Leading agile South African development agency Hellocomputer chooses ApostropheCMS as their preferred CMS

Partner Profile

Ashleigh Mason
Marketing Director

Hellocomputer is a South African-based marketing and development agency that seeks to transform the relationship people have with technology, underscored by their mission to find the human in everything they do. Among their notable brand partners, such as Toyota South Africa and Coca Cola, Hellocomputer supports projects with budgets ranging between $50,000-$2M USD. Since 2017, this leading agile agency has found categorical success deploying ApostropheCMS by delivering high quality and easy to update websites, on time and under budget.

Since adopting ApostropheCMS as their preferred content management system, Hellocomputer has gone on to deliver major projects for Lexus South Africa, Toyota South Africa, Hino South Africa, Coca Cola, Fanta and other leading brands faster than ever before.

Hellocomputer approaches project development from a strategic lens, giving critical attention to the evolving business goals of their enterprise clients. One of their main goals is to create coactive digital ecosystems that work for the client long-term. A challenge is to provide solutions for both front-end and back-end development, as well as ongoing content management. One major focus is on content-driven executions, wherein content is updated frequently. At the same time, there are critical systems driven executions to be considered and accounted for. Finding the right balance between the two has led to high client retention for the company.

In 2017, prior to adopting ApostropheCMS, the Hellocomputer team was selected to build the official tourism website for South Africa. This bespoke project required advanced page design, including 21,000 unique pages across 10 different languages. After a demanding build and lessons learned, Hellocomputer decided to seek alternative resources to improve future executions. Having done similarly large projects in the past and with new projects on the horizon, Hellocomputer wanted to leverage the scalability of MongoDB and extend capabilities directly to content managers. It was then that they started their search for a MEAN stack CMS to help them achieve their goals. As a result of this search, Hellocomputer was able to further support their competitive advantage in speed of development, adherence to budget and unmatched creativity.

Hellocomputer chose to explore the open-source advantages of ApostropheCMS, and they haven’t looked back since.

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In defining a technical strategy for his department, Nick Bester, Head of Technology and Development at Hellocomputer dove deep into open-source CMS options and discovered ApostropheCMS. He was looking for a solution that would support speed and adaptability, which are key to their agile methodology. ApostropheCMS was rapidly adopted by the Hellocomputer developer team due to its modern Node.js based architecture, allowing developers to work in full stack JavaScript environment. In an ever-competing labor pool, Hellocomputer values these architectural decisions in ApostropheCMS because they attract top-notch talent and reduce developer turn over. While developers enjoy working in a Full Stack JS environment, content editors and clients also benefit on day one with the in-context WYSIWYG editorial experience. In addition to the flexibility provided by an open-source platform, the architecture of ApostropheCMS enables an efficient workflow in a modern, modular and highly organized way. With this, Hellocomputer is positioned with a competitive advantage by continuously providing high-quality deliverables to their clients on time and under budget.

When reviewing the capabilities of ApostropheCMS, Hellocomputer found that the custom objects and elements that had been created for previous large build websites, and the time and resources required to do so, were now no longer necessary. Nearly all of the required capabilities came out of the box with ApostropheCMS, reducing development time by 20%.

Bester states, “clients come back to us and completely understand this ethos of reusability.” Each time Hellocomputer builds a new project on ApostropheCMS, custom components are created or edited. These recurring elements are built into a component library and are available for simple deployment on future websites, digital campaigns, and applications. This reusable component library strategy acts as a base or boilerplate which supports the rapid production of prototypes grounded in pre-existing elements that have already been approved by a client. This efficiency allows Hellocomputer to spend less time on re-engineering foundational building blocks, and more time on the functional and aesthetic values. Therein producing more functional and dynamic websites in far less time, which ultimately reduces their billed hours and results in very happy clients.

As a successful agency, to be mindful of cost savings while producing the highest quality work is at the forefront of the relationship model for Bester. “We’ve got to try and make those concerted efforts and ApostropheCMS helps us do that in a lot of ways.”

Primary drivers in the case for ApostropheCMS, Bester summarizes:

  • Reliability — before Hellocomputer adopted ApostropheCMS, they had seen how a notable digital agency in Philadelphia, PA, USA had used the CMS with Fortune 500 companies

  • Community — there is an engaged community maintaining the platform with nearly 40,000 downloads and ever-increasing Github stars

  • Maintainability — easy-to-use modules and templating engine allow for project managers to add content to the website, building in autonomy from the reliance on developers

  • Scalability — ApostropheCMS allows users the ability to write custom implementations at a rapid speed

With the flexibility and efficiency provided by ApostropheCMS, digital agencies can focus on their client’s business objectives without diluting development budgets on repetitive builds or by trying to recreate the wheel. Through their deployment of ApostropheCMS, Hellocomputer is efficient in their strategy and delivery, using a platform that developers can adapt to quickly. “Efficiency is something that a client respects,” Bester reflects. This efficiency frees up time and budget, allowing more room for creativity, micro-interactions, and unique components, all of which support better end-user experiences.

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Ashleigh Mason

Marketing Director

Empowered to shout out the best of who Apostrophe is. A lover of to-do lists, whiteboard sessions, and lifting up others