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From concept to delivery in three days

How CircleCI helped ClickMechanic push critical COVID-related updates with confidence and in record time.

The Challenge

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, ClickMechanic needed to quickly deploy updates to their app about their contactless car repair service to users. The UK-based startup connects people who need car repairs with vetted mechanics who come directly to the customer’s home. ClickMechanic manages the entire process from start to finish, including payment, which is why they often describe themselves as the “Uber for mechanics.”

In March, Kat Crichton-Seager, head of engineering at ClickMechanic, needed his team to push out the updates to both mechanics and customers, letting them know that ClickMechanic was now able to offer completely contactless car repair service. The messaging had to deploy to both the mobile app for mechanics, reminding them to do a completely contactless service, and to the user mobile app to let customers know about this option. They also needed to deploy the changes fast and accurately.

“Being a small team and a small company, pivoting correctly and getting stuff in front of customers as quickly as possible is very important to us,” Crichton-Seager said.

The Solution

Getting those messages out was mission-critical for ClickMechanic and CircleCI helped them accomplish it.

“The main reason we could do it is because we have a very good, very fast integration set up [on CircleCI],” said Crichton-Seager. Not only was ClickMechanic able to quickly push out that messaging, but they were also able to add extra elements to the forms that mechanics fill out on the job, ensuring they were following the right protocol and customers were getting the best service possible.

Using CircleCI, ClickMechanic was able to push out its COVID-related changes three days after coming up with their plan.

Why CircleCI

Prior to joining ClickMechanic, Crichton-Seager had worked with several different continuous integration systems, including Jenkins and CruiseControl, but found they took too long to set up and maintain. With other CI/CD platforms, the annual cycle of upgrading the operating system, upgrading applications, installing new fixes, plugins, and more, wasted too much of his team’s valuable time.

When he joined ClickMechanic, Crichton-Seager decided his team would use CircleCI from the get-go. “For me, that’s the big, big sell of CircleCI,” said Crichton-Seager. “Not having to do all that rubbish.”

His team pushes changes live between one and two times a day on average, sometimes more, which CircleCI makes possible.

“Being able to run things through CircleCI and be absolutely certain that builds are working, plus being able to build on branches and integrate into the main branch for deployment means we can […] get stuff out in front of customers as quickly as possible,” Crichton-Seager said.


Kat Crichton-Seager
“We switched to doing every [car repair] service contactless. Getting the message out was critical and we had to be absolutely certain that the mechanics were doing the right thing and the customers were getting the right service. From conception to delivery, we got the changes out in three days.”

Kat Crichton-Seager
Head of Engineering at ClickMechanic


About ClickMechanic

UK-based ClickMechanic aims to make car repair trustworthy and easy for customers. As the “Uber for mechanics,” they connect people who need car repairs, servicing, and inspections with vetted mechanics, and manage the whole process from start to finish.

Joined in

2012

Deploys to

Heroku
PostgreSQL
Microsoft SQL Server

Languages

Ruby

Stack

CircleCI
Ruby on Rails
Docker

Team size

6

Previous CI/CD

None

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