Case Study
Jan 24, 2024

Scaling Nebula’s Engineering Team With the Right Talent Results in Meeting Goals Six to Nine Months Faster, a platform that uses generative AI and natural language processing to help recruiters and hiring managers find and engage with talent faster and more accurately, tapped into the Andela network to scale their engineering team with the right talent quickly.  

Andela exists to connect brilliance with opportunity, so everyone wins. And it’s that mission that instantly caught the attention of Ed Donner, CTO of Nebula, when it came time to scale his team for greatness. “I wasn’t hiring when I first came across Andela. I got a call from a client partner at Andela, and though I don’t normally engage with cold calls, their mission was different. Connecting brilliance with opportunity completely resonated with me.”  

Andela’s mission aligned with Nebula, but its global reach set it apart from competitors. Donner was interested in exploring offshore development initiatives, and with 60% of Andela’s network in Africa and Latin America, the partnership found quick validation.

We always knew we didn’t want to hire within the confines of the US, and we wanted to access brilliant minds beyond our borders.  

Donner understood that he would need to future-proof his global tech talent strategy to ensure business growth. When it finally came time to take his organization to the next level, Donner turned to Andela to build an elastic team of distributed global talent, fast.  

We needed people that were technically very strong, true experts in their field…,” says Donner. “What set Andela apart was how quickly they could bring exceptional, specialist talent straight to us. It would have taken months with competitors, but with Andela, we found the right talent in days.

With their platform built on a foundation of several complex machine-learning initiatives, Nebula was looking to develop its software rapidly and hit a commercial go-to-market date of late 2023. Nebula's mission is to empower a hiring manager with little to no recruiting experience to achieve the same results as a tenured agency recruiter. They achieve this by offering an approachable and intuitive front-end experience that delivers automation and augmentation throughout the talent acquisition journey. It takes a specialized team with unique skills to engineer a platform like Nebula's. Andela was motivated by the challenge.

When he worked with other vendors, Donner could only hire two engineers per month who matched the skills and expertise required for the project. With Andela, Donner brought on 10 people in just a few months.  

Nebula hired skilled Andela engineers to scale their team

Two of Nebula’s first Andela hires were Gideon Agyekum and Ifunga Ndana, a back-end and front-end engineer, respectively, who have now been on the team for more than two years.  

Not only did Agyekum and Ndana quickly become part of the team, but their talent and professionalism impressed Donner so much that Nebula sourced an additional 25 skilled engineers from Andela’s talent pool in less than six months.

"Andelans are exceptional. They bring their A-game to Nebula, making suggestions for improvements and thinking outside the box", says Donner.

Agyekum works on the back end, building the platform and creating automation in Nebula’s app. Ndana is a front-end engineer working on the parts of the app the user experiences. He has spent most of his time working on the communication and messaging features of the app.

“Gideon and Ifunga are two of the strongest engineers I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with,” remarked Donner. “They have contributed significantly to our company’s culture, performance, and growth since joining.”  

Agyekum saw the potential in Nebula after being approached by a matcher and knew he wanted to join the team. “I could see what Nebula wanted to do with the product, the difference it would make. I wanted to be part of that story.”

Ndana agrees. “Nebula cares about its people, what you can bring to the table, and working to the best of your ability. The product was key. It felt exciting, and with the potential for growth… that’s what sold me.”

Nebula understands that the key to success is surrounding themselves with technologists who are passionate about their product and curious about new, in-demand technologies. Donner and his colleagues encourage the team, Andelans included, to upskill and develop their skill sets. While at Nebula, Ndana has developed expertise in back-end Python coding and wants to contribute more to machine learning projects despite holding a front-end position within the organization.

Another important thing to Donner, as they scaled the team, was to bring on people who felt that they were truly a part of Nebula, not just contractors.

“Andelans just seem to have that cultural mindset where they’re willing and excited to bring themselves to the team every day,” Donner says. “When I first met Gideon, I discovered two things: he’s passionate about his work, and in his spare time, he’s an excellent jazz musician. We all get along well, and we’re aligned on our goal—to build and deliver a great product.”

Nebula reached development milestones 6-to-9 months quicker thanks to Andela's engineers

“We were able to reach our development initiatives 6-to-9 months faster with Andela,” Donner says. “The overall accomplishments of the engineering team are in huge part because of Andela.”

“They met every sprint milestone—there is a spotless execution track record.”

In early 2023, Nebula was offered the chance to trial Andela Qualified, the only performance-based platform that uses real-world work simulations to predict on-the-job performance, which has proved a welcome addition to Nebula’s hiring process. “For me the greatest value is that Qualified has been effective in screening candidates for technical skills, with questions involving real-world technical challenges rather than coding puzzles” says Donner. “Candidates with strong Qualified assessment results have tended to perform well at technical interviews and at solving actual technical problems on the job.”  

What’s next?

Andelans will continue to be a massive part of Nebula’s engineering team.  

“We expect to have another growth phase shortly after our commercial launch, and we’re looking to continue to hire Andelans in our next growth period,” Donner says.  

In the future, Donner hopes the team upskills on the job, moving towards a full stack foundation, and having more data science and machine learning exposure. As the team gets stronger, so does the final product.  

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About Andela

Andela is a global private talent marketplace powered by a unified platform to manage the complete tech talent lifecycle. Andela Talent Cloud provides an AI-driven platform that helps enterprises source, qualify, hire, manage, and pay global technical talent in one integrated platform. Powerful AI-matching algorithms learn from thousands of touch points in the hiring journey to pinpoint the best technologists up to 70% faster at 30-50% less cost than other hiring approaches.

Market leaders partner with Andela to help rewrite their workforce strategies to include global, remote-fluent talent from emerging geographies such as Africa and Latin America to scale their teams and deliver projects faster. With a community of over 4 million technologists, Andela caters to specialized disciplines such as Application Engineering, Artificial Intelligence, Cloud Computing, and Data & Analytics.

The world’s best brands trust Andela, including GitHub, Mastercard Foundry, ViacomCBS, and Mindshare. Discover more about Andela here.

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Scaling Nebula’s Engineering Team With the Right Talent Results in Meeting Goals Six to Nine Months Faster

Looking to develop new software fast, Nebula turned to the Andela team to quickly hire quality engineers.

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