Case Study

Centralized notification system implementation in a major retail company

In today's digital landscape, large companies, with their multiple teams and distinct priorities, often face the repetitive challenge of integrating different communication service providers.
About the Project

Consumer-facing businesses constantly engage with customers through various channels such as SMS, Email, Push Notifications, In-App messages, and instant messaging platforms like WhatsApp.

Large companies, supported by multiple teams with distinct priorities, often face the repetitive challenge of integrating with different communication service providers. This case study highlights how Create IT developed and implemented a centralized notification system for a major retail company, impacting a wide range of businesses and development teams, addressing these challenges and significantly streamlining the communication process.

The Challenge

Like so many other businesses, our client often encounter a recurring pain when developing new consumer applications: the need to integrate with an SMS provider, a Push Notification service, and so on. Which one to choose? How much will it cost per message? What features are available? The main challenges encountered included:

In a nutshell, there was the need for a unified notification layer that could simplify the process, offering developers and businesses the ability to select from a pre-configured suite of providers.


The Solution

The project consisted of designing and implementing a solution that exposes a single REST-based API for managing all communication channels in one place.

This was designed to be simple, well documented with the following in mind: the developer is the end-user. Along with the API, we also built a self-service backoffice for the developers and their teams.


The initial tech stack for this project was: 


The API was the first module to be built. Afterwards, two new modules were developed: 


The tech stack for these new modules included additional technology: 


The initial iteration of the core module—the API—was developed by a compact and autonomous team utilizing the Kanban method. The adoption of Kanban, a streamlined framework, facilitated rapid progress while maintaining oversight. This initiative marked the establishment of a platform-oriented team as per the Team Topologies model, taking charge of the Communications Hub and additional integrated services. 

The project's rapid progress can be attributed to the team's modest size and significant autonomy, with infrastructure as the primary dependency. The effective partnership between the development team and the infrastructure team played a crucial role in minimizing this dependency. 



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The Results

The Communications Hub has proven to be a resounding success, gaining widespread adoption across our client's numerous development teams. The platform's integration metrics are a testament to its efficacy:
API Integrations

Over 50 applications have been seamlessly integrated with our API.

Email Dispatch

Weekly email dispatches have reached a volume of 135,000.

SMS Dispatch

The service processes approximately 2.8 million SMS messages each week.

Push Notifications

A steady flow of 700,000 push notifications is delivered weekly.

In-app Notifications

The in-app inbox feature handles a staggering 60 million notifications every week

This initiative has dramatically streamlined the notification delivery process, cutting down the time and effort required by any team to issue their initial customer notification by over 80%

This case study illustrates how Create IT's teams helped solve a major retail company's challenge of integrating multiple communication channels by developing a centralized notification system. This innovative system provided a unified notification layer, complete with a REST-based API and a backoffice tailored for developers. The initial technology stack included ASP .NET Core, Azure AppService, and Azure SQL Database, which was later augmented with Azure CosmosDb and Azure EventHubs. 


Utilizing the Kanban method, our small and autonomous team successfully developed the Communications Hub, which has dramatically reduced the time to issue the first customer notification by over 80%. The solution has been widely embraced, with integration into 50 applications and the handling of millions of messages on a weekly basis. 


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