TeamBuildr provides online strength and conditioning software for high school, college, and professional teams across the world.

Athlete apps were developed to make the platform more accessible and more mobile. The new cloud infrastructure has minimized costs, allowing the business to scale efficiently.

ACTIVE USERS

100K+

iOS and Android

REVENUE GROWTH

80%

Since App Launch

ALEX MORGAN’S

#1

ACTIVE USERS

100K+

iOS and Android

REVENUE GROWTH

80%

Since App Launch

ALEX MORGAN’S

#1

TeamBuildr is a fully bootstrapped startup founded by Hewitt Tomlin and James Peters, two former college athletes from Johns Hopkins University.

James and Hewitt created TeamBuildr help strength and conditioning coaches at the high school, college, and professional levels. Their software allows coaches to send personalized workouts to all of their athletes. In turn, athletes can follow their workouts, track their progress, upload videos, and view leaderboards. As TeamBuildr’s user base grew rapidly, costs for their infrastructure started to mount, and their users demanded mobile functionality. They turned to 3Advance for support on both fronts.

Challenges

In what was both a challenge and an opportunity, TeamBuildr already had an extensive web app that had quickly developed a devoted following. Users wanted a mobile version, and they wanted it quickly.

Another challenge came in adapting the web application for mobile in a way that preserved the user experience and accounted for the different ways people use their phones. James and Hewitt also needed the app to allow data entry in a user-friendly way on a small screen, and they had to make sure everything worked in a mobile ecosystem. Users weren’t going to tolerate an experience where they lost all their data if the phone rang.

Finally, as a fully bootstrapped startup, they didn’t have a lot of cash on hand to pay massive up-front fees. Their revenue is sometimes sporadic and completely dependant on the growth of their customer base. There was no room for a giant up-front bill, and no room for error.

Process

When TeamBuildr approached us, we knew the first step was to get an iOS app up and running as quickly as possible. We researched user interactions with the web app and worked closely with the TeamBuildr team to choose the most important features — the parts of the software that absolutely had to be included in the first version.

Once we knew the most important features, it was time to figure out how to translate those features for a mobile environment. We hosted UX workshops with TeamBuildr to ensure every part of the app was user-friendly and intuitive.

With a laser focus on creating a viable product, we were able to get an app built and launched in just a couple of months.

The initial app was a huge success. To continue that success, we knew we had to be smart about when we launched various features. Based on user feedback and testing, we continued to launch new features month after month, keeping user interest and engagement high.

With the iOS version off to a solid start, we began working on the Android version. Development progressed quickly thanks to the groundwork that was set during the initial iOS release.

And we were able to do all that without charging Teambuilder a massive up-front fee, instead working with a monthly budget. Each month, we work with TeamBuildr on a sprint-to-sprint basis, prioritizing tasks, features, and rollouts to continue giving them the best possible results. This gradual investment strategy keeps the budget in check while allowing our lean, agile team the opportunity to prove ourselves quickly and iterate on a solid foundation.

Challenges

Teambuilder had created a web application that people loved — then they added a mobile application. They were expanding rapidly, adding new clients across the globe. This was great news, but their back-end infrastructure was growing increasingly expensive with so many users.

As a bootstrapped startup, they didn’t have a lot of money initially, so James taught himself to code and created the entire back-end. They were making improvements, but as time went on, James decided he wanted to build an API the right way, from the ground up.

They knew they couldn’t shut the whole thing down while they made updates. They needed the software to keep working while they made changes, which meant they needed to take a gradual approach.

Process

TeamBuildr approached 3Advance with this new project because of the work we’d done on their apps. We started by working with their team to determine the right way to build and deploy the new API. Working in tandem, we began to roll out updates in stages, one web service call at a time, so there would be no downtime and no impact to any users.

We worked to make sure TeamBuildr had a solid foundation that would set them up for success now and long into the future. We created rules, processes, and best practices, documenting everything and training their team along the way.

As the TeamBuildr team has grown, they’ve hired a few developers to manage some of the infrastructure internally. We’ve been able to train and support their internal team. Our extensive documentation process also meant that they had the information they needed to get up to speed quickly. As TeamBuildr takes over more and more of the back-end processes, our team here can move on to more advanced features for the platform.

TeamBuildr has achieved incredible success! Their products are used by strength coaches in the NFL, the Premier League, the MLB, and beyond. Almost 90% of users take advantage of the mobile app, and it’s resulted in a huge increase in retention.

Athletes love it, too. In a WSJ interview before the World Cup in France 2019, Alex Morgan revealed that it was her favorite workout app!

And as a company, TeamBuildr just keeps growing. Since the launch of the app, they’ve achieved an impressive 80% year-over-year growth.

For James and Hewitt, the biggest success is how they’ve helped strength coaches in middle and high schools across the country, coaches that are usually working with hundreds of kids at a time. Teambuildr gives those coaches access to the exact same product that pro-level coaches are using all over the world, helping them better serve aspiring young athletes. And TeamBuildr saves them hours every week, giving them a chance to catch dinner with their family or spend time relaxing with friends. To James and Hewitt, it feels like a small way to give back to the people who helped them throughout their lives.

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