STRATEGY CONSULTING & CUSTOM SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT FOR A GLOBAL NON-PROFIT

  • Digital strategy and consulting services to discuss solutions to achieve the over arching objective of increasing member engagement.
  • Service Request Management application to increase engagement and collaboration among members
  • Infrastructure audit to optimize recurring annual hosting costs
  • Comprehensive code refactoring to remove security vulnerabilities of digital portal
  • TECH STACK:
    Ruby on RailsPostgreSQL Refinery CMSHeroku
  • EXPERTISE:
    Digital Strategy & Consulting Enterprise Portal DevelopmentBI & Analytics
  • VERTICAL:
    Non-Profit
  • ENGAGEMENT MODEL:
    Fixed Cost Fixed Scope

BACKGROUND

The World Trade Centers Association (WTCA) is a Not-For-Profit organization dedicated to the effective operation of World Trade Centers (WTC) around the world. The association has 334 WTC licensees in 92 countries, spanning across North America, Central, and South America, Europe, Africa & the Middle East, and Asia & the Pacific. It acts as an international ecosystem that focuses on trade and investment opportunities, economic development agencies, and international businesses looking to connect globally.

The Client was unhappy with the technology infrastructure at the time as it was built by different teams based in different locations. These teams have historically built and maintained applications for their digital platform. As these applications were hosted in isolated environments of their own, they weren’t talking to each other. This lead to a lot of data inaccuracy and data redundancy aside from exorbitant hosting costs. The lack of proper accountability when technology failures happened and inability to standardize technology lead WTCA to start the search for a technology partner who could provide strategy and consulting services as well as solution implementation.

WTCA had several business needs:

  • 1.
    Build a comprehensive extranet web portal that would increase awareness about its global mission to the general public
  • 2.
    Consolidate existing applications and technologies into a unified intranet portal and provide access to its members around the world - promoting trade and investment opportunities among its members
  • 3.
    Manage and maintain the existing legacy applications until the new portal launched
  • 4.
    Integrate a user-friendly platform with discussion forums to facilitate better information sharing among geographically closer WTCA members
  • 5.
    Create an advanced service request management application for members to request facilities of other WTCA members around the globe for conferences, trade missions or similar business purposes
  • 6.
    Digitization of the once a year capture of licensing application information from all its members

After a rigorous vendor research and selection process, the WTCA zeroed in on Asahi Technologies as best suited for the project based on our understanding of the business requirements and the approach to building the solution.

"We were looking for a technology-agnostic web solutions provider who could help us with a variety of technologies for our digital platform. We found the right partner in Asahi Technologies. Their commitment to quality is truly amazing."

Arun Manansingh,
Executive Director, Corporate Services, World Trade Centers Association, NY

SOLUTION

  • Pilot - Service Request Management Application (Phase I) - We kicked off the engagement with a pilot project – an advanced application that enables members of one World Trade Center to request meeting spaces, conference facilities, business contacts, and other information from another.
  • Digitization of the capture of licensing information We created an application with necessary forms, validations, and scripts to facilitate the annual capture of license application information from WTCA licensees. We then transmitted the relevant information updates to the digital portal and CRM with minimal manual intervention.
  • Comprehensive code refactoring - The Client contracted a third-party security company to provide recommendations on measures that needed to be taken to ensure that the software was compliant with regulatory standards and also protected against external threats and unethical hackers. Our team implemented these recommended code/system changes to ensure that all WTCA digital assets were compliant and protected.
  • Service Request Management Application (Phase II) As the original application we built as a pilot project had an excellent adoption rate, WTCA came back with request for further enhancements that included changes to dashboard layout, tighter integration with the CRM system and ability to track additional metrics about member usage of the platform.
  • Discussion forum application To allow members from the same geographical region to enagage in meaningful discussions with each other on common issues in a secure channel and with ease, our team integrated Discourse, a RoR based Internet discussion forum to the digital platform.
  • Annual maintenance of technology infrastructure While we were adding new applications to the platform periodically, WTCA, through an annual maintenance contract, entrusted the responsibility of ensuring that existing applications kept running smoothly, to our team. Any minor enhancements and troubleshooting/bug fixing on existing applications was covered as part of that. We also audited all existing applications hosted on Heroku – a service that allows developers to build, run and operate RoR applications on the cloud – to understand their resource requirements and recommended some cost optimization measures. Getting rid of unnecessary servers and migrating existing applications to ones that incurred lesser annual hosting costs but delivered the same performance was done as part of that.

RESULTS

Through consistent collaboration and sustained efforts to build various solutions, our team helped WTCA achieved the following results:

  • Increased engagement among members, staff, and administrators
  • Improved accountability among WTCA members
  • Doubled the portal’s adoption rate

Post-implementation training and support - After each new application is developed, and just before it is launched, our team would provide detailed documentation, as well as an in-person walkthrough of the application at the Client’s location in NY. The Client also received free 30-day warranty and support after each application was launched.

BENEFITS

The ‘Service Request Management Application’ Phase I alone improved interaction among members by 100%.

The new discussion forum implemented increased member communication by 35%.

The new Licensing Information Digitization process.
  • Eliminated human error, data redundancies and data inaccuracies across systems
  • Reduced the time spent on validation and Proofreading and nearly brought it down to zero
  • Increased the accuracy to nearly 95% with real-time validation on many form fields
The code refactoring project our team worked on strengthened WTCA applications at least 3 folds against external attacks, and brought down security vulnerabilities to almost zero.
The additional enhancements made to the ‘Service Request Management Application’ (Phase II) increased member engagements by an additional 25%
The cost-optimization services reduced the hosting and licensing costs by at least 60%.

We'd love to hear from you!