# facility management
Telemetry-based vehicle location aggregation web platform for efficient fleet management and vehicle rental
8million pounds raised
18weeks to ship the MVP
85%code coverage with unit tests
problems to solve
South Africa has approximately 420,000 heavy-duty trucks and vehicles across its area of 1.2 million sq km (0.46 sq miles). The country boasts a network of 12,978 km (~8000 miles) of national routes and shares borders with developing economies such as Namibia and Mozambique. With limited rail infrastructure, truck transportation plays a crucial role in African countries.
GoMetro, a South African fleet management provider established in 2012, devised a solution to enhance and optimize transportation and the cargo bidding process. By utilizing telemetry, they aimed to develop an efficient truck location aggregation solution that benefits both fleet operators and the leaseholders of their vehicles. This solution allows for a comprehensive view of all trucks, even when equipped with different trackers.
In Spring 2022, GoMetro approached us after securing seed funding to develop an MVP. Our primary challenges included:
- Developing an intuitive and seamless user and admin portal.
- Integrating the portal with GoMetro's telemetry solution.
- Providing Product Design consultations to optimize the UX and UI.
- Delivering the app in a timely manner without compromising quality, in order to validate the MVP with GoMetro's customers.
To meet investor-related timelines, budget, and engineering excellency we assembled a self-managed agile team consisting of five full-time engineers (2x backend, 2x frontend & 1x QA) engaged Project Manager, and experienced Product Design consultant. They not only delivered high-quality work within ambitious deadlines but also provided valuable advice and verification of assumptions GoMetro needed to fine-tune their product.
This proactive approach, characterized by bold recommendations and exceeding expectations, permeated all aspects of our collaboration with GoMetro. It proved particularly beneficial in developing the telemetry access management feature, where we established clear terms for sharing tracking permissions. Through extensive manual testing, evaluation of various usage scenarios and edge cases, consideration of dependencies, we ensured the bulletproof logic of this functionality and the entire app.
GoMetro also utilized our consultancy services in the field of product design. While they provided us with over 100 Figma views, which were based on their exceptional domain experience and clearly defined business requirements, they decided to validate their work with an external UX/UI expert who possesses broad experience in app design. Merixstudio's Product Design consultant facilitated a seamless workflow between our developers and the client's designers, implemented effective Figma file standards, and identified areas for improvement in the prepared designs.
Merixstudio is very proactive in helping us improve the product's design. For example, they didn't just take our design and implement it; if they saw something we'd left out or any issues, they raised those areas of opportunities with us. Overall, the team cares about the design.
Cliff Court, CTO, GoMetro (from: Clutch.com)
Both main technologies - Python and React were suggested by the client, and as laying in our core competencies were swiftly implemented in the project. Python was crucial for integrating the app with the client's telemetry system. We also needed to maintain coherence between the user portal and the part of the app prepared by GoMetro within the areas like e.g. vehicle databases.
As the entire product was under development and requirements were evolving, we maintained high flexibility and deployed ongoing modifications. To prepare the app for future growth we implemented DevOps, architectural and other tech solutions ensuring scalability like AWS 2 and Content Delivery Network (CDN) and enabled deploying modifications easily even for app administrators who don’t have programming skills (e.g. in areas like setting vehicles categories, brands and types). Despite time pressure, we prioritized the highest code quality, achieving an 85% code coverage on the backend side.
On the frontend side we’ve integrated the solution with Google Maps and implemented WebSocket for real-time updates of truck location. Although it wasn’t planned within initial scope, we’ve also made the app multilingual to future proof it, considering that there are 11 official languages used in the RSA.
The team has been working for nearly 18 weeks in 2-week sprints which allowed stakeholders to monitor the progress of work. We maintained constant communication with the client's CTO and lead designer, relying on Slack for daily communication. Despite the geographical distance, we effectively collaborated in practically the same time zone. Merixstudio continues to provide maintenance services for GoMetro, with ambitious plans for further development scheduled in 2023.
Provides a precise view of vehicle locations for monitoring purposes, utilizing the telemetry system and real-time updates through WebSockets.
Enables sharing real-time vehicle location data with the company renting a vehicle for the duration specified by the owner of the truck.
Displays a list of vehicles added by the fleet operator, including key information about the trucks and their current state (e.g., in use or available for rent).