Appointedd’s approach to software development | Appointedd
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Appointedd’s approach to software development

By Zoe Perl 08/31/2020

Appointedd’s cutting-edge infrastructure offers the necessary agility, flexibility, and cost-effectiveness it takes to move fast. We often come up against organizations who are struggling with inflexible and expensive legacy systems, but our evergreen approach to software development allows Appointedd to find effective solutions to real-world problems. 

Together with our customers, we are evergreen – our infrastructure consists of components that are always up to date – we scale, we are secure and we collaborate to deliver a world-class booking solution.

Software Development

Evergreen

Appointedd is more than an online booking system – we manage the impact of a booking right the way through the customer journey. We remove friction and ensure a seamless experience for the business and the customer. 

We also help organizations of all sizes move away from predominantly manual to predominantly automated processes driven by Appointedd’s intelligent software and evergreen ethos.

Greg Dickson, CTO of Appointedd explains in a little more depth…

“Evergreen is how software should be built. Take Google Chrome for example, they have an evergreen browser. You never have to manually download, or pay for the latest version, it just updates. Appointedd takes that approach with everything.

A really good example is Appointedd’s booking flows, they’re installed on other people’s websites but they automatically update with new features without our customers having to do anything.”

If a software company doesn’t take an evergreen approach, they’ll be really slow to release new features to all customers and they’ll need to charge for it too. It’s hard and can be a lot of manual work without the appropriate infrastructure behind it.

That’s why it’s a no brainer for Appointedd to have an evergreen ethos –

“When we make a feature or new update, we’re able to deploy it to our customers all at once and everyone benefits. We don’t charge for them or hide them away.” – Greg Dickson, CTO, Appointedd

Evergreen Software Development

At Appointedd, we have a great product, but the team is even better. We’re a bunch of diverse 20+ individuals with one thing in common – the product.

”Everyone really cares about the product and has adopted the evergreen mentality right the way through the business, It’s at the core of everything we do.” – Greg Dickson, CTO, Appointedd

When our talented UX designers are designing new features, they think about how it will work for every customer, and then we’ve got the back end developers who build with API and are always thinking about how Appointedd can scale in an evergreen way. We don’t cut corners.

“We don’t build or add to the product unless it makes sense for everyone. We listen to our customer’s problems and work backwards, figuring out what features or design components make sense rather than just thinking of a feature and building it.” – Greg Dickson, CTO, Appointedd

At Appointedd, everything is built with scalability in mind. We’re proud to have a modern infrastructure that is agile, flexible and cost-effective.

Scalability 

Scalability is taken into account at every stage of the software development lifecycle. Our backend infrastructure scaling meets the demands of increased traffic. This is just as important to us as user experience scaling, which meets the demands of our small business users right the way through to our enterprise users.

Appointedd’s Senior Software Engineer, Mikey Stewart explains how scalability is kept as a primary focus for the software development team.

New features are methodically mapped from inception through to the development and testing process. We roll out our new features through the use of feature flags to ensure backwards compatibility & continuity across our services.” – Mikey Stewart, Senior Software Engineer, Appointedd

Other software companies can take longer to design and build new features. They often have a legacy system which requires them building a different version for every single one of their clients. This makes it extremely difficult for them to scale. 

As a cloud-based software system, Appointedd can easily roll out features and security updates. Our infrastructure is hosted on Amazon Web Services, in eu-west-1 (Ireland) and is hosted across three physically segregated data centres to provide redundancy. Systems within our infrastructure are designed to be distributed and make use of elastic scaling, allowing us to scale up our services to meet increasing traffic automatically.

“Appointedd’s evergreen software updates without any downtime nor scheduled maintenance. We’ve been able to have 100% uptime for the past two years!” – Greg Dickson, CTO, Appointedd

When we say Appointedd is flexible, we mean it. Our customers can choose how they want to add Appointedd’s booking tools onto their website. We’ve got booking tools that can be installed with just a copy and paste, or we’ve got some more advanced methods too. 

Scalable Software Development

Appointedd’s problem solving possibilities are endless with our API as it empowers our customers to build what they need. Our development team also uses Appointedd’s API to build our internal booking tools. The term for this is called ‘eating your own dog food’. It’s reassuring to know that if a customer chooses to create their own booking flow, they’re using the same API that the team uses every day.

“By building our API on the same platform that powers Appointedd, we provide a consistent high-level quality to our customers who choose to integrate with us via our API. This high-level quality is also prominent within our world-class appointment management system and booking tools” – Geraint Corneu, Lead Software Engineer, Appointedd

Alongside our API, we have real-time webhook functionality which allows Appointedd to send data to client systems. Webhooks differ slightly from API – they push information to your systems and are triggered by events in Appointedd. They are reactive, whereas the API is proactive, and allows customers to access Appointedd from their servers.

Using our API and webhooks means that clients can embed us into their proprietary reporting systems so that Appointedd can seamlessly work alongside other, pre-existing software.

“Having an API and webhooks allows our customers to build the booking flow of their dreams without the complex work of creating and maintaining their own online booking system.” – Geraint Corneu, Lead Software Engineer, Appointedd

Mamas & Papas – one of the UK’s biggest nursery retailers –  use Appointedd’s API to pull in information from Appointedd into their own reporting systems. By taking a customer-centered approach, Mamas & Papas enhanced its customers’ online experience and maximized its conversions with a 43% increase in online bookings.

“We’ve received a solution that is very reliable. We are now able to look at the customer journey, or the funnel of customers coming in and really understand what’s going on.” – Chris Greenwood, CIO, Mamas & Papas

You can learn more about how Mamas & Papas use Appointedd here.

Security

Security is at the heart of everything we do at Appointedd. Our infrastructure is within the scope of our ISO27001 and Cyber Essentials Plus accreditations. We are audited yearly by external third parties to ensure alignment. Additionally, we have penetration tests performed twice per year by a CREST accredited external third party. All data within our infrastructure is encrypted at rest and in transit.

“We don’t take the approach of security being a “nice to have”. We are serious about it and incorporate it into everything we do at Appointedd. We review and harden the security with every change we make.” – Greg Dickson, CTO, Appointedd

Collaboration 

Saving the best to last! Appointedd LOVES to collaborate. We’re problem solvers, but not on our own. We collaborate closely with our customers to get to the root cause of their problems to really understand where we can improve and add value.  Customer feedback is key to us planning our product roadmap. 

Appointedd is not traditional enterprise software like Salesforce or JRNI, which are really complex to use. We think about the user experience, which allows people to self-serve. We support some of the world’s best brands with their booking and scheduling needs, but because we’ve got a great SME customer base, the software is really easy to use.

Our UX Designer, Tina McGuinness has the privilege of keeping the customers at the heart of all design.

“There are a lot of factors that need to be considered when designing a new feature, I start with asking myself ‘does this solve real customer problems?’ – we value our customers’ feedback, and always take what they say into account when making product decisions, whether they are big or small. We’re not afraid to be bold and completely redesign a feature if we know that it will provide a much better user experience to our customers.“

Collaborative Software Development

Every customer plays a part. Whether they are an online tutor, high-street retailer, or one of the Big Four global accounting firms, they are at the forefront of all builds and designs.

“User testing is a core part of my role at Appointedd. We believe it’s so important to not only make the product look good, but to ensure its functionality is intuitive and easy to use”. – Tina McGuinness, UX Designer, Appointedd

If we need more context to our customer problems, we ask! Chris Greenwood, CIO of Mamas & Papas had to say about working with Team Appointedd.

“Working with Appointedd is such a lovely experience. They made the decision to change providers so easy. Every single person that I’ve met on the Appointedd team has been outstanding. So easy to get on with – you just feel relaxed and at ease. I feel as if they actually care about what they do which is amazing, because that’s difficult to find these days.” – Chris Greenwood, CIO, Mamas & Papas

 

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