Full Process Review and App Build with Custom Integration - Long-Term Client Relationship
initial Needs Description
A small automobile spare parts manufacturing firm based in the U.S. has multiple partner factories in China. The firm began using Quick Base (formerly QuickBase) to track orders and the tasks required for their manufacturers to deliver those orders. The goal was for the manufacturer contacts in China to receive their work orders by accessing the Quick Base app in order to have streamlined access to their pending work. Since English is not the first language for these contacts, the workflow had to be simple and easy to comprehend. After using Quick Base on their own for a few months, the firm realized they need assistance to effectively design and fully launch their app.
Iterative Process for Initial Work Together
- Initial Meetings: We began the engagement with a series of meetings held virtually via screen share. The client provided access to the existing app, as well as reports being built in Excel and a wish list of functionalities.
- Design: After a couple of meetings and review of all documentation and the app, a design diagram for the new app was presented and reviewed.
- Build Start: The next day, the new app build was underway and a first review of the new app was conducted via screen share four business days later.
- Revisions: Based on the feedback, changes were made.
- Observed Testing: Three days later, the client engaged with us in an observed testing session, offering feedback while using the app and allowing us to see and hear their experience as first time users. This helped us understand workflow needs, structural integrity and how best to enhance the user experience.
- Revisions/Test Run Data Load: Based on the feedback from the shared session, revisions were made. Utilizing data mapping done with the client in a previous shared session, a test run data load of all orders from the current year. At this point, we were about three weeks into working together.
- Independent Testing: Client identified three users from different functional areas of the organization to test the system by editing the uploaded orders as the orders processed. This was done in parallel with keeping up the current system. A process and mechanism to easily capture feedback within the system were put in place.
- Revisions/Review: After a week of testing, we implemented the changes then conducted another review session via screen share.
- Live Data Upload: We made a few minor tweaks based on the last review session, then uploaded the live data during an agreed upon window beginning late in the day Friday and completed in time for a Saturday morning review by the primary client contact.
- Launch: After approval of the live data import, the new system launched Monday morning - a total of five weeks from the beginning of the engagement.
first app Post-Launch
- Immediate Launch Support: For the two weeks following the Monday morning launch, intensive support was provided almost daily - answering questions, making adaptations, supporting the system administrator as he gained familiarity with adding and on-boarding new users.
- On-Going Support: Over the following months and years, support was provided in the form of coaching and executing requested tasks (depending on client’s resource availability). Topics included report building, workflow facilitation, adding new functionality such as adding Customer Quotes that could be mailed directly to clients and Inventory management.
New Integrated Systems
- Build New App: A few years after launching the order management system, the firm moved sales and marketing in-house. We worked together to build a new CRM (customer relationship management) app in Quick Base to track sales and marketing activities. The sales team now had all their contact information and activities constantly available via their tablet as they were out in the field. A feature of the CRM included daily automated integration with the email marketing platform, GetResponse.
- Automated Integration: As contacts are added or inactivated in the CRM within QuickBase, GetResponse is updated and vice versa using both services' API. Activity within GetResponse such as clicks, subscribes and unsubscribes are recorded in Quick Base so the sales team understands at a glance which contacts are the most interested in each particular marketing communication, and then knows who to target with outreach. Home pages are designed based on role to provide detail on upcoming sales activities and prospect actions.