Mercy Ships rebuilds recruitment process using OutSystems

Charity Mercy Ships uses OutSystems’ rapid application development tool to help it streamline the hiring of new volunteers

Charity Mercy Ships has used OutSystems’ rapid application development tool to help it streamline the hiring of new volunteers.

The charity has been running since 1978 and currently has one hospital ship, African Mercy, which supports countries in Africa and has 450 volunteer crew.

OutSystems was used to create a custom online application that has led to a 20% increase in volunteer registrations for the charity in just two months.

The previous method to register volunteers used a paper-based process. Applicants needed to download and fill in a paper form, which was then submitted.

The human resources (HR) staff at Mercy Ships did not have any visibility within the application process, which meant they were unable to understand how far along the recruitment process the applicant had gone.

Mercy Ships CIO Chris Gregg said the paper-based manual process actually put people off, so it needed to be replaced.

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He said he did not have the resources to build the application from scratch, so he looked for a rapid application development tool that could be used to create the HR application quickly.

Gregg decided to test OutSystems. "We wanted to see how it would worked," he said.

Gregg said he was impressed by the speed with which the application could be created using Mercy’s small software development team.

The project kicked off in March 2014 using the equivalent of one-and-a-half full-time software development people. By the end of May, the team had built all the application screens. 

The team then spent two months working with 16 national offices to customise the screens to meet their individual requirements. Beta testing began in September and the application was fully live in October 2014.

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