Mobile Apps & Cloud Applications

Gold
VERIFIED

3Advance is a tight-knit development team that creates mobile apps and data-management applications in the cloud. We work with both startups and established business leaders aiming to disrupt their ecosystem. 3Advance offers an on-demand, passionate team with diverse skillsets - capable of producing multi-platform applications, quickly and professionally, at a fraction of the cost of a dedicated internal team.

 
$25,000+
 
$100 - $149 / hr
 
10 - 49
 Founded
2010
Show all +
Washington, DC
headquarters
  • 1001 Connecticut Ave NW, Suite 725
    Washington, DC 20036
    United States
other locations
  • 1811 W Winnemac Ave, Suite E
    Chicago, IL 60640
    United States

Portfolio

Key clients: 

NPR, AARP, Special Olympics International, The Newseum, Octagon, The Newseum, Politifact, NNEDV, Ben's Chili Bowl and a host of DC Tech Startups including Upside Travel, TwentyTables, Fanamana, Eyrus and HSA Coach.

Upside Travel

Founded by the original team at Priceline.com, DC's Upside Travel is a $50M-funded business travel startup. Embedded within Upside's product team, 3Advance developed their all-new Android app.

The Newseum

The Newseum is an interactive museum of news and journalism. 3Advance designed and developed the hugely-popular Today’s Front Pages for Android and iOS.

TwentyTables

TwentyTables is a revolutionary new mobile platform connecting consumers with restaurants and foodtrucks. 3Advance designed the UX, the cloud-API and native mobile apps.

NPR

3Advance supported NPR's iOS Development Team, contributing to NPR One, NPR News, NPR Music and Planet Money, in addition to focusing on voice-controlled and dashboard-controled Connected Cars initiative.

Special Olympics International

3Advance developed the Special Olympics Services portal - essential, cloud-based applications that enable collaborative data collection and analysis, across the organization’s global program structure.

Teambuildr

3Advance developed iOS and Android apps for sports-tech startup Teambuildr, and supported the upgrade to their API v2.

National Network to End Domestic Violence

3Advance partnered with NNEDV to create the Tech Safety mobile apps - native iOS, Android and web-apps that educate users about online threats to personal security.

HSA Coach

3Advance developed the brand, server platform and consumer facing mobile apps for HSA Coach - a startup providing mobile tools to help maximize health savings accounts.

Eyrus

Advance developed the entire cloud-based platform and responsive web interface for Eyrus - a construction industry startup using NFC technology.

Ben's Chili Bowl

3Advance created the popular mobile-apps for DC's favorite, Ben's Chili Bowl powered by "You're Up!" - 3A's social selfie platform. 

The Reporters Commission for Freedom of the Press

3Advance developed iFOIA.org - an online tool for managing and sharing FOIA requests - used by journalists across the United States.

Reviews

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UX Design for App Dev Company

“The app 3advance designed looks phenomenal.”

Quality: 
4.0
Schedule: 
4.5
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Aug. 2018 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

3advance designed the UX of an app used for communicating within the restaurant industry, including wireframes. 

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Greeneville, Tennessee
CEO, Restaurant App Dev Company
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The well-designed, user-friendly app 3advance designed has not only exceeded expectations but also helped the business attract attention from a potential client. Overall, they provide a very personalized approach and do a great job of translating ideas into end products.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I'm the CEO of a restaurant app development company.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with 3advance?

We wanted to create a CRM system that could streamline some of the communications within the restaurant industry, so we reached out to 3advance to design the UX of the app we had in mind.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

3advance met with us to go over project requirements and goals, and then created wireframes for our review. Once we approved of a direction, they designed the UX of the app from scratch and are starting to move into the development phase. 

What is the team composition? 

We work with about 11 different people, including UX designers and developers.

How did you come to work with 3advance?

I discovered them on a trip to Washington, D.C., where they were highly regarded within the community. I liked the fact that they not only had POS experience but also experience within the restaurant industry. When I reached out to them with my idea, they invited me to meet with them in their office, and the rest is history.

How much have you invested with them?

We've invested about $40,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We've been working with them since August 2018.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

The app 3advance designed looks phenomenal. They did a great job of translating our vision into a product that's already attracted the attention of a chain restaurant. 

How did 3advance perform from a project management standpoint?

They always meet, if not exceed, any timeliness we set and are very communicative overall.

What did you find most impressive about them?

They take a very personalized approach, listening closely to our needs and vision. Their designs have exceeded our expectations and reflect our vision very well. 

Are there any areas they could improve?

They've already made improvements, but I've let them know that it's challenging to work within multiple different types of project management software. 

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

Stay in constant communication with them throughout the project.

4.5
Overall Score
  • 4.5 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 4.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Video Streaming Application for Niche Education Company

“Both apps were released under aggressive timelines and have received nothing but positive feedback...”

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.5
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
 
June 2018 - Sept. 2018
Project summary: 

3Advance developed two video streaming apps both for iOS and Android, collaborating with an internal development team to integrate the platforms with an existing website. 

The Reviewer
 
Seattle, Washington
Craig Swanson
Co-Founder, Digital Product Studio
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

3Advance delivered well-designed, robust apps in a very quick timeframe. In addition to exceeding client expectations, their deliverables have received a tremendous amount of positive feedback and high ratings from customers. They were responsive and flexible throughout the engagement. 

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I'm the co-founder of Digital Product Studio, an online platform that partners with educators to create niche platforms for different types of communities. 

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with 3Advance?

We engaged 3Advance to develop our video streaming app, enabling our customers to watch videos on the go.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

After providing 3Advance with a basic outline of the app we wanted to build, they laid out the scope of work and created wireframes. Working with our internal developer in sprints, their team helped develop the app from scratch and connected it to our website. After launching the first app in iOS, they also developed the app for Android, as well as a second app shortly after. 

What is the team composition? 

We worked directly with Paul (CEO, 3Advance), as well as a couple of developers and one UX designer. 

How did you come to work with 3Advance?

Our internal developer asked around in his personal network for some recommendations and came across 3Advance. They impressed us the most out of the few firms we interviewed. 

How much have you invested with them?

We spent $30,000–$40,000 on each app, so we've invested under $200,000 in total.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working together around July 2018 and completed the first app by the end of August. They delivered the second project just in time for a conference in September. 

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

3Advance delivered high-quality apps in just a few months, helping our business achieve a lot. They were one of the best technical partners we've ever worked with. Both apps were released under aggressive timelines and have received nothing but positive feedback since launching. Within the first week of their releases, we received hundreds of positive comments and an average rating of 4.7 or higher in the iTunes store. 

How did 3Advance perform from a project management standpoint?

They were very responsive and flexible when it came to adapting to our changing scope of work in order to have the apps ready by certain dates. They worked efficiently in series of two-week sprints and joined one of our Slack channels, which worked very well for us. 

What did you find most impressive about them?

They understood what we needed and what to suggest that was appropriate for our business, unlike other developers that require more guidance and redirection. 3Advance's suggestions were very much in line with what the business needed. 

Are there any areas they could improve?

I can't think of anything.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

Trust that they're good at what they do and be transparent about your needs, even if that means limiting the scope in order to get the necessary product by a certain timeframe. 

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They were able to deliver ahead of an already aggressive schedule.
  • 4.5 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    We're getting great feedback from customers.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Mobile App Dev for Social Impact Nonprofit Organization

"3Advance has the ability to uncover the hidden potential in a project, and deliver a valuable product."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
 
Mar. 2018 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

3Advance developed native iOS and Android data collection applications. Key features include notifications settings for incomplete entries and Salesforce integration.

The Reviewer
 
5,001-10,000 Employees
 
Washington, District of Columbia
Lacy McDowell
Technology Advisor, AARP
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The app, which has received positive feedback from key stakeholders, has dramatically reduced the number of man-hours spent on data entry. 3Advance kept the project moving through constant communication during the engagement.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the technology adviser at the AARP Foundation for the Experience Corps program.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with 3Advance?

We were trying to figure out how to simplify our data collection. There was a tremendous burden on our volunteers to maintain paper logs of their tutoring sessions with students. Staff also spent many hours every month inputting the data into Salesforce.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

3Advance had three initial sessions with me over the phone to make sure they understood our entire program. I explained to them what our network does, who the key stakeholders are, and who the customers are. They asked me a series of questions about how the data should sync, and what platform we use. They spent a lot of time working on how to make the application as simple as possible for our volunteers. They focused a lot of their efforts on the user experience. We had two in-person sessions to do data modeling about how to structure the application and decided on the best approach.

They developed iOS and Android native applications. A key feature of the app is notifications. If a volunteer goes in and does not complete a session, they will get a reminder within 24 hours to complete their session. There’s also a feature that allows them to enter data from multiple sessions at once without having to log out again. They’re currently helping with the pilot phase and making sure that the app is running smoothly.

What is the team composition?

I've worked with five members of the team: a server/architecture developer, an interaction designer, a graphic designer, a mobile platform manager, and a backend programmer.

How did you come to work with 3Advance?

I worked with them in a previous job. I didn’t consider other providers for this project because they did such an amazing job on the last one. They always made sure that I had exactly what I needed.

How much have you invested with them?

We’ve spent $70,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working together in March 2018 and the engagement is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

The mandate was to significantly reduce both the burden and the amount of time spent on data for our volunteers and staff. We also wanted to provide a great user experience for the volunteers. Now I’m able to present a clear path for getting data into our Salesforce system without staff having to go into Salesforce themselves. Thanks to the new app, staff don’t have to do any data entry in Salesforce and volunteers get more time to do tutoring. 

So far the app has been rock solid without any crashes. The initial feedback I'm getting from users is that they're excited about it. They really like that they don't have to manually enter data because it’s preloaded in the app. 3Advance has the ability to uncover the hidden potential in a project, and deliver a valuable product.

How did 3Advance perform from a project management standpoint?

They’re great at providing regular updates. I'm on a call with them every week for about 45 minutes. We go through what the team is working on and their progress. I get to talk with the team members actually doing the work and not just the management team. The regular calls keep us on the same page. If an issue comes up during the development phase, they work to solve it. They also use Notion and Basecamp to manage the project.

What did you find most impressive about them?

The most impressive thing is that they ask good questions and they listen to your answer. That allows them to provide a solution that's right for you and not just the industry standard. They’ve figured out the formula for working with clients. You don't feel like you're just another problem on a list. They're invested in you and your project.

Are there any areas they could improve?

Any organization has room for improvement. Their competence assures clients that they're going to receive a viable product.

5.0
Overall Score They deserve a 10.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    I'd give them a 6 if I could.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Mobile App Dev for Interactive News Museum

“We trusted them to produce strong work, and we never had to hold their hand throughout the project.”

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Oct. 2014 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

After updating an existing iOS app, 3Advance built an Android version. They currently provide ongoing maintenance for both versions and plan to implement future changes.

The Reviewer
 
201-500 Employees
 
Washington, District of Columbia
Michael Bateman
Senior Online Producer, Newseum
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

3Advance’s app garnered outstanding feedback, boasting positive reviews and popularity. Throughout the project, the team communicated clearly, provided budget-conscious suggestions, and leveraged their expertise to produce excellent work. They continue to uphold their image as leading developers.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the senior online producer for the Newseum in Washington D.C.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with 3Advance?

We originally worked with a freelance developer based in Ireland to create our "Today's Front Pages" app. When it came time to update the iOS version and ultimately create an Android version, we decided to go with a local company with a broad skill set.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

The Newseum's multimedia department initially engaged with 3Advance in 2012 to update the iOS version of our "Today's Front Pages" app.

Although the features didn’t substantially change, they stabilized the app, created a new user experience and design, and implemented social sharing.

Beyond development, they gave us recommendations to improve our app and keep us up to date with OS changes. Currently, they continue to provide on-call support and we plan to work with the team in the future to implement some modifications.

In addition to the app, they work with our exhibition department to facilitate the transition from our old digital asset management tool to Widen. However, I’m not directly involved in that project, so I can’t give concrete insights.

What is the team composition?

I primarily work with Paul (Founder, 3Advance) who serves as our main point of contact.

How did you come to work with 3Advance?

I’ve actually known Paul for a long time, now. I worked with him over 14 years ago, so I had already heard about his company. I had an idea of Paul’s capabilities and knew what to expect, so it was easy to hire his team.

How much have you invested with them?

We’ve spent under $25,000 thus far.

What is the status of this engagement?

Their work began in 2014 and is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

Updating the iOS version and then launching the Android app tremendously increased our audience. The app is immensely popular and continues to be well-reviewed. Compared to our website, the app is far more user-friendly, which, I believe, encourages more mobile engagement.

As for their process, they were self-sufficient and knew what to do. We trusted them to produce strong work, and we never had to hold their hand throughout the project. As a well-known developer in the area, they lived up to their reputation.

How did 3Advance perform from a project management standpoint?

I mostly communicate with Paul; if I have questions about status updates or need any changes, I know I can email him directly. While I’m not sure if this is the case with other clients, it’s an invaluable part of our relationship.

In terms of costs, they’re great at working with our budgets. Because they want to improve the app, they often make suggestions, even if they might be too expensive for us. However, they understand our budget limitations and always provide alternative cost-efficient solutions to move forward.

What did you find most impressive about them?

I appreciate how much they can do with such a small team. Over time, they’ve really grown, building a strong reputation in the area.

Are there any areas they could improve?

No, nothing comes to mind.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

Look at their past projects to see their abilities. I recommend 3Advance because I trust their work and have no doubts about their abilities.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Flagship Product Dev for Hospitality Startup

“I was expecting quality to the highest degree, and that’s exactly what I received.”

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
 
Apr. 2017 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

After using wireframes to assemble prototypes, 3Advance developed an iOS and Android app. The app boasts several complex features, including real-time map and menu updates, as well as purchase optimizations.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Washington, DC
CEO, Restaurant Ordering Platform
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The app garnered 20 restaurants in only five weeks, and consumers have increased from 20 to 300 without any active onboarding. The simplicity of use for end users stems from 3Advance’s sophisticated backend development. Easy communication and professionalism are only two of their notable traits.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

TwentyTables is a mobile platform that connects restaurants and consumers through prix fixe meals which include $6 lunches and $12 dinners. For every 20 meals a consumer purchases through the platform, TwentyTables donates five meals to charity. I’m the founder.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with 3Advance?

I tasked them to build out the platform for both iOS and Android.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

I had wireframes and a business plan when I contacted them. They helped me develop more advanced wireframes and then, from there, built out a prototype, an alpha, a beta, and a released app.  It took about a month to design and build out the prototypes from the wireframes. And app development took a total of five months for both iOS and Android - which is impressive considering the technical sophistication of the app.  We had a clear idea of what we wanted going in but based on their engaged feedback and insightful advice, we made adjustments to the platform and are better off as a result.  They also helped us put them in Google Play and iTunes.

The finished product is an Uber-like interface where instead of cars you see participating restaurants and food trucks. You click on the icon of the particular restaurant on the map and on the bottom it pops up white labeled which means an image of the restaurant or food truck. You click on that again and you scroll three options per. We limited it to three options to focus consumer attention on the inventory that the restaurants and food trucks want to move at that time. Food trucks can migrate across the map and you can track them in real-time, which is a solution that’s not currently out there.

It’s real-time interfacing on both sides. If a restaurant turns off, it disappears from the map. If a food truck turns on or changes its location, it updates real-time on the map. Restaurants and food trucks control their menu offerings and field the incoming orders in real-time, so they can manage their inventory and say yes or no on an order-by-order basis. On the consumer side, we built in an optional ‘friend finder’ where users can see where their friends are eating and when so they can jump into a meal with them. For consumers, it’s a passive way to advertise their meal plans to a closed network (at their option), giving contacts and friends a chance to join them for a meal - driving more business to restaurants.  The app is intuitive and very simple on the front-end, but there’s a lot of friend finder functionality built into the backend, which was part of the sophistication.

For payment integration, we used Stripe. The way that works is that customers purchase books of electronic ‘tickets’, a book of 10 tickets costs a consumer $60 (or $6 per ticket). One ticket is redeemable for a lunch and two tickets are redeemable for a dinner. 3Advance had to do the backend work to make sure the remittance from the customer equals the $6 per ticket purchase price.  

There’s also a rate and tip functionality. After a restaurant serves a meal, they close out the loop by clicking confirmed reserved and that prompts the user to rate and tip by thumbs up or thumbs down. The tips are one-off in terms of payment processing. Books are normally purchased all at once, but tipping is on an ad hoc basis.

On top of that, we gamify that charitable giving experience for consumers so that they can see how many meals they’ve helped us contribute to charity. For every 20 meals purchased a customer gets credit for five - and we reflect that contribution on a separate rewards screen. The rewards screen indicates their status/ranking among their closed group of friends (on a no-names basis) as well as the platform as a whole. For example, you could be ranked first out of your 12 friends and then in the top fifth percentile for the platform as a whole. We also built in the capability for people to donate tickets directly which would bump them up to 12 meals donated. We have a button in the rewards screen to donate tickets. You can opt to donate one, two, five, or ten which also integrates with the payment information. 3Advance had to create the mechanism to tally and keep track and accurately reflect our customers’ charitable contributions.

What is the team composition?

On the tech side, we had 10 different builders and designers at any one time. It was a full-time exercise on their part. We sapped up their resources because of some of the sophistication and changes that we put in front of them. Paul Murphy [Principal and Founder, 3Advance] was our point of contact. Paul and his team were great.

How did you come to work with 3Advance?

I wanted to keep it stateside and local and 3Advance is relatively well-known and very reputable in Washington D.C. tech circles.  As a non-technical founder, one of the main things I found attractive about Paul and his team was Paul’s ability to connect and understand what my particular vision was and what I wanted. We were able to communicate well. I thought that was essential considering the scope of what we were trying to accomplish.

How much have you invested with them?

We spent between $200,000 and $300,000 - money well spent.

What is the status of this engagement?

I first contracted them in April where we had a few planning sessions. They came back with the prototype in May and then they started the full built out in mid-June which was the timeframe I was looking for. We plan to continue to utilize 3Advance for app maintenance for the foreseeable future.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

The apps are launched in both stores. We’ve been in the market running a pilot test for the past 10 weeks. We started with one local restaurant with 20 friends and family on the platform just to test it to make sure the logistics on the consumer and restaurant sides were as anticipated.

In 10 weeks we’ve grown from one restaurant to 24 registered restaurants and 11 daily average active restaurants. The food truck functionality works perfectly, they move around on the map and the application is fantastic. The map is different every time someone turns it on because the food trucks change locations daily.

We have jumped from 20 to over 300 consumers without doing any active onboarding. We’re pleased with what we’re seeing so far.

How did 3Advance perform from a project management standpoint?

We did weekly video chats, more frequent calls, and bi-weekly in-person meetings. We spent a lot of time going over every single minute aspect of the platform. Their organizational efforts were impressive and commendable.

What did you find most impressive about them?

Paul and his team are the utmost professionals but are also very easy to get along with and to communicate with. Being a non-technical founder, it was of paramount importance that he and I and his team and I could communicate. I would put them at the top of any other vendor I’ve worked with. They delivered on what I asked them to and even improved on that.

They came as the top of the pack. I was expecting top notch work and that’s exactly what I got. And that’s exactly what you want at this level. You want predictability with what you’re going to get out of the experience. They live up to the billing and I couldn’t be more pleased with them and their work.

Are there any areas they could improve?

I have no complaints. We invested a fair amount with them and I’m very impressed with the result. The app is beautiful and functions flawlessly, and despite (or perhaps because of) the technical complexity for users, it operates very simply. On the user side, it’s three touches to order a meal. On the restaurant side, it's three touches to field an order. But there’s so much underlying sophistication between the friend finder, the charitable mission, the moving food trucks, and the live swapping in and out of food. I put a lot of challenges to them and they were able to meet those challenges.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

As a general matter, I would recommend coming as prepared as you can. Know what you want and don’t leave too many variables to work out on the fly. Fortunately, I had a very clear vision and they were able to execute on that vision. But I would imagine going into a circumstance like this without that much clarity is just a good way to rack up a lot of expenses. If you put diligence in at the beginning selecting a vendor and in platform development and vision, you do yourself a lot of favors.  But the best advice I could give to potential customers is to become actual customers -- 3Advance will get your job done!

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    It was a lot of money, but it was worth it for what we got.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    If I could rate them higher than five, I would.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Website Development for Legal Nonprofit

"I appreciated that there were no real surprises because you almost expect things to go wrong in these situations."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Confidential
 
Nov. 2012 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

3Advance built a secure, responsive site with upgraded emailing capabilities and a streamlined UX. The website lets journalists better manage FOIA requests. 

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
Washington, DC
Legal Defense Director, Advocacy Nonprofit
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Communication was completely fluid and transparent. 3Advance was responsive to urgent requests and changing requirements; they were genuinely friendly and professional, too. 

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the legal defense director at a nonprofit organization that provides free legal assistance to journalists with any First Amendment- or Freedom of Information-related issue or question. We write briefs in favor of journalists if they’re in a court case, provide free legal assistance through our hotline, and produce a number of publications to help journalists understand their rights.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with 3Advance?

We were looking to create a more professional site to allow journalists to manage their Freedom of Information requests, including submitting them electronically to agencies and receiving the responses from agencies through the same process. We had a very simple repository version that had been put together by me years before in PHP, but we really wanted a more professional, robust version. The old one didn’t handle email directly, for instance; it just let you store and catalog PDFs.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Our old system was probably 15 years old and was very simple, so they really started from scratch. They used a better server setup and a better database backend. They tied in a bunch of other services, too. It was a complete professional project. They developed something really unique. I don’t remember how often we had meetings, but they were always very receptive to talking about the features we wanted. It was definitely a back-and-forth process where we had input and could talk about changes.

Paul was running a pretty small shop at that time; I don’t know how big his organization is now. It was primarily Paul and another programmer there that we were working with.

How did you come to work with 3Advance?

We had talked to a number of groups who knew people who did this, and another media client had worked with them and recommended them. We talked with them and thought they were a great fit. They also had some impressive clients. We’re not programmers and we don’t deal with programmers a lot, so we weren’t necessarily sure what the market rates were, but the rates were very reasonable based on everything we were hearing.

What is the status of this engagement?

We probably began working with them in late 2012.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

Feedback from users has been very positive. It was our first professional site; our old site was very static, and on this one, everything is updated without having to refresh a single URL. There’s a lot of behind-the-scenes JavaScript or jQuery kind of stuff that we hadn’t had on the site before. It now has a much more modern look than what we had in the past. The response is very good. The site is a free service for journalists and the feedback from journalism groups is very positive because we need to go into newsrooms and convince them that this is the place they should use to store their news gathering information. It had to be both professional looking and secure.

How did 3Advance perform from a project management standpoint?

They were responsive and they were always available, so it worked out very well. They’re very friendly people, too. We went to one of their office functions for a happy hour, and they’re a very social bunch. In terms of project management tools, we did everything through GitHub.

What did you find most impressive about 3Advance?

There was certainly nothing surprising in a bad way. It was our first time working with GitHub, so that was unusual for us, but it worked well. I appreciated that there were no real surprises because you almost expect things to go wrong in these scenarios.

Are there any areas 3Advance could improve?

I didn’t have any complaints.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Very reasonable; no over-runs.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Native iOS & Android Product Redevelopment for Fitness Startup

"I really doubt there is anything they could improve."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
 
Mar. 2016 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

3Advance launched a personal strength & conditioning app [iOS/Android]. The project team developed and implemented latchkey features like offline data caching and automatic push notifications.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Washington, DC
Co-Founder, TeamBuildr
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The launched app has achieved 25,000 unique user authentications in 6 months and maintains a 5-star rating in the Apple iTunes Store. The product’s success is well deserved, having been the result of a thoughtful and meticulous process.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the co-founder of an organization called TeamBuildr. We’re a strength and conditioning software company, on which high school and college professional strength coaches, as well as trainers in boxes and gyms, can monitor and provide programs for athletes. You create your training program online, it gets distributed to the athletes on your team, and they fill it out on their phone or computer. That data then goes back into the system, where the coach can report on it and make changes to the program based on what he sees.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with 3Advance?

I built the program using Bootstrap, so it was flexible on the web. I did the backend databases and the frontend with Javascript/HTML5, so it was okay, but it had limitations, especially on Apple devices. When we had built up enough funds, we decided to approach a company about building our iOS app.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

We already had a web platform that I had styled over the years, so they built our iOS and Android apps with that style in mind. They did a great job with it. They made some tweaks, and they have a designer on staff who suggested how we could make everything look nicer on the iPhone. Obviously, the iPhone has its own look that goes along with its apps, so we tried to bring our style together with what they knew about iPhone apps.

One of the major issues that we addressed was caching data. One of the major problems in our industry is that a lot of gyms are underground or have terrible Wi-Fi or cell service, so we needed athletes to be able to download their workout before they go to the gym, complete their exercises, and then have their data upload to the cloud or our database once they were connected again. Once we did the iOS app, we moved on to Android. Their Android developer was able to take a lot of the Apple code and streamline the process, so it went much faster. But in both platforms, the key features were offline caching and push notifications, which we did with 3Advance’s Play Pusher service.

Their team included Paul, their principal, then Mark and Rob, their iOS and Android developers, and Chloe, their graphic designer.

How did you come to work with 3Advance?

We met Paul four or five years ago at the D.C. Sports Tech meet-up. We exchanged information and we’ve been in touch ever since. We would go out for drinks every once in a while, so when we were ready to get our app developed, they were our first call. We did look at other teams, but we liked that 3Advance was local, and we liked that we knew them personally. We did get some quotes from some others, and even if they were close in price, they weren’t going to be able to offer the same relationship as 3Advance. We knew their current apps were very well done and looked really nice, so we got together and we brainstormed. They got what we were trying to do; we went through our whole program and they told us what they’d be able to work on. At the end of the process, they walked us through setting up the iTunes Connect and Google Play accounts, but after that initial setup, they’re the ones who release the updates.

How much have you invested with 3Advance?

We invested around $65,000 over the course of the last year for everything. Part of that was to go back in after everything and rewrite some of the iPhone app to match the version 2.0, and they’ve been working on that for a few months. We’re currently adding some new features as well, so it’s been an ongoing process. I would say it was about $30,000–$35,000 for the initial iOS app and $25,000–$30,000 for the Android app.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

The way we go about selling our product is that we target coaches, athletic directors, and trainers directly, and they add their clients in, so one football team could have 100 users. That being said, we’ve had over 25,000 authentication tokens since we launched the iOS app six months ago. Prior to the release, the main selling point our competitors used against us was that we did not have a native app. The 3advance team helped us eliminate that conversation entirely and has placed us at the forefront in that department thanks to their work on offline data storage.

Regarding ratings, we haven’t gotten anything less than five stars, except one person who gave us one star because we hadn’t moved some features from the web platform over to the app yet. But we’re working on that now. We’re lucky enough that the strength and conditioning community, especially the coaches, were more than willing to beta test for us, and 3Advance was really helpful in getting people set up for beta testing. We got tons of great data from that, and 3Advance made the fixes and got a new build-out right away. It was a good process, for sure.

How did 3Advance perform from a project management standpoint?

We used GitHub for error tracking, plus a GitHub extension that allows you to create boards where you can drag tasks into categories based on their degree of completion so that we could stay on top of that. We did have a meeting every Friday, but they also added me to their Slack channel so I could reach them there whenever something came up. Closer to the end of last year, we started using Notion to keep track of any API-related issues; before that, we used Postman. I think our Basecamp stuff might be moving over to Notion as well, but we used Basecamp in the beginning.

Are there any areas 3Advance could improve?

I'm probably not the ideal person to answer this question since 3advanced helped me so much as a developer. I really doubt there is anything they could improve at this point, but I know Paul is consistently looking for ways to improve/streamline the development processes, which is great. Like our company, 3Advance is growing, which requires us to alter processes, systems and project allocation to account for increased business. Paul handles this well and communicates with us about changes of software, developer availability, etc. Aside from minor growing pains that all successful businesses face as they grow, I have nothing but great things to say about Paul and the team he has assembled at 3Advance.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    We definitely got what we paid for. More than what we paid for, even.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

iOS & Android Developed Platform for Fantasy Sports Startup

"I work a lot with offshore contractors, and it’s so nice to have someone who’s local and speaks fluent English."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
4.0
Cost: 
4.5
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
 
Aug. 2014 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

3Advance developed from scratch functional iOS/Android prototypes. The assigned dev team implemented features like 3rd party verification, geolocation, and live game feed integration.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Washington, DC
Dan Cook
Co-Founder, Fanamana™
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The project team’s passion was palpable throughout the process and also quite evident in the quality of their deliverables. It was clear 3Advance had fun and the enjoyment they experienced likely produced their exceptional responsiveness and creativity.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the founder of Fanamana, which is an in-game fantasy experience like DraftKings, but is happens live, while the game is on. We take live feeds from baseball games and mash them up in a mobile app so that people can draft a fantasy sports team while the game is on and play a contest for real money.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with 3Advance?

I came up with the idea for the app in 2013, and I was surprised to find that no one was doing it already. I decided to do it myself, but I needed a developer to actually create the app.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

We basically built an MVP [minimum viable product] to prove that the game could work. We actually took the major league baseball’s XML feed, kind of hacked through it, and found a cheap way to build the MVP so it worked really well. From there, we hired 3Advance to build the full iOS and Android app, which we did sequentially in 2014 and 2015. He did the backend design in-house and farmed out the frontend to this guy, Joe, who I didn’t have a ton of involvement with. Since then, he’s brought on a frontend developer, but at the time he farmed that out.

In terms of resources, it is possible there was five or six, or maybe even seven people who touched it over the process. We communicated mostly over Slack, which might not work for all clients but was great for me. Because of the unique legal situation of fantasy sports apps, we’re currently working with 3Advance to implement third-party verification and geolocation to make sure that our users are over 18 and in states where we’re licensed to operate.

How did you come to work with 3Advance?

Paul [Principal, 3Advance] submitted a formal proposal, and we’ve been working together since the very beginning.

How much have you invested with 3Advance?

During the 3 years or more that we’ve been working together, I think we’ve invested $200,000 to $300,000.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

We’re at about 4,000 active users right now, which is pretty low. We’re in a pretty weird situation that has nothing to do with Paul, but more to do with the business model. There have been some lawsuits in the fantasy sports world where last year we had to pull out of the play store and stuff. There was legislation in New York that was pending. So we kind of didn’t grow a lot last year, but it had nothing to do with him and everything to do with the business model. I handle the regulatory aspects and they handle the technical compliance with it.

How did 3Advance perform from a project management standpoint?

In terms of project management, we used Slack to communicate most of the time, as well as GitHub to log and address issues that came up.

What did you find most impressive about 3Advance?

One great aspect of working with 3Advance was that they were local. I work a lot with offshore contractors, and it’s so nice to have someone who’s local and speaks fluent English. The best part about 3Advance, though, is that they’re a bunch of guys—and Chloe—who really love what they do. Paul looks for projects that are going to be fun for him, and it shows. They’re really good at it. They’re having fun with the work, so they attack problems in lots of different ways.

Are there any areas 3Advance could improve?

They’ve gotten better over the years, but they sometimes went down rabbit holes or spent a lot of time on something that they shouldn’t have. One example is that they spent a really long time trying to deal with the internal linking of the app and social sharing, and they could have much more easily bought some third-party code and saved a lot of time. But it’s all because they’re really passionate about the work, so I get it.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 4.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    Some room for improvement there. They either bite off more than they can chew or they go down rabbit holes that aren’t the best use of time, but it’s linked to their passion for the project, so it’s a double-edged sword.
  • 4.5 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    If the question is how many dollar signs do you put next to their name like at a restaurant, which doesn’t speak to quality at all but rather speaks to how much the entrée is, it’s probably towards the higher end, but if you ask for value, it’s very good.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Mobile Product Development for Healthcare Startup

"They would suggest directions for us to go that I'd never even considered."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
4.5
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
 
Sep. 2014 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

3Advance designed/developed an educational consumer app that helps users better understand their health savings accounts. Key features include Dropbox integration and a customized savings calculator.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Washington, DC
Aaron Benway
Co-Founder, HSA Health
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Key strengths include obvious enthusiasm and innovative problem-solving. The launched app continues to rank in the iTunes store’s Top 10 list, reaching as high as the 2nd position while also sustaining a 4.5-star rating.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the co-founder of HSA Coach, which is focused on financial wellness for the individual consumer. HSAs are health savings accounts, sort of like 401ks or IRAs, and they can be fairly complicated for most people. So, we created an app that would allow people to keep track of their medical spending and their benefits. The app would also educate them on the nature of their plan.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with 3Advance?

There were three key features that we wanted to be implemented in our iOS and Android apps. First, we wanted DropBox connectivity so that users can take photos of their receipt, save them on the app, and then back them up to their personal DropBox accounts. Second, we needed to make the complicated and wonkish world of HSA policy more accessible, so we wanted to develop a cartoon character that would walk the user through their plans. Therefore, we needed our developer to have a very high degree of graphics expertise. Third, we wanted to have some benefits calculators embedded in the app that users could access as they did their annual planning.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

3Advance started by building a demo app or a proof of concept for both iOS and Android. They then built and enhanced the main product going forward. They have about seven people available to us, including designers, developers, and projects leads.

How did you come to work with 3Advance?

We found them through a referral. Out of all the other groups we looked at, 3Advance demonstrated not only collaboration and expertise but also real enthusiasm for the project. That was why we chose them. Fundamentally, we’re not just writing code—we’re tackling the issue of rising healthcare costs in our country. Paul and his team embraced not only our project but also our mission.

How much have you invested with 3Advance?

I would say we’ve spent about $300,000 or so on their services.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with them in September of 2014. The arrangement is ongoing; these projects are never really over.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

They have delivered and then some based on what I thought was realistic. Because our product is an app, the main metric we use is ranking in the App Store’s algorithm. Depending on your search terms, we’re consistently around four or five, and we’ve gotten as high as number two. We have a 4.5-star rating and we average about ten downloads per week. That is fine for us because as a free app, our viability isn’t dependent on the number of users we have at any given time.

How did 3Advance perform from a project management standpoint?

They’re very responsive. Ultimately, I believe that you get out of these arrangements what you put into them, so we work hard to be clear about what we want. We don’t change our plans at the last minute. Because of that, we’ve gotten much further down the path than we otherwise would have. Part of this relationship was about dreaming big, so sometimes when we ran into hurdles and things slipped.

What did you find most impressive about 3Advance?

The greatest benefit of working with 3Advance is that they were working on a number of projects for a number of clients. That meant they had a broad base of solutions that they could draw from. They would suggest directions for us to go that I'd never even considered; my role in many ways was just to let them go.

Are there any areas 3Advance could improve?

The only area for improvement is kind of a strength in its own right. They’re a small, outsourced developer shop, so they don’t have the big internal processes to keep on top of everything. While that means we can move faster without all that bureaucracy, it also means that you sometimes have to follow up with them and make sure they’re on the ball. It’s never been a real issue, though. They’ve struck a good balance.

What tips or recommendations could you share that might increase the likelihood of success with 3Advance?

This is going to sound mundane, but they get most excited about solving problems. I think most developers like to work in that space anyway, not being told how to write their code but rather being asked to solve problems at a higher level.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 4.5 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    I certainly don’t want to penalize them because you do want them to be creative and stretch. Sometimes, stretching means you can’t hit everything.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    It’s been great. We’ve approached this in the right way. We gave them a dedicated budget and then periodically reviewed it and prioritized tasks. It’s worked out really well.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    If you want to give ten years to a project, it can be done perfectly on initial launch, but that wasn’t the objective here. With that as color, I’d give them a 5.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Mobile App Dev for Domestic Violence Advocacy Organization

"They’re very good at wrapping their heads around where we’re coming from and what our perspective is."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
 
Apr. 2014 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

3Advance was subcontracted to build an app focusing on technology made for counselors and victims of domestic violence, which was financed by a Dept. of Justice grant.

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
Washington, DC
E.VP, Advocacy Group
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Respecting budgetary and scheduling requirements is rarely a problem. 3Advance is more likely to hit milestones and deliver assignments ahead of time, which is why they’re now developing a Spanish-language version of the same app. Clients can expect only great things.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the executive vice president for a national nonprofit working in the domestic violence field. We support the state-level coalitions (umbrella organizations), and we also house signature projects such as technology, economic justice, housing, HIV, public policy, and other topics.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with 3Advance?

We applied for a grant with the Department of Justice’s Office on Victims of Crime in April of 2014. This grant was for the creation of a nationally scoped smartphone app that would provide vital information to counselors and victims of domestic violence. We wanted the app to help victims get answers to questions like, “What do I do if my ex is tracking me with my GPS?” or “What if my stalker is reading my emails?” Because we’re focused on privacy and safety, we’re pretty particular as a customer.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

We needed to have fairly detailed specs in order to submit the grant application, so 3Advance worked with us to write the grant before we even knew if we would get the money to be able to pay them. Once we got the funding, we had a project kick-off meeting where our teams met and got on the same page in terms of envisioning the content we wanted to put on the app. Then my team had to go off and really figure that out the specific content on our own. As soon as we had something to share, Paul became a really active participant in the process. He’d point out the ramifications of each decision and offer alternatives. He climbed in with programmatic and substantive edits that weren’t just technical, which was helpful because we’d never designed an app before. So we went back and forth finalizing the wireframes and making sure the layout was what we were envisioning. Once we got the infrastructure done, his graphic designer started working with us on the look and feel of the interface. Because we had such complicated content, we wanted to keep the imagery as simple as possible. The designer was fantastic. That sums up our professional relationship throughout the project—whenever we need something, he climbs right in and helps brainstorm solutions that will meet our needs.

How did you come to work with 3Advance?

When we were looking for an app developer, I reached out to my contacts in the technology and safety world and asked for recommendations. Different people led me down different roads. Several people pointed me to 3Advance and said they’d had really good experiences. I scheduled three interviews with firms that looked promising. The first two spent the whole time telling me about the awards they had won; they weren’t the most productive conversations. When I got on the phone with 3Advance, though, Paul listened to my description of what I was envisioning and he asked me insightful, spot-on questions. He just jumped right in and started brainstorming with me. That was what won me over. Instead of trying to sell me, he was trying to solve the problem.

How much have you invested with 3Advance?

We ended up spending about $200,000 to develop the app including all of the required additional specifications from the Department of Justice.

What is the status of this engagement?

We were awarded the grant in the fall of 2014 and were able to start spending in January of 2015. We had a two-year timeframe and a set budget, but we actually finished ahead of schedule and under budget. We asked the Department of Justice for permission to do some additional work, and we’re now working on a Spanish-language version of the app.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

We did come in under budget and ahead of schedule. So far, the feedback on the app’s beta test has been great.

What did you find most impressive about 3Advance?

Over my career, I’ve specialized in the intersection of technology and violence against women, so given that, I’ve worked with a lot of different technology vendors. I will say that 3Advance has been the easiest to work with. They’re very good at wrapping their heads around where we’re coming from and what our perspective is, even when it’s very different from the norm. Most people in the data world think that some data is good, more data is better, and all data is best, but because we’re in the victim privacy field, the opposite is true for us. We’re looking to keep track of the least possible data about our users. 3Advance was great about that. The other great thing about 3Advance is that they have great social skills. They came with us to a conference in San Francisco, and they were able to talk to non-techies about the app development world in a way that was really easy to understand. A lot of techies have a hard time communicating with people outside the tech world, but 3Advance was great at that.

Are there any areas 3Advance could improve?

None that I could think of.

What tips or recommendations could you share that might increase the likelihood of success with 3Advance?

When you’re looking for vendors in the technology field, you have to go with someone who can speak your language. You’re not going to get anywhere if you spend all your time trying to get the vendor to understand where you’re coming from. Anybody can design, but if you don’t understand me, you’re going to design the wrong way.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    When I did my interviews, they came in as the most reasonable of the bids that I got and they were the most amenable to meeting our needs. I thought they were very cost-effective, but I don’t have a lot of knowledge.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    We’ve actually already used them for another project.
Verification

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Verification Level
Gold
VERIFIED
Business Entity
Status
Active
Jurisdiction of Formation
Virginia
ID
05240689
Date of Formation
Jul 22, 2015
Source
Office of the Illinois Secretary of State
Last Updated
Jan 19, 2019
Payment & Legal Filings
Bankruptcy
No
Tax Lien Filings
0
Judgement Filings
0
Collections Count
0
Last Updated
Jan 15, 2019
Client Reviews
VERIFIED CLIENT REVIEWS
10
OVERALL REVIEW RATING
5.0
Source
Clutch
LAST UPDATED
May 13, 2019