The biggest accomplishment for us is to help our clients gain success stories. We get a kick out of any opportunity to optimize their processes, and really enjoy designing solutions.
In 2007 Hawaii VA Loans started business. Their goal was to provide the best options for loans for veterans in Hawaii. With a great forward-thinking mentality, company execs were invested in implemented whatever software it took to get a competitive edge. Their pre-approval, search and offer system quickly built momentum, and the company began to grow as their client base grew.
As the company grew, so did the need for the right software. With multiple applications used to run their marketing, client database and HR, it became more and more apparent that everything needed to be streamlined to avoid losing important data and increase effectiveness overall.The solution they had found previously was hiring developers to build custom software to both connect their existing software and fill in the gaps of what they lacked. The only other option was to get pre-canned connectors that didn’t really do what they wanted them to.It was expensive, and it took months to make a course correction or add a new feature to their software, making implementation slow and often outdated.
With help from Openside, Hawaii VA Loans implemented two main changes. The first was introduce them to Airtable. The part database, part team collaboration platform was instrumental in filling in the gaps of their current systems. We set up their Airtable account as an “in-between” for their website and their CRM (PipelineDeals), greatly simplifying the data delivery and easily outlining the actionable items for their team. Anything that didn’t seem to have a home in either their CRM or their Email platform (Autopilot) now had a home in Airtable.
Next we took their current integrations (using Zapier) and did a significant amount of simplification. Their previous set up did the job, but the configuration was so complicated it took a dedicated developer to understand and run it. We used our custom built connectors for Zapier to do everything they had before plus much more. The result was much simpler, taking their 73 zaps and turning them into a much more manageable 15 (80% efficiency improvement!). Now, someone already on their team could be trained to manage them easily.
Benefits and Results:
Our friends over at Hawaii VA Loans didn’t know what was possible until we came around to show them.
In their case, the work we did for them can be tracked to making this kind of difference:
Moving away from pure custom development (more cost and time) to less expense and just as good. Cut dev costs at least in half, development time 75%.
Augmenting their CRM to do more than it does out of the box.
Everyone has “our CRM or finance platform is good, but it doesn’t do these 3 things we really want it to” – we made it do those things.
Filling in the missing data to get the full picture of the story with their customers
Automation to reduce manual labor time and cost – 1-2 full time employees worth of time.
With the right systems in place (and with a few ongoing pointers from us at Openside) Hawaii VA Loans was finally ready to scale the way they wanted to, with affordable software solutions and simple implementation. Since then, they’ve helped hundreds of veterans become homeowners in Hawaii. You can hear more of their story on their website: https://hawaiivaloans.com/our-story/
Global Citizen Year is a non-profit based in Oakland, California that takes high school seniors through international immersion education experiences. Currently providing experiences in Brazil, Senegal, India and Ecuador, their focus is on helping youth have a successful “gap year,” or year of preparation to move on to college and career with a more global perspective and understanding.
Being a global-focused non-profit, Global Citizen Year coordinates a veritable mountain of tasks, statuses, and the people behind both. With Airtable as a central hub for many of the contact points and processes in their setup, it became necessary to set up some in-depth integrations to do most of the heavy lifting. One top priority was to be able to send information from Airtable to other tools with the click of a button (or toggling of a checkbox). Unfortunately, the vanilla Zapier-Airtable connector was either extremely complicated in some cases, or simply wasn’t meeting their needs, so the team began looking for additional help on the Airtable community.
Searching for their specific use case, the team at Global Citizen Year found Openside via the Airtable community and quickly assessed the capabilities of the library of tools offered. With the On2Air tools in their setup, they were able to build their desired workflows with Airtable + their tech stack in a variety of complex integrations, in the end both simplifying and expanding what they were already doing.
Benefits and Results:
In addition to being able to send data out of Airtable with ease, the team at Global Citizen Year have been utilizing the other features of the Openside tools. The “find and update” function has saved the trouble of creating numerous repeat steps in a Zap (traditional Zapier approach). This and many others have become time-savers for their everyday operations. As a small-but-expanding non-profit, time is one of their most precious commodities, and putting the right automations with Openside in place has freed them to focus on what they do best.
Based out of Toronto, Canada, The Founder City Project is a service-based project with the goal of helping founders communicate and accomplish true scaling while building diverse teams. They serve the larger city area with in-person training, peer groups, and more. Their vision of “No One Succeeds Alone” has captured the hearts of the creators of the city, and the project grew from 6 to over 1000 founders within 2 years, and continues to climb.
With as big a vision as they had, the founders of The Founder City Project had to face many of the same concerns they were helping people with: finding the time to follow through on projects, having the confidence to scale in the way they wanted to, and finding the right partnerships to make the group thrive.Many of the concerns they had were related to their backend tech (which included Airtable, among other things), and the workflows needed to grow without dropping momentum or missing important details. It was during this growth period that founder Ben Baldwin began seeking additional help from the Airtable community, and found some extremely helpful comments made by Openside founder Dan Fellars. It was these clear explanations and helpful tips that led Baldwin to search out more of Openside’s offerings, and quickly found the solutions he was looking for.
From the beginning, Baldwin knew that there were things he didn’t know when setting up his workflows and scaling. From day one working with Fellars and the Openside team, Baldwin quickly acquired real-world wisdom on effective systems to set up and maintain, and added powerful tools to his tech stack in the form of the On2Air library. Both were instrumental in helping The Founder City Project take the direction they wanted with a solid backend to support it.
Benefits and Results:
With Openside on The Founder City Project’s roster of support, the Project’s workflow capabilities skyrocketed. The On2Air tools augmented their systems and allowed previously complicated and time consuming workflows to be made simple. This, combined with the constant assurance of having automation experts in their corner, is what led Baldwin to describe Openside as “a trusted advisor and one of my most important business relationships.” He additionally points out that “there’s no way my business would be where it is without [the Openside team’s] skills, dependability, humility, and most important: [their] patience. Whenever I get a bill from Openside, it’s money well-spent. In fact, I think it’s a marker that tracks my progress.”
I've worked with Dan and his team for several years ane for multiple clients. The team at InAir Studio has been instrumental in helping us configure Airtable bases for editorial projects, customize workflows, and create helpful automations to tools like Slack and Asana.
Director of Editorial Operations
Working with Sergio for a number of months to create a base for us to act as a CRM. He is an expert at translating business needs into functional systems without fuss. He is reliable and timely in his work and I provide the highest recommendation to you for working with him.
Sherrard Kuzz LLP
Knowledgable, Helpful & Very EfficientWe enjoy working with InAir, they are extremely knowledgeable about Airtable & extending its capabilities in building our dream CRM.
Founder & CEO
"InAir Studio provided an excellent service for our unique Airtable needs. They helped us build automations and custom scripts to more effectively manage our internal processes, which they're very experienced and skillful with. We would happily work with InAir again."
Always helpful! Dan and his team are always willing to help. They are true experts when it comes to tools and technical know-how with Airtable.
Fairway Independent Mortgage
Sergio has been the best to work with, Nothing is ever a problem. Sergio has taken our ideas and worked them into a function base.He is very easy to work with, I highly recommend.
Good Hustle Group
Iker Quilez, Founder / Partner
Consulting made easy – Dan knows the ins and outs of airtable better than anyone we’ve worked with. On time and quick to respond. Look forward to working with him again.