2016 Year in Review

December 29, 2016 by Coleman McCormick

This year was a great one for Fulcrum. Since 2011, it’s been our mission to make communications and data capture more seamless between the office and the field, and the growth in diversity of our customer base has proven that it’s a challenge worthy of solving — that organizations in many verticals are faced with poor back-and-forth process with field operations.

In working with new customers every day (and growing our existing ones), we’re constantly amazed by the solutions people are building using Fulcrum. From construction and utilities to logistics and transportation to humanitarian aid and disaster relief — the range of uses where we’re bringing value to the table continues to expand.

2016 Year in Review

To reflect on the current state of Fulcrum, let’s look at some metrics on the platform.

Metrics!

Some highlights in usage for 2016, and current state of the Fulcrum ecosystem:

  • 17 million records collected! A record year, with the rate climbing every day.
  • Fulcrum was used in 190 countries this year.
  • 4.9 million “syncs” of Fulcrum records — Fulcrum captures a changeset for each sync action, it’s clear that there’s a ton of activity each day!
  • Users are collecting an average of 50,000 photos per day from the field (~40 GB)
  • Customers spend a collective 35,000 hours collecting or editing records each month (1,458 full days, 4,374 work days)
  • The average customer app has an average of 51 form fields (people create some complex apps!)
  • 2,000,000+ lines of javascript code written in Calculation Fields
  • Over 685,000 conditional field rules created

Here are some other highlights from this year!

New Capabilities

  • Introducing Data Events — As we’ve expanded in scope with larger rollouts of Fulcrum to dispersed teams, we needed a way to customize the behaviors of Fulcrum Mobile for user-defined workflows. Data Events give users a framework for writing their own custom business rules into how data collection works, and opens up the door to building highly efficient flows for collecting exactly what’s needed.
  • Reconstructing the Editor — Viewing and editing collected data is a key step in the workflow. Administrators use the Fulcrum web application to perform QA/QC and data review as it comes in from the field. Using React and a lot of design iteration, we rearchitected the Editor to support Data Events and perform much better with complex data.
  • Auditing and QA Metadata — Metadata is crucial in any data workflow. We released additional attribute collection on records to give insight into edit session duration, edit locations, and more. This gives owners more visibility into the historical change over time.
  • Stability, reliability, scalability — While this is behind the scenes to our users, we’ve made radical evolutionary improvements to our cloud infrastructure and mobile app stability, making Fulcrum faster and more secure, scalable, and reliable.

Customer Stories

The diversity of Fulcrum uses is amazing. Our customers show us new ways they’re tackling complex data collection projects every day. Here’s a snapshot of customer stories we published this year showcasing how users are using Fulcrum.

Adirondacks

  • Fulcrum supports tenBoma for counter-poaching operations in Kenya — We worked with IFAW and the Kenya Wildlife Service to support counter-poaching data collection efforts. Using a mobile reporting app in Fulcrum on Android devices, KWS field investigators are able to report activity in near real-time back to the intelligence ops center for mapping and analysis. This crime report intel center is helping better deploy their forces to find and stop poachers.
  • Tilson — Tilson uses Fulcrum for a range of services they provide for telecom and utility services work. Their management staff can now monitor progress back in the office as work is happening in the field across dozens of active projects.
  • Monitoring Environmental Impacts with Fulcrum — Steve Signell of Frontier Spatial reported on work they did with the the Adirondack Park Agency to create a wetland monitoring system to collect environmental metrics throughout the park. They built a boreal wetlands mapping application powered by data from Fulcrum.
  • Turbine Master on Fulcrum for Manufacturing — An interview with Mike Merrill from Turbine Master on how they use Fulcrum for manufacturing facility inspections.
  • Building Asset Management Systems with Fulcrum — Fulcrum power user Century Engineering on how they use Fulcrum’s mobile applications and APIs to build fully integrated asset reporting and management systems for DOTs.

Business and Workflow

In addition to our regular posts on technical methods, features, and functionality, we also had popular posts on business and workflow topics.

Events

We had some great events this year, chock full of presentations on workflow best practices, how to use Fulcrum for disaster relief, the future of data collection technologies and techniques, and more!

All in all 2016 was a productive year for Fulcrum! We’ve already got a couple of big things in the pipeline for early 2017, so we plan to get started on a great positive kick. On behalf of the Fulcrum team, we wish everyone a Happy New Year!

About the author

Coleman is a geographer and President of Fulcrum, working every day with our customers to bring better data management capability to their operations.

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