E-Commerce Design, Development, and Optimization

Forix Web Design is an eCommerce development agency based in Portland, Oregon. It is a Magento Enterprise Solutions partner with a team that includes over 60 Magento 2 certified experts.

For mid-market companies looking for aggressive online revenue growth, Forix is a strategic eCommerce partner for both the planning, design and building of digital shopping experiences, as well as for the strategic planning necessary to drive dramatic growth in rapidly changing digital landscapes. Contact us toll free at 800-818-2361 for more details.

 
$10,000+
 
$100 - $149 / hr
 
10 - 49
 Founded
2007
Show all +
Portland, OR
Headquarters
  • Forix
    2140 SW Jefferson St. Suite 200
    Portland, OR 97201
    United States
    503.764.4123
other locations
  • Forix
    1200 Fifth Avenue, Ste 1920
    Seattle, WA 98101
    United States
    206.456.6659

Portfolio

Key clients: 

Sexy HairSigmaPackitVersareAll Cosmetics Wholesale, CRKT, Nature Bright, Skora

Next Adventure - Connecting Online with the Outdoors

 

Next Adventure is known for providing customers with great outdoor gear at competitive prices. Over the years however, a dated e-commerce shopping experience and fulfillment system has limited their ability to grow online. With the need for a major redesign, Forix helped create an online store from the ground up integrated with new ERP, POS, and shipping systems to privde a platform for Next Adventure that will scale with their online business as it continues to grow.

 

Read more...

SexyHair - Mobile-First Brand Experience

 

SexyHair needed a new brand-building ecommerce platform that could help cater to their growing mobile customer base. With this in mind, Forix developed a mobile-first strategy with a new site built from the ground up to deliver brand and product discovery for any device. Read more...

~~~~~

Sexy Hair's innovative website has also been recognized as a finalist for the Magento Excellence Awards in the Best Mobile Experience category. Read more...

 

PackIt - Refined Branding Platform

 

PackIt originated from a single mother's idea to create an insulated, freezable lunch box to keep meals cool. Growing into the company it is today that's been featured on the Today Show and Good Morning America, PackIt needed a new e-Commerce platform that would also serve as their main brand platform. Forix developed a responsive Magento e-Commerce site with a unique parallax homepage, Netsuite integration, return management system, and more.

All Cosmetics Wholesale - International e-Commerce

 

All Cosmetics Wholesale specializes in providing discounted quality cosmetic supplies. With a massive selection of products and an large international following, ACW needed an e-Commerce platform that handle and scale with their rapid growth. Forix developed a Magento website with features including Ebay integration, advanced shipping matrix tables, multiple storefronts, and more.

Reviews

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Magento Redevelopment for Tool Manufacturer

"There’s been a 28% increase in revenue, 18% in page views, and 11% in sessions."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
 
June 2016 - Feb. 2017
Project summary: 

Forix upgraded an existing site to Magento 2.0. The project team then imported data for 20,000 users, added address verification features, improved security, optimized the UX, and added live chat.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
CIO
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The project was a tremendous success by all relevant measures, including a significant increase in both revenue and online user engagement. This wouldn't have been possible without the concerted effort and proactive contributions made by Forix. 

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m a manager for a tool manufacturing company, and I handle everything related to internal technology. The tools we make are for the niche industry of paintless dent repair. Professionals use these “fancy pry bars” to fix the damage caused by hail and other impacts. We make about 450 different types of fancy pry bars. I'm in charge of everything from plugging in keyboards and mouses to managing AdWords, weighing in on technology issues, acting as a project manager, and interviewing companies like Forix.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Forix?

Forix helped us rebuild and upgrade our website from Magento 1.3.3 to Magento 2.0 for design and security reasons. They refreshed the whole design, built it from the ground up, imported our existing data, and then added some extra bells and whistles.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Our website was on Magento 1.3.3 for way too long, and we knew we needed to at least upgrade a couple of versions. I didn't know at first that we were going to go to Magento 2.0. In general, I have no desire to upgrade just for the sake of upgrading: I have to be able to tell the owner that an upgrade is going to be worth it. My selling point to the owner was that our website had to get responsive to be user and mobile friendly. More of our customers than ever before were visiting us on mobile, so if our website didn't scale, we weren’t going to win. Forix also helped us realize that we needed to go to Magento 2 for security reasons, and they added that our website needed somebody with a UX eyeball to look at it.

The website was a complete rebuild from the ground up. It started with the fresh install of Magento 2, and then Forix wrote a script to help us import the data of about 20,000 customers from the old website to the new one. The data included customer order history and addresses because our customers travel and chase hail storms, and so their addresses change a lot. We needed our customers to be able to say, “Yes, I have a new address,” or “Yes, that’s the old address,” or “Let me select it out of the 17 addresses I've shipped to before.” The database for Magento 1.3 and Magento 2.0 didn't line up perfectly, so I imagine Forix also had to clean up the data a little bit. They also added an address verification service to the checkout process. We’re working on a few more features, like a live chat add-on.

I'm now working with Forix on the site operations side. They’ve actually been great in renegotiating their contract when I asked them about it.This month we’re using Forix to modify the invoice to where when we print it out to box the items to ship, we want the invoice to look perfect and well organized for our shipper.

I have two projects I want to engage Forix for in the future. The first project is a WordPress storm-tracking website. They’re going to help us redesign that site with a mobile-friendly and responsive WordPress theme. They’ll have to do the same type of data import, but this time it’s purely blog posts, and they’ll have to clean the data by completely redoing our AdSense code.

The second project is an add-on to the website they just launched and built for us, and it’s going to be complex. It will be a subscription service for some of our durable goods. A lot of our tools have a lifetime warranty, so for items like that, it always makes sense to try and offer a subscription. So we’re going to have a subscription service using a whole specialized backend. That’s going to be a huge project, and I think that could be equally as costly as the website. I'm a dreamer, but I think it could double the revenues of the website.

How did you come to work with Forix?

I started online looking at Magento developers nationwide. I checked out their listed physical address on Google Maps to see what kind of building they were in. I skipped developers who looked like they worked out of a house. If I were going to go that low-key, then I could develop the website myself and hire some technical help, but it would take a year and a half, and by the time it launched, it would be out of date again. After I found people my way—which was going to Google and looking for organic results, people who knew what they were doing enough to rank organically for Magento developers—I went to Magento’s partner website and figured, “At least these people have been certified, whatever that means.” I found two or three developers there, and I probably interviewed about six or seven. The more I talked with Forix, the more comfortable I felt with them. Eventually, I asked them to submit their contract for review, which they did.

How much have you invested with Forix?

We invested right around $85,000 or $90,000 with Forix.

What is the status of this engagement?

Our kick-off meeting was June 20, 2016; the website launched February 6, 2017.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

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

When I came to the company in 2007, our old PHP company website was 80% phone call sales and 20% online sales. Needless to say, there was a huge opportunity to improve our web presence.

We didn't set the bar super high for Forix. When we started working together, I told Forix that we were already having success, and we couldn't do any worse. We needed our website to be maintained and just multiplied a little. We were OK with no increase in revenue as long as the metrics didn't fall off the cliff; if the time on the site went from 6.5 minutes to 2 minutes, or if the pages per session went from 12 to like 4, we would be in trouble. I think because we had success coming in, it enabled Forix to do what they do and not have to think about the business side of what we do.

We launched our website on February 6, 2017, and we’re up over 700 orders and hundreds of thousands of dollars. We’ve completely made our money back in a month and a half. Revenue is on pace. I did a five-day study, and it showed a 30 percent increase in revenue. I didn’t think that could hold out, but it did. There’s been a 28% increase in revenue, 18% in page views, and 11% in sessions. But comparing year over year for the last 30 days of Google analytics, all of those numbers hold up.

The new website is also able to charge people more appropriately for shipping. We were losing $3,000 or $4,000 a month on shipping before we built the new site. Based on the last report I did, I would guess we’re at least breaking even on shipping now, which is good. I also shared with our owner the stats on the visitors and sessions, the number of orders and the number of items per an order.

How did Forix perform from a project management standpoint?

I think there were two UI, wireframe-type people working for our team, at least for the color mockup. And then when they launched the demo site, we would have screen shares that would involve three different people with an extreme knowledge of Magento. They fixed any bugs we found with an insane amount of technical expertise.

I could tell that they knew we were on a fixed-cost contract and that they were working on a timeline. In the end, we had the smoothest launch I've ever been a part of, and this is the fourth version of the website I've seen. The website launched, orders rolled in, and it was pretty cool.

On the customer-to-Forix side, we used Basecamp 2. Every Wednesday they would call, usually using a GoToMeeting screen share, and we’d touch base for an hour or so in the afternoon. As we moved from the wireframe color mockup to the live testing, I could tell that they used a JIRA system on the backend for their bug tracking and internal messaging.

What did you find most impressive about Forix?

They stayed on for a whole extra week through our website launch, because our PCI.trustwave.com was taking too long. That wasn’t Forix’s fault; it was actually on our merchant’s processing. Eventually, the information we needed came through, and we had a new PCI-compliant website with security upgrades three times a year, and the website will work better on mobile.

Are there any areas Forix could improve?

I have no criticism for Forix. They were fair and upfront about everything, from payment to the weekly meetings.

5.0
Overall Score Forix is unbelievable.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    The value we received from Forix is insane.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    I feel like a schmuck by giving Forix all 5s, because I think people aren’t going to believe the experience I had.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I told Forix that if they ever work with another small to medium manufacturer, they should have them call me first. I’ll give them a good recommendation.

Ecommerce Development for Flourishing Online Bakery

"I can’t even put into words how impressed I was with the design experience, from start to finish."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.5
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Confidential
 
Feb. 2016 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Forix upgraded an existing Magento site to version 2.0. Assigned engineers improved asset tracking features and then automated shipment label printing but they now focus mainly on scaling the platform.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Wakefield, Massachusetts
VP, Business Development, Gingerbread Construction Co.
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Access to a wide variety of technical and design talent is one amongst a whole host of advantages when hiring Forix. Project teams bring incredible communication skills and a meticulous management approach, which helps prevent derailment and mitigate disruption when unexpected challenges arise.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the vice president of business development and marketing, and our company is the Gingerbread Construction Company. We’re a family-owned and -operated business located outside of Boston, Massachusetts. We have two brick-and-mortar stores and an e-commerce site, GingerbreadUSA.com. In the late 90s, early 2000’s, we opened our online store and we began shipping muffin loaves throughout the continental US. We can ship houses and all our other products. One of the challenging parts of our business is that we ship perishable products, so finding a way to ship all those products has been our biggest challenge. And then since we’re in the gift business, shipping to multiple addresses has been another one of our challenges

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Forix?

We’d had our same website since 2009, so enough time had passed that people’s expectations online had changed, and we were no longer meeting those expectations. Another major reason for us needing to update was that our whole order entry and order fulfillment system was written in the late 90s by some developer who had worked for us many years ago. It wasn’t compatible with improving technology. And then there was the whole “God forbid somebody gets hit by a bus” thing: he was the only one who knew how to fix it. We needed to streamline all our systems and make it more user-friendly and easier to update, and not be so reliant on one single person.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Forix started from scratch. We went from an early version of Magento to version 2.0, and they upgraded all of our backend systems, too. They took very basic things from our old site, information from our PDPs and some content, but overall they completely redeveloped it. Magento is what we use to manage our inventory; shipping rates that are customer-facing and hit UPS directly so customers receive the correct box size and all that stuff, they integrated with a company called Shipper HQ, which is an extension of Magento. ShipStation is what we use on the backend to print labels and packing slips and manage our order fulfillment. Customers never see any of that information.

I had one project manager and she had an assistant who helped with more mundane tasks. She was great; everyone I worked with was great. And then we had one designer, and in the beginning discovery phase, we had a pretty decent team of people who helped me articulate what we were trying to achieve. That discovery team consisted of two additional people. I never talked directly to the development team, but I would say there were at least three or four of them. Throughout development, I had one main point of contact; during design, I had two main points of contact.

How much have you invested with Forix?

Between $50,000 and $200,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

I want to say we began discovery in February of 2016. A website doesn’t really have an end point. One of the things I like best about Forix is that they agree with us: a website is never really finished; it’s always evolving. But technically the website launched in mid-September, but that was a beta launch. We knew we were doing a rough launch because we needed the website to be in the wild so that we could learn more about how the extensions were going to work and how our back-end fulfillment was going to work. So it was intentional that we launched a very early beta version of the site in September. I would say by mid-October we had things nailed down and we felt good about everything. We’re done with our original scope of the site, and any work that we’re doing now is part of a separate scope of work. Due to project constraints, we built the site the way we wanted it to launch with all of our must-haves, and now we’re on to our nice-to-haves. It’s more about the way the customer uses the site. We’re still evolving.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

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

Just because of the kind of company we are, our website does 80% of our business in November and December. It’s like somebody shuts off a faucet come January. November is typically busy and December is typically busy, but we had our busiest November ever. We received so many new customers this year. One of our primary goals was that we wanted to grow our corporate business, and our corporate business grew significantly in November. I like to think it’s because we were more visible in search engines and we had a more professional appearance. Anecdotally, that’s what I got from people who reached out to us in regards to corporate orders. They said they had found us through Google, which nobody had ever said before, and that our website was what drove them to contact us for more information and move forward with their order.

How did Forix perform from a project management standpoint?

We used Basecamp to keep our to-do list. That’s where she kept our timelines as well. I’m a big Basecamp user, so I didn’t have any issues with it. They were very efficient in the way that they used Basecamp. They had a numbering system so that in each version of the site, everything was assigned a number and then a letter for the device that we were on. And then the to-do was given a title and then we elaborated on it in the comment section. That process worked very well because instead of having to go, “Remember that thing I said about the search bar?” we had a number to refer to so we were sure we were talking about the same thing.

When it comes to project management, I tend to be overly critical. I was a project manager myself, so I can be overly critical of the process. Jess, our project manager, was easily the best project manager I’ve ever worked with. The way they organized the whole process was the most streamlined approach I’ve ever seen. I can’t even put into words how impressed I was with the design experience, from start to finish: the wireframing and then laying out the information I gave them in the most comprehensive way possible.

They didn’t “yes” me to death, which is something I really appreciated. If I made suggestions, they didn’t just automatically say, “Yes, we’ll do that.” We talked through it; they gave me different scenarios.

One of the worst parts of building a website is gathering and organizing content. Forix took a really basic approach to it, but it was basic and it worked. They used spreadsheets to streamline things so I could plug and play. I entered the content and they took it from there, and it made the whole process seamless.

What did you find most impressive about Forix?

We rarely if ever missed a development deadline. If we missed a deadline, it was a decision that we made together because we opted to include more things or move things around. They stayed on time and on the budget, which pretty much never happens on a website project. Their development team was in Vietnam and I’m on the East Coast, so we were working with three very different time zones, and they made that work to their advantage. It helped with turnaround time. We fell into a very quick rhythm of me doing my work early in the morning, them responding in the afternoon and Vietnam responding overnight. They took advantage of the three time zones we had going on and making it work. It just worked for us.

The team, in general, is really easy to talk to. I enjoyed working with them. I went out to Portland three times, and each one of those visits was useful. It was always great to put a name with a face and see their workspace and learn how everything works there. I appreciated that as well.

Are there any areas Forix could improve?

They’re incredible communicators, but one area that we could improve on for them would be communicating more clearly what’s included in the scope of the work when it comes to anything outside of Magento. They recommended a lot of extensions for Magento and then installed them, but when it came to troubleshooting those extensions, it becomes a little outside of the scope of their work. I understand their reason for it, so it’s a hard criticism to give. It’s not really their fault, but it’s the only thing I can think of to be critical. I could really only say that they could communicate better about what’s going to happen when they install anything outside of Magento. But even then, Jess took so many phone calls with me and ShipStaiton and Shipper HQ, even though it was outside of the scope. She wanted to make sure I felt comfortable and that the site was working the way it should.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 4.5 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    Every time I got a deliverable from them, they hit every piece of feedback I have. That pretty much never happens.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Web Design for Hot Tub Retailer

"Forix had complete control of the website. We had no management control."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Mar. 2015 - Oct. 2016
Project summary: 

Forix redesigned and launched a custom e-commerce site. The engagement hasn't been without its mishaps and unexpected issues, but they haven't undermined the partnership.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 employees
 
Phoenix Metro Area
Jeff Hartman
Owner, Desert Hot Tubs
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

[Editors Note: This formerly critical review has since been amended by the client respondent having reached an acceptable resolution.] 

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

We are an exclusive dealer for Hot Springs Portable Spas. The company name is Desert Hot Tubs. We have four retail stores in the greater Phoenix metro area. I am the Owner and President.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Forix?

I wanted to redo our website.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

I worked with a gentleman named Jeff in Indiana who is in charge of all website maintenance and management from the standpoint of posting specials, making changes, and all SEO [search engine optimization] and Ad Words. He's my go-to person when it comes to anything online, Google, etc. I signed a contract with Forix in March or April 2015. From the get-go, I told them that Jeff will be the in-house person to contact and will be dealing with any templates. I wouldn't know what to look for or what's right or wrong. Consequently, Jeff was involved as my representative and looking out for my best interests.

It was almost 6 to 7 months before they finally had something we could launch. Jeff wasn't the one who had access to the contract that I signed, so none of that came to light after the site was launched. He realized he had no access to it. We didn't realize that Forix had complete control of the website. We had no management control. There were some codes or access numbers that only Forix knew and wouldn't divulge, so we had no ability to manage the site.

There's another term the Forix guy mentioned as an easy way to manage the site and keep it secure: WordPress. Apparently, this had no WordPress capabilities. He said we're going to be in trouble. It's not going to work out regarding management. It's designed for them to have control of and charge you. That was something I didn't know. I just thought they were building the site and then would transfer ownership to us, like "Here are the keys, you take over, we're done." That's not how it worked. All of a sudden, late last year, we get hacked. Our website is down, and it has this Chinese stuff all over it, under their watch. Apparently, they don't have updates. According to Forix, WordPress gives you automatic updating capabilities, so things can't be broken into like that.

We don't have any commerce associated. My understanding is the whole concept of WordPress is simplicity regarding day-to-day maintenance or management; putting things in, taking things out. We went back-and-forth with Forix again and finally said "Listen guys, we want control of the site. We want to own it, and take it out of your hands. I've already paid you $20,000, and I don't have anything that I own." They said "What do you want? Nobody mentioned WordPress in the beginning." Jeff never saw the contract.

They "rebuilt" it, supposedly under a WordPress setting, with the idea that we were supposed to be getting the keys to the kingdom at some point. Then, of course, they wanted more money. I wrote them another check, and this has been going on back-and-forth. Jeff still doesn't have access to it, and there are still some lock-in features that he can't get into. We got hacked again 2 days ago.

Something Jeff found out, which I didn't even know was someone hacked the site and deleted certain pages of our website. He doesn't know why or who would do this. I couldn't imagine why anyone would take the time to do that unless they were a competitor. He said they uploaded a bunch of data. I didn't have the stomach to go on the website yesterday; I was too busy doing other stuff. He supposedly band-aided it together.

We're supposed to have a fourth location on the website, and we can't touch it. The whole premise was that's what we want to do. The conversation started almost a year ago, and we finally realized that it was built just for them, with their codes and backdoor stuff that we can't see. Jeff said, "I might as well step out because I can't do anything with it." Every time we want to do something, we must contact them. "That's the contract you signed up for," Forix says.

How did you come to work with Forix?

Our manufacturer (which is the largest manufacturer of portable spas in the world) had a worldwide annual dealer meeting two and a half years ago in San Diego. One of their key speakers was a representative from Forix who talked about concepts of web design and development, assisting dealers and upgrading their websites. At the same time, he was representing Forix. He was very good and hung out with the dealers afterward to help with questions and give advice. I was impressed enough to want to redo our website from the ground up. I signed a lengthy contract (keep in mind that I am not an internet person at all).

How much have you invested with Forix?

If I remember correctly, it's $25,000, maybe a little more.

What is the status of this engagement?

We sent them an email to a guy named Henry, with whom we've been dealing for almost a year and a half, saying "Hey, we need to get in and post the grand opening of a new location and get it on the site." He doesn't respond for 2-3 days. We're done with these guys.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

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

I just opened a whole new location, and we can't even get it on the site. They have the keys, and we can't get in to put on the front page of the website that we have a new location. Whatever it is they were supposed to be giving us, it's not happening. They still have these codes to keep us out.

How did Forix perform from a project management standpoint?

Jeff did his research and sent me an email that specifically said, "Forix built a website around a WordPress framework and knowingly or intentionally included a plug-in to actively prevent and block, not only site notifications of needed updates, but also the ability to make necessary updates." Not only did they do this, but they failed to notify us of this issue and failed to provide training to circumvent issues caused by providing updates and notification of needed updates. They have refused to respond to repeated inquiries about how to update the custom plug-ins and even plug-ins that need periodic updating. Since Forix doesn't provide service for the website "as stated in the contract" or their plug-ins, the site was put at risk from day one by the way in which it was built. His fourth point is "potential security and stability risks increase with every day it's active." The bottom line is his opinion that "The site was built as to self-destruct over time."

What did you find most impressive about Forix?

Nothing. I'm sitting here holding a site that I can't utilize. It's been invaded, I don't own it, I'm in for $25,000, and I can't start over. I'm trying to take it away from them, but they won't just give it to us. I can't communicate with them because I don't know what I'm talking about. I'm using my go-to guy Jeff (he and I have been working together for about 5 years). So far, everything he has said has been correct. I've just had it with them. They're not helping me out, I'm going backwards, the whole issue of these hackings has cost me money, and I'm losing sleep.

Are there any areas Forix could improve?

They've had different rationales over time; one was that the contract didn't state it this way. I put Jeff on, and supposedly he tells them exactly what he wants. That's what I want to do because I work with him daily. Apparently, he made it very clear to them what he wanted, and they still haven't done it. I told them "If I'm going to pay you more money to go down this road, maybe you don't understand that I want to own it and control it." I don't know how much more simple that needs to be, but it just isn't happening, and now they're ignoring us.

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

I sent an email this morning to one of the owners: "If I had the time, money, and resources, I'd probably sue you, but it's probably not worth it. My avenue is to make sure people know what kind of problem I'm having with you guys."

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

Developed Asset Tracking Solution for Consumer Product Company

"We continue using their team because of their consistent delivery in the past, as well as their price."

Quality: 
4.5
Schedule: 
4.5
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Confidential
 
2014 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Forix developed Android and iOS applications to help manage global assets for a camera and software manufacturer. The app evolved as a surveying tool and incorporated a scanning feature.

The Reviewer
 
1001-5000 Employees
 
Los Angeles Metro Area
Assistant Database Manager
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Forix was consistently supportive throughout the project, which led to an overall improvement of the user experience. The team was proactive in developing a new system that prevents users from cheating the system. Their hands-on engagement and optimism has left a positive impression.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your organization.

We're a camera manufacturer and a software and services provider. We have a presence throughout the globe and sell our products via retail partners, on both physical and online locations.

What is your position?

I am an Assistant and Database Manager.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What business challenge were you trying to address with Forix Mobile?

We have assets throughout the globe which we have difficulties keeping track of. We needed to develop an application which would help us locate and maintain those assets.

SOLUTION

Please describe the scope of their involvement.

Forix Mobile developed an app through which our team can locate our assets and report that information back to us. The app started off as a validation tool, but then evolved into a surveying tool as well. We've also incorporated a scanning feature on it.

The app was developed for iOS and Android, but also runs as a web platform. We manage the database locally and the app has SQL capabilities built-in.

We don't manage their development team closely. Typically, we're told how many hours it will take to develop a feature and we draft a contract based on those estimates. Our interaction is done through a project manager.

How did you come to work with Forix Mobile?

I was not working for the company when they were brought in.

Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

The total development cost has been around $325,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We first contacted them in 2014. Our project is ongoing, with updates being made constantly. Our most recent discussion took place last week, regarding adding a market scanner. Forix Mobile has finished developing the feature and worked out all the remaining kinks in order to deliver it.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

We don't track their progress closely. Since our service is constantly evolving, we simply tell Forix Mobile what our needs are. Internal validation was the main concern for us. The outcome of that has nothing to do with Forix Mobile's work, but rather with our teams working on the field.

Compared to other development teams I've worked with in the past, Forix Mobile has been considerably more willing to support us whenever we've come to unforeseen problems. They're very engaged, and seem almost excited to fix any issue we may have. A primary example of this is a situation in which users have attempted to cheat our system. We brought this to Forix Mobile's attention, and they put together a list of ideas and thoughts within a week, helping us not only prevent this sort of situation from happening again, but also improving our software generally. They're one of the better developers when it comes to support and progression. Our app is more than a job for them. They want to see it succeed.

How did Forix Mobile perform from a project management standpoint?

We used Basecamp to track our project.

What distinguishes Forix Mobile from other providers?

We continue using their team because of their consistent delivery in the past, as well as their price. Forix Mobile has worked within our budget in order to get us to the right place.

Is there anything Forix Mobile could have improved or done differently?

I've been working with their team for six months, since I've been with this company. I can't think of anything that they'd need to improve. Whenever we have a problem, it's always due to our users, not Forix Mobile's work.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 4.5 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    They're one of the better options available in terms of cost.
  • 4.5 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I have recommended them.

Custom Development for Arts & Entertainment Startup

"Forix Mobile has made the process very easy for us, explaining things thoroughly."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
Project summary: 

Forix Mobile developed iOS and Android applications to allow users to send mobile messages to clients at a future date.

The Reviewer
 
2-10 Employees
 
New York City Metro Area
Steve Clark
Co-Founder at SFC Fine Arts
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Though the project is currently still in development, Forix accommodated a tight project timeline and helped identify and solve problems in complicated wireframes. The team was highly responsive. They hyper-aware of deadlines and quickly responded to all requests.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your organization.

Our company delivers text, audio and video messages from clients to their recipients at specified later dates.

What is your position?

I am a co-owner and manager of the company.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What business challenge were you trying to address with Forix Mobile?

We needed development resources for our app.

SOLUTION

Please describe the scope of their involvement.

They've developed our application for iOS and Android. Both versions are being built at the same time, along with a tablet version. They're also working on a website for us.

We came up with a logo and general ideas, but the design itself was made in conjunction with Forix Mobile. We track the project through their senior project manager. He is in control of the number of developers working on each area of the project.

How did you come to work with Forix Mobile?

Our project manager is also a web designer and has a technical background. He made an initial survey of multiple companies and came up with Forix Mobile, along with a few others. After speaking with their owner and the team, we decided that they understood our idea best. They asked all the right questions and even made inputs on functionality and concept.

Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

The total development cost has been just under $250,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

The project timeline involved a six week planning and wireframing period, followed by a month dedicated to design and ultimately the development. We're now in the development stage. Our launch is scheduled for August of 2016.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

We are now at the initial phase of development. In terms of our feed-back for the experience of working with Forix Mobile, I can say that they've been excellent in being aware of our timeline, and have been flexible in accommodating our schedule for providing them with materials.

There has been a lot of back-and-forth concerning wireframes. It's a complicated app which hasn't been attempted before. They've worked very well with us, not only in identifying problems, but also coming up with solutions for them. Our process was very interactive. We feel lucky to have found them.

How did Forix Mobile perform from a project management standpoint?

We've used Basecamp for project tracking. Forix Mobile suggested the tool to us.

What distinguishes Forix Mobile from other providers?

This was my first foray into the tech world, and the same applies to my business partner. Forix Mobile has made the process very easy for us, explaining things thoroughly. Whenever we made a request for something that they weren't familiar with, they'd find out the best way of achieving our needs. They always met their deadlines and were alongside our company for 100% of the time. It's been a very positive experience.

Is there anything Forix Mobile could have improved or done differently?

They set up a weekly conference call with us which we've maintained since September of 2015. We never felt any sort of neglect. There was nothing that they should have done, and didn't.

5.0
Overall Score There have been no problems.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Their original quotation was more than we wanted to spend. Forix Mobile was active in finding ways to keep the cost down without jeopardizing the project. They came up with a great solution...which we were comfortable.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I would unreservedly recommend them.

Developed Cloud Solution for Oil & Gas Startup

".... Forix Mobile has an extremely personable touch."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
 
May 2015 - May 2016
Project summary: 

Forix developed iOS and Android applications to provide users with fuel tracking and tank monitoring features via cloud-based services. Resources included six developers.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Portland, Oregon Area
Kevin Bretthauer
Co-Founder, FuelCloud
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The app was showcased at the Western Petroleum Marketers Association in Las Vegas, where it worked flawlessly and received great feedback for its web interface design. Forix was great at managing timelines and went above the call of duty to provide support during the conference.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your organization.

Fuel Cloud provides fuel tracking and tank monitoring cloud-based services. We can install our system on customers' tanks at ten percent of the cost offered by the nearest competitor. We can track and control every gallon in a tank and record it. Through our reports, customers can apply for tax refunds on the web.

What is your position?

I am one of the founders of Fuel Cloud.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What business challenge were you trying to address with Forix Mobile?

We needed development resources for our project.

SOLUTION

Please describe the scope of their involvement.

We worked together on a wireframe for the application. The look-and-feel of the web and application interfaces were designed as a joint project. Forix Mobile also developed the full functionality of the app. It was basically a ground-up build. The application was developed for both iOS and Android.

We had consistent interaction with project managers and developers through weekly meetings. Their team consisted of six to seven developers.

How did you come to work with Forix Mobile?

We'd worked with them on a previous project consisting of a full web development endeavor, with login features and so on. We knew that they specialized in mobile applications as well, and could be used as a complete solution. We underwent a multi-stage interview process before starting on the current project, having phone, and in-person interviews with multiple development firms, both locally and across the globe. The fact that Forix Mobile is local, along with their reputation, became the main factors for choosing them.

Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

The total development cost so far has been around $350,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We've worked on the wireframing of the project starting from May of 2015. The launch is projected to be complete in May of 2016. We have scheduled a meeting this week about putting together a multi-year strategy for continual improvement of the platform.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

We've received great feedback for the web interface design. Last week, we attended the Western Petroleum Marketers Association in Las Vegas, where we showcased the demo version of our app. We loaded it on eight iPhones, and also had a feed of our website up. The pre-sales strategy was to put the app on each person's hands, have them do a transaction and show it come in live. We did several hundreds of transactions without any issues. Every customer loved the interface and our cloud platform, finding them extremely useful.

A number of larger companies who have traditionally had software and server-based approaches have asked us to do a co-branding project on our cloud platform.

How did Forix Mobile perform from a project management standpoint?

We haven't had any budget increases at all throughout the project. Forix Mobile is also very good at managing timeframes. They set deadlines that they think can be met and constantly update us through the process. Their project management has been impeccable.

The project was conceived as fixed-price. We've done certain addendums for small items, which have been charged on a time and materials basis.

We use Basecamp for project tracking. Forix Mobile provides us the relevant documentation in our weekly meetings. We're still in development for the app, so training documentation has been factored as one of the last steps in the process.

What distinguishes Forix Mobile from other providers?

Compared to a lot of other companies that I've worked with, Forix Mobile has an extremely personable touch. They relate well to what we're doing. We have weekly meetings in person, which is nice.

We have had specific deadlines that had to be kept, like the trade show we attended. Without a second word, our project manager worked over the weekend and ensured that our demo app would be finished. He was also on-call for support when we were at the show. I can't think of a lot of other companies that would go the extra mile in the same way.

Is there anything Forix Mobile could have improved or done differently?

If I were to nitpick, I would say that because they're all in their early 20s, finding someone available between the time of 8-10 AM is sometimes challenging. They tend to work from late morning into the evening. Calling someone for small issues is also a challenge. They tend to be more email-based. If I need to get a hold of someone and have a five-minute conversation, it's important that I am able to. Otherwise, Forix Mobile has been very responsive.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    They are expensive, but they’re very good.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

iOS and Android Prototype Development for Entrepreneur

"Forix has a small agency feel with the talent pool of a larger one."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.5
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
Project summary: 

Forix developed Android and iOS applications that allowed users to automatically track mileage expenses in areas like business and health. The app combined data with GPS information to produce spreadsheets.

The Reviewer
 
51-200 Employees
 
Denver Metro Area
Owner & Founder, Consumer App Startup
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Forix’s development led to a mention by three major publications: YahooFinance, CNN, and MSN Money. The application also won two Best Mobile App awards for its user interface. The team worked late hours to perfect the design and exceeded expectations from a project management standpoint.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your organization.

We created an app that served as an automated mileage expense tracker. It accounted for business, health, and other mileage expenses for a current year and, using a simple interface, it would take that data, combined with GPS information, and put it into a spreadsheet. Someone could watch analytics by week or day, pull up trips and see them on the app, or export them directly to the IRS, their accountant or to anyone else. The information was also stored through Google Drive. The goal was to simplify keeping track of mileage expenses, which are otherwise a headache.

What is your position?

I was the owner of the app.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What business challenge were you trying to address with Forix Mobile?

I needed a developer for my idea because I can't code. The key was finding a developer that I could trust, one that could help me refine my idea when it came to the technical aspects and then also help with the deployment. 

SOLUTION

Please describe the scope of their involvement.

The process started as a verbal exchange between their team and myself. We put together an idea using visual elements that I'd conceived. They built wireframes that I'd approve or tweak, and those wireframes would then go into development. The app's website, marketing, and sales were handled by me.

As the collaboration progressed, we gained a feel for each other's way of thinking. We would make small changes like the ability to customize vehicles, add more than one vehicle to a profile, and so on.

Initially, I didn't plan to retain Forix Mobile's services for updates and maintenance. However, since the app launched, we continued to discuss development changes and worked on two major updates together, during the course of two and a half years. We took the app from a simplistic, three-page version to one that featured in-depth export functions, data analytics, and so on. We went beyond a retainer-based project into full-scale development.

How did you come to work with Forix Mobile?

I made a list of every developer I could find on Google. I called them and talked to their project managers in order to get a feel for their companies and to request estimates. For the most part, Forix Mobile seemed to be on the same page as me in terms of dialect and vision.

Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

The total cost of the project was around $40,000, including ongoing development.

What is the status of this engagement?

Our work has ended. The app has been launched.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

When I was running the app, we had a fair user rapport, and we were ranked in the top three apps for the Business and Finance section. We were picked up by a press release on Yahoo Finance and CNN mentioned our app in an article about Uber drivers. MSN Money made an article about the top five easy-to-use mileage apps. It won two Best Mobile App awards for its user interface on bestmobileappawards.com. The app performed very well overall.

We integrated Flurry Analytics within the app in order to track metrics, and used site-specific analysis tools.

How did Forix Mobile perform from a project management standpoint?

Our project manager would customarily work until 10 o'clock at night. Outside of a couple of delays, their work was always within a week of the projected date. Costs never went over what had been agreed upon. Forix Mobile was fantastic during the two years in which we worked together.

We exchanged documents through Google Docs and communicated primarily through phone. I feel that many details get lost in translation when talking through emails, so more than 50 percent of our conversations took place through direct contact.

What distinguishes Forix Mobile from other providers?

At the time of our collaboration, Forix Mobile had a small agency feel with the talent pool of a larger one. In terms of responsiveness and quality of work, they gave the impression of putting in the required effort to make sure that the results fit exactly what was requested. Their work never had a template feel. They were exactly what I asked for. I've never had a negative experience for the two years in which we worked together.

Is there anything Forix Mobile could have improved or done differently?

I only have positive things to say about them.

5.0
Overall Score I'm still in contact with them even though I don't have a business need for it. We had a great relationship.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    Our schedules were very complex, and I never had an issue with them.
  • 4.5 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    They were expensive, but the quality of work was up to par.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    I never had any issues.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    They were the best company I've come across through my research.

Magento Redevelopment for Consumer Products Firm

"[Forix] has a great talent pool that clients can take advantage of when it comes to taking your site to the next level."

Quality: 
4.5
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
Project summary: 

Forix redeveloped a Magento-based website to increase SEO and fix site performance and speed issues.

The Reviewer
 
51-200 Employees
 
Portland, Oregon
Director of Corporate Sales, Consumer Products Firm
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Immediately following project completion, conversion rates during the Christmas season saw a healthy increase. Forix was highly skilled with Magento, SEO, and ecommerce tactics. They acted as the sole development team and quickly completed all tasks.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your organization.

Our business sells premium fruit baskets and fruit towers. We operate throughout the year, but Christmas is our peak season.

What is your position?

I am the director of corporate sales and customer service. I was the director of marketing when we started working with Forix.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What business challenge were you trying to address with Forix?

We had gone through a site redesign and were seeing some serious issues with its performance speed, SEO [search engine optimization], and other factors, due to a general lack of Magento experience on the part of the developer. I was looking for someone who would be able to make quick changes and get us ready for Christmas 2015.

SOLUTION

Please describe the scope of their involvement.

One of our biggest issues was speed. Magento is known to be heavier than most website platforms, but we were seeing excessively slow load times. Conversion rates were considerably down compared to our old site, due in part to its speed and to the navigation experience.

We've made a mile-long list of changes to the site working with Forix with speed and organic SEO being the focus points.

We had a responsive site, but we hadn't optimized its mobile version at all. We had been focused on the desktop version exclusively, so a third item was getting this issue fixed. The site's mobile friendliness was improved dramatically before Christmas.

Forix also worked on some CSS [cascading style sheets] issues, mainly for the mobile site, but not on overall design. The focus was primarily on functionality. One of the things that I wanted them to focus on was setting up Magento as it was meant to be set up. There are many corners that can otherwise be cut. They analyzed how our databases were structured and how all the elements were working together, making sure that we were as optimized as possible, without making major changes.

Forix served as our entire development team. We have an internal web manager in charge of updating the product catalog, but no coding resources.

I don't know what the size of the development team was but, any time a task needed to be done, it was completed quickly and well. Speaking from past experiences, there will always be a lot of quality checking work and plenty of back and forth, but Forix simply did what was asked of them and provided their own QA [quality assurance]. They worked through the whole process, instead of presenting something and saying they were done.

We mostly interacted with their project manager and with specialists that were brought in when we had specific needs in terms of SEO, database architecture, and so on.

How did you come to work with Forix?

Our situation was dire, as we needed to make some changes quickly. They were recommended by two acquaintances. I called Forix, talked to them, and determined that they seemed to know their trade. I needed to make a decision quickly, so I gave them a chance going on a limb. They were the only vendor we considered.

Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

The total development cost was around $15,000 to $20,000. We worked on an hourly basis, setting our priorities week by week, as things moved forward and new issues were discovered. The maintenance contract includes a number of allotted hours each month.

What is the status of this engagement?

The site has been relaunched. We're continuing to work with Forix on a monthly maintenance base as well as other ongoing development projects.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

During the Christmas period, we saw a healthy increase in our conversion rates. The site's speed was much better, even with the added traffic. Forix definitely met our needs. 

How did Forix perform from a project management standpoint?

They have great project managers. They're responsive, communicate well and, more importantly, they understand many of the technical elements. When we were asking them questions and giving them problems, the project managers were able to think them through, versus taking the issue back to their developers. They have a solid understanding of Magento and its technical aspects. We used a portal for entering tickets. That was our means of communication.

What distinguishes Forix from other providers?

If you have a Magento site, finding a developer that understands the ins and outs of the platform is mandatory for success. Even though there are other agencies with a Magento certification, my impression was that Forix understood the software. They had a great project management process that made sense and worked.

Forix is a one-stop-shop. They have a great talent pool that clients can take advantage of when it comes to taking your site to the next level. 

Any parting recommendations for inexperienced buyers?

Forix is a very knowledgeable company that can provide experts that help you through a development process. Having worked with agencies that don't understand the general process and e-commerce, in particular, I can tell the difference. Building an e-commerce site is more complicated than creating a page and attaching a shopping cart to it. Finding an agency that can understand the process is critical. Otherwise, it can be a tough road.

5.0
Overall Score I've worked with many agencies. There will always be issues that come up, but Forix's team was incredible.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    I felt that we got what we paid for. Working with other agencies, I have wondered what exactly we received for the amount we spent.
  • 4.5 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Magento Redevelopment for Cosmetics Firm

"Their flexibility and their ability to flesh out unique business requirements set them apart from similar firms."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
Project summary: 

Following a failed experience with a previous developer, Forix built a QA environment and deployed a two-week audit test to find solutions for a redesign. They added new modules while maintaining the core site.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Los Angeles Metro Area
Director of Marketing & E-commerce, Cosmetics Producer
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Forix quickly defined the project scope and was compliant regarding potential fees for scope creep. The team’s response time was excellent, and they developed a custom plan that prioritized certain areas of development based on what would generate the most revenue in the shortest amount of time.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your organization.

We are a skin care company. Our product is biotech-based and developed in our own lab. We create new technologies in skin care for anti-aging and skin repair for dermatology procedures. We target both consumers and professionals in the international marketplace.

What is your position?

I am the director of marketing and e-commerce.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What business challenge were you trying to address with Forix?

We launched a new e-commerce system based on Magento in 2014. We had originally worked with a Magento Gold-certified development company, which built the system, and there were numerous problems near the end of the deployment stage. Since that time, we'd been looking for another partner that could meet our expectations and best practice standards.

Our main goal is never to customize the core module of our development. The installs for security patching and general upgrades become very complicated once the core has been modified. Best practice development implies installing a core and building modules around it – never actually tweaking it. This was the original requirement for our previous developer, but it became clear that they'd made some changes. I needed another developer to come in, identify those changes, bring Magento back to its vanilla state while keeping the system working, and install new updates. The challenge was identifying what we could work on at any given time, what we needed to put on hold, and how we should move everything forward. We had three moving pieces in total.

SOLUTION

Please describe the scope of their involvement.

Forix was able to identify immediately what changes had been made to the core and prioritized what should be done first based on what our business needs were and how we could keep money coming in. Following this, they built out a plan for not only a new theme, but also new modules that we needed to install after fixing the core. There were many moving parts that they were able to make us understand, outline and put into a timeline while still meeting business goals. We didn't have to stop and wait. Forix jumped right in and fixed a lot of bugs on the fly, which was fantastic.

They undertook a two-week audit process for our site, which included making a copy of our system and making up their stage environment. They then identified all the core pieces that had been changed, determined the order in which they needed to be updated in, and submitted the tasks to our ticketing system.

It took three weeks in total to make the system live, followed by another week of testing. Any problem that was then identified later on was fixed by Forix quickly.

We are working on two simultaneous projects with them. I needed a development team that would work on the current website, fixing its bugs and making it more efficient while another team would work on retheming. We were rebranding our products and launching a new product line. Forix were able to provide this for us, putting together two teams as requested. There were designers and developers on both of them, but I never received this kind of accommodation from another developer. The typical practice is to put together one group that becomes maxed out once all the bugs need to be worked on, leaving no resources for improvements. Their approach made the process fantastic.

We are working with a lead developer who is excellent at understanding time management, design aspects as well as actual code development. He can speak in both development terms for designers and business speak for executives. Often, it's hard to work with a developer because they might not be able to visualize the UI [user interface] part of the system. He was initially going to be our bug fix project manager but, because he worked so well with me, I requested him as a connection to both teams. I do also have a project manager assigned specifically to the new theme work.

Written code is always checked by its author before being released to the Forix QA [quality assurance] team. Once they've tested and released it to us, we will use our customer service, marketing teams and so on to try it. We then make a ticket request for it to be made live. There are other modules that we will move to a lifeline stage and retest, so there are a couple of different iterations of testing.

How did you come to work with Forix?

We initially found a company that was too small for our needs, and ultimately came to find Forix through a business I used to work for, namely a large publisher. I knew how many websites and how much data that activity entailed, so I knew Forix could handle our scaling needs.

Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

For the current work, Forix's rate is $100 per hour, regardless of what is being done. This is better than our experience with other developers, who have offered us different rates for junior and senior developers, project managers, and so on. It's even more advantageous for the current bug-fixing project as we don't have a specific budget for it, but rather are fixing issues from 2014. Forix provides us investigative hours, and from there we can choose if a certain change is worthy.

The total budget for our retheming and upgrade project is $70,000 for what will be a six-month development period.

What is the status of this engagement?

The relationship is ongoing. The new website will be launched in June 2016. We don't have an in-house staff, and the goal is for them to be our permanent developers.

Once we've launched, we plan to install an auto-ship module. The one initially installed by our previous company was never functional. Forix will help us pick the right module, build our business requirements and then, rather than customizing it, we will work with what that module can offer, and fit our practices into it. Constant customization led to a messy system in the past. Forix is great at understanding that we don't want to take shortcuts. The system needs to be clean and scalable.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

We're publicly traded, and thus have very specific requirements for scoping out work, outlining a Schedule A and what its details are. Originally, Forix worked on a broad estimate of what they could do for us, but we needed much more in-depth details about each phase of the project. Their president [Ngu Nguyen] stepped in and gave me exactly what we had asked for, within a day. We were able to sign the contract and keep moving.

Usually, when the work scope is set, any changes made by the client will increase the total cost. We, on the other hand, specified that any changes that are out of the scope and lead to a delay in work delivery will result in nonpayment from us. Penalties were set in advance and we decided on specific amounts. Their president was again compliant to our needs.

Whenever there is a delay, we have very good communication on what the next delivery date will be. Forix were very flexible on this issue. I was able to contact their president easily, and we worked out all details with our legal teams.

How did Forix perform from a project management standpoint?

We use Freshdesk for ticket support. The team for the new project will use Basecamp for progress tracking. We've agreed that these tools are meant for ticket support, and not conversations, as the process could get convoluted otherwise. We instead have many calls with Forix. They're always available to discuss unclear details in tickets, and their general response time is excellent.

What distinguishes Forix from other providers?

Their flexibility and their ability to flesh out unique business requirements set them apart from similar firms. Their in-house team is structured in such a way that they can give us a team for one project and a team for another. They haven't nickel and dimed us at all, which is great.

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

Magento and iOS Development for Electronics Manufacturer

"The [Forix] team feels like an extension of our company. They're comfortable to work with and communicate well.."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
4.5
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
Project summary: 

The client, once a small motor manufacturing company, is now a global provider of complete water systems and fueling systems. Limited technical expertise and an increasingly obsolete website convinced the client to find a partner capable of redeveloping their site and a building a custom iOS application. Forix was vetted carefully and then contracted to supply a dedicated team composed of a project manager, several Magento and iOS developers, user interface/user experience designer, and quality assurance specialists.

The Reviewer
 
501-1000 Employees
 
Portland, Oregon Area
Product Manager, HVAC & Industrial Controls, Electronics Manufacturer
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The client remains extremely pleased with Forix and their performance. According to the client, the successful launch of their new Magento site has received overwhelmingly positive feedback. The client also considers the development of their corresponding iOS app a major success, which has streamlined their sales processes. The client maintains an ongoing relationship with Forix and recommends them highly.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your organization.

We manufacture submersible motors and pumps for buildings not connected to the city water system and have to rely on wells to provide irrigation and water supplies. The specific business unit I work for manufactures controls for monitoring the pumping process in order to maximize energy efficiency and water yield.

What is your position?

I'm a product manager in the control division.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What business challenge were you trying to address with Forix?

We needed to have an overhaul to our website. It was important that we build tools for both our sales staff and customers in order to streamline the process of selecting, sizing, and ordering equipment. We had unique challenges due to having three sales channels, each of them with its own identity and processes. We had to find a way of building these tools with different storefronts for each section of activity. Ultimately, we wanted the website to help our business.

SOLUTION

Please describe the scope of their involvement.

Forix rebuilt our site from the ground up, making a new platform for us based on Magento. They have also developed an app for iOS that gives us control of the back-end for adding products and making changes.

We are considering building the app for other platforms, but we've started in only one area in order to learn the process and get some validation from the market. If it proves to be justified, we'll move on from here. We made sure that the website itself is optimized for any mobile platform, in order to accommodate non-iOS users.

We're not developers ourselves, so we needed a solution that could capture the complexity of our products, including their different descriptions and the variables that go into sizing and selecting, without the need to do actual coding when we add or change an element. Magento lets us do this. We can add images and products, move things, and set up pricing rules for various customers. We have a business-to-business environment, so different customers will have different pricing structures. This was an important element for us. Our model is more complex than a retail outlet.

In the past, we had this ability to a limited extent. We sold a few products online, but the site was more of an information portal for products. The new site was a step toward full online ordering. We're not quite there yet, which is more of a limitation on our end, not of the Magento platform itself. We will be undergoing a full enterprise resource planning update, and didn't want to tie functionalities to our current system, only to change them after a year. The new website has full order processing capabilities, but we still use our staff for this task.

The purpose of the iOS app was to support our sales reps. They're constantly visiting customers and contractors, so it becomes a way for them to have access to the full set of tools remotely. They can get product information and size, build quotes and generate submissions. Those submissions act as a snapshot of an entire order, which our engineers can look over and assess the requirements for a project. It helps reduce sale time and back-and-forth activity.

We collaborated primarily with the UX [user experience] developers and project managers, who acted as intermediaries between us and their coding team.

How did you come to work with Forix?

We initially talked to four or five local app and web developers. We met with each one face to face and discussed our requirements. Forix seemed to best align with our goal, namely of building tools to support our business. There are many companies doing interesting work in terms of graphics and content, but they don't offer very robust back-end solutions.

Could you provide a sense of the size of this initiative in financial terms?

So far, we've invested close to $200,000 in project work. This includes the work we've made for the first project, and two others that are underway.

What is the status of this engagement?

Our collaboration is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any statistics or metrics from this engagement?

We're only now starting to measure the results of our system. The site was launched during the holiday period, and we're turning on features gradually. It will be up and running fully within the next two months.

The initial response has been great, but not data-driven. We're getting general feedback on its general look and feel, which are greatly improved from before.

We plan to track actual user activity as quotes and statistics, and this will be the true reflection of its value: the site's effect to the bottom line.

How did Forix perform from a project management standpoint?

We had a positive experience, which is confirmed by the fact that we have started two other projects with them. Forix has been very easy to work with and also very flexible. Parts of the process have been new to us, and we've tried to understand them. Forix helped guide us through it and has even split development costs on features that we hadn't considered in the initial planning phase.

They've been great as far as being on time and within budget. On any big IT [information technology] project, time and money are the two factors that people look at in terms of performance.

The people with whom we work day to day are easy to reach and communicate well. We can't ask for more than that. We use Basecamp for keeping track of the project.

What distinguishes Forix from other providers?

Their team feels like an extension of our company. They're comfortable to work with and communicate well. From my limited experience, this is what separates Forix from other companies.

Is there anything Forix could have improved or done differently?

Because the process is relatively new to us, there have been a few things early in the scoping process that we didn't think to nail down, and which affected things later on in the project. Forix could offer a little more hand holding for newbie's like us, which would help avoiding circumstances like splitting costs on certain features. Forix handled the situation well, so I couldn't say anything specifically bad about them.

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