This year our IT Department have been given the task of building some application processing software! I'm a designer, so hearing this astounds me if I am honest as I would love to have the knowledge to be able to create a system such as this. I love designing, but when it comes to programming that’s when my brain starts to go into meltdown. I'll stick to being creative instead for now!
It was quite interesting when having a conversation with Simon from our IT Department last week. I showed him a wire frame of a website that I created and asked him how long it would take him to build it. His reply “about 1 hour”. Would you like a giggle? It took me an hour the night after just to get the header set! Whoops! Although it is interesting to see their reaction when the IT department get asked about our design work - then it’s their turn not to have a clue! We are all different, all talented and all valued!
I had a meeting with Simon to get an insight into the work that is involved in building this piece of software. He explained to me that if they were to work full time on this only then they would have the system up and running within 3 weeks. However we are a busy internet company and all tend to work on multiple projects at once, so time will need to be allocated in order for this to work.
The software being designed is for the warehouse and operations teams. It will allow the staff to see on a screen, in real time, what orders have been placed and which ones are to be dispatched that day. As the orders are assigned and move through the various areas of the warehouse, the packing team will be able to update the status to show everyone in the company what stage the basket is at and how close to completion the order is.
This will allow everyone to be able to check the progress or history of an order. The office team will be able to trace the baskets at all times and will be able to change the order if needed. At busy times of the year we have customers needing their gift card message or delivery address changed and it can be very time consuming trying to locate an order in the warehouse to do this. Once this program is in place locating the baskets will be much easier to do therefore improving our service further.
The software will also alert the warehouse staff when stocks levels of certain products are running low so new orders can be placed with our suppliers. When the company employs new, temporary workers during busy periods this system will help them to find the stock needed to fulfill any orders they are assigned as all stock items have been allocated to a grid system to make them easy to locate.
Simon has also been building the network infrastructure to help keep the office tidy and improve the office space. It makes the speed of the office 10 times faster too and it will help make future expansion of the office more straightforward. The company has to employ an electrician to complete this job as it is all to do with cabling etc and so requires a qualified person to complete this for safety reasons.
In the next few weeks the IT guys will also be building a server. The equipment needed to do so is very expensive, but is also required for the future expansion of the company. The server will be stored in our office store rooms as it is quite a big piece of equipment and is also very noisy!
Here are a few pictures of some of the IT Team building the equipment.