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The Client

Innovative Staff Solutions (ISS)

ISS logo

ISS is a professional staffing agency with 22+ locations throughout Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, and Kentucky. They are family owned and operated for over 25 years having started in 1994 as part of a franchise and then becoming an independent agency in 2002. They provide contractor/flex staff to hundreds of businesses throughout the Midwest.

The Project

Failing System with Inaccurate Data

ISS had an internal system that was failing. The data within the system could not be trusted, which is vitally important when calculating employee hours, PTO, absenteeism, and more. Furthermore, it could take weeks for a new customer’s portal to be built and launched due to the old architecture that was dependent on a developer.

Project Points

  • Failing System
  • Inaccurate Data
  • Developer Dependent
  • Lengthy Onboarding

The Challenges

DNN, Vue, and Cadillacs

#1 When we hear that a client needs a multi-portal, custom-built solution with permissions-based functionalities, we generally recommend starting with the free DNN Platform since those pieces are inherent. Yet, Chad Clevenger, the project owner and Chief Information Officer at ISS was whole-heartedly against it due to receiving multiple recommendations to not use DNN.

#2 Developer experience at ISS was with the Javascript framework Angular. At Engage, we prefer Elm for front-end development; however, the developers at ISS were not familiar with Elm. Therefore, we pivoted and started the project in Vue (which is more similar to Angular).

#3 We had been working with Chad extensively and everything was running smoothly. Chad was very excited at the progress we had made and the direction it was heading. However, once it was presented to the rest of the ISS management team, the excitement only grew and they were looking for more. They wanted a Bentley, not a Cadillac.


  • Not building with inherent DNN tools
  • Building in Vue
  • ISS Management Team's Excitement

The Approach

Discovery, MVP, & Agile Development

It’s simple - build a new system leveraging our .Net expertise. ISS was not going to try to fix the old one. So, after an official discovery process and documentation done by Engage’s CTO, Brian Dukes, we better understood the issues, the technology, and all of the functionality of the old system as well as what ISS wanted in the new system. We understood that each office had its own Custom Client Portal (CCP - the tool we’re rebuilding) and while leveraging the DNN multi-portal capabilities seemed like a possible approach, bringing everything together was a better solution. Management at ISS can view their CCPs as one whole system, running reports, editing flex staff across multiple offices, and more. Utilizing permissions, ISS gives access to a CCP or multiple CCPs depending on the responsibilities of that staff person.

We started by building just one CCP and migrated the data from the old system keeping all of that history intact. We built out the table-like structure for the Admin Dashboard allowing ISS staff to quickly see their employees. Next, we tackled the complicated processes around employee evaluations and counseling. In the old system, the eval forms and counseling intake sheets were hardcoded, meaning that they could not be re-used for other clients. The forms were not customizable. Now they are. Then, with the new forms in place, we were able to create workflows using roles and permissions based on job-specific responsibilities. One admin staff person could request an eval, while another person has the role/permissions to write it, and then yet another approves it. Furthermore, we incorporated the new feedback from the ISS management team. We didn’t just rebuild the CCP, we completely redesigned it. We gave it a fresh new look by using large format “cards” instead of a table structure, allowing admins to not just quickly see the display of employees, but also see any data specified in the new, robust search and filtering tools. And lastly, we integrated this new CCP with their current 3rd party system for employee applications, hiring, and payroll so that all CCP data flows back into this other system as the source of truth.


  • Official Discovery
  • Clear Documentation of Issues & Acceptance Criteria
  • Minimum Viable Product - one CCP
  • Agile Development


The Results

Happy ISS Management, Staff, and Sales Team

The search tool allows admins to easily find the data they need by filtering by tenure, shift, when an eval is due, and more. Then the data on the cards shifts to display only the information designated by the filter. A future enhancement is the ability to save filters.

The data can be counted on. The reporting tools are much better. We’re able to give them access to data that they’ve never had before, run reports, and make comparisons that are helpful for them and their customers’ businesses.

The sales team is excited to show off their fancy new system with its intuitive designs and clean navigation. Sleek features like the quick view slide-in of the employee details as opposed to taking the admin to a whole new page and a search/filter stays loaded on the page allowing the admin to quickly see and make notes on slide-in without losing their search or losing their spot when scrolling the page.

As of July, 20+ offices are launched with hundreds of customers (companies that ISS is doing the hiring for) and thousands of employees. And best of all, it only takes 30 minutes to set up a new CCP and have it launched by a normal, everyday user. No more being dependent on developers.


  • More modern, easier to see design
  • Reliable data
  • Better admin tools
  • Robust search and filtering capabilities
  • Faster CCP launch
  • Removed developer dependencies

More Feedback

The Next Steps

Full Quote From Chad Clevenger, Chief Information Officer at ISS

“The team at Engage did a fantastic job on our project. I was impressed in our very first meeting when they knew almost nothing about our company or our project. At the end of our first meeting, their CTO (Brian Dukes) was able to summarize in detail almost the entire project that I had just spent about 2 hours describing. I knew they were true listeners at that point."

"The project evolved every step of the way and each hurdle and roadblock that we encountered was overcome. There were features I wanted that I could barely describe myself because they were so complicated, and they nailed every one of them. Engage has a team of developers who each bring something unique to the table. Some of my favorite conversations were with their Creative Director (Anthony Overkamp) and Senior Developer (Jon Bockhorst). We would start the meeting with a very vague concept and would use the meeting to hash out and truly develop the idea into something real. Oftentimes, Anthony would have the idea mocked up in real time before the meeting ended. Sometimes the next day, I was already testing that functionality myself. These development meetings weren’t just me telling them what I wanted, they were confident enough in their abilities to push back and take the idea even further than I had imagined. Sometimes we would argue like brothers going back and forth about what was the best way to accomplish the goal, it was fantastic to work with their team knowing we were all fighting to build the best product possible."

"Engage ownership stayed in touch with me throughout the entire project and always was aware of the next big idea we were working on. One of my most important goals for Engage was to make the software intuitive enough that it required no instructions and no training in order to use it. Just prior to the release, I put the software in front of 10 everyday users and gave them zero training and asked them to accomplish a list of 20 activities in a 30 minute period….it went flawlessly. I would highly recommend Engage, they make any idea possible." - Chad Clevenger, Chief Information Officer, ISS

Enhancements & Future Projects

  • More email notifications, specifically for workflow processes and changelogs
  • Ability to subscribe to regular email reports
  • Ability to create a graph from a report
  • Integration with texting application
  • Integration with current time card system
  • New interview and appointment scheduler
  • New interview guide
  • Updating or replacing current applicant/employee texting
  • Affiliate portal - similar to a CCP but for partnering with other staffing agencies


Portrait of Henry Kenuam
Henry Kenuam Account Manager
Portrait of Brian Dukes
Brian Dukes Chief Technical Officer
Portrait of Anthony Overkamp
Anthony Overkamp Creative Director, Designer, Front-end Developer
Portrait of Jon Bockhorst
Jon Bockhorst Senior Developer
Portrait of Cregg Hancock
Cregg Hancock Developer
Portrait of Tim Upchurch
Tim Upchurch Developer
View Engage's Team
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