New

MGH & ADK Group have launched a COVID-19 Testing App.

Learn more here

Driving culture and empowering remote work

Increasing ALKU’s company value and performance with custom software.

Industry
Consulting
Services
Technology Architecture
Web Development
API Integration and Development
Technology
ReactJS
AWS
.NET
WebSockets

PURPOSE

A unique culture drives the success of Massachusetts consulting firm ALKU, known for placing top talent in some of the most vital sectors in America. ALKU has succeeded where many businesses fail by differentiating itself through a culture of camaraderie, friendly competition, and high performance. ALKU is a proud, technology-minded firm, but was leveraging whiteboards at the core of one of the company’s most business-critical processes. This analog means of talent-matching and progress-tracking had become the touchstone that set ALKU’s culture and company apart from its competitors.

The responsive sales application can be projected to several office collaboration areas, viewable across all screen sizes.
6 Locations

Whiteboard data synced across 6 different office locations

100% User Adoption

All eligible users are actively using the new whiteboard tool

13 Departments

User adoption is spread across 13 department groups

THE CHALLENGE

Whiteboards were the people-powered tool to mark success for ALKU recruitment teams and the staffing firm quickly grew from less than 100 in one office to 500 across six. While the boards were crucial, they lacked scalability in a digital world, which hampered the firm’s growth.

ALKU knew they needed to keep that real-time visibility of recruiter wins and client fulfillment updates made possible by their whiteboarding system. What they didn’t know was how to keep the essence of the whiteboards but make it scalable.

Going digital was the only way to replicate collaborative and constantly updated communication across six locations in a human-centered way. They first tried cameras but couldn’t replicate the magic of the whiteboard’s real-time personal and team wins across all locations.

With 80% of the firm’s personnel relying on the real-time whiteboard data, they first looked to off-the-shelf software before an immediate cultural kinship with the ADK team formed during a wider search. A shared understanding of what made ALKU special convinced the two firms that a custom approach was the answer.

Users can quickly get pertinent details about a particular client account, including team members, type of client, job history, and more.
Custom Web App

A digital whiteboard built on top of AWS cloud storage

Multiple APIs

Stitching together important systems

Smart TVs

Leveraging hardware to enhance UX

STRATEGY

The ADK team listened, watched, and learned from ALKU to understand how the whiteboards fostered comradery, competitiveness, and achievements. Both teams worked together to identify everything that gave ALKU its secret sauce. This defined the roadmap to a familiar but digital way of working that included:

  • A web application that looked and felt like a digital version of the whiteboards so that recruiters and managers could capture data and changes in a familiar way
  • An application programming interface (API) that bridged the gap between real-time user data access using Web Sockets
  • A scalable database running on AWS cloud for storage and access of incoming data from web application users
  • A dashboard for senior executives and the IT team to get reports and keep track of functionality
  • TVs and Raspberry Pi devices in each office were powered by the new web application and cloud database, replacing the analog whiteboards.

The Smart TVs, web-based application, and mobile device connectivity for remote collaboration were simple to use and familiar to ALKU staff. Next, the teams worked together to integrate everything with ALKU’s technology infrastructure, including:

  • Bullhorn recruiting application
  • CloudCall call management system
  • All other process-related applications and systems

Personalized color-coding for each recruiter (akin to the whiteboard marker days) was carried over into the digital system. This familiar experience was one of many that created a friendly digital user experience (UX) and helped drive adoption.

ADK came in, understood our goals, and designed a solution that "just works". It has exceeded every expectation that we had for the project. The team at every level of the organization is thrilled with the product.
Mark Eldridge,CEO, ALKU
IMPACT

With this new tool, ALKU now has a digital process that keeps the magic of the old analog whiteboard process, a foundation of their early success. Users could now work remotely in real time across all offices and any remote location. Internally branded as ALKU EverywhereTM, it was rolled out on a per department basis over six months.

With 100-percent adoption among all users across all offices, ALKU would grow without interruption to their recruitment and business processes. The completion couldn’t have come a minute too soon as COVID-19 threw every business into remote work mode.  ALKU Everywhere ensured that ALKU didn’t miss a beat.

Moving Forward

The ALKU and ADK partnership has succeeded over the years since both firms were founded on a commitment to building long-term relationships.

After the technology rollout was completed, ADK and ALKU immediately began planning for new features with two ADK full-time engineers working on ALKU’s behalf. This has since led to new collaborations, including a powerful gamification platform which takes ALKU’s culture of healthy competition and rewarding performance even further.

The two like-minded partners of ALKU and ADK now look to future innovations through people-powered digital transformations that would drive future success