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CKC Good Food

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Project Overview

CKC Good Foods is one of the largest, family-owned/woman-owned school food caterers in the Twin Cities. With over 30,000 meals prepared and delivered to over 115 different sites on a daily basis, CKC needed a website overhaul. With an eye on user experience (UX), we collaborated with the CKC team to design a highly-functional site that brings ease and convenience to its users.

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New Framework Gives Power to the User

Our job was to rebuild old PHP application and normalize a MySQL database that had undergone many disorganized changes into a PHP framework called Laravel and a front-facing Javascript framework named Quasar. These new frameworks gave us the benefit of code organization, style, layout components and robust functionality which cut down on the development time and improved the overall software.

One of the major features of Laravel that we implemented was a REST (Representational State Transfer) API (Application Programming Interface). All website operations directly interact with the API. By separating all logic from design and brand, the website user experience and design can now easily change as marketing or demand changes. The API also creates an opportunity for more integration. This model will allow CKC clients or other 3rd parties to create their own applications utilizing CKC’s data.

The front-facing JavaScript framework Quasar utilizes the Laravel API to communicate with the data and functionality. This framework is used for creating the interface that CKC clients use on a daily basis for ordering and managing their accounts. The Quasar framework generates an extremely fast JavaScript-based interface that can also be ported to a desktop and phone application – reducing extra development to expand to other devices.

All of the new application code has been developed within a Git version control repository so programmers can easily review past changes, create new features and fix bugs without affecting the main application until everything is approved and ready.

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Hosting with Amazon Provides Adaptability & Speed

For hosting, we’ve opted for the Amazon Web Services. Within Amazon, secure production and staging servers were configured with continuous delivery so new changes can be easily deployed from merging and pushing code within the version control repository. This gives developers the ability to see exactly what code has been uploaded to the server, match that code locally for continued development and flexibility to work on the project from almost any computer.  

CKC’s data is stored on Amazon Aurora which is a fully managed, distributed, fault-tolerant and self-healing relational database. This database service also runs up to five times faster than a standard MySQL database. CKC’s data is very important and ever-growing. We wanted it to have the best chance of being able to grow, be quick, backed up and secure.

Lastly, all files uploaded by CKC admins are stored on Amazon S3 (Simple Storage Service). S3 provides an ever-expanding amount of space for CKC to upload files to, so there will never be a limit. We wanted all points of this application to be easily expandable in size and power. With Amazon’s infrastructure, CKC will be able to smoothly grow its business without major breakpoints from their online application.

Monitoring & Error-Tracking Ensure Continued Functionality

In our attempt to make sure that CKC’s code is working properly and issues are caught quickly, we implemented Sentry’s application monitoring and error tracking software. Both on the Javascript frontend and server side PHP API, Sentry monitors the application for any errors.  If there is an error, a report of the error is delivered via email and to a Slack channel directly to developers so they can keep an eye on the application’s health.

One App to Rule Them All

The software written for CKC provides functionality for three sections; Customers, Employees, and Admins. With proper permissions, one app services them all. 

Thank you so much for all the wonderful years you have provided such incredible design, brand and tools for our success, I am forever grateful! The branding process we just went through was one of my most favorite experiences in many years, truly, maybe one of my top 3 best work experiences.

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