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Internal workspace reservation app

ODRA - Case Study

Office Desk Reservation App

An intuitive app to book an ideal workspace built with Python and Flutter

Jan Solecki
Jan Solecki ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE

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The Product

ODRA - Office Desk Reservation App is our internal application that we created to efficiently deal with the new reality that the COVID pandemic brought to the day-to-day working environment.

Odra monterail

Scope and Highlights

The Challenge

After the initial COVID pandemic-related restrictions have been reduced, we were faced with new requirements with regards to the working environment. The office capacity no longer could be used in full. It was necessary to find an efficient way for people to book available spaces so that the booked workstations can be disinfected and prepared. It was crucial for us that the booking process can be done effortlessly, even when people were on their way to the office.

Another need we had was having a list of people present in the office at a given time so that we can notify them if a COVID infection was confirmed for any of the coworkers.

We were using Google spreadsheet at first, but to increase efficiency and take some workload off of our Office Manager, we decided to create an app that would solve these needs.

Key challenges of the project included:

desk-picker-ODRA
ODRA-mobile-view

The Process

To make sure we pinpoint all needs, we’ve engaged our Office Manager and the People Team in the development process. We decided that we want to base the entire booking process on a map of our office.

To book a workstation, people would select the desired space on an interactive office outline. Then, they could define the equipment required for optimal working conditions. This would achieve two goals: increase the comfort of working in the office, and efficiently collect all requirements for the Office Manager.

We decided to use Python on the backend and Flutter on the frontend. Since this was an internal project, we employed developers with time to spare to work on it. This required efficient rotation and onboarding, and to facilitate this, we kept a part of our Flutter team constantly in the project so they could ensure consistent quality. We also engaged some developers outside the Flutter team so they could learn this relatively new development kit.

Another use we made of this project being internal, was allowing the Flutter team to create new coding standards and approaches to the documentation. We can use the results of these experiments in projects for our clients.

This is how we made it happen:

Hubert Białecki
Creating a tool that our colleagues needed was very motivating, and because this was an internal project, we had the opportunity to test various coding conventions, libraries, and testing approaches. We also learned how to convert the mobile app into a web app with just a few UI tweaks. Hubert Białęcki Mobile Principal Engineer at Monterail

The Outcome

We developed an application that allows us to efficiently book workstations in the office with limited capacity. The possibility to configure a workstation and request specific equipment in the app is an option useful both for the Office Manager and the people coming into the office. Because we’ve switched to a hybrid model of working, this feature also allows people outside of Wrocław to come to the office from time to time and have a workstation prepared for the optimal comfort of work.

The app also creates a list of people that were at the office at a given time, in case a COVID infection is confirmed.

The success of this project hinged on the following factors: