8 May, 2019 12:01am

Developing for Conservation

Code, beautiful sunsets, fresh air ... and more code.

Curious?

Ol Pejeta Conservancy is a not-for-profit wildlife conservancylocated in Laikipia, Kenya. Covering an area of 360 km2 (~140 sq. miles), it is a leading tourist destination, not just within Kenya, but all over the world. With an economic contribution of over Ksh 3.5bn (US$ 34m) between 2014-2016 and a revenue of Ksh 761m (US$ 7.5m) as of 2017, it is also a leading economic contributor. Not content with resting on its laurels, the organisation is always looking to, in the words of MD Richard Vigne, "use technology to enhance the tourism experience." As such, various avenues are constantly being explored to improve the quality of service offered to tourists.

As of 1 May 2019, one such avenue has been available to the public in the form of a new booking system. We at FluidTech Global are proud to have developed this online booking system, a journey which provided a lot of insight into the dynamic world of tourism and conservation.


The Master Plan

Before the introduction of the new booking system, Ol Pejeta had been using two disparate systems; one handling ticketing at the gates and the other handling online bookings. The redundancy that resulted from such a setup, the potential for human error and a number of other factors led to the decision to have a system that was built from the ground up specifically for the needs of the organisation. This system would need to be capable enough to replace the existing systems (ticketing and online bookings) as well as seamlessly integrate with third-party tools already in use within the organisation.


The Development

With an overall plan laid out, the finer details needed to been ironed out. With the help of the forward-thinking Ol Pejeta IT department, the system requirements were gathered and the development process began. As any seasoned developer will tell you, however, that process is never straightforward.

Building a system from scratch for such an organisation, in an industry not very familiar to many on the team, there were undoubtedly complications that arose. These complications required a closer interaction with members of the various departments that would be directly affected by the new system in order to get a better grasp of operational processes. This, of course, meant that a trip to Ol Pejeta was necessary; and the Conservancy was kind enough to host the team at The Stables.


The Beautiful

While the stay at Ol Pejeta was crucial in the successful development, testing and launching of the product, it wasn't all business all the time. In addition to interacting with the host of guests who came through the metaphorical doors of The Stables, the development team got to enjoy some of the conservation experiences.


As enjoyable an experience as it was to be at Ol Pejeta, the show must go on and other projects were beckoning. However, when planning your next safari, why not give Ol Pejeta Conservancy a try? It is an experience that you're unlikely to forget. Oh, and FluidTech hopes you enjoy interacting with our work.



About Michael

Tech enthusiast. Windows sheep. The author of thought-provoking, informative pieces.

Discover More of Michael's Talks