Our client is a leading consultancy firm in the telecom industry specialized in market entry, product planning, and state and federal regulatory compliance.
The client maintained only an excel spreadsheet that contained comprehensive information of every wireless provider’s projects related to product planning and Federal and State regulations.
- Real-time sharing or updating was not possible in the spreadsheet method. Further, with too many versions of the file, it was impossible to know who made what changes, and the location of the latest version.
- The manual process of updating the spreadsheet was tedious; It was more prone to errors most of which were difficult to spot. The possibility of major disaster because of minor entry errors was waiting to happen.
- The level of security posed by excel was relatively low and with growing data it was susceptible to an easy hack especially when the list of sophisticated services available for cracking open encrypted sheets were growing.
- Lastly relying on Excel for product planning was no longer sustainable for the client as their business was growing fast. The effort and time that went into maintaining the spreadsheets was a hindrance to work productivity.
After evaluating the problems and the existing infrastructure of the product, our team has concluded that an web app with real-time sharing would help the client to work and collaborate faster as well as mitigate the challenge of a security compromise.
The spreadsheet had cumulative data of over 10 years. Some of the challenges we had to confront include:
Cleaning the product planning data of inconsistencies and formatting it right with the correct column and row headings, including, mapping reference to external files etc, Creating a wireframe to accommodate the prodigious amount of planning data by matching features to context of use, adjusting design differences in different devices etc, Having the right UI components with proper filters, dropdown lists, form fields, add custom features, UX integrations etc and We had to create an online portal that can be inclusive of other spreadsheet products that the clients use. So, we had to make it reusable for the future, too.
We consolidated all the excel sheets and optimised them to create the scaffold of the application. We used Angular JS to develop the application for the client because Angular’s declarative and directives, make web application development a walk in the park. We built the application with a controller, which assisted in fetching data from the consolidated template. With cus¬tom fea¬ture de¬vel¬op¬ment we were able to fine-tune the extent of user interaction with different contents, enrich data visualization with elements such graphs and charts. The application was hosted in the client’s own environment and was made accessible only to users at the admin level.
With the help of this application our client was able to keep a sharper eye on compliance and planning requirements. The app helped the client to:
- Limit user access to the master version and give users access to specific planning data and fields and mask out the rest
- Eliminate chances of data tampering by restricting data access and use
- Enable users collect planning data from a variety of sources and not just Excel
- Provide users easy and any time access thus enabling changes in real-time
- Notify all users of updates at the same time