Lee Heidel

Mobile Asset Tracking with Wordpress

Dutch Island App

Businesses turn to Heideldesign because they have problems to solve.

More often than not, those problems directly translate to sales goals, marketing opportunities or public relations needs. But websites can also bridge gaps in important internal tasks by streamlining processes, generating analytic data and enabling more managerial oversight.

Dutch Island is one of Savannah, GA's most prestigious addresses. The gated community of nearly five hundred homes is a mini-city with its own infrastructure and amenities, surrounded by beautiful salt-water marshes and waterways. An oasis just minutes from the bustle of downtown, Dutch Island is vigilant in monitoring unauthorized access to the private community. To empower its security personnel, the homeowners association needed a more efficient way to track vendor automobiles as well as resident boats and golf carts. The solution had to be mobile, simple and inexpensive without any specialized hardware or software to purchase and maintain.

We started from the end-product and worked our way backwords through the development process. The first step was to devise the security guard interaction. These are busy employees and any additional technical responsibilities should be as transparent as possible.

Approved vehicles are given a weatherproof sticker designed to repel the extremes of UV rays and salt-water exposure with a five year lifespan. Guards scan the label's QR code with a free smart phone application. That QR code triggers a mobile-optimized website that displays the vehicle's owner, expiration status and buttons to call or email associated contacts. The guard can click a button to "check in" the vehicle at the guard station or at the boat dock. They can also report infractions. Those are saved along with the asset for possible fines or establishing patterns for those who abuse the community rules.

The security interface and walkthrough process was quickly mocked up, demoed and approved by the client. For the back-end database management, they needed a system that was easy to customize and had a low learning curve. We chose Wordpress to essentially serve as the database graphical user interface. The guards can quickly create "Owners" (vendors or residents) and assign them to "Assets" (cars, trucks, carts and boats). Those assets are assigned a number that matches the pre-printed QR codes. That completes the loop.

The use of an off-site web server means the data can be accessed from anywhere with proper login credentials. Board members can report on the issuing of vendor stickers with a one-click overview export to CSV or a create a more detailed report that can be opened directly in Excel.

Best of all, the modular structure of the site means seeds are planted to expand the application, allowing vendors to manage their fleets and pay invoices online. 

Does your business need an out-of-the-box solution to a problem? Contact Heideldesign today for a conversation and a quote.