Product Builders Shaping the Future

Fast Rope Labs is an elite research and development firm known for building amazing products and experiences at the intersection of hardware and software. We have built IoT, Wearable, Big Data, and Mobile products used by thousands of customers for consumer brands, government agencies, cities, non-profits, destinations, and well-known startups. 

Our team is comprised of veteran founders who have worked with some the world's most innovative companies, successfully raised capital and invested in startups.

 
$10,000+
 
$150 - $199 / hr
 
10 - 49
 Founded
2015
Show all +
Washington, DC
headquarters
  • 1875 Connecticut Ave
    Washington, DC 20009
    United States

Reviews

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Mobile App Dev for Nonprofit

"It's a bit like having our own high-performing startup team."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Confidential
 
Nov. 2018 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Fast Rope Labs developed an iOS app to support charity donations. Features included online payment integration and customer support. The solution has launched.

The Reviewer
 
51-200 Employees
 
Washington D.C.
Entrepreneur in Residence, Nonprofit
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The solution has improved donation volume and conversion rates and attracted new donors. Customers can expect an accommodating and knowledgeable partner who can support connections with third parties.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m an entrepreneur in residence at a nonprofit network. We process donation for many companies as a donor-advised fund. We accept donations for any charity registered in the United States and aggregate the funds before processing them out to charities.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Fast Rope Labs?

We wanted to accelerate innovation in giving and sought a partner to help us create a new iOS app to support donations.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

They built a roundup app to calculate credit card donations to charity. They also launched our new mobile platform for direct donations. Frontend development for the app was done in React, and they also used a lot of Java coding and Intercom for customer support.

What is the team composition?

We communicated requirements verbally and worked in a partnership.

How did you come to work with Fast Rope Labs?

We'd had experience working with them. They’re our preferred vendor.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with them in November 2018 and the engagement is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

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

We’ve set up OKRs, objectives, and other key results to track the changes in conversion rates since launch. We’ve measured good improvements in the target areas, as well as donation volume and new donors. They created a much more modern, user-friendly mobile experience with good customer support. We can also connect with third parties seamlessly using modern APIs.

How did Fast Rope Labs perform from a project management standpoint?

They created documentation and used Asana to manage the project. We used an Agile approach and shared wireframes for our specifications. They were very flexible and capable and helped us understand how to deliver to customers.

What did you find most impressive about them?

I appreciate their collaborative nature, their ability to move quickly, and their flexibility. It's a bit like having our own high-performing startup team.

Are there any areas they could improve?

No, I can’t think of anything.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

Customers should embrace collaboration and work in partnership with them. Use them to help shape the objective instead of just providing requirements.

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

iOS Mobile App Dev for Social Impact & Volunteering Platform

“Thanks to Fast Rope's efforts, we've been more successful in proving our app's scalability.”

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Apr. - Nov. 2017
Project summary: 

Fast Rope built an iOS app from scratch, providing consulting throughout the launch process. They incorporated features that allow users to invite others through third party APIs and donate funding.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Chicago, Illinois
Jimmy Spencer Jr.
Founder, Glocal
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Fast Rope delivered a well received initial version of the app, allowing the company to collect invaluable feedback and secure investing to pursue the second version. More than a developer, Fast Rope's entrepreneurial experience helped guide the product through all phases of the launch.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I'm the founder and CEO of Glocal, a platform that helps people track and earn rewards for their social impact (i.e., charity or volunteer work). We're a small team of four and I oversee fundraising and product development.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Fast Rope Labs?

We were looking for a vendor to build our app.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Fast Rope built our iOS app and API from scratch, providing both consulting and development services in the process. We presented them with some initial wireframes and requirements that they then scoped out including the cost for the number of hours it was set to take. Following development, they posted the app to the app store and walked us through the launch process.

Features included the ability for organizers to use third party APIs to invite people into projects. Users are able to create a wall, sharing what types of events others were attending and donate to projects through the app.

What is the team composition?

We mainly worked with Dhruva (Founder, Fast Rope Labs) and Garren (Senior Tech Advisor, Fast Rope Labs) and I didn't have a lot of interaction with any of the developers.

How did you come to work with Fast Rope Labs?

A friend of ours who had worked at the White House recommended Fast Rope. Once we sat down with their team, we were impressed by how they scoped out our work. They also provided the lowest quote out of all the vendors we were considering.

How much have you invested with them?

We've probably invested about $45,000 at this point.

What is the status of this engagement?

We worked together from April to November 2017 on the initial build and were able to test it in London. We'll use those results to pursue the second version with Fast Rope once we secure funding from our investors.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

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

The initial beta testing of 1,000 users in London went very well. Based on that feedback, we'll be able to incorporate additional features to help expand what we're doing. Through that testing phase, we've been able to approach three interested companies, all of whom signed up for version two of our product which will lead to around 105,000 users. Thanks to Fast Rope's efforts, we've been more successful in proving our app's scalability.

How did Fast Rope Labs perform from a project management standpoint?

As founders themselves, the team helped walk us through both development issues and the launch process, which was extremely helpful. We communicated mostly through Slack and a tracking system to see how many people were onboarding each month. We also spoke twice a week on conference calls, so we were kept up to date on a regular basis.

What did you find most impressive about them?

I love working with other founders with experience starting and exiting companies. They're more than just a development shop in that way. The fact that they have that entrepreneurial spirit was invaluable and they've also passed a few potential investors onto our app.

Are there any areas they could improve?

The only thing I might mention is they tend to sell themselves as a complete one-stop shop, but that might be a bit ambitious at the beginning. At the end of the day, their main service is development.

5.0
Overall Score They're honest, knowledgeable, and willing to walk through the process with you.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They worked very fast and met or beat deadlines.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    They were the most reasonably priced vendor we found and they stayed on their budget.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    They delivered on everything, including additional suggestions at no cost.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I've already recommended them to several people.

Web & Database Dev for Labor Rights Non-Profit

We were impressed by their wide array of services and their willingness to be flexible.

Quality: 
4.0
Schedule: 
4.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
4.0
The Project
 
Confidential
 
Sept. 2015 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Fast Rope reimagined a website and built a database to enable supply chain mapping. Now, they implement key updates and develop additional sites and databases upon request.

The Reviewer
 
51-200 Employees
 
Amherst, Massachusetts
Program Coordinator, Non-Profit
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Their team has a wide array of expertise and is always flexible to updates and changes. They are friendly and approachable, providing advice throughout the project. The solution is crucial to proving value to internal team members.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

We are a labor rights nonprofit providing research, training and consulting to companies, governments, and other stakeholders. I am a program coordinator in our research department.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Fast Rope Labs?

Our most recent experience with them involved working to make content updates to a site previously developed by another tech partner. We lacked the technical capacity in-house to update the site as needed and needed a partner who could quickly get up to speed and be responsive to requests from team members without a technical background.

We have also worked collaboratively with Fast Rope to create tools for data storage and visualization.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Fast Rope helped us make the content updates to a sub-site that we needed on very quick timelines, working within the technical constraints of a website back-end developed by a third party.

In terms of databases and visualizations, they were helpful in terms of talking through our needs and finding efficient ways to meet those needs.

What is the team dynamic?

They assigned us an engineer who helped itemize our tasks. They were available to us by phone or email for updates and questions about our projects together. 

How did you come to work with Fast Rope Labs?

A trusted partner recommended Fast Rope to us.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working together in September 2015 and the relationship is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

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

They helped us in the crucial early steps of thinking through how we use technology to provide increased value to our clients and funders. Early conversations could have gotten easily bogged down by our lack of technical expertise, but they were patient and able to clarify whenever asked. Many of the things we asked them to help us create were innovative and therefore lacked a baseline model to point to as an example. They were willing to help us think through what these new approaches might look like and we continue to use many of the tools they provided.

How did Fast Rope Labs perform from a project management standpoint?

They completed all projects in a timely manner and were willing to be very flexible as our requests changed. They were responsive to requests for updates and to communicate to non-technical experts.

What did you find most impressive about them?

We were impressed by their wide array of services and their willingness to be flexible. They’re also very friendly and approachable and they are not intimidating, which is unfortunately not always the case for tech providers.

Are there any areas they could improve?

We would occasionally have to provide further guidance or clarification to arrive at the outcome we envisioned but the team was always open to feedback.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

As with working with any third-party service provider, providing guidance and feedback at each stage of the project improves their ability to deliver a product that meets all of your needs.

4.0
Overall Score There is some room for improvement, but in the end, they provided helpful solutions.
  • 4.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They were responsive and met deadlines as specified.
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Our financial team would give them an average rating.
  • 4.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    Overall, they provided a solid level of service and deliverables. Our projects were often challenging in that each was a pilot of a new approach.
  • 4.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    We have a specific need that requires a particular kind of expertise.