  4. Create valuable content.
  5. Keep things up to date.
  6. Network, network, network.
  7. Use social proof.
  8. Don't underestimate the power of a follow-up.

What is design studio methodology? ›

Design Studios are a Lean UX method that help multidisciplinary teams come up with a lot of ideas to solve a well-framed problem.


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