Just because a project has stalled doesn’t mean it is destined to become defunct. SlideWave stepped in after MilTribe’s lead developer stepped out and helped the company to capture additional funding.

Backend Engineering

One Man Down

When you create a software startup, you never imagine that you’ll be left with a stalled project. You think that the idea, and even the funding, will win the day for your new venture. But that’s not what happened to MilTribe. Flash back to December 2015, when MilTribe learns that their lead developer had just quit. He left the company without so much as documenting code or providing future direction. While the other members could code, none knew C# or databases well enough to complete the project.

“The original developer left the company, actually, and that was what triggered it. So we didn’t have anybody to maintain or add to the original code base back-end in C# or manage the databases or manage the servers. So the, I guess the entire back half of the code base in the system was broken.”

Donovan Becker, Head of Product Development.

Limited Timeline

To worsen the situation, the company’s initial investment only allowed for a six-month runway... at the most.

“The company probably would have gone under. The timetable to turn it around, especially for myself to turn it around, probably would be more like six months. And we didn’t have six months in the bank.”

Developer Wanted

The MilTribe team now knows that they need an experienced software architect who can jump in quick. That developer needs to know C#, databases, and mobile application development. That developer also needs to understand the unpredictable nature of startups. Being able to help direct the project next steps and provide software architecture support are also ideal characteristics.

“The main thing was the experience in the C#. So knowing that the original code base was over-engineered, it couldn’t have been an easy project to jump into with the timeframes. A lot of it came down to how quickly can you learn and then adapt to someone else’s product.”

Choosing SlideWave

At this point, MilTribe turns to David Daeschler at SlideWave. They choose David because he has extensive experience in C# and backend architecture. David also excels in rescuing stalled projects.

“Especially as a young company knowing that SlideWave has experience with startups, is big. There’s a big difference between corporations, and government, and startups. Especially when it comes to the timeframe and getting things done in a certain amount of time with a certain amount of resources. There’s more constraint.”

Agile Roadmapping

  • Together, SlideWave and MilTribe developed a plan to keep MilTribe on track.
  • First, SlideWave evaluated the codebase and determined what had already been done.
  • Then, SlideWave worked code sprints into the existing six month deadlines that MilTribe approved.
  • SlideWave fixed old features and delivered new features on a weekly basis, maintaining constant communication.
  • Through it all, SlideWave worked directly with the team to resolve technical issues and meet deployment deadlines

“With all the insights and the knowledge the most important thing is a clear path forward. It’s knowing what the next steps are. With this company being so young, everything is done one month at a time pretty much. And being able to know what’s being done next month and what’s capable three months down the road. ”

By April 2016, SlideWave’s involvement in moving the application forward contributed to MilTribe’s securement of a second round of funding in 2016. The project went from stalled to on schedule in under six months.

Expert Insights

Finally, SlideWave discovered and revealed data integrity and code issues that were not immediately apparent to MilTribe. This allows MilTribe to continue to develop a superior product for its customers and investors.

“So a couple of confirmations that we kind of guessed and assumed which were confirmed once David came in. That our site wasn’t actually scalable like we were told it was. Server reliability wasn’t there. On the technical aspect, the data management and the data integrity wasn’t really in place. So those were some of the main issues that were concerns that were confirmed.”

Why SlideWave

“I speak for myself but definitely the integrity. That’s always [the CEO’s] biggest thing. Reliability. And the fact that [SlideWave] actually overcame all of the obstacles that were there. That was something that I was worried about from the very beginning. Yeah, the most important things are execution and honesty. And we’re fully satisfied with both.”

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UX/UI Design

A Trusted Partner

After the success experienced with their web based platform, MilTribe stakeholders realized they needed a seamless, native application designed for both iOS and Android. To complete this project, MilTribe put their trust in SlideWave.

“SlideWave's UX strategies, UI design and turnkey development have been an important component to our success.”

Kevin La Rue, CFO.

SlideWave worked with MilTribe’s existing style guides to design a user experience that spanned from login all the way through search and messaging. User Interface designs were then developed and delivered to SlideWave front-end engineers to be implemented as part of a new native app.

Front-End Development

SlideWave has chosen React Native to develop the front-end of the new MilTribe mobile app. This will enable SlideWave manage a single codebase for almost all of the development. In the few places where it is deemed necessary, components will be coded natively to give the application access to the full power of the iOS and Android operating systems.

Flexible development methodologies and using the right tools for the job have EverMarket on track to launch their mobile app in 2017.

Learn More About MilTribe

MilTribe provides a safe, trusted, and community-driven marketplace for our U.S. Military Community.