The partner spotlight is a weekly series where we go behind the scenes with some of the companies that make VendorDB great. Next up is ATTCK!
Location: New York, NY
Year Founded: 2014
Specialties: Web Development, Design, and Staffing
What inspired you to start your company?
Dennis Plucinik: The challenge of creating the perfect shop. Chuck and I had been consultants for years (30+ combined) and consistently felt that there was something missing in our profession. There always seemed to be something obvious that could be done better.
Chuck Nelson: We wanted to be the development shop that we wanted to work for. When an agency gets too big, it seems they either start missing the details or stop caring. We wanted both the flexibility of a small shop and a powerful brand and process. We are constantly listening to our team who are in the trenches for ways to improve.
How did the partners meet?
Chuck: We met at a WeWork in 2011 sharing a coworking office. I was listening to the obscure Electro-Nintendo-rock band “Anamanaguchi”
Dennis: …loudly in his headphones
Chuck: … you can’t play their music softly, not possible. He asked me if he was listening to Anamanaguchi. From then on, we were fast friends.
Why New York?
Dennis: Because we live here.
Chuck: Aside from the obvious energy of the city, New York offers a wealth of support and community for the startup and media industry. Along with a very unique and eccentric artistic community, New York is unmatched in creativity and technology.
What was the first job someone hired you for?
Disregarding lemonade stands and paper routes, Dennis was hired by his father’s company in 1996 to design and develop their corporate site. If we’re talking about as a company—I think we had a WordProject or SquareSpace project on our first day of business
What was the most technically challenging work you’ve created?
Doing architecture work for enterprise content/ecommerce sites with budget and time constraints is always challenging since early mistakes can manifest as major problems down the road.
Which work or brand are you best known for?
Each of us has worked with many well known brands in our careers. As a company we’re just getting started so our most well known stuff is through other agencies so we can’t discuss them.
Which project is your most underrated?
Chuck: One project, only used internally at the moment, is an app named “What the F*ck Should ATTCK Eat Today?” The office enjoys free lunches everyday, but sometimes we get stuck in a pattern of only eating burritos or at one specific restaurant. To free us from boring lunch choices, a team member created an app that works with the Seamless API to suggest new and different choices in our area at random. The forceful language helps push the suggestion along. Everyone is afraid of a hangry developer.
What is the smartest work you’ve seen in the past year that didn’t come from your shop?
I really liked ANA Connections which was from Firstborn. It combined a beautiful 3D WebGL component and a unique and compelling narrative.
How has the business changed since you started?
Chuck: Many things have changed since the beginning, and we made sure to allow for changes since the beginning; it’s a part of the culture. We’ve added employee driven seminars to be able to present development skills to their peers and made available tools for online learning. We’ve also added company happy hours to get away from a computer screen at the appropriately named hour of “Beer:30.” Constantly improving has been one thing that’s remained constant.
Dennis: It general there’s an increasing number of technologies being introduced. We will live or die by the success of those we choose to specialize in.
What emerging tech trend will have the biggest impact on your business?
What is your biggest challenge at the moment?
Finding the right talent. We are each multi-disciplinary and self-guided. Add the depth of experience required to actually execute the work and we’re talking about very rare people.
What advice do you have for agency producers or creatives?
Producers should understand all the moving parts with as much detail as possible. This means communicating your understanding of each stakeholder’s unique priorities to everyone on the team. Creatives and devs still just need to learn how to get along 🙂
What do you make of the trend where brands are skipping their agency of record to work directly with production partners?
I am obviously in favor of it. They pay less overhead and get to work more closely with the engineers and creatives behind the work.
What is the best thing about working at ATTCK?
Everyone works very closely because individual success is intertwined. We require autonomy and promote mentorship, focus, and ultimately mastery of skill. Also everyone seems to like free lunches, regularly shifting projects, remote working, and free beer.
Where is the best bar in Gramercy?
We drink at the office. Dennis has a great Japanese whisky collection.
Any wild company party stories?
Not yet but we’re setting our sights high.