Challenge: Thomas Associates, a rapidly growing architecture and engineering firm, needed a single view of 100 to 200 hundred simultaneous projects, a view that could be visible simultaneously for managers at nine locations in the Northeast US. Architecture projects involve dozens of in-house staff and out-of-house consultants. The projects continue through four or five years, and if you include the pre-contract interval, as Thomas needed to do, projects continue two or three years more. Clearly a browser interfaced solution would give the simultaneous view, but could it handle the scheduling and budgeting of hundreds of persons through six to eight years and still serve fast enough to support nine managers in a conference call.
Solution: Using Witango middleware and a simple database system Spider Graphics created a calendar view presentation with click-to-detail for individual projects, workers, and budgets. Project may be selected by many criteria including office location, any worker, work group, or design specialty. In later phases the application was made accessible to all staff through a see-only-what-you-may-use password system. All users may define projects and save them in their own profile.
Results: The application now serves twelve locations. It is fully integrated with a Spider-built marketing database. Architecture marketing database are many-to-many in endless ways. It has also become the key budgeting tool in the firm. In addition to project managers, hundreds of workers now use it daily to see their own schedules, and schedules and budgets of interest. Spider Graphics extends the systems several times per year as the company grows and changes.
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