Growing Furniture Repair Company
From a small regional player to a recognized national leader
Their software evolved rapidly to meet the changing business needs

This company started with one man repairing furniture in New York. Over time, this entrepreneur began hiring and training employees regionally. This required a layer of management -- someone to collect the work orders, bill for them, call the customers, and to plan each technician's route. He found a web developer who started a Rails application for him. - After a fall-out with their original developer, they came to me. Their site had been without maintenance for months. There were unresolved bugs that were starting to be a source of daily frustration. Since it was critical to their business, they needed someone they could trust to resolve their outstanding issues quickly and without causing further problems. There were some automated tests in place but I beefed up the quality control aspect of their software as resolved bugs and discovered more about their business model. - After a few weeks of urgent fixes, we were able to transition to writing new functionality again. As they grew, they increasingly relied on this software, leaning on it to support new operational initiatives. Eventually we went to the next level and started using the app for operational awareness by writing reports, creating alerts, and adding additional numbers to their dashboard.

I acted as the defacto lead engineer for this project. I worked directly with their head of operations on a daily basis. Sometimes she would come to me with specific functional needs. But just as often, she would come to me with their business problems and delegate the solution-ing to me. This allowed her to focus on the business rather than the technical aspects of the website.

Over the next 10 years, their app became the centerpiece of their national operations. They grew as much as 30% per year, thanks to our combined efforts.

We release new features almost every week -- from automating something that was previously done manually, to giving management new visibility on their processes through reporting, to supporting new business objectives.

Operations Dashboard
This dashboard is my attempt to give this team better, more timely visibility into their operations.
Furniture Repair Rails App Screenshot
We started off collecting basic information. Then we were able to get higher-level visibility about profitability and success rates.
Furniture Repair Service Order View
The service order page is dense with information, but is structured so that users can quickly see what's happening.