People love Perch: James Stanley

We love to hear how much People love Perch and this interview is with James Stanley of App Haus.

Tell us a bit about yourself

I’m James Stanley and I’m a partner and developer at App Haus – a web and mobile applications development company based in Staffordshire.

We started up in 2010 as part of our ‘year in industry’ at University. After a successful start we kept the momentum going through our final year of studies (a challenge to say the least!) and are now at App Haus full time having graduated last year.

One half of what we do is creating mobile apps for iPhone, iPad and Android devices and the other half is designing websites and developing web applications.

What sites have you used Perch for recently?

We have very recently launched a newly designed website for Holcom. Holcom are a specialist telecommunications company based in Stafford who came to App Haus looking to put themselves on the web. The main aim of the website is to promote the services offered, in addition to the ‘Recruitment and Resource’ aspect of the businesses which allows engineers to register their skills and for companies to be matched to these engineers based on their requirements for specific jobs.

We have also recently worked with Tiledspace based in Stoke-on-Trent. We redeveloped the site from the ground up using Perch, allowing the Tiledspace team to keep their website content fresh and up to date without having to worry about how the underlying website works. App Haus also developed a custom translation Perch App which allows Tiledspace to easily manage text, images and other assets on their website in a variety of languages.

One of the very first Perch websites App Haus created was for International Power’s Rugeley Power Station, completely replacing their previously outdated website. The new site is much cleaner and more engaging, but importantly allows staff throughout the Power Station to take ownership of their own areas by updating and adding content themselves.

Why did you choose Perch?

What attracted us to Perch was the fact that it’s extremely small and lightweight – there’s no huge learning curve involved as a developer to get started, and it doesn’t dictate how we have to build our pages.

The fact that Perch is a tried and tested platform is another huge benefit for us. We never have to worry about Perch, it does what it promises and it adds a huge amount of value to those managing the content of their sites.

How do you find working with Perch?

Perch definitely feels like it’s working with us and not against us. We don’t have to do anything special to get Perch up and running, or to integrate it with our sites – and I absolutely love that!

We find that clients pick up the interface really quickly and so it’s extremely rare that we get anybody asking “How can I do x on my website?”.

Perch Apps are great too. We’ve developed a couple of these for our clients, including automated backups to Amazon’s S3, and another to automatically Tweet as new content such as news or products are added. We hope to release these publicly soon, after a little more testing.

How do the content creators/site owners find working with Perch?

We work with a wide range of clients, with a varying range of technical abilities. The thing that amazes me time and time again is that once we explain the interface to Perch and walk the customer through it, usually in a 30-60 minutes hands-on training session, they “get it” really quickly!

Perch empowers our clients to take control of their website in a way that they’ve never been able to before. The “undo” functionality within Perch definitely puts the user at ease too – it’s really difficult to do anything wrong!

It’s fantastic to see the websites we create at App Haus grow and evolve after they’ve launched, driven by the client and their vision.