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How Mobile app technology assisted Callmax to grow 10x & resulted in exit in less than 5 years

In our initial consultation sessions with company stakeholders one of the most frequently recurring areas of concern is how we can build a software solution that actually supports the long-range vision and growth that company leadership has set out to achieve.

After failed attempts at building solutions in-house and with external teams, this is exactly what happened with CallmaX.

In this article we’ll cover how our unique process was able to produce a software solution that finally unlocked growth and contributed to massive market penetration, 10x rev and a fantastic exit in less than 5 years.

The problem: Callmax’s existing call center software was not able to effectively work for their maintenance personnel and took too much time to use. In a competitive marketplace CallMax needed to set themselves apart. We looked at their call center software and discussed their clients and how they serve them and determined a mobile application would disrupt their marketplace if done correctly and improve their business offering.

What this caused: In their industry it was typical for their clients to manage maintenance requests in offices and apartment buildings through phone calls and by using paper or computers. This meant that each time a maintenance person showed up for work they needed to spend time on a computer or getting printouts of tasks for the day. In addition, new tasks and emergencies would need to be added into the mix through phone calls and there was no way to track when they would arrive, what their estimated time to completion was or when they were available for the next job. This meant that jobs overlapped, customers were ignored and things did not get done in a timely manner. All of these cost money, created employee frustration and more importantly made the customer angry.

Table of contents:

Interviewing, listening and learning

Interviewing, listening, learning

The first thing Anderson Taylor does with every new client is to kick off with a white board session. This is where we ask questions, listen and learn. We aren't there to just build some software and leave. We are there to learn about their business day-to-day lives. How they all interact with each other and their customers. What they want to accomplish in the first year, 2 years, 5, 10 and on. We are there to help your business grow through technology and we can't do 110% if we don't also know your business. During our white board session we may draw your business model out. We may show how things flow and what the journey looks like from inside the business and from the customers perspective. We use this to discuss and visually show how things are working at that point in time. It's amazing how many times this helps you learn things about your business you were only slightly aware of and gain a new perspective. Next we move on to the project. What is it we are looking at creating, what are our goals, how does it break into phases and what is the MVP we absolutely need to build to meet our goals.

When we meet with a customer we are there to learn. Our team has over 20 years of experience building software that works. We sometimes only need 30 minutes to an hour in the first interview to determine what is needed and if we can help. Then once aboard we spend days and sometimes weeks meeting, interviewing our client, their customers, their employees and creating a business plan for software development. This business first software second methodology means we put the business and its people and customers first. We then take our knowledge and experience and create a software solution that will digitally transform their business so it can run more efficiently, allow employees and customers to be taken care of and happier and create revenue that many times grows the company exponentially over the next 5 - 10 years.

With CallMax we met with the owner, we met with the people that worked there and we talked about their clients and explored the current marketplace and what future technologies we would create may do to increase ease of use and generate revenue. During the discussions we uncovered the need for a time tracking system which we then built to allow the maintenance personnel to use all day long. It needed to be visually appealing, and easy to use with the click of large buttons (many times they were under a building in a crawl space or in a cabinet working on plumbing.) The end result was a clock-like user interface with large buttons that we designed to allow the user to click when done with each phase of a project. This then fed instant data back into their database and call center systems.

At Anderson Taylor we specialize in learning about your business. Unlike many other software developers we are a full service consulting firm. We have spent over 22 years learning hundreds if not thousands of businesses and their needs. Our teams of expert engineers and CTOs have developed a methodology for interviewing that is casual and painless. While we talk we are learning about you and your business, your products, your employees, your customers, where you are having difficulties and who would benefit most from a digital software solution.

We ask questions about your current software systems. In every business there are many layers of software being used that lend to getting tasks done. We dive deep and find out what it takes to get each task done and where the bottlenecks are.

That is how we learned that CallMax needed integrated APIs that they could not develop on their own. We ask about your customers. That is how we learned that CallMax’s customer was not only the property manager but really their staff of maintenance personnel. Then we asked deeper questions and found out that their personnel wore gloves, worked in areas where it was hard to get to a computer and needed large easy to use buttons to quickly move things along.

If you have a project to discuss, the first step is our 15 minute project overview meeting. Start yours now >

How 22 years of enterprise development experience allows us to envision everything a project requires and sidestep common dev pitfalls

Anderson Taylor isn't just 22 plus years old. We have hundreds of engineers, designers, planners, CTOs and CMOs and CEOs with 1000s of years of experience that we lend to you.

Our teams have worked for fortune 100s like Adobe Macromedia, Cox Communications and many more successful companies. We provide this type of expertise to you. You get so much more from us than software developers. You get a team of some of the brightest minds in the world looking out for you, creating a vision for you and making it come true.

Our Whiteboarding Process

When you hire Anderson Taylor you get a great team of people using a tried and tested methodology for learning and envisioning business solutions that is visual and audio all in one. This is our white boarding process. Whether we have one person with you or a dozen we all are there to help you succeed. We start by drawing up your current business model. We inspect it from the inside and look at it from the outside back in. We work together to visually show each step of the process at a high level so that we all are on the same page. Then we draw up the project. This is the thing we are looking to do together that will change your company, solve some problems for you and create new opportunities to grow. We then look at phases, draw up and outline which section is MVP (needs to be developed first) and phase out each additional part of the project. We draw up integrations and discuss where this software will touch other software, hardware and technologies. At this point we start listing out requirements both internal and external and finalize a path so that we may start. Each white board is completely unique to that client and their situation and provides a visual representation of what they need and how we will build it.

On Demand Team Assembly

When you try to build a software system in house you start by building a team. The problem with this is you 1. either are forced to use the existing people you employ that probably dont know the best languages and frameworks to develop this system and are already busy working on things they were hired for in the first place. We give you peace of mind. We put together the best team for your unique project with top 5% engineers and software developers that have the experience and knowledge to build just what you need. And IF we determine that the project needs additional developers, engineers, hosting experts, different coding languages and frameworks we simply add the people we need and keep moving forward. This is why we always succeed where others fail. We know what needs to be done and we provide the resources to get it done.

If you are ready for us to assemble a team the first step is a15 minute project overview meeting. Start yours now >

How we pushed through alpha, beta and beyond

With CallMax the MVP we developed was tested by us and internally by the sales and marketing staff. That was our alpha roll out, from that we took notes, fixed a few issues and rolled it out to beta. The beta roll out was done through Testflight type software which provides us with up to 100 users pre in store release. This allowed us to get both the Android and iPhone applications into the hands of CallMax’s best clients. They then took the application for a spin and after a few weeks we collected all feedback through CallMax’s single point of contact systems and we implemented a few changes. Once done we then applied for the Apple dev and Google app licenses on behalf of CallMax. We expedited approval through our contacts and spent a few days getting the apps uploaded to the stores with the correct marketing images and descriptions in place. The CallMax marketing team then rolled out the app launch announcement to the community and they went live.

Callmax’s key project results

CallMax went from being a company with a call center and some older software to a disruptive force in their industry. They promoted their new mobile app everywhere at shows and in trade journals and online. Before long they had penetrated the industry and inquiries started coming in.

The next steps were to focus on on-boarding new customers which we made it easy to do with their admin user portal and simple customer registration tools. Once new customers came on board and started using the application there were requests for new functionality. This is something we anticipated. We had advised CallMax to start by building an MVP (a Minimally Viable Product) This first version of the mobile application did not have every bell and whistle imaginable. Instead we took time to learn about all the functionalities and paired the list down to a minimum number of necessary functions to make the application work and worthwhile.

If you are ready to get results the first step is a15 minute project overview meeting. Start yours now >

The idea here is that even though you think you know everything the user may want you don't. And spending your time and money building all of your great ideas before you have users on-board and using your application can be a waste. This is not always the case, but in this instance it worked well and our advice saved CallMax time and money. Over the next few years we looked at customer requests for functionality and rebuilt the application many times to make it even better.

After only 5 years the client was able to increase their client base to 100s of clients nationwide and 10x their business revenue. They then sold to another company for more than they had originally envisioned the company would ever be worth. We are proud to be a significant part of the growth and look forward to our next client.

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