2021 Rewind, a year that left a huge mark

2021 was a very important year for Abstracta, where we have not only continued being testing leaders worldwide, but we also kept growing as a company and as a team.

After the severe global blow of the pandemic, this year we were faithful witnesses of the re-acceleration of the labor market and the incessant push of the IT industry. As such, we had exponential growth: we invoiced 21% more than in 2021!

We were able to co-build technology with clients from the USA, Canada, Chile, Uruguay, Mexico, Spain, and England. We also reached Japan, China, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and many other countries, through the GXtest platform. We closed the year with 24 clients in total.

We’re extremely proud because 50% of our new projects were carried out for existing or new clients, in long-term business relationships.

We have managed to focus on our client’s objectives and be helpful to optimize their systems through our precise engineering knowledge in testing, in combination with the incredible human quality of our testers and leaders. Effective and assertive communication has been a key factor in all processes.

In addition, we have expanded our team, made up of inhabitants from different parts of Uruguay, the United States, Canada, Costa Rica, Chile, and Argentina. At Abstracta we work with people of all generations, multiple religions, nationalities, ethnicities, cultures, and genders.

We know for a fact that diversity lies in creativity, and that transformational leadership is key to empowering all the people who work within companies.

For the abstracta family, none of our achievements would be considered as such if the growth as a company had not been accompanied by the care and growth of our people, the personal and professional development of our team, and our social commitment through various projects with a high impact on people’s quality of life.

Testing is much more than running tests! Great thinkers consider that the technological revolution of Industry 5.0 has already begun because, in one way or another, today our lives are mediated by technologies in absolutely all its areas.

For this reason, at Abstracta we seek to help our clients make software quickly and with quality, and be successful. All this without ever neglecting our great objectives: to contribute to community development and improve people’s quality of life.

The impact of testing can be truly immense. Testers have a constructive and crucial role in society, in deeper ways than we might imagine.

As stated by our COO Federico Toledo in his book Introduction to Information Systems Testing, “It is already part of the day to day to be affected by the poor quality of different systems on which we depend. The issue is that there are also thousands of examples of errors that have produced great tragedies, deaths, accidents, losses of thousands of dollars, etc”.

Now here it goes, a scoop of some of our 2021 achievements:

1. Global compact

We began to collaborate with the UN through the Global Compact. They called us to be part of their Executive Council and we decided to take up the challenge.

We have been collaborating with the Sustainable Development Goals of “Health and well-being”, “Gender equality” and “Decent work and economic growth”, which are fundamental and strategic for the UN globally.

2. “Talent has no gender” award

We won the first prize in the National Company category of “Talent has no gender” in Uruguay, awarded by the IDB Group, PwC, and the program “Win-Win: Gender equality is good business”, as part of a regional alliance implemented by the European Union, UN Women and the International Labor Organization.

In the same vein, in September we intervened on the facade of our Salto office, located in the center of the city, during Diversity Month. To say loud and clear that our strength lies in our diversity, in all its variants.

3. Best company to work for Millennials

We were on the TOP 10 of “The Best Places to Work for Millennials in Uruguay”, in a ranking carried out by Best Place to Work. We are so proud that 91% of those who work at Abstracta assure that it is an excellent place to develop.

Likewise, Abstracta Chile was ranked No. 3 in the EFY SME Ranking of Employers for Youth 2021, with the participation of more than 18 thousand young professionals from 160 different companies. Being part of this recognition together with the “Best Medium Companies for Young Professionals”, 2nd year in a row, motivates us enormously.

4. Labor reconversion of refugees and migrants

We are proud to announce that we have completed this project, in which we are working together with the Government of Canelones and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). They are displaced persons abroad or refugee applicants who had the opportunity to train for free as Software Testers at Abstracta Academy this year.

13 participants have already finished the course, 10 of whom are women, and 2 have already been hired!

5. ReconverTite, for gender equality in the IT world

It is a program that trains women who live in the interior of Uruguay in testing and brings them new job opportunities. The training of 10 women in 2019 was just the beginning.

Since then, we have opened the possibility of free training to the families of all the people who work at Abstracta, and the majority of those who do it are women.

Thus, we continued with this project all year, accompanying all women who have graduated from Abstracta Academy in their job placement. In addition, we continued with the monthly meetings open to the community and we carried out awareness campaigns on the subject.

6. We launched “Fibras”

We signed the Fibras Foundation, an association that brings together public and private organizations that share the belief that we can generate an important social impact through technology.

“Working in a network and generating synergies we can go further”, we assure together with other organizations at the official website. We define ourselves as an ecosystem where people, companies, and organizations come together “to support and accelerate projects and ideas using technology as a platform to generate social impact”.

7. Core Camp

We held the founding act of Core Camp, formerly known as Wortech, with support from the IDB. This is a project that seeks to offer first job opportunities in the IT industry to those already trained but without work experience.

The initiative addresses the disparity between the demand for talent and job opportunities for those already trained. We are very excited about the impact it can have on the lives of its protagonists!

“The idea is that all the new abstracteros and junior abstracteros go through CoreCamp. Abstracta is a CoreCamp client, but it will also be working with other companies so that they can increase the number of people they take in their first work experience”, explained our CEO, Matias Reina, at one of the Abstracta Talks of this year.

8. Abstracta Academy

We have new graduates! Almost 200 people completed 557 courses. Who attended? Members of our team, former members, their families, and the general public.

We made 13 courses available publicly and 3 internally. As if this weren’t enough, there are 3 new courses on the way: DevOps, Performance testing with Gatling and Exploratory Testing.

In addition, we were also able to release a new website to present our academy: Our course on Udemy about JMeter and Blazemeter reached almost 9000 students from 95 countries!

In 2021, Abstracta Chile culminated with the Hub Testing program, jointly developed by Abstracta Academy and Fundación Aplicaciones. The objective was to provide the knowledge and skills necessary to perform as software testers to young people living in Chile between 18 and 29 years old, interested in starting a career related to information technology.

9. Internships

We have a loan from BidLabs for our internship initiative, which seeks to maximize the chances of those who have training in technology. With the aim that they have the possibility of entering the industry and having their first job opportunity

Getting your first job can be really difficult! And at Abstracta, we know it. Therefore, we are extremely satisfied with this project and have achieved its implementation. In 2021, we managed to train around 20 people from scratch and offer them their first job opportunity.

10. Redalco

We joined a solidarity mission undertaken by Redalco and helped those who need food the most. We collaborated with almost 100,000 dishes, to contribute to reaching the 1,500,000 proposed by the campaign.

11. Jóvenes a Programar

We had the honor of continuing to collaborate with Jóvenes a Programar (JaP), from the Ceibal plan. All over this year, we continued updating the material of the testing course and gave them all the material, so they were able to train all the groups they wanted. We also contributed with teachers from Abstracta, and we hired people who studied there.

In November, the IDB manager from the Southern Cone came to Uruguay and invited us to share our experience with JaP, as representatives of the business sector. It was amazing to share our journey and collaboration.

12. Internal automation

We managed to automate 100% of our billing processes with PIA. This way, we were able to obtain new data from our clients and our operations as well as reduce processing times.

13. GXtest – VUCE

GXtest is a testing platform and it was Abstracta’s first product. VUCE is Uruguay’s single window for foreign trade, which gathers all import and export procedures. It is more than relevant for the country to have a window that works well.

Through different actions, we achieved greater effectiveness in the delivery processes of their systems. Among them, we added the possibility of doing visual testing and to improve productivity; we managed workshops for more than 80 people; we participated in the GeneXus 2021 virtual event; and 11 clients from Japan, the United States, Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Brazil and Chile began to use the platform.

14. JMeter Java DSL

It is a new product, an open source contribution that seeks to bring performance testing closer to developers and, thus, speed up the development of quality software with the JMeter Java DSL tool.

There is currently a trend that developers can perform more performance tests. This new product can undoubtedly be key to positioning ourselves in the future in the performance world, due to the ability to innovate in this area.

15. Apptim

There are already more than 250 active companies using our product around the world! Among them, important companies such as PlayTika, which is on the TOP 10 of gaming companies, and Mercadolibre.

Sofia Palamarchuk, Abstracta partner and Apptim CEO, was selected in Google’s LAC Women Founders Accelerator and was supported by BIDLabs. More than 400 startups from all over LATAM participated, of which only 20 were selected.

This was a great opportunity to work with the Google team and continue to look for ways to improve the way we create apps.

16. Shared information

This year, we shared much of the knowledge incorporated through the different processes. How did we do it? Through the publication of posts on our blogs, social networks, and new episodes in the Quality Sense podcasts, led by our COO Federico Toledo, and The Everything Else Podcast, by our Chief Culture Officer Vera Babat.

In addition, we managed multiple internal and external webinars; shared content on the TestProject, BlazeRunner, and Blazemeter blogs; we were selected for the ScaleUp UK program on pitch day; and we participated in various conferences on testing in different countries.

Likewise, Federico Toledo was interviewed on different podcasts and YouTube channels, including Free Range Tester, a very popular channel intended for testers and automators. And, as if that weren’t enough, Vera Babat was a finalist for Woman that build at the Globant Awards!

17. Camp

We had our first camp since the pandemic started: we were able to look into each other’s eyes, hug each other, enjoy and share from a different place. The committees for different needs of the event were fundamental in the development of such a beautiful event, as well as the active participation of each abstracta member.

Fortunately, we handle remote work wonderfully in terms of organization, but without a doubt these get-togethers enrich and strengthen us as a team.

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