What's different about a la mode?

There's a big difference between a la mode and many vendors in the real estate industry.  We're a technology company.  We're not a data aggregator or a consulting agency with an outsourced infrastructure.  We've been a fast-growing, innovative real estate technology company for 30 years, and we serve multiple industry segments including appraisers, agents, mortgage pros, inspectors and more.  Over time, our market share has grown to power over half the nation's residential real estate transactions.

As a lynchpin of this country's most critical economic sector, redundancy, fault tolerance, and disaster recovery are built into every part of our architecture, and that directly benefits our clients.  While other companies don't have the infrastructure to weather service interruptions of their third party providers, much less natural disasters, we've invested millions in building a Network Operations Center (NOC) capable of surviving that and more.  That means you get the advantage of unparalleled reliability.  Other companies depend on a conglomeration of third-party tech providers and infrastructure that's hodge-podged together as they grow because technology is not their core competency.  You've received their apologies when service is down, but apologies won't get you up and running any faster. 

In contrast, we're obsessively self-reliant.  Our history and our technology expertise makes all the difference in the world to the hundreds of thousands of appraisers, salespeople, inspectors, and lending professionals who rely on our services.

Others are still learning tough lessons about server up time, software development, security (we've seen some things from other companies that would curl the toes of any examiner), and don't get us started on how they're supporting what they sell.  But all of that – building the technology it takes to power an industry this nation's economy depends upon – it's what we do.  It's all we do.

Your choice is critical, so compare our technology, our experience, and our infrastructure with the others.  Which company do you feel most comfortable partnering with to power the company you love, serve the clients you want to keep, and attract clients who value innovative, effective tools, and stability?  You can count on us.

Click on any of the menu items above to learn more about the infrastructure that sets us apart.

The unrivaled Network Operations Centers

In a typical day, our Network Operations Centers (NOCs) power more than half the nation's residential real estate transactions.  At any given second, more than 50,000 real estate professionals, lenders, attorneys, and their clients are accessing services from our NOC.  Whether it's a lender ordering an appraisal, an appraiser pulling flood data for a property, an agent adding a listing to their website, a borrower filling out a secure online 1003, or any of the hundreds of other tools we provide, that's 50,000 connections reliant upon us at any given second during the day.   If we go “dark” – 50,000 people will feel it immediately.  We know that your business – as well as that of the other 49,999, – are too important to let that happen.

Today, our Oklahoma City NOC operates with more than 300 servers, with a fully redundant backup of all customer data in Salt Lake City.  We have dual ISPs with redundant fiber optic data lines to their point of presence, both into our actual facilities, and also through the host city's infrastructure to the ISP's point of presence. We are able to recover from a major Internet backbone disruption simply by failing over to our secondary carrier.

We house more than 85 terabytes of data (that's about 85,000 copies of the full A-Z Encyclopedia Britannica).  It's a lot of data, but we're prepared.  We could instantly lose half of our servers in the NOC, and still maintain service for those 50,000 connections relying on us right this second. 

Security that protects the industry

Since more than half of the nation's residential real estate transactions rely on our NOC, security is critical.  Physical access to our NOC is controlled with two levels of Proximity Card/Magnetic Lock systems, as well as armed guards.  Five weeks of data backups are stored between our Oklahoma City NOC and an undisclosed offsite location.

We regularly use industry standard vulnerability detection tools to probe our servers, our network, and our applications so that we know about potential problems before the bad guys do.  We are PCI DSS compliant, and pursuant to PCI DSS requirements, we have enlisted a third party PCI Approved Scanning Vendor as an additional layer of vulnerability detection.  On top of all of that, on an annual basis, we undergo a comprehensive penetration test of our entire infrastructure.

All NOC locations are strictly climate controlled with fully redundant Liebert industrial air conditioners.  On a weekly basis, we alternate between all units to ensure the continuous redundancy of our cooling systems.  The NOC is also protected with FM200 industrial fire suppression systems to immediately deploy in response to any detected combustion in the NOC, without damaging equipment.

Continuity that powers the industry

Since more than half of the nation's residential real estate transactions pass through our NOC, continuity is critical.

All critical systems are redundantly powered.  From dual power supplies that protect against the failure of a single electrical circuit, to industrial backup generators in case of regional loss of power, you're protected.  Even the most well-known companies in the country had downtime after Hurricane Sandy, but we've been prepared for power interruptions for years.

All NOC locations (both the main in Oklahoma City and the backup in Salt Lake City) are connected to fail over to multiple industrial diesel generators within 15 seconds of utility power failure.  Our own fuel logistics provider can keep those generators online indefinitely without line power to our facilities, so your business will continue when others are dark for days or weeks.

We have dual ISPs, each with dual facility entry, and dual paths to the ISP's point of presence.  We are not phased by Internet carrier failure.  Whether a fiber cut, or major backbone disruption, our carrier redundancy allows us to route our customers' traffic around problems.

When it comes to moving and storing data, we do big.

Since more than half of the nation's residential real estate transactions pass through our NOC, bandwidth is very important.

At any given moment during a routine business day, more than 50,000 people will be connected to our NOC to send or receive data.  We could lose more than half the over 300 servers in our NOC, and still maintain service to the more than 50,000 customers who depend on us every day.

Our NOC supports:

  • 85 terabytes of data
  • The delivery of more than 20,000,000 property geocodes a month
  • The safe and secure storage of more than 11,000,000 appraisal files
  • The processing of more than 26,000,000 e-mails a month
  • The management of more than 274,000 faxes a month

Modern, agile, solid development

Our development team primarily builds web and desktop solutions using Microsoft's .NET framework.  We're also leading developers of mobile apps using the iOS and Android platform SDKs.

We follow a highly adaptive, rapid development process, which is based upon the Agile Scrum methodology.  Our requirements and vision come from product managers who are innately tapped into our clients' expectations.  The user experience is mapped out meticulously, and then organized into a series of rapid iterative builds.  This approach produces deliverable results at the end of each iteration, allowing the team to adjust dynamically to changing needs without being locked into multi-month or multi-year efforts.  Then, once “code complete”, new builds are tested rigorously by our Quality Assurance department.  The last step before deployment is a highly interactive testing cycle with our beta users.

Bottom line: You never have to worry about untested, haphazardly-designed software.  We take our infrastructure very seriously.