OpenLMIS

Open Logistics Management Information System

#Java

#JavaScript

#Production and logistic

#Full Software Development Cycle

#app


Challenge

VillageReach is a non-profit organization working in the area of medical logistics, especially the last mile delivery of medicines to remote rural areas in Africa. It was established in 2001 and is based in Seattle, U.S. VillageReach develops, tests, implements, and scales new solutions to critical health system challenges in low-resource environments. Its mission is to save lives and improve health by increasing access to quality healthcare for the most underserved communities.

We worked with VillageReach on numerous projects. One of them is OpenLMIS (Open Logistics Management Information System), which is a combination of domain experts in logistics and supply chains, eHealth information systems, software development for low-resource settings, and process improvement. Like other open initiatives, the intention is to ensure OpenLMIS becomes the place for sharing information about LMIS planning, requirements and system design, promoting interoperability between systems, developing open source solutions and galvanizing interest in a shared vision for effective, scalable and sustainable solutions.

The mission of OpenLMIS is to collaboratively develop shared, open-source software in order to improve health commodity distribution in low and middle income countries.

The vision of OpenLMIS is a world where all countries have the logistics data they need to manage their supply chain effectively in order to save lives.
Nurse with a patient

Problem

While successfully deployed in multiple countries and solving people’s problems in the field, the most widely used version 1 and the most recent version 2 of OpenLMIS (the beginning of 2016) are not without flaws. Features developed for countries were not shared and lived in different codebases - diverging forks of OpenLMIS were being created in order to facilitate deployments across countries with different problems, needs and ways of approaching logistics. Reuse of features was a difficult and non-transparent process.

Because of this, VillageReach decided to build version 3 of OpenLMIS from scratch, using the already-existing business logic as reference, but focusing more on extensibility and modularity, while at the same time taking into consideration the lessons learned from previous versions and their deployments.

SolDevelo worked on OpenLMIS implementations in Mozambique and Benin in the past, as well as on other projects from VillageReach. The re-architecture and rewrite of OpenLMIS is the biggest joint endeavor for the two organizations.
Woman in factory

Solution

We have been working closely with VillageReach in order to ongoing development of OpenLMIS version 3. We have laid out the microservice architecture, an extensibility model, as well as tied it all together in a reference distribution. Moreover, we have repurposed the old version 2 user interface to work as standalone AngularJS application that works as the reference UI for the reference distribution. We are using the business logic from version 2, adjusting it as we go along the way, refactoring it into an easily extensible and flexible micro-service based solution.

The current SolDevelo team working on OpenLmis is 10 people. A team of around 10 is also engaged from the VillageReach side. Development on the side of SolDevelo is divided into 2 sub-teams.

Result

The OpenLMIS version 3.0 is relased!
The OpenLMIS community, representing a global consortium of partners, such as software developers, implementers and donors, collaborated on a full redesign of the OpenLMIS core software, reflecting a more flexible and responsive micro-service architecture.

OpenLMIS version 3 provides better support for customization and extensions than the previous versions through its new service-based, API-driven, modular architecture. The end result is a powerful, flexible product that emphasizes interoperability, extensibility and performance at a scale across countries, programs and products.

The launch of version 3 also represents a renewed focus on community building. Streamlined community processes, transparent development and documentation, as well as information sharing between partners are the hallmarks of the OpenLMIS Initiative in 2017. An updated logo, a refreshed website and a new communications strategy will focus on the expanding of the global awareness of OpenLMIS in order to gain opportunities for implementation.

You can read more about the outcome on the OpenLMIS official site.
Doctor examining a child

References

Brandon Bowersox-Johnson

"SolDevelo has been a powerful partner in the development of the OpenLMIS software. They quickly ramped up a skilled development team with expertise in the complex tools our project needed, and have made a lasting contribution to OpenLMIS version 3. Their work on this project will have significant global impact."

Brandon Bowersox-Johnson Software Development Manager, VillageReach

Technologies used

Java 8 Spring AngularJS