Israeli history is peppered with stories of small forces overcoming seemingly insurmountable challenges. One of the most famous stories told and retold is that of the Davidka. In 1948, against the massive Arab Legion forces, David Leibowitch manufactured six homemade mortars that did not do any real damage, but just created a lot of noise. The various underground groups were able to move the device quickly and simply from location to location and create the illusion of a much greater force that really existed.
In short, strategy is much more important than size.
However, not all strategy in Israel comes out of the IDF. Anshel Pfeffer, co-founder of Mobilibrium, spent the last 15 years volunteering for the local emergency service in Jerusalem. There, he learned from firsthand experience the need for quickly mobilizing scarce resources in both time- and location-critical situations.
From that necessity was borne the concept of SNAP: Send Nearest Available Person. It sounds deceiving simple. However, in order to actualize the concept, the Mobilibrium team created patent-pending algorithms that create a mashup of location, personnel, and equipment data, with minimal overhead needed, and a thin-client that sits ambiently on the mobile devices of members of the team.
Originally designed for emergency responders, SNAP is now being used by Natali, the organization that won the bid to provide health services to students in schools across Israel. Using SNAP, Natali can maintain a smaller stronger base of employees who can respond in an optimized fashion to any school within 15 minutes of a call.
For instance, there is no need to send a paramedic when a child has a fever, a nurse will suffice. But if there is an epileptic incident, a team of two people may be required: both a paramedic and a nurse. SNAP automagically finds the closest individuals who fit the description and have the necessary equipment with them.
As a SaaS run on the cloud, any company with time sensitive needs will be able to smartly optimize its resources. It could be a 10 member plumbing company to the 200 member team working a concert, event or parade, to a newspaper which needs to ensure that every relevant global breaking event has coverage.
SNAP was designed with the users in mind. For instance, not everyone wants their employer to know where they are at every moment. Mine would question how many times a day one can go to a cafe. SNAP has a mode that blocks the user’s location from the system, instead only informing the dispatcher that someone is in the desired vicinity, without any specific location or name.
From what I saw, the user experience on all sides is simple and elegant. The set-up is painless. And the potential cost-saving is high.
But I doubt that the plumbers in Des Moines or the Deadheads in St. Paul will really care about the Davidka.