As it has every year since its inception in 2002, TazWorks experienced even larger year-over-year growth than the previous year. This is a testament to the strength, ingenuity, and business expertise of you, our clients. We cannot thank you enough for your continued support and contributions to our mutual growth. Though we have said it countless times before, it merits repeating that we have the greatest clients in the industry.
Our goal in 2013 was to exceed your expectations by providing a record number of new applicant screening features, an increase of 150 percent!
The most satisfying new features released were QuickApp™ Pro, QuickView™, and QuickVerify™. I personally demonstrated the QuickVerify™ feature during its prerelease beta period and was often asked how much extra it would cost. It was very rewarding to exclaim, “It’s free!” I will admit, however, that my inner bean-counter had to be suppressed each time I said it. These new features have provided huge gains in operational efficiency and will help grow your bottom line.
We also faced a few challenges last year. The ever-evolving compliance and security landscape mixed with the need to scale up due to growth put us on a treadmill of IT changes. Recently, when the primary InstaScreen™ 2.0 database server suffered deteriorated performance during peak hours, the disaster and recovery planning paid off as we were able to fail over to the secondary server. Additionally, our second data center serves as a means of backup and security. We will continue to invest heavily in security and IT. We appreciate your patience through those learning experiences, and we know that you will benefit from the enhanced security and infrastructure improvements.
Learning from these challenges has further emphasized how critical the quality of InstaScreen™ service is to both our clients and yours as well. In 2014, we will continue to work daily to improve and further refine our processes. We recently brought in an expert IT consultant, another senior developer as well as an experienced product owner with multiple SCRUM Agile certifications to the staff. See more…
A core goal for 2014 will be making improvements to the InstaScreen™ user experience. As a software consumer, I find myself avoiding complex and cluttered systems. When we first came up with the slogan “Simple. Powerful.,™” I knew that the simplicity of the user experience would make all the difference. A “Return to Simple” will incorporate all of the UX/UI upgrades and capabilities we have seen in technology over the past few years.
Justin Peck, our web-application architect, sums up why the time has come for a face-lift:
“At the time of its release in 2008, InstaScreen™ 2.0 was developed with the latest software innovations available. For example, the InstaScreen™ ‘back-end,’ which our clients benefit from but largely never see, is built upon Spring – the most modern Java-based Web application framework out there. Over the past six years, we have worked studiously to build new features upon this framework. During that time, several industry strides have been made in the Web application “front-end” arena. These innovations affect what a user sees, as well as how they interact with an application. Some of these innovations have already been incorporated, but there are many more that demand our attention.
The time has arrived for the InstaScreen™ development team to pay down some technical debt. While busily building great new features, we have allowed InstaScreen’s interface to lag behind a bit, and it’s showing its age. The good news is our team is more focused than ever to bring to life a number of these front-end innovations to our clients. Over the coming year, we will be working hard to improve the InstaScreen™ user experience by integrating with the best, most innovative front-end technologies. These will do to our front-end what Spring has for the back-end – providing a more user-friendly and responsive framework to our application. Stay tuned!”
In addition to improving software usability and refining our processes, we will focus our resources on the following popular user group meeting requests:
- Adding more ATS interfaces
- Adding new background check products and data provider interfaces
- Simplifying the background check ordering process
- Upgrading the embedded QuickApp™
- Enhancing the Scorecard™
- And, of course, balancing all this with client needs.
We even have a few ground breaking surprises in store for you this year!
I look forward to seeing you this coming May at our annual User Group Meeting in Park City, Utah where we will show off new features and collaborate with on our direction for future software development.We are excited to make 2014 our best year yet and are committed to making InstaScreen™ technology even more Simple. Powerful.™ and incredibly easy to use!