Release Management Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, David H Deans, Liz McMillan, Jnan Dash

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Release Management : Case Study

Replacing Excel with a Web-Based Project Time Solution

"After a short look at the code of the example applications, there were no problems for our developers to build new ones"

Herrmann is an innovative company that offers intelligent, economic and future-oriented solutions in the following areas:

  • Building Automation
  • Software Development
  • Network planning
  • Refrigeration, air conditioning
  • Facility management

The pillars on which the company was founded 30 years ago and still cherish are intensive consultation, cooperation and consistent orientation to the needs of customers.

The company used to manage its projects by collecting information from each employee into excel sheets. About two years ago it decided to build a centralized application to manage and monitor this data and also add functionalities in order to be able to analyze and export the working time data of projects.

Business needs:

It was decided to create a new solution that would solve the current issues of:

  • Missing verification, for example undefined project numbers
  • Missing global analyzing functions
  • Missing export functions (must done by hand)

Since many employees work from their home-office, the new solution needed to be web based to allow them access without the need to install any program or plug-in other than a standard web browser. In addition, the design demands called for a Windows/Office look and feel and an intuitive, easy to use UI and that the actual workflow should not be generally changed (the team administrators had to verify the data of the team members, the project administrators had to verify the project specific data).

Earlier web solutions developed by Herrmann used native HTML provided by Visual Studio. However, the company recognizes the advantages of Windows applications for the developers and for the end users. "The possibility to build a web solution looking like a Windows Desktop application with the Visual WebGui framework was great and it was one of the main reasons to choose Visual WebGui," said Walter Greiner whose development team acknowledge the almost zero adoption that was required form them as experienced Windows developers in C#. "After a short look at the code of the example applications, there were no problems for our developers to build new applications", concluded Greiner.

Due to Visual WebGui Hermann managed to create a centralized solution for collecting their employees' working time which allows them better management and monitoring. In addition, Visual WebGui saved time in programming the solution since there was no learning curve required for the development team to use its intuitive framework.

Using the new Windows-like application has been also saving time for users. The system is also more efficient now as there is no need to print any data within the entire workflow, data is certificated by the program and each user can build reports which altogether provide transparency. In the past the system had to print out two pages for each employee and weekly print outs were also necessary in order to track and verify data.

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