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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

New Texting & Appointments Applications

On the heels of our original project with ISS, rebuilding their Custom Client Portal, we have now added two major enhancements: the Texting App and the Appointments App.

The Texting app project started in November of 2022. ISS had an existing app in use, but it had performance and user experience issues, plus it was not integrated with other systems nor did it sync data across the ISS offices.

The Appointments app project started shortly after we wrapped up the Texting app. Similar to the texting app, ISS was already using a tool for appointments but it was also built with old technology, did not integrate, and was specific to each office instead of syncing across all offices.

Project Points

  • Old Technology on Different Tech Stacks
  • Performance Issues
  • User Experience Issues
  • Wasting time waiting for things to work

The Challenges

An Opportunity to Upgrade

The Engage team tried to spend some time fixing the existing apps. But, that proved to be more difficult than anticipated and it was a better approach to rewrite.


  • New team dynamic
  • ISS serving as Project Manager

The Approach


Because we had just built the CCP (custom client portal), we already had some patterns and could better integrate the three systems where from the CCP you send a text; from the texting app you can view the CCP record; from appointments you can view the texting history; and from CCP, you can view the appointments that are scheduled. We were able to leverage the same database for all applications.

With the texting app, we did a staggered release. We would perform user testing with a subset of ISS staff and employees, get feedback, iterate, etc. We completed about 6 weeks of this and during each iteration, we would inform the users when new things were released. The new and improved Texting app was launched fully to all users on March 3rd, 2023 and the old app was shut off the following Tuesday.

For Appointments, we worked diligently with Chad and his team to fully develop the new system and then did a complete cutover for the launch.


  • Following patterns from CCP
  • Integrating the 3 systems
  • Release & Iterate


The Results

Robust Records & Fewer Missed Appointments

The Texting system is so much more robust and efficient than the old system. This new tool has many smart pieces built into it, like the language translator. If an external employee texts in a different language (Spanish, French, Filipino, Thai, Portuguese, Haitian Creole are the common ones), the Internal ISS staff member is able to text back in English, but then the system will automatically translate into the user's language.

The system pulls in an activity log every time an ISS staff member is communicating with an external employee/applicant. It shows all previous texts as well as any notes taken, all in chronological order. Anyone, from any ISS office, is able to access all texts and notes. There is an “update contact” switch for if an external employee calls/text in from a new phone number, an ISS staffer can click the switch to sync all previous data to the new number. The system is also smart enough to identify the number calling/text in and automatically pull up that person’s records prior to an ISS staff member answering the call or texting back.

And lastly, the system features a mass text option. At ISS, they manage all communication between the external employee and the ISS client who has hired those employees. So when that ISS client needs to fill more shifts, ISS can send a mass text to each employee asking if anyone wants to cover the shift. A snowstorm causes a factory to close/cancel a shift, ISS can mass text all employees scheduled to work and let them know to not come in.

The new major feature of the Appointments app is an “Ask for Help” button. When an ISS staff person is double booked or simply knows they will not be able to take their scheduled appointment, they send out a “Help Request” for someone else to take over that call. If no one responds and the call has started, then after 5 minutes, the “Help” alert changes to a high priority “Fire” alert. If no one responds after 10 minutes, the system will automatically cancel the alert and send a notification to the applicant with apologies and ability to reschedule. This notification is configurable by the ISS staff.

Missed appointments are much fewer now and ISS has a report specifically for this. ISS doesn’t even know how many were missed before because the old system didn’t track it. In general, there is a lot more data available.

The history of all of this data - the employee profile, the texts, phone calls, emails, etc, appointments and more - is all connected in each of the ISS systems.


  • More modern
  • Reliable data
  • Improved UX
  • Under Budget
  • Fewer missed appts

More Feedback


Portrait of Anthony Overkamp
Anthony Overkamp Creative Director, Designer, Front-end Developer
Portrait of Jon Bockhorst
Jon Bockhorst Senior Developer
Portrait of Daniel Bolef
Daniel Bolef Developer
Portrait of Brian Dukes
Brian Dukes Chief Technical Officer
Portrait of Tim Upchurch
Tim Upchurch Developer
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