Software Development as a Service – Case Study with DWM, Inc
DWM Comprehensive Facility Solutions has grown over 25 years to the pinnacle of solving facilities maintenance and construction related contracting challenges for brands across the international landscape. Its customer base includes the who’s who of major retailers, restaurants, banks, healthcare clinics, and educational institutions. DWM’s core service offering takes customers’ maintenance work requests from start to completion of work, beginning with matching of contractors across an extensive vetted network based on the specific customer needs. Customers benefit from high-availability, quick turnaround, high quality of work, and elimination of distractions that detract from focusing on their brand.
One pillar of DWM’s ability to bring this value to market is a proprietary software system that doesn’t exist anywhere else. The system, called “Hera”, was developed over many years, and handles all the detailed planning, scheduling, execution, accounting and follow-up verification that embodies the delivery of services to customers. It enables the extended team to collaborate on thousands of transactions each day.
Any good software system relies on a qualified IT team to handle tasks ranging from system maintenance to ensure high availability, to assisting users with new reporting, and adding new features that evolve at the pace of innovation while responding to ever-increasing customer expectations.
It was easy to manage Gavant. They communicate well.– Kristen Sullivan, Information Systems Manager
Over the years DWM struggled to rationalize the high cost and management challenges of maintaining an in-house software development team. The impact became clearer as recent conditions related to COVID led to developer turnover, including the sole IT Manager, and needing to replace members of its software development staff.
The company shifted an experienced Accounting Manager, Kristen Sullivan, into a new role – Information Systems Manager. While deeply familiar with the business’ operational aspects, Kristen was admittedly not a “techie”. She, and her leadership team, immediately began to investigate whether DWM’s own business model – providing a single source service to solve customers’ facility maintenance challenges – could be applied to solve its internal software department needs more effectively. With that, she began searching for a partner to assume responsibility for the company’s internal software development, delivery, and maintenance needs.
There were many considerations that factored into search. Prime among them were:
- Cost alignment between this type of service and business benefit
- Top grading of talent for deeper resources with modern and relevant skill sets
- Ability to meet deadlines and high accountability for results
- Avoiding the cost of staff turnover, losing “tribal knowledge” with each change
- Continuity of systems and functions through the transition process
- A positive feeling of partnership with a provider
- Ability to translate business objectives into software results
After evaluating an assortment of alternatives, DWM selected Gavant Software to take the reins. And almost immediately, Kristen saw improved results in the turnaround time of some complex initiatives she felt were taking too long for the in-house team to complete.
“I was impressed at how Gavant addressed the opportunity to work with us, from asking great questions and developing an understanding of our environment, to the flexibility they brought by working with our existing staff developer to ensure a smooth transition” said Kristen Sullivan, Information Systems Manager at DWM.
“As an experienced manager given a new role, it was easy to manage Gavant. They communicate well using business vernacular so that we can make good decisions and be kept in the loop. They present options so I can provide good direction, and they get it done.”
With Software Development as a Service, Gavant helped equip DWM with a strategy for transitioning accountability while simultaneously delivering on key business initiatives for their software. And through it, DWM was able to gain clarity and confidence from strong communication and a collaborative process.