Open Source Digital Innovation

Founded in 2008, Zivtech is a full-service web design and development agency that specializes in open-source software. We offer design, development, strategy, and project delivery services to a wide range of clients across a variety of industries. Our mission is to empower individuals and organizations through technology, and provide our clients with digital products that are attractive, accessible, functional, and adaptive.

 
$10,000+
 
$150 - $199 / hr
 
10 - 49
 Founded
2008
Show all +
Philadelphia, PA
headquarters
  • One South Broad Street, Suite 1010
    Philadelphia, PA 19107
    United States

Portfolio

Key clients: 
Acquia • BioClinica • Bryn Mawr College • The Carilion Clinic • Children's Hospital of Philadelphia • City of Philadelphia • Cornell University • Diversified Search • The FruitGuys • Greatist • Guthrie • HealthCare Without Harm • Jefferson College of Health Sciences • The John Templeton Foundation • Mitel • Novartis • Princeton University • Radial • Temple University • TIME for Kids • The University of Pennsylvania • US Courts

Reviews

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Drupal Redevelopment for Telecom Firm

"[Their] team is extremely passionate about the applications they’re working on."

Quality: 
4.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.5
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
 
2013 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Zivtech audited an existing Drupal site developed by a former supplier. Once finished, they began fixing bugs to improve performance and now focus mainly on new feature design. 

The Reviewer
 
1001-5000 Employees
 
Kanata, Ontario
Director of Marketing Technology
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The previously incomplete website was successfully salvaged by Zivtech within a fairly aggressive timeline, demonstrating a high degree of product ownership and a clear commitment to customer satisfaction.

A Clutch analyst personally interviewed this client over the phone. Below is an edited transcript.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

We are the in-house digital marketing group of a large telecom company. We have a small team of 3 dedicated, technical resources who are in charge of the frontend digital marketing efforts while other, higher-level members are in charge of our content. I am the director of marketing technology and digital marketing.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Zivtech?

We had a broken Drupal CMS environment and were looking for someone to help us fix it. The group we'd used for building it was also the one who broke it, so we needed someone else to come in and resolve our site issues.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Zivtech was tasked with improving our existing site. They increased the stability of our environment, making sure that it would work consistently. This was a problem that had been left behind by our previous supplier. After getting our site to a point that made us comfortable sleeping at night, Zivtech started helping us attack some of the template codebases. This made it easier for us to deploy web pages in a safe and sustainable way. We needed to know that doing this wouldn't break something else into the system. Zivtech also did some frontend development work, helping us develop responsive styling for our pages. In doing this, Zivtech handled some graphic work and page designs, enough to have a big impact in that area.

Over the course of time, we worked directly with 5 resources from Zivtech's team. We also had a project manager helping prioritize their time and making sure that the work was being followed through.

How did you come to work with Zivtech?

We found Zivtech through a personal relationship with another developer we were using, one that didn't actually do Drupal work. We talked to several firms, but once we got to talking with Zivtech, we realized that they were among the best within the Drupal space.

How much have you invested with Zivtech?

Over the course of our relationship, the cost of Zivtech's services has been close to $800,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with Zivtech 2 years ago.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

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

Zivtech had a willingness to make sure that things were done right. Early on, as they were developing code, we deployed something that worked within all our environments except for the production one. That’s where it completely broke everything. I personally spent around 48 hours on the phone working hand-in-hand with Zivtech's developers in order to get things back running properly. There was a sense of ownership that Zivtech felt about the site that many vendors don't have. Others weren't willing to spend their weekends with us trying to make things right.

This issue wasn't something that Zivtech did wrong; it was simply a problem inherited from our previous supplier. But Zivtech's willingness to take responsibility for things that weren't their problem distinguished them.

How did Zivtech perform from a project management standpoint?

Zivtech's team isn't necessarily faster or slower than anyone else, but the quality of their work is higher. Over the course of 2 years, we've seen a couple of issues here and there in terms of deliveries. There was nothing of any real significance. Everything pointed back to communication problems, lack of definition around the project deliverable, or something similar.

What did you find most impressive about Zivtech?

Zivtech's team is extremely passionate about the applications they’re working on, especially with the Drupal community. They're spending a lot of time giving back to that community and making sure that the product is being moved forward. They're only going to be as successful as the actual Drupal product—if people don't like it, they're not going to make any sales. It's easy to get all the way to the top. If necessary, we could escalate things to their CEO who will yield a resolution of some sort. 

Are there any areas Zivtech could improve?

Zivtech could open up a bit more to other platforms available on the market. Being an open-source group, they prefer these solutions, so it's been difficult to ask for turnkey platforms that are available from a vendor. Zivtech usually comes back with open-source alternatives for us in these cases, but sometimes we need a quick fix no matter how much it costs.

5.0
Overall Score Zivtech has always been willing to listen.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    We haven't missed a deadline yet.
  • 4.5 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    There's always a bit of wiggle room in terms of cost, but I understand that Zivtech needs to run a business.
  • 4.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    Zivtech is a good company and they've done a good job with the work delivered. However, their developer mentality doesn't always translate well into big-business thinking.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    If someone is looking for a Drupal development firm, Zivtech is the choice to make.

Drupal and Salesforce Integration for Nonprofit Organization

"From a technical standpoint, these guys are really spot on."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
4.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$200,000 to $999,999
 
2009 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Zivtech was hired to develop an online grant portal. The team now manages the design and implementation of various technical requirements, such as information architecture, functional builds, and maintenance.

The Reviewer
 
51-200 Employees
 
Philadelphia Metro Area
IT Director, Nonprofit
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The portal continues to support over 3,000 unique, active users a year and a complex application process. Zivtech provides consistently accurate estimates for projects and excels at a range of tasks extending beyond Drupal. The team is flexible, accommodating, and responsive to feedback.

A Clutch analyst personally interviewed this client over the phone. Below is an edited transcript.

BACKGROUND

Please describe your organization.

I work for a nonprofit foundation, and we are a grant-making institution, which is a special type of nonprofit. Unlike most nonprofits, we don't seek donations. We have an endowment, and our job is to make grants and give money away, rather than fundraise. We give money away in mostly academic research areas. Almost all of our grants go to academic institutions, researchers at universities, scientific research, and religious activities.

What is your position?

I'm the director of information technology.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

Could you describe the business challenge that you were trying to address when you first approached Zivtech?

We've been working with Zivtech since 2009, so it has been almost six years now. At the time, we were re-engineering our grant making, which was entirely paper based at that point. We decided to take it to the electronic world and do all of our work online. Our initial challenge was to create our grant-making portal, which is where our grantees come to apply for and report on grants, interacting with us. It's similar to what a bank might have, where you go in and manage your checking and savings accounts, transfer money, and so forth. They developed an online portal for us that allow our grantees to do conduct all of their transactions with us online.

SOLUTION

Could you describe in detail the actual scope of work assigned to Zivtech?

We keep the business analysis, workflow, and business logic of what we need to do in-house. We distill that into business requirement documents, and that's where Zivtech gets involved. They design and implement the technical side of what we want to do. They're involved with information architecture, the functional build, project management, testing, deployment, and ongoing support and maintenance.

How did you come to choose Zivtech as your partner?

At the time, we were working with a Salesforce vendor because our grant-making system was built on Salesforce. When we were integrating the portal, Zivtech was heavily involved with the Salesforce plug-in that created an interface between the two systems. They came on our radar because of their involvement with that plug-in.

Can you provide a general cost estimate for this engagement?

Through the years, we've spent about $500,000 working with Zivtech.

Is this an ongoing relationship?

Yes. We started working together in the summer of 2009.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

In terms of results, could you share any statistics, metrics, or user feedback that would demonstrate the quality of their performance or the long-term success of your engagement together?

Probably the best quantitative information is the activity on our grantee portal, which supports approximately 3,000 grant applications a year. That means we have at least 3,000 unique, active users coming into the portal. But, that understates the situation because there are many people that come to our portal and initiate an application, but never actually finish it because they realize it's not a good fit, that we require too much information and so forth. The grant-making process is rigorous. When they're on the portal, they may spend hundreds of hours completing their applications.

From a project management perspective, Zivtech's estimates are usually extremely accurate. I've never been unhappy with any of their estimates or their project management.

When working with Zivtech, is there anything that you would consider unique about their practice that distinguishes them from other vendors?

Their ability to not just do Drupal work, but things that integrate with Drupal, add-on to Drupal, or regular development work – all are very good. Most of the other projects we've had them work on have been more standard Drupal development projects, and they were great on that. Only on one of them did we have them doing the graphic design. From a technical standpoint, these guys are really spot on.

In retrospect, are there areas in which you think they could improve as a service provider?

In the very beginning, their tracking of how hours were spent was a little vague, but they implemented a new project management tracking system that gives us much better numbers, so that is not an issue anymore. We had given them some feedback on that issue, and it was something they recognized they needed to do. It's just another example of how flexible and accommodating they are with clients.

What advice, if any, would you give a future client of theirs?

From our experience, I would recommend documenting what you want, your business requirements, business documents, and process. Give them as much information as possible because then their estimating, design and architecture will be much better suited to what you're trying to do. I believe that is one of their strengths. They are very good when it comes to taking something from a business process or design view and building it. They're also good when the customers don't really know what they want; however, in situations like that, accurate estimates are extremely hard to make.

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

Custom Drupal Development Lynchburg College

"Their communication and project management abilities were so far superior to [previous vendors]."

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

Zivtech collaborated on the rebuild of an outdated platform. The team moved the website to Drupal to improve its scalability, organization, and maintainability. They continue to provide onsite training and support.

The Reviewer
 
201-500 Employees
 
Lynchburg, Virginia
Deborah Blanchard
Director of College Communications & Marketing, Lynchburg College
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The new database-based website is more efficient, responsive, and user-firendly. Zivtech provides excellent project management with accurate estimates for time and money, often completing tasks ahead of schedule. The team communicates effectively and delivers customized service.

A Clutch analyst personally interviewed this client over the phone. Below is an edited transcript.

BACKGROUND

Could you describe your organization?

We’re a private liberal arts college in Virginia with about 2,500 matriculated students.

What is your position?

I’m the director of college communications and marketing.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

Could you describe the business challenges that you were attempting to address when you first approached Zivtech?

We were upgrading from an old proprietary platform with no database that was very expensive, and it had not been updated in a very long time. We had a lot of back-end fixes that the webmaster had done over time to make things work, but it was 11,000 pages of a mess. We decided to go with Drupal at the time, but no member of our Web team had any experience with it. We did some investigating and thought it was the best option for us at that time, and we were looking for an open source platform. Going the open source route was due to a budgetary issue. Our budget was inadequate for the things that needed to be done. I had experience with other open source platforms from previous jobs. I knew the open source community was robust, and there were a lot of people I knew that were starting to use Drupal. It provided what we needed and it was a scalable platform, which we wanted.

SOLUTION

Could you describe the scope of their involvement in greater detail?

They took over the mess that we had from the previous developers, and they were wonderful from start to finish. I have a really good Web designer, a good developer, and some good content people, so I didn’t need a start to finish website development project team. I needed people who knew how to build the site in Drupal, but could then just walk away and turn it over to us. We also didn’t know what we were going to do for hosting at that time. We had previously hosted our old site by ourselves, and I wasn’t happy with that decision at all. It’s a huge maintenance job.

They were great in terms of the development work they did. They stuck with what they said they would do. They were great at giving us estimates as to how much time and money it was going to take, and they were always very close. I think we ended up with a much better website than we would have otherwise. We have continued to use them since. They’ve done some onsite training for our Web team, and they’ve helped with some problems we had after the launch. They’ve been a great resource. We also have a contract with them for continued support.

What was your process for selecting Zivtech as your partner?

We talked to Acquia because we knew from other people that they had a very good reputation in terms of providing guidance as to which companies were good, and providing quality Drupal Web hosting. We took a shortlist, and vetted them and talked to them, and got down to the top two choices: Zivtech and another vendor. We decided to go with the other vendor at the time because they offered more in the way of front-end testing and strategy planning, and we needed a lot of that at the time. That part of our experience with this other vendor was very good.

When we got to the Web development part, however, we had really big problems, and we ended up with a mess. We ran out of money before the website was completely developed, and I was left holding the bag of parts. We were behind schedule, and I had a pretty serious mandate from the leaders at the college to get the website launched as close to on time as we possibly could. So, I basically fired the other company and went back with our second choice that, in retrospect, I wish, had been our first choice. They were very cordial and open to talking to us, but they were not very excited about bailing us out of a deep hole. They didn’t really know what they were inheriting, and I understood that. We were able to convince them we had a team that would work with them, and that it was a situation that they could help us out of. They took a look at it and decided they could, and they did.

Could you provide a general cost estimate for this engagement?

I’m not sure of the amount we paid Zivtech. We had used up pretty much all of our $50,000 budget with the other company. I’m going to guess we paid Zivtech about $8,000 or so.

What was the duration of this project?

The relationship with Zivtech started in July of 2012, and the site launched in August or September of that year.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

In terms of results, could you share any statistics, metrics, or user feedback that would demonstrate the quality of their performance?

We never had a database-based website before, so the fact that we could push and pull information meant we were saving a lot of man-hours. In terms of human resource management, the situation got a whole lot better. Zivtech got us to that point, but that’s a function of Drupal, too. The analytics told us people were navigating the site more quickly, getting to what they needed faster, and with less frustration and hassle. We were having search issues beforehand, and a lot of what we did enabled us to have a faster, more responsive site. We had a lot of anecdotal positive feedback, where the campus community that was using the site was a lot happier with it.

When working with Zivtech, is there anything that you’d consider special about their strategic approach or development methodology that distinguish them from other vendors?

Their communication and project management abilities were so far superior to the other company. It was the difference between night and day. They kept in touch, they knew when to communicate and what to communicate. Their system worked well, their project managers were really managing the project, and they always knew what was going on. We never had any issues with project management. In terms of managing my budget and managing their time, they were on the mark. If they gave me an estimate of 10 hours to do something, nine times out of 10, it was 10 hours or less. Zivtech was able to fix all of the issues that were left behind from the other company. They gave our people great customized, onsite training, so they knew exactly how to use the new system.

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
    I’ve sent people to them, and I would continue to do that.

Drupal Development for Health Care Nonprofit

“They’ve been fantastic.”

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

Zivtech provided additional development resources for a variety of development projects, including Drupal website design and custom code enhancements.

The Reviewer
 
10,001+ Employees
 
Roanoke, Virginia
Cathy Miles
Web Manager, Carilion Clinic
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The site received consistently high traffic and positive feedback on its functionality and visuals. Zivtech's capable project management and seasoned Drupal expertise helped them perform well on all projects. Their thorough training on core Drupal modules set the internal team up for success.

A Clutch analyst personally interviewed this client over the phone. Below is an edited transcript.

BACKGROUND

Could you briefly describe your organization?

The Carilion Clinic is a nonprofit health care organization, serving the Southwest Virginia population.     

What is your position?

I’m a Web manager for our public facing site.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

Could you describe the business challenges that you were attempting to address when you first approached Zivtech?

We reached out to Zivtech on an ongoing basis, to help us with Web development projects, anywhere from support for a redesign Web project to enhancing web functionality, across the board. In my role here, I’ve worked with them for just more than a year. They've proven to be an invaluable resource in terms of their expertise and their training for my staff.

SOLUTION

Could you describe the scope of their involvement?

We’ve been using Drupal for about a year and a half to two years now, and they were integral to setting up the whole Drupal site for us, training staff, and basically helping us build the site from the ground up when we first started using it. Typically, we give them a detailed scope of work that they use to provide estimates for. That’s basically been our working document for specific project tasks.

So, typically, what we will do in our working relationship is, we’ll have a strategy, we’ll have the nature of the task itself, and then they execute. We provide them wireframes and any design support assets, in terms of what we would like them to build for us. Then, they review the scope of work that we give them, and then use it as their guide document to complete all tasks. So, they’re very easy to work with, but they do like to have detailed work given to them to help streamline and keep the project on task.

How did you select Zivtech as your solution partner?

They actually predate my role here. Carilion Clinic was using them prior to my coming on board with the company. I think it was through a prior relationship one of our staff had, or knew of Zivtech. So, I don’t have any history with that. But, they’re very supportive and always willing to help us out when we need them.

Could you provide a general cost estimate for their work?

We don’t have a rolling month by month. On a project basis, it can range anywhere from around $10,000 to around $47,000. It just really depends on the type of complexity of the work we give them. It’s from small, custom code enhancements, all the way to helping us build responsive design for our redesign.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

In terms of results, could you share any statistics, metrics, or user feedback you’ve received that would demonstrate the quality of their performance?

Our site traffic has remained stable. We cater to various audiences: patients, physician community, and education community, which are our residents and fellows. We’ve received very positive feedback in terms of overall health of the site, the functionality, from our internal users, our employees. We’ve received a lot of great feedback but, overall, our metrics have remained very steady and strong. We’ve received nothing but positive feedback from their involvement in projects.

Everything went very smoothly from a project management standpoint. They provide great ongoing communication. They keep us up to date on our burn rate in terms of hours that we’ve used up. We have regular meetings for status updates, so they’re highly responsive and good communicators in terms of managing products.

When working with Zivtech, is there anything you’d consider unique about their strategic approach or development methodology?

I think their expertise in Drupal itself is the one key thing. They have provided all kinds of training for us outside of specific project-based work. For example, when it comes to a certain core module in Drupal, or explaining any particular type of code, they’re really personable and flexible with us. I think that training piece, more than anything outside of projects, has been a key differentiator for them, just because they’re such experts at what they do. Their lead developer, Matt [Klein], is a gifted Web developer. He really has good insight of best practices for Drupal development. They’ve been fantastic.

In retrospect, are there areas in which you think they could improve as a service provider?

I can’t really think of one thing where I could see them improving on. We see them as an extension of our team.

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

Drupal Implementation for Healthy Food Delivery Service

"We’ve never presented them with a question they couldn’t answer."

Quality: 
4.5
Schedule: 
4.5
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
Confidential
Project summary: 

Zivtech redesigned a Drupal website to help improve online presence. They also developed efficient bac-kend systems for invoicing and accounting to streamline operations.

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
San Francisco Bay Area
Scott Larson
IT Manager, The FruitGuys
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

ZivTech helped the company recover from a potentially catastrophic situation by fixing a broken internal accounting system. Later, they grew its digital presence considerably. Their large pool of talented resources and willingngess to provide long-term advice produced outstanding results.

A Clutch analyst personally interviewed this client over the phone. Below is an edited transcript.

BACKGROUND

Could you provide a brief description of your organization?

The company is called The FruitGuys. We’re a B2B [business-to-business company] that delivers fruit produce to offices as a part of their wellness programs. We’re nationwide, so we deal with all of the lower 48 states. We’ve been around for the last 15 years and we’ve have grown nationwide within the last seven years.

What is your position?

I’m the IT [information technology] manager.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

Could you describe the business challenges that you were attempting to address when you first approached Zivtech?

Growing the business, growing our user base, growing our Web presence, growing financial, growing database issues, siloed data centers, and siloed branches within in our own company and departments. We had challenges in all of those areas. We started out as a small business, and we’ve grown into a medium-sized business. It’s been very intense during the last five years. A lot of it that we’ve been facing is growth out of old systems and getting transitioned into new, modern Web-based systems.

We originally had a third-party vendor build out a shopping cart for us, and that was our first exposure to Drupal. It was a Drupal 6-Ubercart integration that we used for the shopping cart, and that was about five or six years ago. That particular third-party vendor built the cart, but we didn’t have the best experience with dealing with them. Not so long after that, we had a problem with our invoicing and accounting systems that weren’t in Drupal. It was kind of an emergency, in that it fell apart on us, and that’s when we ended up getting in contact with Zivtech. We needed them to come in and overhaul our system.

SOLUTION

Could you describe the scope of their involvement?

They haven’t had an impact on our current implementation of the visuals, the ones that you can see currently from the frontend. Internal systems that we use within the company, they’ve implemented those designs. Then, they did a stand-alone design for another part of our business that deals with schools, too. Their involvement was complete. It was strategy, consultation, design, implementation, and support.

How did you select Zivtech as your solution partner?

There were multiple vendors in our consideration. We’re a family run business, and we have a pretty tight integration with our priority vendors. Our farmers are the best example of that, where we have personal relationships with each and every one of them. That kind of relationship influences the way we run our company, and that goes all the way to our own vendors. The working relationship was the thing that we were really trying to find. Because we were such a dynamically growing company, I think we scared some people. Zivtech really embraced the challenge, though. We could tell based on our conversations that they were in the best position to deliver the full range of services and expertise we’d need.

You’re partnership is still ongoing, correct?

Yes. We’re currently building out newer systems on the back-end with them.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

In terms of results, could you share any statistics, metrics, or user feedback you’ve received that would demonstrate the quality of their performance?

They were able to bridge the gap in the emergency I mentioned before, and then work to build out the longer-term solution. The fact that we’re still running as a business, after our near catastrophe, and that we grew pretty sizably the last year under the new system, I would say that’s a pretty big testament to their performance. We’ve really relied on them to provide the knowledge and resources we need to run our business. 

When working with Zivtech, is there anything you’d consider unique about their strategic approach or development methodology that distinguish them from other vendors?

Because it’s not just an individual, they have a pretty wide internal repository of knowledge. Different people that focus of different parts of the business, and have different skills. They have front-end designers that are particularly good at front-end design while they have others that area great with engineering and configuring databases. We’ve never presented them with a question they couldn’t answer. They have people that are familiar with different integrations and different systems, API [application programming interface] experts, integration database experts, and then general business experts, then the nuts and bolts of Drupal and the do’s and don’ts. They have a pretty broad experience level within the organization, and I think that has been very helpful to us. Whatever problems were facing, there’s typically someone that has experienced a solution in the past to draw upon.

In retrospect, are there areas in which you think Zivtech could improve upon as a service provider?

I’d say having more people on staff. They have a lot of customers, so managing multiple projects across multiple customers and having more programmers or developers at their disposal would be helpful.

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