Administrative Support Requests
Miscellaneous employee requests ranging from shipping labels to information updates were submitted into this database. Requests were routed to the appropriate department or individual by Administrative staff members.
Implementation - Product Delivery and Installation
This application managed the scheduling of customer training classes on the use of the company's product. Three training classes were provided with the purchase of company products. The first and third classes were presented at company facilities, while the second class was presented at the customer site. Classes could also be purchased by customers for new employees, promoted employees, or as retraining.
The database was used to assign Customer Support personnel as trainers and to schedule sessions so Customer Support service levels were not affected.
After presenting a class, the trainer would complete a training report for use by subsequent trainers, for consistency, and by managers for evaluation of the training process.
Training evaluations were printed from the database for customers to complete and return. The evaluation forms were printed with class name, customer specific information, and trainee names. Training certificates were also created for the trainees from the database information.
IS Service Requests
Employees could submit IS service requests through this database or, in the event the user had a problem that prohibited access to the database, IS personnel would create the request. The database was used to track work order status, response times, IS responsible party, and priorities. IS help desk staff used the database to manage their work and IS managers used the database to monitor its progress.
Customer Satisfaction Survey:
After an IS service request was completed an email notice was sent to the user to evaluate IS customer satisfaction. Satisfaction surveys were created in the database anonymously and were used by IS management to evaluate customer service levels.
The database was used to manage and track software licenses and hardware. Hardware and software was assigned to individual users and a record of the assigned resources was kept here. Hardware information included brands, models, serial numbers, asset tag numbers, processor type, memory size, disk size, and peripheral equipment. Software information included title, version, and license number.
In the case of hardware or software problems, equipment could be assigned a repair status (e.g. in-house, sent out for repair, to be repaired on-site by contractors, etc.). Equipment could also be marked as discarded or donated in the case of disposition. Accommodation was also made for lost or stolen equipment.
Software licenses were tracked and marked as available or assigned. Operating System software was included in this tracking. Warnings were issued if an attempt was made to issue more software licenses than were available.
In addition to the individual user information, the user's department was included in the database.
This database was used by the Telecommunications Support team to track and inventory telecommunications equipment and calling cards. The information managed included phone type, headset type, telephone jack assignment, extension number, long distance code, voice mailbox number, modem number, and calling card information.
The database was used as an inventory and tracking tool and as a quick reference by the telephony support team.
The database was used to manage the mail migration of approximately 400 users from Notes to Exchange, as a result of a merger. Prior to the migration, Notes users were sent mail via an Exchange custom directory entry which forwarded mail to the Domino mail server. At the beginning of the project all Notes mail users were imported from the Notes NAB and assigned a target migration date. IT personnel used the database to contact users and change the Exchange directory entries for those users. The schedule was modified as necessary as the project proceeded. The project was managed from the Nashville office and was performed by offices in Nashville, TN, San Jose, CA, and London, England.
Company employees submitted travel requests to the Travel Department through this database. Employees would provide travel information, such as length of stay, travel dates, lodging, airline, purpose of the travel, and any travel preferences they might have. Special requests, such as staying over a weekend for personal time, could be forwarded to the appropriate manager for approval by digital signature.
Consulting and Training Center Applications
The Consulting and Training Center divisions of the company cater to customers who were not, necessarily, users of the company's products. The customer base information for these divisions was not shared with the parent company's sales group. These divisions acted as independent business units. Consultants did serve as CCU instructors.
Training Registrar and Scheduler
The company's Training Center developed and managed technical and management courses, seminars, and a certification program for managers, supervisors, and technical staff in call and customer centers. Courses and seminars were held at training facilities, customer sites, and at independent locations. Courses and seminars were made available to individual attendees and as corporate packages.
The corporate packages were typically held at a customer location and included only representatives of that customer; the customer would purchase a given number of "seats" in the course or seminar. Attendees at these courses might also be taking part in a more general curriculum or a certification track.
Individual seats in courses and seminars were attended by students who were engaged in a certification track and by those who were not.
Courses and seminars were presented by members of the parent company's consulting group.
This application managed scheduling, student attendance, and student progress in the certification tracks. Course grades were maintained for students who chose to take certification exams given following the courses. Since exams could be taken in connection with courses or independent of courses, they were treated as separate registration events.
Courses and seminars could be discounted as either multiple attendees at a given course or as multiple courses by a given individual. Attendees could be substituted but such substitutions could affect discount rates retroactively. Early registration discounts were also applied; these discounts were affected retroactively by late payments. Payments, discounts, and account balances were maintained and tracked.
Notifications were sent to support staff responsible for the assembly and shipping of course materials and equipment.
Purchase order, invoice, and credit card information was printed on special forms for submitted to finance for billing.
Class rolls were printed for instructors.
This database was created from a sample database to manage Consulting projects. Project codes were created for billing and for use by the time keeping database
Consulting Time Keeping
This database was a tool used by consultants to enter and submit billable and non-billable time to management.
Each consultant had profile documents indicating their fees and had access to only their own time slips.
Once approved by management, time slips could not be modified by the consultant without a manager's approval.
Time slips referenced project codes created in the Consulting Projects database.
The billing information from this database was used for financial reporting.
Customer Support Applications
On-line Document Management and Knowledge Base
A reference database containing information to assist Customer Support personnel in problem resolution. Some of the documentation were for internal use only and some for distribution to customers. The database contained document review workflow for content validation and authorization for customer release (i.e. documents were marked as internal only or as available for distribution to customers).
The database was available to customers through the Customer Support web site; only information authorized for customer release were available to external web users.
The database also included an Action button to submit sales leads.
This database was a mirror of information contained in a SQL Server database created with Clarify's ClearSupport. The database was available to users who needed to read-only access to the information. In order to update information a $3000-$3500 Clarify client license was required; once the Clarify license limit, users were locked out of the SQL Server database. This database allowed licenses to be used more efficiently.
The database was also replicated to a Customer Support center in Britian. The British office was connected through a 64K ISDN line which limited real time connections to the SQL Server database.
The database was updated nightly via ODBC SQL calls from LotusScript prior to replication.
This database was a mirror of information contained in an Oracle database maintained with Test Director for read-only use by Customer Support. The content consisted of product bug information established by the Development Services during QA/QC testing and customer problem resolution.
This database was also updated nightly, via Oracle driver SQL calls from LotusScript, prior to replication with the British office.
Product Client Configurations
The company product installations were specifically customized for each customer. These databases contained customer configuration information about these product installations. The databases related to the customization specifications for these products and were very different in design.
Customer Support Web Site
The Customer Support web site included access to the On-line Documentation database, contact information, and other general information relating to Customer Support.
Customers were required to register on the site prior to access. A Customer Support representative reviewed all requests before granting access. Once accessed, customer specific information was delivered to the user, including the Account Team to which the customer was assigned with specific contact information for that team. The customer could also view a team photograph to put a very personal touch on the company's commitment to customer support.
Product Development Applications
This contained a record of interface development projects for individual customers. It included Project Status, Status Change Log, and development notes and comments.
This database contained in-house "Help" topics, tips, and tricks related to Product Development.
Development Services (Discussion)
The primary use for this database was for posting Development Services meeting minutes.
The database also served as a Development Services Information bulletin board.
Development & Testing Status
This database maintained project status for product development and testing
This was a project management tracking tool for custom development projects.
Project Status Repository
This was a repository for project status and notes for development and testing.
Application Database Errors
This database was used to translate cryptic Oracle error messages into user friendly error messages. Development Testing team members would find and translate error messages and record them here. The database was then used to generate a C++ include file for product software builds.
Product Ideas (Discussion)
This was a discussion database used by the Product Development team for on-line brainstorming.
This contained notes and topics used for product training for employees.
This was a repository for the Oracle database schema for the company's primary software product.
This contained product feature requests and ideas from customers.
Test Docs and Data
This database was used for product testing documentation, strategy, and comments.
Human Resources Applications
This application was initially designed to post job openings to employees. It was developed further for posting job openings on the web.
Job "templates" were created for each job title within the company, including department, job description, EOE Job Group, Census Code, and department. A Job Code, reflecting the department and a sequential number, was assigned automatically. An email autoresponse type could also be assigned; the email autoresponse was maintained in the Resume Management database.
Managers submitted a Staffing Requisition for new positions and included department, job title, job description, hiring manager, target start date, and whether the position was full time, part time, temporary, a contract, or an internship. The requisition also specified whether the position had been budgeted, for which month or quarter, and the salary range. The Staffing Requisition was mailed to the hiring manager and departmental executive for electronic signature, then forwarded to Human Resources. If a new position had an existing job title, the requisition could be created from an existing job template. If the position was a new job title, the information contained in the requisition was used to create a new job template by Human Resources. New staffing requisitions were reviewed by Human Resources before being posted internally or externally.
When a job opening became available, the job was posted either internally or externally based on company policy, as outlined in the Employee Manual.
Open job postings could be viewed using a Notes or web client. Applying for a job created a document in the Resume Management database.
A job posting could be marked Closed/Reopened, On Hold/Released, or Filled by Human Resources.
Applications and resumes submitted through the Human Resources Job Postings database were deposited here. Email notifications from on-line job banks were mailed into this database and notices from monster.com and CareerMosaic were parsed into document fields. Resumes from other sources were manually entered by HR personnel.
The database included autoresponses specified by the Job Postings database (e.g. general response, transcript request, request for writing samples, etc.). Resumes could be marked with a status (new, awaiting information, interview, et.al) and a disposition (rejected, not qualified, scheduled interview, hired, et.al.).
After HR review resumes were routed from HR to Hiring Managers for consideration. The database contained an interview scheduler, which was a simple Interviewer/Date/Time entry form.
The resume documents contained fields for tracking EOE information.
When a candidate was hired (i.e. disposition marked as hired) the appropriate document in the HR Postings database was marked as filled and start date information inserted and a "New Employee" record was created in the HR Postings database. The New Employee documents are used to inform office support, IT, and telecommunications of start dates for the new hire. Prior to the hire date a person document was created in the Employee Directory database.
In addition to the New Hire document the database contains Departure, Transfer, and Relocation documents, also used by the aforementioned service teams for scheduling purposes, and for viewing by all employees for informational purposes.
This database contained contact information and a photograph for each employee. Business information included job title, department, team, phone number, cellular phone number, and fax number. Personal information included home address and phone, birthday, spouse, children, interests, and emergency contact. While fields for this information are included in the Public Address Book, the database was initially put in place in Notes 4.5 to include pictures as the executives of the company were very committed to knowing people by face and name.
The database was available to all employees and was particularly useful for receptionists as a phone directory.
This is an on-line version of the employee manual. It included document versioning and links to in-house employee development and training
Sales and Marketing Applications
Sales Force Automation
This application maintained company, division, site, and contact information for the international sales staff. The nature of the company's software products were such that each sales opportunity required the collection of hardware, network, systems, number of users, number of site locations, and other configuration information very early in the sales process. These parameters had a significant effect on proposals, quotes, and prices.
All sales representatives were remote users who replicated the application to laptops.
The primary database contained company and contact information in a corporate hierarchical format (i.e. company, divisions, sites, and contacts at those corporate levels). The application additionally had a complex security structure specified by Sales management. Specifically, each sales representative could replicate a subset of all top level corporate information and subsets of other information that might have an indirect bearing on their sales focus. It was necessary to create and maintain "who can replicate" fields for every document in the application.
In addition to company and contact information, the application included sales process tracking, sales event tracking (e.g. phone calls, email, site visits, etc.), sales opportunity status (hot, cold, dead, etc.), sales closure predictions, and event logging. The database was used by sales directors to create sales projections and reports.
Email and faxes, via print to a fax driver, could be sent directly from the application.
The application made use of a primary database, a database log, a help and documentation database, and auxiliary databases listed below.
The primary database contained in excess of 50,000 documents and was over 1 GB in size.
Literature Mailing Requests
These databases served to route literature and demo requests from the primary application to the appropriate personnel for packaging and delivery. The databases maintained response time reports and maintained the request status in the primary database. Notices were also emailed to the sales rep upon completion. Additionally, web users could request Marketing information from the company web site.
Proposal/Quote Request Log
A proposal was a sales document that detailed the proposed solution for the customer. When a proposal was requested by a sales rep, the Proposal Writers Team was notified and an entry was made in the Proposal Request Log.
A proposal was based on parameters collected in the SFA application and its development was tracked in this database; proposals could differ significantly depending on the specific requirements. The database managed the proposal development process and included a step-by-step worksheet and deadline tracking. Notices and alerts were sent daily to aid in the management of the process.
A quote was based on a proposal after customer review and, often, modification. The quote process was managed similarly.
Inside Sales Bookings
This application managed the Inside (existing customer) Sales effort. The sales process was tracked and logged with workflow, status, and email notifications.
The application included workflow to manage the review and information flow required for a variety of products. Products fell into different categories which had different review and information requirements (i.e. this was not single track workflow). The application included pricing and discount information in US dollars, British Pounds, and Euros with currency conversion rates that was used for generating financial reports for the Inside Sales team. Reports were generated for sales regions, booking values, sales managers, and sales reps. Reports were generated as Excel worksheets using LotusScript. The reports were used in monthly and quarterly financial reports.
Sales Support Documents
Document Library database containing information for the Sales Support and Proposal/Quote Writers teams.
A repository for sales leads submitted from outside the sales department. A custom mail form was created which could be mailed from any user's mail client. Additionally, The Customer Support Knowledge Base contained a button which allowed users to create a sales lead directly to the database.
Discussion database used to distribute sales related documents and information.
Sales Support Engineer Discussion
Discussion database used to distribute sales engineering related documents and information.