Time efficient crisis management app for municipal employees

Municipalities of Leusden and Woudenberg

During crisis for municipalities the common factor always is the difficulty upholding the crisis organisation.

Due to incorrect data on the so called pocket cards and the unavailable check lists and handbooks when needed. Checking notes and call data took too much effort and time. There was a definite need for a digital approach to drastically improve efficiency. The municipalities of Nieuwegein, Wijk bij Duurstede, Veenendaal, Woudenberg, Soest, Blaricum, Eemnes en Laren with the help of Aquirius and Trifork started building a solution.

Project outline

Trifork was asked to develop a mobile app for crisis management in a “GRIP 1” crisis situation for Dutch municipalities. The users of the app are municipal employees involved during a crisis situation. The app was designed in co-creation with the involved municipal employees to ensure an efficient crisis management operation. The Crisis App should be able to register crisis notifications, keep track of notes, log information, show who to inform within municipalities.

Technology

  • HTML 5
  • jQuery Mobile for styling & themes
  • WebStorage for storing data (SQLite)
  • Cordova for accessing native functionality
  • Dropbox.js SDK, a client lib for Dropbox API
  • Cordova plugins: File API, InAppBrowser and CDVPDFViewer
  • Mustache.js
  • add2home.js
  • TestFlight for easy beta testing distribution

Architecture

There were several requirements that shaped the decisions of the development team:

  • the budget of the project was limited and
  • the desired target platform for the app was determined to be both iOS and Android

So the first obvious solution was to decide for a platform independent technology stack (e.g. HTML5). In general the app did not need specific services offered by the phone except that it should be able to store files on the phone. However storing files cannot be done by using “pure” HTML5 because you need to be authorized properly. Therefore Trifork’s development team decided to add a wrapper framework.

After evaluating several frameworks, Trifork finally decided to use Cordova to build, package and deploy a “native-like” app. Cordova offers some nice abstractions on top of native phone functionality like file API that could be used to store files on device.

The promise of Cordova (and similar frameworks) is simple: developers who are good at html/css/javascript can leverage their knowledge to quickly develop mobile apps while staying within their comfort zone.

Conclusion

Gerard van der Linden Advisor Crisis Control at municipalities of Leusden and Woudenberg states: “The Crisis App proofed to be very useful as I turned picket for 6 municipalities. References available, automatically log in, note fields, support for preparation CoPI and all of that associated with contact lists.”

Trifork managed to deliver a Crisis App with an intelligent solution for both budget and platform requirements. With only correct and recent data available; quickly unlocking all relevant information; real time; for all those involved.

But there is more. Trifork offers:

  • Help with implementation; as the app in itself will not solve the organisational challenges;
  • Intake and instruction training: what is the Crisis App and how to use it, installation through  Trifork’s own app store available for all end users;
  • Aftercare for use and management of the app;
  • For the distribution of both beta and production releases, Trifork’s own distribution     platform The Perfect App platform (TPA) was used. All users were given an account to download the Crisis App through TPA.

case_crisisapp

Gerard van der Linden Advisor Crisis Control at municipalities of Leusden and Woudenberg states: “The Crisis App proofed to be very useful as I turned picket for 6 municipalities. References available, automatically log in, note fields, support for preparation CoPI and all of that associated with contact lists.”

Read more: Trifork blog

More information? Contact us!

 

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