During his time with the company, Evolution-X Inc., Pat developed the sites and e-commerce systems. The site Vilantae.com was designed by Joel Price and ColdFusionAcne.com was designed by Adam Hoover. The content was written by Steve Good, CEO of Evolution-X.
The sites featured a contact form and a custom order management system, named Order AI that Pat developed in 2007.
Evolution-X shipped its own products. They had a Microsoft Access order management system and a web based postage printing system that had a desktop client. Employees were required to copy and paste multiple fields from one system to another for each order, which was prone to human error and required a lot of time from the shippers. The shippers also had to rotate the labels after each print and assign the products being shipped.
The owner wanted a system that could print the postage with ease. Past employees told the owner there was no way to get all these systems to communicate.
Pat was challenged to find a solution. He installed a Microsoft web server on the order manager’s computer and found an ASP script that could read the Access files and find new orders. Then, (having never programed in ASP before) he wrote another ASP script that would convert the orders into XML files that could be read by the postage client program. When the XML files were generated, the client would automatically print all orders.
All the shipper needed to do was press a single print button. Address labels would print along a postage stamp and code for what products went with the shipment.
Evolution-X is an international company that owned offices in the UK, Netherlands and Scandinavia. It ships products in the US, Canada, UK & Europe, Scandinavia, Australia, Latin America and Japan.
In 2006, several separate systems were needed to package an order. The system was complex and required a sharp eye. Printing labels was a manual process that involved copy & paste and printing each order individually. Subscriptions were fulfilled by an employee every day. It was error prone and time intensive.
To streamline the company, an in-house custom shopping cart and order management system was developed. The new system eventually became known as Order AI. HAL 9000 inspired the new system’s name, because of how much it could “just do.”
Order AI has several features:
Order AI turned hours of work into a simple mouse click, which automated the tasks of printing postage labels and subscription fulfillment. It made customer support easier and faster because orders were easier to track. It made German ELV payment processing easier by automatically generating a list of customers with pending payments and helping with collections.
Order AI also tracked orders and helped manage advertisement by reporting conversions more accurately. It handled currency conversions for better international affiliate tracking. The order stats were visualized in a bar graph and projections could be easily made.
One employee could easily run the office and dedicate more time to business expansion and new projects.
Pat was able to streamline so much of the office work that the CEO often joked, asking Pat to make a robot that could do the packaging as well.