Two key innovators here at Procore met with me (Public Relations Specialist, Noelie LeBlanc) to help shape some answers to these questions. Both Phil and Charles have worked diligently and closely on Procore’s API to successfully transition Procore from Product to Platform.
Phil Mau is the Sr. Developer Success Engineer at Procore. He manages the Developer Success team which provides technical support for the API and helps our partners through the integration lifecycle. He helps enable 3rd party developers to efficiently build, deploy, configure, support, and monitor their integrations in order to help redefine the Construction Industry.
Charles Julius is the Platform Program Manager for Procore Technologies. He works on the platform team and helps manage and enable the platform strategy as it exists across Procore. The platform is the mechanism through which applications are populated on the App Marketplace. He works closely with R&D and marketing groups to enable integrations, which unlock new functionality through newly formed partnerships.
Tell us a little about Procore.
Procore is a mobile and collaborative all-in-one platform built to streamline construction project management. It was established by our CEO, Tooey, back in 2003 and has experienced rapid growth in the last 3 years - 47% increase in the number of employees since January 2016. Tooey began the development of the web-based software that is now Procore. Now, 1.25M construction professionals worldwide actively manage their projects with Procore cloud-based construction project management software.
Why did you decide to create an API?
Procore has had an API use case for years. Initially, Procore developed an API that would enable us to have mobile uses. We have seen the value of having an API increase as it has enabled people to use their custom processes and incorporate applications they want to use. By exposing our API, we have allowed companies to use Procore in ways we would have never thought of.
What does it do?
Procore’s API enables full CRUD functionality across all modules that exist in our platform. It also allows customers and partners to build on top of the functionality that already exists in our system in order to create new solutions to solve use cases across the construction industry. Here's a simpler explanation.
What are some cool ways you see people using it?
Botlink integrated with us to create a direct connection with Procore. Botlink provides live visual updates to all project stakeholders using Botlink's drone technology. With this integration, users can view and manage live drone photography in multiple formats, directly within Procore. With this integration Botlink is able to take an overhead shot of a project in progress, and is then able to transfer over that flight plan to get an overview of the building process in progress.
On the other hand, an example of an application (as opposed to a company) integrating with Procore would be SmartSheet. This integration made processes more efficient and improved the SmartSheet business model through making it more useful to more companies. Applications are then able to go forward and resell the integration as a service, improving their business and making profit.
What was the most challenging part of developing your API?
The most challenging part of building Procore’s API was the process of coming to a consensus on the design. The communication with consumers regarding the API and how to best support their needs also proved to be difficult, at times. Originally, we developed our API for internal use, but when we exposed it to third party developers we realized another persona needed to be considered. Through our Developer Success team we realized a group similar to our User Experience team needed to be formed specifically for developers. Thereafter, the Developer Experience team was born. Our API is built with the developer in mind. At Procore we value delivering the best developer experience by providing a seamless and user-friendly open API.
What’s up next for the Procore API?
Procore’s next big step in our API is to reveal our strategic partnerships, which have been enabled via our API, in order to give our clients new and exciting abilities through the Procore application. We look to provide the best developer experience we can to help enable developers to build applications to share in the App Marketplace, which showcases all of Procore’s integrations, applications and partnerships.
APIs are like food, good at connecting people (not really related, we just really like food). Any recommendations for a good place in Santa Barbara/Carpinteria?
Good point! Two of our favorite places include Zaytoons for Middle Eastern food where we can sit outside near a fire pit and enjoy the amazing weather year-round, or head over to the Santa Barbara Public Market to grab some of the best Thai food at Empty Bowl.