Sharing Economy in the Stories of JustCoded and Akvelon

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The Ukrainian IT sector has always stood out for its innovation and ability to adapt quickly. However, the war in Ukraine poses challenges: foreign investors and clients have become more cautious, opportunities for Ukrainian IT companies are limited, and there is a loss of talent and team dispersion.

This has led to the need to review business strategies and support services. In the summer of 2023, the Kharkiv IT Cluster launched the project “IT Cluster in the Cloud” with the support of the USAID Competitive Economy of Ukraine Program. The aim is to support small and medium-sized IT companies that have partially relocated their teams across Ukraine and the world.

IT Resilience in Military Realities

On the morning of February 24, 2022, when an ordinary workday turned into a day of trials, the JustCoded office became a shelter for employees’ families and their pets. Instead of meetings with colleagues and work memes, this place provided refuge in times of war.

Managers stayed connected with clients, and developers continued their work despite the danger and chaos surrounding them. This situation revealed a new perspective on the JustCoded office, which even without backup power sources proved to be a fortress, ensuring safety and productivity.

In early March 2022, when most teams left the city, the three-story building of the JustCoded office opened its doors to volunteers from the NGO “Through the War.” The charitable foundation did not stop its work, and the JustCoded space was always ready to welcome those in need.

In September, the team developed a plan to withstand the winter period and respond to the enemy’s intentions. The office was equipped with generators, star links, and supplies of food and water for a field kitchen. Each employee received home chargers, power banks, and everything needed to continue working for victory.

“Thanks to coordinated work and a pre-established action plan for each team member, we were able to withstand the darkest times for our country and preserve our business and people. We continue to donate and help the country,” says Maya Chirva, HR at JustCoded.

JustCoded opened its IT-resilient office to employees of other IT companies or IT courses in need of workspace in Kharkiv.

Resources for Continuing Work in Wartime

Akvelon, also a member of the Kharkiv IT Cluster, actively responded to the challenges of recent years. As soon as the first power outages became known, the company’s leadership decided to provide employees with the necessary resources to continue working and supporting their families.

In the Lviv and Dnipro offices of the Akvelon Dev Center, generators and star links provide coworking spaces, while in Kharkiv, the company has equipped the office with everything necessary independently. This allowed the team to effectively perform their tasks during active disconnections.

Now the situation has stabilized, but there is confidence that Akvelon is 100% ready for a possible repeat of the scenario with a power outage.

Kharkiv IT Cluster continues to grow during the military escalation, actively communicating and creating online platforms for networking. The “IT Cluster in the Cloud” project provides cluster services to support, protect, and develop export opportunities for companies, regardless of their location. The community is united by common values, not geographical restrictions.

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