Ryan & Carlos

Ryan & Carlos

Product Design & Development

Ryan & Carlos is a Lean Startup and design & development team based in NYC. We build relationships with entrepreneurs, helping them to think strategically about technology while drawing from our 20 years combined experience. We take on business and product challenges and conceive, architect, and deliver the simplest solution that finishes the job. We are realists who get stuff done. Between projects, we are also entrepreneurs who incubate our own ideas into products.

What we do for startups

Lean Startup

Lean Startup is at the core of every decision we make. This results in decisions that avoid superfluous solutions and that spend money wisely, automating with custom software only when manual or off-the-shelf processes are no longer possible.

Technology consulting

We’ve been coding and overseeing startup development projects for years. We intimately know what technical pitfalls startups should be wary of and what architectures lead to flexible, scalable products.
Read about our project planning service.

Full-stack Development

We’re senior-level front-end and back-end coders with Computer Science degrees from top schools (and years of real-world experience). We’re also active in the open source community from time-to-time.

Functional design

We build a strong technology foundation first and foremost, focusing on application architecture and user experience. We iterate until we meet customer needs on these fronts.

Recruiting & mentoring

A great team is a startup’s most valuable asset. We’re pros at vetting technical candidates for your in-house team. After you hire your ninja, we make their transition in seamless by coaching them on how the app works and optimal workflow strategies.

Marketing strategy

Landing pages, email marketing (newsletters and drip campaigns), content marketing, A/B testing, SEO, analytics, and competitor analysis are all things we’re called upon to handle routinely. So we get it done.

Copywriting

We do what needs to get done. Sometimes this means we have to write some quick copy. Like the kind you're reading right now. We don’t always prefer to do it, but sometimes it can be fun.

Emergency support

It happens. You’ll have minor technological crises from time to time, and you’ll need immediate support from an expert. Don’t worry; we’ll be there to make sure these hiccups stay just hiccups and to get you a plan for how to tackle the underlying issues. Read about our preventative support service.

Project management

Clients, requirements, specifications, budgets, developers, designers... we’ve been doing this for a long time and understand how all of these parties and their needs get synthesized.

How it’s done for startups

It all starts off with getting to know you and your startup: your professional background, what validation you have that your product should be built, what work you’ve done on it so far, what goals you’ve set and what your budget looks like. Yes, we’ll ask questions that are hard to answer!

We build your MVP

If working together makes sense for both parties, we’ll build out an alpha version of your product at an extremely competitive price given our expertise and quality of work. This “1.0” application we architect will serve as a rock-solid, scalable foundation for future development and will knock the socks off of investors (as many of our clients have!)

We cover your tech needs

You’re naturally going to want to make enhancements based on customer feedback, so we’ll work with you on them. Our ultimate goal however is to get your development needs in a stable situation, so while we code we’ll vet, interview and mentor tech talent that can grow with you as your company grows.

We offer continuing value 

Product direction, marketing strategy, and emergency support are only part of the continuing value we provide our partners once the meat of our engagement is complete. Once we’ve built up a solid relationship over a substantial period of working together, and we believe in you as a real go-getter, we’ll be open to replacing our cash compensation with equity if that works better for a cash-strapped you.

20+ Years Combined Experience
20+ Startups Aided 
Scores of ideas lean-tested
Scores of concepts into reality

What we don't do for startups

Build stuff willy-nilly

We must understand the business case behind each product decision so that we can craft the best possible solution to support it. Once we do, the leanest solution that satisfies the requirement is made.

Non-competes

Our business is working with entrepreneurs on products. Signing a non-compete inhibits our ability to do that by making the pool of potential work we can take on in the future smaller. This is not good business.

Bureaucracies

We want to work directly with the people responsible for making decisions for the business. There’s no time for hierarchies when you’re starting a new business; a level playing field works best to get stuff done.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why wouldn’t I just hire the cheapest team?

Software development can never be factory-type work. It will always hold high strategic value that requires input and lots of attention from product managers, project managers, programmers and designers. After all, what value would you put on a team that can automate complicated instructions in ways that are highly reliable so the work done today will be an asset for the next 10 to 15 years?

Why are you experts?

Experience. Our experience has taught us the importance of making informed product decisions, writing detailed project roadmaps, writing “good” code, shipping that code with an extensive testing suite, rigidly adhering to best practices, staying current with technology, and giving back to the community. This experience helps us produce quality product quickly and efficiently.

What is this “good” code and why does it matter?

Good code is code that achieves valuable desired functionality in as simple and concise a manner as possible while being easily changeable. Less, easier-to-modify code means reduced maintenance. Good code matters because these savings on maintenance means saving time and money.

Will you be around to support us?

We stand behind our work because of the significant investment both we and our clients have made in it. We respond to all requests within 24 hours and are here to support your project indefinitely.

When can I expect to see stuff?

We publish changes daily or weekly, depending on the project. You’ll never need to wait a month to see progress. We're fast, and you see things as they happen.

Do you provide development and design?

We are currently big advocates of Google Material Design.

How do you deal with hosting?

We host with Heroku, which is a layer of abstraction for developers that provides ease of deployment to Amazon EC2 servers. We have over 25 of our client’s applications currently hosted on Heroku and are members of the Heroku Partner Program.

What is your technology stack?

Ruby, Ruby on Rails, Bootstrap, Foundation, jQuery, Unicorn, PostgreSQL, Amazon Web Services, Amazon EC2.

Recent startups

Tripwing

Tripwing

Tour search engine & itinerary builder
Helped secure investment
RoR, Slim, Sass, Coffee, Elasticsearch, Postgres

AfterSteps

AfterSteps

End-of-life planning software
Helped secure $300,000 investment
RoR, Haml, Sass, MySQL

PhysicalFix

PhysicalFix

Online personal training
Increased revenue of service 166%
RoR, ERB, Sass, Coffee, Mongo

Revenue Trades

Revenue Trades

Investment platform
UX design for investment wizard
Bootstrap, Coffee, OmniGraffle

Our faces

Ryan Jafari

Founder
Product Designer • UX Developer
Technology Consultant
Blog LinkedIn

Carlos Ramirez

Founder
Product Designer • Full-stack Web Developer
Technology Consultant
GitHub LinkedIn

Entrepreneurs love us

Michael Bamberger, Simplify Digital

“They’re smart, enthusiastic people who helped us accomplish our business goals.” 

Michael Bamberger
Founder, Simplify Digital
Jon Katz, eDivv

“I expected them to deliver a launch-worthy minimum viable product, and they did so on budget, on time, and in a professional manner.”

Jon Katz
Co-Founder, eDivv

“I am privileged to have the opportunity to work with them and highly recommend them to anyone that needs to take their venture from "0 to 90 mph" in seconds.”

Thai Nguyen
Product Management Professional
Wayne Cooper, Greenhaven Partners

“...they are incredibly smart, hard working and dependable. I recommend them highly.”

Wayne Cooper
Director, Greenhaven Partners
Jess Bloomgarden, AfterSteps

“...the technologies they chose and the quality of their engineering... led to a great, revenue-producing product...”

Jess Bloomgarden
CEO, AfterSteps

“Both projects that we worked on together were delivered on time, within budget and with great documentation. Very easy to work with.”

John Surdakowski
Founder, Avex Designs