Last week we traded our office in The Hague for a beautiful vineyard in the east of Croatia. Why, you ask? “Why not?” is my answer.
For a year now, we had a dream of visiting the vineyard which is run by the family of one of our own colleagues. The last couple of months everything fell into place. Not just because the team had changed a lot over the last couple of months and we felt the need to bond, but also to have dedicated time to develop something that we’ve wanted for a very long time; strengthening the API foundation. We relocated our office… and started working… because we can! I say “relocating our office”, but it was not even that! Because of something we have already talked about before – being a paperless company that uses only digital and cloud-based tools (safely & securely) – a laptop per person, a couple of desk phones and the internet connection was all we needed to move to another location, any location for that matter! And so we took off to Croatia with a mission; creating… together.
Deciding what to work on during the week
There were a lot of different ideas about what we should work on during this week, and to be honest, even in the plane it wasn’t 100% clear what exactly would be the outcome for this week. What we did know, is that we wanted to create something having to do with how the API is built. We felt for a long time that the API would become more flexible with the changes we wanted to make to it. On the other side, the process of onboarding customers is becoming increasingly important, and therefore it’s crucial to make it as easy as possible. Every customer that uses Compass will have to make one or more dial plans at some point. The current dial plan editor is less accessible and maturely developed than we might want. To have an intuitive dial plan editor helps to onboard customers, as well as to help experienced users save time or add more functionality. So, with our team, we set out to create the best dial plan editor in town and the API foundation to go with it.
What did we actually make?
In only one week, this is what we came up with: A renewed API foundation that makes changes in a dial plan possible through calls on the API. By making dial plan elements generic and usable throughout the complete company, this simplifies the API greatly and solves a lot of inconveniences our customers are experiencing by being able to make templates, import/export dial plans and losing settings in the dial plan switch while updating other dial plans.
For the dial plan editor itself, we are planning a complete transformation. Although it is a product we are proud of, we felt that we could greatly improve the user experience. Not only will it have a new look and feel, but it has some awesome additional features to it as well. For instance, adding and editing all the elements in the dial plan itself. On the other side, the process of onboarding customers is becoming increasingly important, and therefore it’s crucial to make it as easy as possible.
We feel that with the new dial plan editor and matching API we have taken the next step towards making communicating obstacle-free, and I am very proud that we were able to do the thinking work together in a limited time. Now, to really show the outside world what we made takes some more time, but we will keep you updated on the progress.
Innovation is just one plane ride away
First, our week of creating wouldn’t be possible without the great and welcoming attitude of the Knezev Dol restaurant in Knezevi Vinogradi, which we almost completely took over during our stay. Not only our every need was taken care of (and then some), but the atmosphere and ambience also had a significant positive effect on our creativity. Second, would you like to see what your company is able to create when they have a week together without distractions of daily operations? Then don’t be afraid to take the step that we took, it is just one plane-ride and some hand luggage away. ;-)
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