Development Authority of the North Country
Bringing High Speed Internet to Rural Communities
The Development Authority of the North Country (DANC) runs an extensive telecommunications network in the upstate New York State comprised of over 1,800 miles of fiber and 31 Central Offices. Recently, DANC's Telecommunications Division determined that its legacy Microsoft Access-based database needed to be replaced. They wanted to improve data entry and retrieval for their network of cables, optical assignments, and lit locations and provide superior tools for their field technicians.
DANC chose to partner with Colibri in a multi-phase effort to build a new application using the FileMaker 19 platform. An initial two-month project phase detailed processes, functionality, and user roles, provided an initial technical roadmap, and explored the possibility of a companion mobile app. The second phase was timed to begin after the start of the new fiscal year. During this phase, Colibri developed the desktop app and deployed it to Amazon Web Services (AWS). An early version of the mobile app was also made available to technicians using cellular iPads. Phase 3 completed the mobile app functionality, added media like field-based images and network schematics, and added new reports.
In fall 2021, DANC and Colibri are working together to manage deployment of fiber distribution hubs and GPon fiber assignments. This new capability lets DANC manage a whole new class of internet connections and clientele. And going forward, FileMaker's integration tools will allow the app to connect and share data with third-party applications like geographic information systems and REST APIs.
DANC's app makes it far easier to administer optical fiber assignments and control user access. The companion mobile app provides immediate access to assignment data, schematics, and media to technicians in the field, removes redundant data entry, and reduces their administrative workload.
By working with Colibri, DANC was able to control expenses and schedule development to conform to its budgetary cycles. Colibri deployed the app within six months of the initial discussions, and DANC has both PC and mobile components for the expected cost of a single desktop application. Our development processes also allow DANC to update the app as needed without any downtime, and each new function is designed to provide tangible benefits to the authority and its users.