Author: Binary Star

Case Study: Customer Portal

The Problem

Our client’s portal was in need of new functionality to improve the customer experience when a change of address occurred.  We were able to implement a standardized development workflow and introduce new functionality, allowing  the customers’ accounts to merge upon a change of address.  This has allowed a seamless transition in online services upon an address change as well as providing them with new document notifications, and service outage updates for their new address.

The Solution

We used our Drupal, React, and Docker expertise to understand and improve their stack – providing new functionality, resolving existing bugs and refining the developer experience. Not only did this result in an improved customer experience, but also reduced costs for our client.

The Result

During the lifecycle of the project we paid down existing tech debt which our client had expressed concern for. The CI/CD pipeline was made faster and more straightforward by removing unnecessary code, introducing semantic versioning, and simplifying the docker experience.

Case Study: Data Migration

The Problem

Our customer has been storing data in third party vendors for years. As a way to liberate the data and reduce migration costs, our customer has been asking for our assistance in developing a solution that will allow them to host their own data in the cloud.

The Solution

Using AWS data engineering services (Lambda, S3, RDS, Glue, Athena, CDK, SQS, SNS) the team is building a fully managed ETL (extract, transform and load) pipeline. 

With the data now owned and maintained by our client, they are now able to share data freely throughout various departments.

The Result

With the ability to own their data in the cloud, the business is able to query and generate reports much more easily which will help drive smarter decision making and reduce costs.

Case study: Viewbid.ca

The Problem

Viewbid, an online auction house based in Nova Scotia.

Our client needed a mobile app for their existing online auction platform to better serve the needs of their customers and put the platform in their hands. We were tasked with building this experience for their users.

We had a number of challenges to overcome. One was that the existing auction solution did not have a useful REST API that we could use, which meant that we had to add APIs to the existing auction platform code in an easily maintainable way. This was code that was largely out of our control, that we could only add to, and not modify.

The existing solution also had some fairly severe performance challenges that added considerably to the client’s workload when setting up and running auctions. We needed to ensure that the addition of a mobile client to the system wouldn’t make things worse. We decided to implement a “shim server” that could sit between the existing back end and our mobile app, and do as much of the heavy lifting as it could to minimize the load. This included ensuring that real time listing updates worked well, along with adding new features such as mobile push notifications.

The Solution

From the outset, it was vital for the app to match the functionality of the current web platform and provide an improved experience on mobile devices that still felt familiar and recognizable to existing users. 

We implemented a Node.js server running on Google Cloud to interface with the existing Azure back end. This enabled us to build a robust system that could handle the requirements of the mobile app, while minimizing and even reducing the load on the existing system.

The mobile app that we built features a clean, modern UI using the Flutter SDK. We focused on creating a polished user experience that achieves functional parity with the existing website, but also enhances usability by observing modern UX best practices. We did this by first wire-framing the ui to ensure that we’d catered for all of the required information while breaking the bidding process down to its bare bones. 

Once we were happy that all the business requirements were catered for, we built a high-fidelity prototype that encompassed all the required information and features, and we began to work on the experience of the product. How did it feel to place a bid? How can we make it better? 

Through an iterative process of constant enhancement, testing and validation we arrived at the desired result.

The Result

The result is an app which features a slick user flow that is comfortable and intuitive. It incorporates a visual language that is familiar to users of the website but provides a superior experience on a mobile device.

Would you like to learn more about our services? Contact us to find out how our development expertise can benefit your business.

Case study: Third Party Integrations

The Problem

In today’s high tech world, customers are looking for the cheapest rates and quickest service to serve their insurance needs.

To serve this need, we assisted in modernizing our clients insurance products to be available to third party comparison websites. These integration solutions have to be fast, secure and accurate to ensure a quality product is delivered.

The Solution

Secure Rest APIs were created to allow third parties to quickly quote and purchase home and auto policies. By allowing the third party websites to self-serve these transactions, our client was able to provide a low touch solution for their partners to sell insurance to the end customer.

In addition to the rest services, a portal was created that allows third parties to view documentation and communicate with our client in a low touch solution that allows them to onboard quickly while providing the information they need to succeed.

Tech Specs

  • Javascript/Typescript 
  • Cloud Foundry
  • AWS (Global Tables, CDK, S3, Lambda)

Business Value

  • Drive more business 
  • Higher conversion rates
  • Better ROI compared to legacy solutions

The Result

Numbers are still fresh as the system was only recently deployed to production, but early results have been good. Conversion rates are up and more customers continue to onboard onto the platform.


Would you like to learn more about our services? Contact us to find out how our development expertise can benefit your business.

Case study: Classifii

Platforms

 

Tech specs

  • Cross-platform development using the Flutter SDK
  • PHP and MySQL back end, running on Google Cloud Platform
  • Google Firebase for real-time messaging and push notifications

 

Highlights

  • Full-cycle development on a new mobile app for iOS and Android
  • Added functionality critical to our client’s business plan
  • Built an internal app to help our client’s team manage transactions and facilitate deals between buyers and sellers

A new way to buy and sell your stuff

Our client had a unique business idea: a mobile app that enables users to buy and sell using a contact-free online platform, with dedicated pickup and drop-off points. This would allow users to trade with each other anonymously, without having to deal directly with strangers.

The work

We designed a front-end UI that would be instantly familiar to users of existing online marketplaces, leveraging our expertise with UX design and Flutter SDK development to build a smooth and intuitive user experience. We used PHP and MySQL running on the Google Cloud Platform to build the back end.

The result

We’re proud of what we’ve accomplished with Classifii. It’s bright, friendly and easy to use. In the short time since its release, we’re already seeing users actively making deals while staying safe.

Classifii is now live and available on iOS and Android

Would you like to learn more about our services? Contact us to find out how our development expertise can benefit your business.

Case study: Salesforce custom quoting application

The problem

In the insurance industry, companies that provide quotes sooner are more likely to get business. Our client, a major Canadian health insurer, needed a custom application that could speed up the quoting process for their policy agents by automating their four different insurance products, and integrate them with Salesforce.

The primary challenge was to develop a comprehensive understanding of our client’s insurance quoting process, and look for ways to limit the number of Salesforce user accounts – the client had more than 300 agents selling policies, but could not purchase 300 Salesforce licenses. They needed a solution that delivered quoting functionality while keeping new user accounts to a minimum.

The solution

Our solution allowed the client to use inactive, unbilled users on Salesforce as their agents. The solution consisted of:

  • Automation of four different health products

  • E-signature app integration with Salesforce

  • Implementation of a cover sheet to be used by underwriters

  • A front-end tool to allow agents to communicate with Salesforce, avoiding the cost of new user accounts

The result

We delivered the required integration and applications within the available budget and within the six-month delivery window.

Our client was very happy with the integration of the E-signature app into Salesforce, which significantly added to the selling points of their policies.

Their policy agents loved the solution and were able to quickly bring new customers on board.

The management was impressed that our solution resulted in much quicker turnaround times between customers applying for insurance and receiving a quote on their policy, which helped them win new business.

Would you like to learn more about our services? Contact us to find out how our development expertise can benefit your business.

Case study: Legacy system modernization

Tech specs

  • React
  • React Context API
  • Apollo-GraphQL
  • GraphQL
  • Express
  • MongoDB
  • Bamboo Pipeline
  • Kubernetes
  • AWS EC2
  • Cloud Foundry
  • Github

 

Business value

  • Updated UX design reduces call time for agents in the quoting process
  • Reduced call times lead to higher conversion rates on policies
  • Reduced mainframe operating time and cost

The problem

Agents in the insurance industry need to work quickly in order to gather information from customers and provide timely quotes. Any slowdowns in the process can lead to increased call times, poor customer experiences and the potential for human error.

Our Fortune 100 insurance client was working with an information collection system running on outdated Java frameworks that had fallen behind in UX standards; agents were finding it overly complex, time consuming and difficult to navigate. It was also running on a mainframe housed onsite, which was proving costly to maintain.

They needed a more modern solution, and we were happy to help them find one.

The solution

The goal was clear: retire the legacy systems and replace them with a platform that would better serve our client’s needs while also reducing their operating costs. We worked closely with our client’s teams to ensure this goal was met and rolled out on schedule.

The legacy systems were presenting pain points for our client’s agents; we identified those pain points and used them to guide the creation of a new UX experience that would reduce the number of questions asked to customers at once, and smoothly guide the user along a more structured page flow.

We focused on developing code using React Hooks, with full unit test coverage. We helped create multiple ReactJS applications using shared UI components and utilities to reduce front-end development time and provide a more consistent UI to customers. A GraphQL API was used to provide a very flexible and less complex API, which reduced development time and decreased maintenance costs.

The result

With an easier user flow to work with, agents are able to handle their customer calls much faster than before. The more intuitive UX design also has the added benefit of speeding up onboarding time for new hires, as the new system is much easier to learn. The reduced load on the mainframe has also provided our client with considerable savings in operational costs.

The new system was built with auto agents in mind, but we see the potential for opening it to both internal and external agents to drive new business. Our client and their agents agree – their remarks on the project have been very positive:

“Straightforward, efficient, easy to use.”

“Very intuitive and efficient.”

“The streamlined process is a lot more efficient.”

 

Would you like to learn more about our services? Contact us to find out how our development expertise can benefit your business.

Levio acquires Binary Star, A Maritime Success Story

Levio, ranked in the top 100 of Quebec’s 300 most important companies, continues to grow as a leader in digital transformation in North America.

Quebec, June 8, 2022 – Levio, an information technology (IT) and organizational management consulting firm, joins forces with Binary Star, a firm of experts in systems development and engineering, based in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island.

Named 98th largest company in Quebec after only 8 years in business and recognized as the fastest-growing professional services organization in Canada since 2019, Levio is now growing its team with over 50 consultants, adding to the current team of nearly 2,000 digital transformation experts in Canada, the United-States and Morocco.

“We are very proud to join forces with Binary Star, a successful maritime organization in systems development and engineering. The complementarity of our expertise and skills will allow us to better our offer to our respective clients, allowing them to have access to an expanded range of services.

Binary Star specializes in migration and development of cloud-based solutions, mobile application development, and systems engineering. They have excellent rapport with clients both in their region and in the United States. We have developed an ambitious growth plan to capitalize on their business relationships, the available talent in the Maritimes, and move closer to our goal of becoming a North American leader in digital transformation.” said Levio President François Dion.

“Over the past 9 years, at Binary Star, we have overcome many challenges and achieved important milestones, and still we have managed to provide world-class coaching and development services to our clients while creating an environment in which our consultants can thrive, grow and maintain a work-life balance.

We want our employees to have career advancement opportunities. We intend on staying the best technology partner for our clients as well as offering them greater business opportunities. This partnership with Levio will create value for both our employees and our customers.”, declared Dustin Sparks, President of Binary Star.

 

About Levio

Levio is an information technology (IT) and organizational management consulting firm, ranked 2nd among the fastest growing Canadian companies in the 2019 edition of Canadian Business magazine’s Growth 500.

The company specializes in helping clients implement digital transformation programs or large-scale projects. Over the past 8 years, Levio has built its reputation on a team of outstanding consultants who deliver large-scale solutions that leverage new technologies to help clients become more efficient and profitable. Levio now employs near 2,000 consultants across its eight offices in Canada, the United States and Morocco.

Learn more about Levio at https://levioconsulting.com/

 

About Binary Star

Binary Star is a remote-first consultancy firm created in 2013, headquartered in Prince Edward Island, Canada. Binary Star’s software professionals partner with clients to deliver state-of-the-art innovation by seeking out and retaining the best consultants across the globe to ensure their clients’ success in a fast-changing world.

Binary Star specializes in custom software development and leadership, cloud-based solutions and AI driven customer interactions. All 50 software professionals located across Canada, USA, Mexico, Brazil, and Australia.

Find out more about Binary Star at https://binarystar.ca/

 

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For additional information please contact:

Jacinthe Bellerive, Marketing & Communications Manager

Levio

418-951-3039

jacinthe.bellerive@levio.ca

Case study: Account-level billing system

Our client, a Fortune 100 insurance company, needed a new billing solution. Under their old system, customers would receive a different letter for each policy they owned.

That’s where we came in.

We were brought on to integrate with their developers, and quickly established ourselves as team leaders. We discovered their system UI was being run on a mainframe, and migrated it onto newer hardware to keep with modern development practices and reduce costs.

We implemented an account-level billing system, and provided training and mentorship to foster good development practices. We interviewed company representatives to learn how they worked, and built a custom UI to address their process needs. We also introduced a payday billing concept, allowing customers to pay at a time that was agreeable to them, thereby reducing non-pay scenarios.

The result was a massive drop in overhead expense.

Our client saved millions of dollars in operating and printing costs, and saw a corresponding rise in net revenue. Needless to say, they were extremely pleased. We’ve been engaged with them on more projects ever since.

Case study: PEI government web portal

The provincial government needed help building a web portal for residents to access interdepartmental services.

User requests were being printed out and hand delivered to the appropriate department, resulting in large printing costs and potential for human error. Applications could take weeks to arrive and even longer to process.

Partnering with Business Technology Consulting (BTC), we implemented a solution using the Angular framework that allowed users direct access to the department they needed. We used on-premises Kubernetes to allay any data security concerns, and a custom web service that used Camunda to orchestrate the workflows.

Our work led to significant improvements in turn-around times for people applying for PEI government services – a matter of hours instead of weeks. We implemented a robust DevOps team structure to monitor the health of all services, and content teams can now create new webforms without needing changes from developers. Around one million applications have since passed through this system – not bad, considering the population of PEI is around 160,000.