How Much Does Custom Software Cost?

By | Custom Software, Uncategorized
Whether discussing software or shelving, the word ‘custom’ is generally associated with high price tags, but that it a common misconception in our industry. When asked “how much does a custom software project cost?” our first, and shortest answer is, not as much as you think. Technology has evolved rapidly over the years, and these projects don’t have the same sticker shock that they used to. You may be surprised to hear that custom software can often be the more economical option. Our second answer is a bit longer, and understandably so. Each project is unique and comes with its own set of requirements. But rather than focusing on cost, it may be more beneficial to focus instead on the software’s ROI. That will give you the most comprehensive picture of any software’s feasibility and profitability. It’s About Finding the Right Solution When an organization is interested in custom software, it is because they have a need to fill, and custom solutions are like a square peg in a square hole, they are designed to be perfectly integrated into the workflow. The resulting efficiency means that a well-designed solution should save you money long-term. They also typically increase process automation, (more…)

Why Choose a Custom Software Solution?

By | Custom Software
If you are familiar with the concept of custom software but still convinced it is not right for you, think again. Custom software isn’t just for the top tier businesses, projects are created on a case by case basis according to each client’s specific needs and budgetary constraints. These solutions have the potential to take your business to the next level by improving your operational efficiency, promoting and enabling growth opportunities with scalability, and improving data security. Here are 3 reasons to consider a custom software solution for your business. Improve Efficiency with Automation – Process automation creates a major opportunity for more valuable resource allocation. If your organization currently wastes time on repetitive tasks like data entry, inventory management, purchase order validation, etc., then you are losing valuable time and money. Your full-time employees are a valuable and costly resource. Why waste their time and effort performing routine tasks? Increasing automation will improve your organization’s efficiency. With custom software solutions your tools will be designed to most effectively optimize your process needs for the best possible fit into your organizational process, freeing up your manpower for more strategic operations. Increase Your Scalability – Ill-fitting software or manual data management (more…)
Database Consulting

What is Custom Software Development?

By | Custom Software
Software is an essential component of any business. Processes like supply chain management, operations, customer service, and administration are facilitated by software solutions. There are two main types of software, off-the-shelf and custom. If your current software isn’t meeting your needs or you see room for process improvement or more efficiency, a custom solution might be just the thing you need. What is Custom Software? –  Typical mass-produced, or off-the-shelf, software products are created with a large audience in mind. These solutions are readily available and quick to implement, although you may sacrifice time trying to fit them into your workflow. Since they are made to be widely accepted by a variety of businesses, these off-the-shelf software solutions won’t be seamlessly integrated into your workflow. You will typically find your team making adjustments and concessions to work them into your processes, sacrificing efficiency. In contrast, custom software is created specifically for a unique client, application, or circumstance. These products are commissioned and then developed to your exact specifications by a team of custom software developers. The result is a product that does exactly what you need to do, exactly how you want it to be done, without any extraneous noise. (more…)

Machine Learning, AI and Advanced Analytics

By | Database Technology Trends
Big data is big news across industry sectors. The digital age has given rise to information overload, and the most resourceful businesses are learning how to take advantage of that information. It takes a special type of skill to gain actionable insights from these massive amounts of data, and that is where advanced analytics comes in. With technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), data-driven business insights are possible like never before. Here’s a breakdown of how these technologies really work. The Science of Advanced Analytics – Traditional analytics refers to more linear quantitative analysis, usually generated by business intelligence (BI) systems. These are examinations of performance drawn from a structured and pre-defined framework. They use existing historical data from a database or data warehouse. With advanced analytics, we are able to follow the data without a pre-determined scope. All you need is a starting point. For example, consider the question: what type of people buy yogurt in the mornings? With traditional analysis, you would be left skimming through sales data and designing reports to cross reference yogurt sales and time of day, but that only tells you how many people have performed this action, not what type (more…)

Understanding Blockchain, the Trending New Tool

By | Database Technology Trends
There’s been an increasing amount of buzz around blockchain technology lately, and people are more interested than ever before. “A new technology that functions as a distributed ledger within a decentralized network and promises greater security, lower transaction costs, etc.” is usually how it’s described. But what does all of this really mean? What is Blockchain? In its simplest form, Blockchain is a digital ledger (consider the general ledger your organization’s finance/accounting teams use) that stores information across a network of computers. It stores information in batches called “blocks,” that are linked together in a chronological fashion, similar to a chain of blocks. This information can be virtually anything, but try imagining it in terms of a financial transaction, since that’s probably the easiest to visualize. To illustrate, here’s what happens when you make a purchase: Imagine purchasing new software online from Microsoft (for illustrative purposes only). The block would store the date, time, and dollar amount of your purchase. It would also log information about who is making the transaction. For security purposes, your name would be recorded as a unique “digital signature,” more like a username instead of your actual name. Once your block has been verified and (more…)
Database Consulting

What are Data Clusters and What Can They do For You?

By | Azure, SQL Server
Learning to effectively manage large datasets is key to optimizing your data analytics. Using data clusters can help optimize your data management. It involves grouping data points with similar characteristics into the same cluster to speed up processing time and improve analysis. Consider starting an analysis project on customer spending habits by gender in different regions. Your time on the project would be maximized if you’re able to use statistical techniques to automatically organize the data into logical groups prior to analyzing. How do data clusters work? Data clustering allows you to partition large volumes of structured and unstructured data/observations into logical groupings. One way it does this is by analyzing all of the data in the data warehouse and comparing each data point with clusters created. You rely upon the clustering algorithms to sort and cluster the data in a logical way. In a perfect world, all data points in the same group should be highly similar in nature, while data points in different groups should be dissimilar. There are several different models and algorithms that guide the clustering process. Here are a few: Hierarchical Method: This method creates separate successive clusters using specific criteria. Partitioning Method: This method (more…)

Make the Most of Microsoft SQL Server with Management Studio

By | SQL Server
Microsoft SQL Servers are an industry leading choice for your workloads, but if you are not using Management Studio you may be making things harder for yourself. The additional service is designed to integrate with your SQL database engine and improve object management, database queries, and other management functionality. What is Management Studio? – SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) was originally released with SQL 2005 and helps users access and manage their SQL instances. It is an integrated management interface that allows you to access your SQL Server, manage objects, write scripts and perform queries with a number of tools and features. It combines tools from Enterprise Manger, Query Analyzer, and Analysis Manager to get this job done. SSMS is easy to use with an intuitive User Interface (UI) and familiar design built on Visual Studio and will help improve your team’s management of SQL Server objects and elements Object Explorer – The interface is intuitive and makes accessing and managing your databases simple and efficient. The Object Explorer is a hierarchical navigation tree that allows you to locate and act upon objects in your environment. These objects can be databases, tables, etc. You can click through the tree to (more…)

We’re Excited About SQL Server 2019, Here’s Why

By | Azure
Microsoft SQL Server 2019 is out in preview and it’s got some exciting new features. When Microsoft announced the release at their Ignite 2018 conference on Sept 24th, we couldn’t wait to see what was in store. This newest offering will continue to build on the solid foundation of SQL servers while expanding offerings of flexibility and further embracing big data by adding support for Kubernetes, Apache Spark, and Hadoop clusters. Embraces Big Data – Probably the biggest change to SQL 2019 is the ability to manage big data clusters. Big data has always been a bit of a gap in the arsenal of Microsoft’s SQL servers, but not anymore. With SQL 2019, Microsoft is fully embracing big data with Kubernetes. Kubernetes is an open-source container-based platform that represents exciting new possibilities for this SQL engine. With SQL on Kubernetes you will be able to can create high availability solutions with Linux containers and manage multiple data sources all in one place. Manage Relational and Non-Relational Data – The new engine can query data from a number of different sources, including relational and non-relational data storage. Microsoft has built in native support of Apache Spark and Hadoop Distributed File System (more…)
Backup Recovery

Improving your Database Security with Microsoft Azure

By | Azure
If you are interested in migrating to a cloud database but concerned about security issues, look no further. Hybrid and cloud native databases do have their own set of security concerns, but if you go with a trusted company and maintain it appropriately, you have nothing to fear. In fact, cloud databases can be more secure since they have access to the most advanced security protocols and automatic updates. Cloud native databases, or DBaaS (Database as a Service) platforms are databases hosted and maintained by third party providers. Operating a DBaaS means that your company will access data through the internet instead of through your internal network. DBaaS solutions offer great benefits for organizations in today’s “Big Data” arena. DBaaS is more scalable and flexible than traditional VM databases. It also eliminates the hardware requirements of maintain a database system. It is crucial to understand and trust the security protocols of your cloud provider before making the switch. Microsoft Azure is at the top of the list when it comes to cloud database offerings. It is a particularly good choice for the security conscious client. Microsoft in general, and particularly Azure, have a long history of prioritizing security for its (more…)

5 Ways MS SQL Server Enhances Data Integrity

By | SQL Server
We’ve entered a time in which high quality data is at the heart of operating a successful organization. For many companies these days data IS the business. For others, data is a driver. In both scenarios its critical to maximize your data’s efficacy, and this means being sure you can trust that data. I’m talking about data integrity. It’s essential to be able to trust your data, and that means using a database you can trust that is actively working toward ensuring your data.  Microsoft SQL is a longstanding leader in the game. Their database offers top of the line stability and data integrity. If you are concerned about ensuring your data integrity this database might just be right for you. Why Microsoft SQL Server? – Microsoft SQL Server 2019 features upgrades that will give your organization greater access to large amounts of valuable data quickly. Once it’s released, querying multiple sources of data, both structured and unstructured, will be simpler and more secure than ever. MS SQL preview CTP 2.0 is now available in preparation for the upcoming official release. If you’re interested in experiencing some of the new features beforehand, consider downloading it soon. In the meantime, here (more…)