In this blog we explore some of the key services that we offer, examine how we differentiate from our competitors and draw out some examples of our past work. We will cover services including software development development and mobile app development.
Software Program Development
As a software development company we specialise in a wide range of software solutions including custom software development, mobile app development (including iOS app development and android app development) along with configuration/customisation of packaged software. We specialise in open source software which is software that is freely licensed for use and often supported by either a large sponsor software company (such as Java being sponsored by Oracle) or a community of software developers (such as Drupal or WordPress).
The reason we choose to specialise in open source (PHP Development for example) is due to the fact there is typically a wide range of community support available and typically a lower total cost of ownership (no ongoing software license costs). Sometimes the balance is slightly more development effort but with that comes the security that your software solution is your software solution, you can control / manage any changes (no changes are forced on you be 3rd party software development companies) and the software is tailored to your business (hopefully providing a differentiator from your competitors to increase that bottom line).
DevOps is the concept of combining the software development and the operational/maintenance side of the solution into one view – ensuring you not only get a great solution but you can run/maintain that easily. We apply DevOps concepts by tightly integrating our operational teams within our development teams at key stages, we have checkpoints to ensure solution maintenance and administration is considered at all major stages. Our target is always 100% administration free control – although impossible it is a good target as we ensure the majority of process flows throughout the system do not require an administrative/human interaction.
Case Study – RightTimeRecruitment.co.uk – we teamed up with designer Nathan Cole to deliver and realise the solution based on his designs. We created a Drupal CMS to provide the required features for the website to allow jobs to be visible, applicants to apply and to manage the range of mobile friendly views. We integrated this directly into a 3rd party provider to receive the job information where we also send all job applications through – ensuring a single solution for our client. A great project for us especially a super test of our infrastructure as Lord Alan Sugar tweeted the launch to his 5.25 million followers leading to a large load on the infrastructure (and the usual rogue requests).
Custom Software Development
Whilst we choose the most appropriate technology for our clients from the open source toolbox we have, however on occasions a custom software solution is the correct choice. We build upon already developed (and tested) frameworks that enable us to jump start the project – as an experienced custom software development company we have developed a large library of assets to suit different core requirements. We maintain these assets, document them for use and of course ensure we re-use to reduce both your project costs in terms of development and also testing (due to the use of already validated components). Our preference for development frameworks can vary but includes PHP (CodeIgniter, Laravel, CakePHP) and Java (AngularJS, VueJS, ReactJS) – we use a wide range of webservers (but Apache is our favourite) and databases (mySQL is our go to database for most solutions and any solution requiring point in time recovery we lean towards Amazon Aurora as we haven’t found a database offering the same for that cost point).
Case Study – Tutorially.co.uk – Tutorially is an online Software as a Solution proposition that enables tutors to manage their business – from finding and connecting with students, managing lessons, handling finance and blogging – all for free or a small monthly fee (depending on tier). We designed and developed the solution for our client using an open source framework – we integrated google calendars, stripe & PayPal payments and of course email features (for notifications). The enhanced process flows that simplify the tutors/students’ interaction are complex in places and require a large amount of validation. The mobile responsive solution was a challenge from the wide variety of requirements but as with every solution that we deliver – it’s a custom software development we are proud of.
Mobile App Development
Our in-house team of native Android and iOS app developers have created a vast variety of apps, from games through to business apps. An app can either be standalone – meaning it doesn’t need to connect to a backend system to operate/function, or integrated – which by far the most common means the app is connected to a centralised system for sharing data. We provide both types of solution with the centralised component either being a traditional webserver (and a CMS such as WordPress or Java / PHP application) or a dedicated service (such as the AWS services). The integration between the mobile app and the backend should be secure (use HTTPS as a minimum and ideally API key and/or username and password) and the technology to communicate (the protocol) can vary (SOAP/XML/REST/JSON). We support with the design, development and deployment – ensuring the mobile app is approved to be deployed to the correct store (should that be required – there are other deployment options without the need to deploy to the stores).
Case Study – Major UK Charity (Confidential) – we have delivered both an iOS and Android mobile app to allow them to deploy to their 9000+ staff, volunteers and partners across the UK. The charities aims are to help reduce the impact (and cause) of strokes and a key part of that is ensuring the public are aware of their heart rate and can understand key factors along with their current rate. The app replaces the paper-based system (hand written, transported centrally, transcribed and then reported 3 months later) with an efficient way of collecting data correctly the first time, ensuring the advice is standardised/simplified across the user base and of course ensuring that data is available for use in a short period of time. We have delivered a framework to support an extension of the solution for future forms, encryption within the device and ensuring data is removed from the app on a timely basis.