• Mar.19.2021

Doing good by doing better: how Lost Lemon uses Jira Software to aid social programs in the Netherlands

  • Mar.19.2021
  • Reading time mins

Understanding the workload

Lost Lemon is a company that truly believes in its mission. They exist in order to provide services to agencies, especially within government, that supply social services. As technology to meet these needs can be expensive, Lost Lemon’s mission is to provide open-source and open-standard technology that can be adopted at a much lower price point, while still meeting all of the diverse and crucial needs of the customers they serve.

The philosophy of Lost Lemon is to actually make a difference. More than just delivering software or helping customers with technical issues, their goal is to really make a difference for people that need support in the Netherlands that support social causes such as healthcare.

Their aim is to be actively involved, and as Wim de Jonge, Delivery Manager at Lost Lemon explains it, “Beyond just making money, what we really want to do is to be involved in making things better, and to help our customers operate easily on a political, administrative, process, information, and technical level.”

In order to best meet the needs of their clients, Lost Lemon developers work in scrum teams with Agile sprints using Jira Software. Depending on the project, there are between 40-50 employees involved in software development spread out over five different product teams. There are also designers, testers, and developers. In addition, they work with almost 25 different consultants, specialists and project leads who implement the software solutions that Lost Lemon creates and act as liaisons between the company and their clients.

In order to understand the time spent on projects by everyone in the company, Lost Lemon uses Tempo’s time-tracking app to keep track of hours worked, as well as billable hours for their clients. It is an essential aspect of their business, allowing them to understand efforts made on specific sprints, and is vitally important to their ability to get paid for the work that they do.

Meeting the needs of the present, and the future

As the word spread about Lost Lemon’s service and work ethic, more customers came knocking, at which point they realized that they didn’t have the capacity with their legacy server version of Jira to be able to handle the increased interest. Not enough licenses were available and using a legacy Server version of Jira began to inhibit their growth.

More than that, the need to improve all aspects of customer experience was at the forefront of their minds at this point. Lost Lemon began investigation the means to:

  • Give customers more insight into their outstanding requests
  • Include the sales/lead follow up process in Jira
  • Consider further integration with other systems for documentation, support, helpdesk, CRM, etc

With their legacy version of Jira as the backbone—of not just development—but the way they do business across all departments, they began to search for a solution.

It was at this point that the team at Lost Lemon decided that a move to the cloud version of Jira would be the right way forward. Lost Lemon contacted a consultancy firm, and began the process of migrating their data, including their time-tracking data from Tempo into the cloud.

However, the first attempt was unsuccessful and the migration stalled due to some difficulty migrating the Tempo data.

At this point, everyone began to feel the pressure. There was little room for error, moving forward. It was at this delicate and crucial time that Lost Lemon reached out to Valiantys.


From migration to settlement

The team at Lost Lemon had a very clear idea of what they needed from the very beginning of the project. They simply wanted to migrate the data they used in their server version of Jira Software with Tempo and have that migrated to cloud versions of those tools without any loss of functionality. It was also critical that there be minimal disturbance of daily work during the migration.

Wim and Floris met with Valiantys and were impressed from the beginning.

“In the first migration,” he said, “Floris [van Duin, IT Consultant] and I made the plan, and we had to pull the migration partner along with us in the plan.” Working with Valiantys, they were able to allow the delivery team to actually take the lead. They worked closely with the Lost Lemon team in the beginning, seeking to understand exactly what their requirements were.

From there, the Valiantys delivery team was able to establish the flow of the cloud migration and to demonstrate what was about to happen to the Lost Lemon team. A very clear layout on which steps were about to be taken before beginning the migration.

The migration went very smoothly. Wim cites a high level of transparency and professionalism, “especially when compared to the previous migration attempt.”

Only Wim Floris and the local system administrator were involved in the particulars of the migration, leaving the larger details to the Valiantys team. They did, however, use the larger team at Lost Lemon for acceptance testing and looking into the processes, leveraging their experience to ensure the new version met everyone’s needs.

Migration to the cloud was painless, with Valiantys using proprietary scripts in order to get the job done quickly and efficiently. In the end, one or two hours of collaboration between the Lost Lemon system administrators and the Valiantys team was all it took. Testing began in earnest and after working out a few early issues, was quickly accepted across the organization.

"In our first meeting with Valiantys [regarding the cloud migration], it was a relief. They knew what questions to ask, and what to look out for. They really knew what they were talking about. "

Wim de Jonge, Delivery Manager

Develop, react, deliver

For the team at Lost Lemon, the migration to the cloud has been key in allowing their business to grow, and teams to thrive. They have set processes with workflows that help them to develop, react, and deliver high-quality products to their customers.

In addition, they have been able to do away with some of the add-ons that they had previously been using, as that functionality is now available in Jira cloud right out of the box.

Using Tempo in conjunction with Jira cloud has also freed up an extra day out of every month for Wim. Previous to the migration, when he wanted to know the status of a project and measure the hours spent on it, he had to hustle to get all of the numbers together from a legacy version of Tempo. It would take a full Friday to get all of the numbers out and then make a report.

Now, he’s able to do it in just a few minutes. He grabs the data from Tempo, moves it to a spreadsheet, and is able to understand and share crucial data on time, allowing the entire team to better understand results and use that data to ensure the continued success of the business.

What’s next

The next stage for Lost Lemon is to look into how they can integrate other Atlassian tools into their existing structure. The addition of documentation, support, and helpdesk tools that can be integrated with their current data in the cloud will set the stage for the next evolution of Lost Lemon.