STBB, in step with their commitment to client service, envisioned a shift to a more streamlined online approach to the sale and purchase of a property. Consequently, Polymorph and STBB partnered to develop a legal-specific solution that integrates with other programmes, particularly LegalSuite, a well-known conveyancing software package.
Prior to launch, Polymorph conducted thorough market research using analysts to strike a balance between what will enhance the day-to-day performance of estate agents in the market and what clients require. The team started by identifying the challenges that would need to be overcome to deliver a solution that would not only satisfy the business process requirements of STBB, but more importantly, address the primary needs of the key stakeholder – the app user. This was closely followed by how this information should be displayed and presented.
“With a project of this scope and magnitude, it is often underestimated how much time and information is required to deliver a workable solution. Polymorph was involved in every step of the development process from strategy and concept design to software/app development and design,” said Richard Barry, CEO at Polymorph.
Following an agile development process starting with a ‘sticky-board’ approach, the information was collated, all the while taking into account how, what, and where the information will be displayed. This, combined with the graphic component, comprised phase 1.
The following phase involved launching the app into the market where it was well-received. However, one of the main challenges was managing and improving the quality of the information provided by the end-user. This is a critical factor as the quality of the output is solely dependent on the quality of the input. Therefore, the requirement to conduct an audit resulted in the improved functionality with each update over the preceding two years. A significant advantage to STBB from the first release was high brand visibility as well as superb user experience.
Polymorph offers unparalleled service and expertise
In addition to the STBB Direct App, Polymorph was instructed to further develop an additional key component to the app: eVault.
eVault can be best described as a personalised, online legal and compliance assistant which saves time by facilitating requests for, amongst other things, FICA compliance, for example, identity documents, marriage certificates, and unabridged birth certificates etc. eVault allows you to store original and/or certified copies of any documents in your private eVault ensuring complete confidentiality and sole access of the documents uploaded.
“eVault is essentially an additional tab on the screen, which provides a very personalised and quite clever and sophisticated Dropbox-like repository where you can seamlessly drop conveyancing documents and other legal and compliance documents to share information with a client” explains Barry.
This additional functionality has made STBB Direct the ultimate legal property mobile app solution. Moreover, the documents and communications remain in the eVault in perpetuity, offering the client a complete record of all interactions and documents.
The entire process from inception to launching the STBB DirectApp took 13 months while developing the eVault functionality required approximately another 18 months. The STBB Direct App is the ideal tool to do cost calculations on the go. It is further used to perform a variety of calculations relating to the sale or purchase of a property such as transfers and bond costs, bond repayments, agent commission and capital gains tax. It also allows users to share the calculations directly from the app with a buyer, seller or a third party.
As a bonus, estate agents dealing with STBB can now track the progress of their transactions on their mobile devices, using the STBB Direct App. Notifications can be set up for pre-selected milestones during the transfer process. An estate agent will be able to obtain the ever-popular STBB Progress Reports directly from the device with the tap of a button – anytime, anywhere. Estate agents have access to the details, documents, progress notes and contacts relating to a specific transaction ensuring constant communication and keeping the agent in control of the transfer process. This was all made possible by the exceptional vision of Philip Steyn, Director and Partner at STBB and the excellent skills of the Polymorph team.