A large healthcare organization recently came to LuminFire in search of a technology partner to assist with their custom FileMaker solution. Because their previous FileMaker consultant had become unresponsive and they didn’t have FileMaker developers in their IT department, they needed help enhancing and maintaining their business-critical solution.

Their marketing department uses FileMaker to track and manage thousands of projects and jobs. For them, FileMaker is the key to keeping their projects on track. Its flexibility and ability to fully customize each aspect of the system makes FileMaker the right choice for them.

Although their solution was operational when they came to us, their team had a list of many areas where their workflows could be automated more to serve them better and increase their efficiency.

First, we created a detailed blueprint plan for the work. We identified multiple instances of technical debt where the solution was not being maintained or upgraded correctly, leading to user frustration and potential problems that could significantly interrupt productivity. We then determined the best solutions to fix each of these issues within their stated budget.

For example, one issue identified was a non-responsive screen in the solution. Whenever a particular item was clicked, the app would pause 30-50 seconds, reducing productivity significantly. We uncovered the issue and then optimized the layout, scripts, and fields and were able to completely eliminate the delay.

We upgraded them to the latest version of FileMaker 19, jumping them forward two full versions which gave them the ability to take advantage of hundreds of new features and reliability improvements.

We also worked directly with the organization’s onsite IT department in the server and workstation deployment area to make this FileMaker solution much more enterprise friendly. First, we properly secured the FileMaker server. Then we optimized the server resources by moving storage of Gigabytes of data into the cloud with BrilliantStorage/fmFlare backed by AWS S3. This made backups of the FileMaker server more reliable and significantly reduced the nightly load on the network.

Working within the necessary security constraints including HIPAA, we also implemented a new development/production environment and process to manage all future application solution changes. Previously, changes were made live on the app leading to work productivity interruptions and other issues. The new process we implemented has two key benefits: 1) It allows for approval of changes before they are rolled out to all users; and 2) it allows users to continue working effectively during their regular daytime hours.

A major part of this project included creating processes to automate legal compliance with document retention policies. The new app now auto deletes documents and projects after a specified period of time, logs the deletion, and produces reports that are then sent to the appropriate departments.

We were also able to offer the client the opportunity to save money on their Claris FileMaker licensing by evaluating their current licensing and proposing adjustments to move them to the appropriate plan and number of users.

All the project work was completed under a tight timeline and a fixed budget. Even after completing all the required functionality fixes, there was adequate budget remaining to allow us to be able to provide many valuable enhancements to the functionality of the app which improved their teams’ productivity and efficiency.

By mitigating accumulated technical debt and increasing the productivity of the users of their FileMaker solution, we were able to help this organization increase their productivity. Even a conservative estimate of a 5% productivity boost equates to an annual savings for an organization like this of over $140,000.

LuminFire’s experience with large enterprise FileMaker clients made for a successful upgrade and enhancement project, and a happy client. We look forward to continuing to partner together in the future to provide ongoing maintenance and enhancements to make their work better.

“We’ve worked with several other vendors in the past, and our experience with LuminFire has been so much better. We’ve been so pleased to work with LuminFire and have appreciated your professionalism and expertise. We look forward to our long term partnership!” – Marketing Director and Project Owner

If you’re looking for a company that can deliver enhancements and take care of maintenance of your FileMaker solution, LuminFire can help.

Tim Cimbura – CEO and Software Engineer

Tim is an expert in creating custom business solutions that make businesses more effective, productive, and profitable. He specializes in rapid application development with FileMaker (certified in all versions) for macOS, Windows, iPad/iPhone and web app integration with WordPress. He also knows Apple technology inside and out.