Our tech workflow at eola

by Daniel Steele


I'm Dan, CTO of eola and I'm in charge of building our beautiful platform. I thought it was about time that we talked about what we're up to behind closed doors.

What we're doing

We've paused development on the marketplace side for now, and instead focussing on building the best booking management system out there. A way for providers to take bookings & manage them. A way to manage instructors, and a way to deal with customers. Also, a place to manage accounting, legal, administrative, and health & safety details.

We've call this project Compass. You can go check it out, and keep an eye on it as it develops over the coming months. At the time of writing it's still relatively early in the building process, but it should be eola's pièce de résistance soon enough.

How we're doing it

This is the cool bit.

Our goal is to work as closely as possible with the people who are going to use this. Every step of the crafting process intimately involves activity centres, instructors, and admin staff; to make sure that what we build solves the problems they face.

Above all, we want to craft a beautiful but simple user experience that works out the box. The way we achieve that is through carefully considered processes.

We start with an enormous amount of research, studies, and meetings.

After a bunch of talks, some hand-drawn wireframes and a shitload of coffee we end up with something like this.

Initial UX of lesson creation
Initial UX of lesson creation

After the above is created by our super-talented frontend wizard @jaicab, we sit down, discuss, iterate and improve.

Eventually, we'll decide on something, and then work on turning the concept in to an actual design that we can implement and looks pretty.

Final design for the cards you see on the homepage
Final design for the cards you see on the homepage

Coding time

I then whip out the laptop and get to coding the code and doing the things.

Part of the code for creating a booking
Part of the code for creating a booking

Everything is covered by a shitload of automated tests, to verify things work the way we expect them to.

Next, when something's ready to go live, we review every little line to make sure it's at a top standard.

Code review
Code review

We then launch the feature 🎉

How can I get involved?

Sign up and try it out. We don't have any monthly fees, so you can just create an account and take a look, here.


Looking for a booking system to help you run your outdoor activities? eola is dedicated to helping instructors and outdoor activity centres share their passion with more people. We reduce your administrative burdens, so you can have more time to spend doing what you love. Find out more at our watersports page.

Searching for other fun places to do outdoor activities with family and friends? Check out our blog page for more information.

Looking for more inspiration? Check out Where to go donutting in the UK and Best outdoor family activities in Cornwall.

Follow us on Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn to keep up with the latest updates, and take a look at eola marketplace to find more great activities near you!

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