Fire & EMS Product Firm

OPTIMIZING RESOURCES FOR FIRE & EMS DEPARTMENTS WITH SOFTWARE PRODUCTS THAT

Improve response times and save lives

Tech Stack

ExpressJSMongoDBNodeReact

Expertise

Custom Software Development

The background

For Fire & EMS departments, a few extra seconds can make a big difference. And with budgets under pressure, departments are in need of digital solutions that help them cut their costs without compromising their ability to help those that need it.

Our client develops software products that enables fire and EMS departments respond to calls faster while making better use of their resources. This helps departments save time, money and lives without impacting service quality.

The challenge

The client already had an app that simulates and tests complex dispatch scenarios to help its customers make sure they are using their limited resources in the best way. The problem was that customers needed to input their data manually which was slow and ineffective.

Although our client’s app had a lot of potential to help Fire & EMS departments operate more efficiently, the need to manually input data worked counter to that aim. The client was having to use its in-house analysts and resources to manage and control large amounts of constantly changing customer data. On top of that, it was spending a lot of time supporting customers on the phone.

Our client needed a way to reduce the workload needed, both for itself and its customers. When we got involved in the project, customers were having to send information to our client by email and wait for it to be uploaded. For an app that promised to boost efficiency, this was not ideal.

We proposed taking a different approach. By creating an admin/configuration portal, our client’s customers would be able to input their own data and run simulations without the need for our client to be involved. This self-service approach would centre around a new application we would build from scratch. The UX needed to make it simple for users to pick up, otherwise our client would have to spend even more time onboarding customers to the new app.

The solution

We developed a new builder app that functions as an extension of our client’s parent app. In terms of design, it matched up perfectly with our client’s style and branding. The build process was unique because we needed the user to be able to move from the parent app to the new one and back again seamlessly. So while the new app was independent, the way it was developed, tested and deployed needed to ensure it matched the parent app exactly in terms of look, performance and UX.

For the frontend, we:

  • Structured the project’s folder and created separate code repositories for the backend and frontend individually.
  • Implemented a single sign-on so that the user who moved from the parent application to the builder application was always logged-in and did not notice moving between them.
  • Integrated with third party ESRI to provide multiple backend and frontend integrations to process and render spatial data on a map layer.

For the backend, we:

  • Used the PostGIS plugin for Postgres, enabling us to read, transform, write and do many more GIS related operations like addressing the significant challenges around reading shape files and transforming shape file data from one projection to another using C#/Postgres DB.
  • Suggested several best practices to work with the complex database relationship schema already in place.
  • Implemented asynchronous logging to address the problem of logging information about each call to the database introducing additional load that impacted app performance.

The impact

The new app developed by Asahi Technologies lets our client’s customers input and configure a large range of information on their own, including incident types, response criteria, time targets and a range of geospatial information such as response zones, street information and hospital and station locations. This means they can manage their data and run simulations without the need for assistance.

For our client, the benefits of this project have been significant. The customer support team no longer have to spend hours each day receiving, validating and inputting customer data. This has led to time and cost savings which have made the app a much more profitable product for our client and enabled the emergency services to respond to incidents faster, saving lives.