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Database and Software
Design and Development

Successful businesses use information effectively to support business decisions. Many other businesses struggle using whatever information that can be painfully won from a mass of unhelpful data. Some businesses survive by blind luck, or the experience and intuition of their staff.

Data when organised, produces information. A well designed and appropriate computer system will allow you to improve the service you offer to your customers, gain a real grip on your business, and a lead over your competitors!

Modern hardware and software provides database power that was formerly the preserve of large mainframe systems - but with a far friendlier user interface, far superior reporting and presentation abilities, and for a price that is almost unbelievably cheap. Microsoft Access is one of the best of these new database systems, and the only drawback is that it is so easy to use, the inexperienced may produce a bad database design that will not deliver all the benefits that it could.

Another common practice is to store data in a spreadsheet (or even a word processed document). Again, this leads to poor design, often to errors, and to a system that is difficult to maintain and use.

Good and effective database design comes with experience. We can provide you with that experience, and either deliver a system for you to use, or design the system for you, and help you to build it as a training exercise, so that you can look after it yourselves, and just come back for help if and when you get stuck.

Key Benefits

  • Improve your use of staff time, creating greater staff satisfaction, and allowing you to reallocate staff time to other business, or maybe just go home at a reasonable time!

  • Improve access to your business information, allowing better, more informed decisions to be made.
  • Allow yourself to consider new methods - do away with some of the filing, mailshot your customers selectively, find out which customers are providing your profits...
  • Make better use of expensive resources - including (but not limited to) your time, your staff's time, and your computer equipment.

Case Study

A customer was involved in property research, and had to respond (in writing) to written requests for information.
The target was to respond within 14 days.
They were not achieving this target, which was resulting in serious complaints from their customers. Some of their information was held in a simple database, the remainder was on maps and plans.

Objective: Develop a system that allowed written replies to be returned within 14 days.

Solution: The existing database was rebuilt and incorporated into a system that allowed, amongst other things -

  • Selection of standard paragraph answers

  • Automatic database query based on address
  • Examination of previous answers for each address
  • Automatic ordering of work priority
  • Automatic generation of letter of reply
  • Archiving and reprinting of previous replies
  • Management reporting - targets achieved, etc.

Results: Once the system had been in use for a few weeks, the workload was being handled effectively allowing smoother operation.

Twelve months later the management report showed that the average response time was well below two days. This was achieved with the same workload and staff as berfore.