FileMaker is an essential tool in keeping that information in motion, ensuring that what needs to be done gets done. 'We needed a way to track our production process by job on a per quarter basis, ' says account manager Kimberly Lewis. 'We also needed to find a way to track time and resources — by department and individual.' Numbers of jobs per client, numbers of jobs per employee, numbers of workdays added to each step of the process, tracking deadlines at each stage of every project — the list of demands goes on and on. And it all needs to be kept under control.
'Our company was using an Excel spreadsheet to track job progress,' recalls Kimberly. 'It proved ineffective and time consuming.' A better solution was clearly needed — and the company briefly considered implementing an Oracle solution — only to discard that idea as even more expensive. Kimberly knew the answer.
Our company is experiencing tremendous growth. Because of that, we're always updating and revising our FileMaker solutions to meet our expanding needs as a company. We'll continue to implement faster, more efficient time management tools with the help of FileMaker Pro.
'Having worked with FileMaker for seven years, it seems each new company I work for needs some sort of database solution,' she notes, and each time she's been able to come up with a plan that works. For Financial Communications, that plan involves a series of three FileMaker databases.
Two of these databases are linked: the Online Planning Interactive Experiment (known as 'OPIE') database is the heart of the system, containing detailed job–tracking data for each pending project. It's linked to a Timeline database, which contains over one hundred records documenting important reference information specific to each client and job. A third database, Business Cards, contains detailed information for key business contacts. But the 'OPIE' database is the busiest one in the system — at any given time it contains over a hundred records, each one documenting a single pending project.
All employees at Financial Communications have access to the system over an internal network. 'Our planning system has improved dramatically,' affirms Kimberly. 'We're able to track jobs and monitor the changes that take place along the way, and with the use of departmental layouts each employee is able to view their own jobs by logging onto the database from their computer.'