I’m beginning to feel like a reality television host, but I have to say it: this year was our most exciting year yet. Welcome to this year’s “State of Roompact Address”!
This year we signed on more clients than ever before. We also provided on-campus software training to most of those new clients and expanded our training resources for all clients. Client success–making sure you are able to easily use our software–is and always will be a big priority for us. With all of these new clients came increased usage of our software. In the 2018 Fall semester alone, Roompact sent and received a total of more than ONE MILLION text messages!
As we’ve grown, it’s been important for us to work on our “digital plumbing” to make sure our software continues to run quickly, reliably, and securely. Though improvements like these aren’t easily noticed, they’re important, especially as we grow so quickly. More people than ever are using our software, and we want to make sure it operates at peak performance. We also added important new features to our Forms module and made many significant user experience improvements.
In 2018 we also made major improvements to the web accessibility of Roompact. We enhanced the experience of using our software with a screen reader and without a computer cursor. We also increased the color contrast between text and background colors throughout application, and added an Accessibility Mode that even further increases color contrast and makes all text larger. These changes help make Roompact accessible to a wider range of people with disabilities, including blindness and low vision, deafness and hearing loss, and limited movement. Roompact strives to match conformance requirements for WCAG 2.0 level AA, and even goes beyond requirements in some cases. Our friends at Basecamp wrote a great blog post explaining the difficulty and necessity of prioritizing web accessibility.
As you probably know by now, giving back to our field is extremely important to us at Roompact. We aim to be active, contributing members of our industry. This year we published a comprehensive e-book called “Developing a Co-Curricular Learning Model.” We also printed 1,250 physical copies of the book and distributed them (for free!) at conferences this past Fall. It was a lot of work creating the book and then bringing copies to various conferences, but it was well worth it. The book was a hit–we received a lot of positive feedback and we printed even more copies that we’ll be distributing at conferences this Spring.
We hosted our first ever user’s conference in Chicago, right before ACPA’s Institute on the Curricular Approach. It was a huge success! We exceeded our attendance goals, had several great speakers share valuable insight, and fielded a lot of helpful feedback. Afterwards, we had a Roompact 5th Year Anniversary Party in a venue overlooking the Chicago River, right next door to our office. The entire day was extraordinary. We’re going to be sharing content from our conference throughout this upcoming year.
And finally, Jong Youn joined our team this Fall. Jong stepped into the role of Business Development Manager last month and he’s already off to a great start. Jong will be at many of this Spring’s conferences – please feel free to introduce yourself and welcome him to the Roompact community!
I’m most excited to announce that we’ve extended our relationship with ACPA and the Institute on the Curricular Approach — ACPA has formally endorsed Roompact and we have entered into a partnership together. Through our partnership, ACPA is going to help us grow our software to best serve the needs of student affairs professionals, and we’re going to help ACPA through things like case studies, data insight, and other support. We’re absolutely thrilled and we look forward to sharing more information at the beginning of 2019. On a personal note unrelated to Roompact’s partnership, I am joining the ACPA Foundation Board of Trustees. My term begins at the ACPA Convention in March. I look forward to working with some remarkable colleagues and am thankful for the opportunity. Our industry and community have given me so much–I hope to be able to give back however I can.
On the technical side, we have some major goals we’re aiming to complete in 2019. We are going to make even more improvements to Forms, make updates to some of Roompact’s original features, and provide better ways to integrate Roompact data into external systems. We plan on making it very easy to integrate Roompact data into not only your departmental processes, but also your divisional processes. Roompact has become a pivotal component to our clients’ work, and we’re going to make sure you can properly leverage your data that “lives” in Roompact.
To provide proper support for our goals, we’re looking to increase the size of our technical team as soon as possible – we’re currently looking to add two software engineers to our team. As we grow our technical team, we’ll be better equipped to update existing features and build great new ones.
We have a couple of fun and educational events planned for 2019. Keep an eye out for more information this Spring. We’ll also see you at conferences throughout 2019–we are planning on going to nearly 20!
To wrap things up, I’d like to express my gratitude to everyone who helps make Roompact what it is today. Taking time to reflect on our accomplishments gives me a feeling of immense pride and gratitude. I’m thankful for our team, our clients, our families, and our friends. Accomplishing everything we did in just one year isn’t easy, and it’s only possible with the tremendous support of our community. Thank you!
P.S. – take a look at the testimonial video we shot at our conference this Fall. We send an extra thank you to everyone who participated!