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Case Study: Human Design

We sat down with Matt Null, co-founder and CTO of Human Design, to chat about how he's using Simpla to streamline his agency's workload.

Human Design logo

Founded in 2013 by John Weiss and Matt Null, Human Design is a U.S.-based digital agency that drives social impact with its empathetic, beautiful storytelling. Adopting the latest technology standards while maximizing efficiency is a core mantra for the team of 20. As client-focused company, Human Design depends on tools that ease the technical burden on its users and help tailor the process of owning a website from idea to production.

“Simpla drastically increased our efficiency when it comes to building static websites for our clients. It definitely is a very elegant solution to content editing.”

The Challenge

Legacy CMSs can be a burden on agencies like Human Design. Clients are presented with complex systems that overwhelm, and end up asking the agency to constantly make changes on their behalf. This means every tweak - even small changes to the content - is delegated to the developers, who could be spending their time on higher priority items.

A few years ago, Matt attempted to solve this problem by starting a side project of his own called AirCMS. Though he left this effort due to time constraints, he came across Simpla during its Kickstarter stages and backed the project almost immediately.

“I was happy to see a team that was going to seriously solve the CMS problem," Matt said. "Simpla is so easy to use that client’s are going to be happier to update their own copy and images. Not to mention they can’t break the layout we have designed for them.”

Simpla in production

In May 2016, Human Design partnered with Vulcan Productions to launch a project called the Social Action Machine (SAM).

SAM is a hub that aggregates the social causes people care about and helps measure their impact. It took two months to build, and Matt and his team relied on Simpla to be able to quickly update content across the project.

“The fact that we were able to work ‘outside’ of CMS and still have a CMS was crucial for us to hit our deadline”

Because Simpla is framework-agnostic, developers could rely on the stack of technologies they’re used to, Matt said. “It allowed us to write code efficiently using the tools that we like rather than learning a CMS-specific toolset.”

Final Thoughts

Simpla provided Human Design with a more streamlined design-to-development process, allowing them to focus on the overall experience rather than technical clutter.

“Simpla has made building static websites incredibly simple compared to other CMS solutions. The beauty of Simpla is that you can use any tool you are used to using: Jade, Coffeescript, Stylus, etc. Simpla is the future CMS.”