As we began to scale the All College Storage business, we ran into the core question — how do we provide a consistent experience at scale? Especially with a labor force was comprised of 19 year olds - not exactly a demographic known for their consistency. And on the customer side, we had parents and school administrators who expected a flawless experience. And that's where our platform allowed us to take off.
This was my biggest engineering lift, and is perhaps the professional experience that I am most proud of.
Customers had a web portal, but we leveraged text-message bots to nurture leads and schedule appointments.
The nurture-bot helped us to convert 64% of users who started the checkout process. When the company that ultimately acquired our business compared that to their internal metric of 27%, the deal was all but closed on the spot.
The core business objective for the platform was to increase the productivity of my workforce - scheduling, customer service, and accounting tasks all took a serious customer service lift.
The web, mobile, and bot platform we developed ended up increasing our labor productivity by 20x – in 2013 one customer service rep could schedule 20 orders per day; by 2016 one rep could schedule 400 orders per day.
Product & Engineering
The first version of the site was developed by a contractor starting in 2008 and built on
Drupal , a
LAMP stack framework. After taking over developing and switching over to a modern stack in 2013, we were able to make an astronomical amount of progress. Some of the core stack included
ElasticSearch. We used a combination of
Mailgun for omni-channel messaging and built a custom e-commerce engine with a lot of credit due to the
This was really the hay-day in the Rails world, and everything from the developer community to the beautiful APIs from folks like Stripe and Twilio made development a joy.