structured development, online, programming, methodology, requirements, online help, documentation, project management
structured development, online, programming, methodology, requirements, online help, documentation, project management structured development, online, programming, methodology, requirements, online help, documentation, project management
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Our Methodology

Whereas a prototyping methodology is best for developing marketing websites, particularly their graphics, we do not feel that works for building online applications. Iterations and prototyping belong in the requirements analysis phase, not during the coding phase. We are committed to building it right the first time. Deadlines are too important to do it any other way.

Over the years, we have perfected a structured development methodology that begins with a solid requirement, continues through development with project visibility for the client, reuses code whenever possible, and concludes with an online application with online help and documentation.

Requirements
The best way to set up a project for success is to begin with clear requirements supported by management and operations, and deemed realistic by the developers. This synchronization of expectations we have evolved into a structured process focused on a Functional Description. A Functional Description is a specification document that evolves in an online, collaborative setting to form the roadmap to building an online application.

It includes semi-operational examples of the online forms and reports that encompass the application, and clear business English describing operations and the business processes to be automated. We have over 100 Functional Descriptions to demonstrate why Bizware should be brought in as early as possible in your planning process. Describe your situation and request examples of similar Functional Descriptions using our Ask the Expert form — we'll have a senior applications engineer respond with some best-fit examples.

Project Visibility
Just as we leverage the internet to help form solid requirements, we use its emerging technology to provide continuous project visibility to you as well as our project managers. Gone are the days when you agree on the requirements and then do nothing but wait and ask how it's going. Task Meister is the online tool we developed to provide project visibility unlike any you have seen in the past.

As part of project kickoff, our project lead uses Task Meister to break a Functional Description into tasks, assigns them to those responsible, including to the client's employees (provide content) and team members (design graphics). Using your password, you can check Task Meister any time to gain factual information about what tasks are done, who has a problem, and what is being done about it. It is also how we manage in-process change requests so no one ever loses sight of where the effort is going. Task Meister takes the surprises out of a development project.

Reusing Code
Our clients do not need to choose between the reliability and cost-effectiveness of off-the-shelf software vs. the ability of custom software to be on target to the needs of the organization.

Over the years developing hundreds of online applications, we have grown our library of reusable code. Some of it we have assembled into online libraries with directories we share with clients during requirements analysis. One of the main advantages of using the middleware software architecture we have chosen is that each programming language has available huge collections of reusable, plug-and-play modules. We would never write the code for a shopping cart, for example, when there are hundreds of shopping carts available to integrate into the applications we build. The reason web services have become popular is because of the ease of integration of the online modules — more easily and more reliably than anything ever before.

Online Help and Documentation
Online applications differ from desktop applications in that they have less documentation and less online help — not!

We feel an application is delivered when your people know how to use it, and in a way that reflects your policies and procedures. That is why we use Help Meister to add desktop-quality online help to your application. Every field on every form has pop-up help guiding the user, and matched to their level of expertise and language preference. To reflect changes to your policies and procedures, as well as clarifications and tips, you can go into Help Meister any time to update the online help without programmers or web designers.

Help Meister incorporates automatic assembly of its help records into a printable Help Manual your employees can keep in their desks. The help records include a "System" version that we use to include system level help, administration info, source code, programming tips, tech support resolutions, etc. Without that, technology transfer is just talk — we make it real.

 
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