Sports CRM for Coaches and Athletes

Headquartered in Montreal, with offices in Canada, the US, and the UK, IsaiX helps clients in the professional services, government, high-technology, pharmaceutical, and financial services sectors with their training and coaching needs by offering unique tools and solutions built on the latest technology platforms.

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The Problem

Front Rush was established by former college athletes, coaches, entrepreneurs and all-around geeks, to develop user-friendly software for college coaches to streamline their recruiting process.

The team aimed to make Front Rush a truly universal app – accessible on multiple screens and mobile platforms, with enhanced features and usability.

We helped them by implementing an intuitive, fully customizable, and top-notch sports CRM solution for coaches. It's purpose is to organize their recruiting process and provide seamless management of information pertaining to athletes, including their activities and conversations for different sports across universities.

The Challenge

Defining the Requirements

Since Front Rush was the first to come up with a concept for athlete recruiting software, it was difficult to determine accurate project requirements and potential features that would delight the athletic coaches - their target audience.

Transition to Mobile Devices

Once the entire web platform was developed, the Front Rush team decided to go mobile. The smartphone market was still in its infancy at the time, so they were reluctant to initiate development of a full-scale mobile app.

Graphical User Interface (GUI) and Multiple Technology Constraints

Another major challenge was to maintain a consistent performance, look, and feel for users across various mobile platforms – iPhone, Android and Blackberry – because of various GUI constraints.

Management of Data from Multiple Sources

We had data coming in from multiple sources including, third-party websites, and flat file(s) placed over remote SFTP or AWS locations. The data needed to be synced between universities' CRM data and Front Rush's database, relying on two-way communication.

Compliance of Reports

Another requirement was to streamline the NCAA reporting process, and accommodate the NCAA rules, based on division and sport, then to integrate all other reporting via one account.

Managing Multiple Technologies

Front Rush (FR) is comprised of three parts: FR web application, Admissions (FR Pass) and Compliance. The main application is a hybrid application, which is running on .Net as well as an ROR framework. The data and communication is shared between both servers.

The Solution

The Solution

We preferred to use the AGILE methodology by developing a proof of concept as part of a strategy to test the product with real customers.

Native App Development and GUIs

After the Front Rush team received a positive response for the mobile website, the development was extended to Native apps for mobile devices such as iPhone, iPad, Android, Blackberry, and Windows phones. We ensured that the GUIs for each of the operating systems would deliver an optimal experience.

Third-party Integration

To make athletic recruitment effortless, third-party integration capabilities were added to the Front Rush app, facilitating collaboration between coaches and recruiters.

Data Management Consistency

This helped in ensuring data consistency and enabled us to render data from multiple sources with automated data-filtering, mapping, translations and scheduling capabilities.

Managing Multiple Technologies

By introducing ROR, we ensured that the application would be modular, and each function would be distributed as an independent module (app), which could be connected to the main application originally build in .Net. Within all this, we ensured that the application would run seamlessly despite the integration of disparate technologies.

Roll-out of Cross-browser Mobile Website

Bearing in mind the reluctance of the Front Rush team to proceed with full-blown mobile app development, a cross-browser compatible mobile website was developed, which turned out to be a big hit.

Compliance of Reports to a Dedicated Account

We added a feature for compliance of reports in the application. In addition to NCAA and NAIA, the compliance officer was able to run reports, manage NCAA and university required forms, track potential violations, collect practice logs, arrange official visits, and connect with current student-athletes.

Process

We used the Agile Methodology and developed a proof of concept (POC) as part of a strategy to test the product with real customers.

We held monthly sprints where we developed, delivered, and tested the deliverables.

We had daily stand up meetings with our client, to review the progress over Skype, and other communication was held with Basecamp and via email.

Asana and Mantis were used for ticketing bugs in the system.

We used a manual testing process.

Deployment was done manually at demo, staging, and live server, and we setup a separate code repository on both the clients' and developers' end.

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The Result

Cross-Platform Experience

The app architecture was structured across multiple platforms using Model-View-Controller architecture, thus helping to reduce project complexity and costs.

Open Access

Front Rush was a big success, both on desktop and mobile platforms. The app made life much easier for its users, giving them anywhere-anytime access to the app, increasing their efficiency and improving their day-to-day management.

Quality Check

We enabled our client to focus on quality by involving separate servers for testing and demo using a live replica database. In doing so, the client could test everything prior to going live.

The Result

Net Solutions is our Outsourcing partner. They really focus on customers and understand their business objectives. We worked with them for over 10 years and they have really done an outstanding job for us. They consistently exceed our expectations despite being in separate time zones.

Sean Devlin
Sean Devlin Product Development, Front Rush