Why we decided to develop a different application? (1)

I was being inter­viewed by an aud­it­or from the Central Bank con­trol com­mis­sion. She wanted to know what was the effect of chan­ging, without due author­ity, the interest rate of a factor­ing account on the monthly pay­ments of the cli­ent.

The lady sug­ges­ted that the ques­tion would have been easy to answer if we had an audit trail for the data­base in place. (the Form based audit trail was born).

Later on that month, all the might of the con­trol com­mis­sion was exer­ted when we had to handle the access con­trol to the applic­a­tion and the data­base. (Access con­trol was devised).

During this peri­od the soft­ware depart­ment was sub­merged by requests for modi­fic­a­tions to the code of sev­er­al applic­a­tions, and for some reas­on calls to main­tain the hard­ware we had installed at cus­tom­ers’ sites increased. (Computerized Maintenance Management was developed.

We had setup an ISO9001 paper based qual­ity sys­tem that tracked down the request and repor­ted back, to both the customer’s man­age­ment and ours, using hard­ware and soft­ware incid­ent forms. Time man­age­ment was also handled by react­ing to the cus­tom­ers who seemed to have the highest need of inter­ven­tion (based on the noise level and the fre­quency of their calls). (Calendars and a sched­uler were developed)

The poor sec­ret­ary was over­whelmed with papers she had to file, and more often than not, the loudest cus­tom­er had his main­ten­ance report lost. (Document Management was intro­duced, with cus­todi­an and phys­ic­al invent­ory of the doc­u­ments).

I was start­ing to feel the need for devel­op­ing a new applic­a­tion to run our busi­ness in a more effi­cient way. This was also the time we star­ted depend­ing more on the factor­ing fin­ance for improv­ing our cash flow.

The more I thought about the applic­a­tion the more depressed I felt. After over 30 years of devel­op­ing soft­ware for com­pan­ies offer­ing ser­vices on the mar­ket, I real­ized that we were the least soph­ist­ic­ated in run­ning our own busi­ness.

A new install­a­tion of an applic­a­tion at an alu­min­um fact­ory made my mind up.

All tra­di­tion­al meth­ods of applic­a­tion soft­ware devel­op­ment star­ted with the busi­ness func­tion­al­ity of the applic­a­tion and not in terms of usage of the applic­a­tion, irre­spect­ive of its inten­ded pur­pose.

To be con­tin­ued…

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