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Custom Software & Mobile Application Development
If you have a business need that off-the-shelf software cannot fill, then it may be time to consider building custom software to fit your needs. Alliance Technologies developers have been developing custom software for our clients since 1994. We can help you define your application requirements and then build the software for you using the most appropriate tools for the job.
Skills and Expertise
Alliance Technologies’ team has specialized skills in software systems development, database design, web design and web-enabled user-interfaces and mobile application development (including Android and Apple iOS). We also provide various implementation/support and hosting services. We will work on projects of all size both large and small. Our work includes very large, multi-year/million dollar projects, developing solutions focused on both large database systems that are process-oriented, as well as user-interface systems that are web-enabled.
Our consultants’ individual skill sets include but are not limited to the following:
Oracle Forms, Oracle Reports, Oracle JDeveloper, Oracle PathWays, VisualAge for Java, WebSphere, WebSphere Administration, SharePoint, Oracle Application Server, Emacs Editor, Apache, Apache Web Server, Apache HTTP Server, Apache Tomcat, Quest TOAD, Quest SQL Navigator, Quest Schema Manager, Quest QDesigner, TogetherJ, CVS, SDK, Netegrity, Visual Studio, Visio, Delphi, BEA WebLogic, FrontPage, MS Office, Adobe PageMaker, Photoshop, Acrobat, Microsoft IIS, Macromedia Dreamweaver, Crystal Reports
Mobile Application Platforms
Android, Apple iOS, Windows Mobile
Oracle, MySQL, SQLServer, Progress, Informix, MS Access, Userbase, Postgres
AIX, Unix, Linux, VMS, Solaris, OS/400, SunOS, Windows, NetWare
Alliance Technologies has adopted an agile and flexible systems development methodology based upon Rational Unified Process (RUP). The RUP approach to systems development includes the usage of the Unified Modeling Language (UML). This allows Alliance Technologies’ systems development procedures to take full advantage of industry standard, best practices that dramatically speed up time-to-market and increases the quality of software developed.
The following briefly highlights the benefits of using RUP:
- Delivers software development best practices from industry leaders
- Embraces an iterative approach to systems development
- Reduces risk and increases predictability of software development
- Delivers process components for domains, technologies and tools
- Gives project managers control over schedules and deliverables
- Provides configuration capabilities to fit the needs of your project team
- Improves team communications
- Optimizes the usage of the Unified Modeling Language (UML)
- Deploys tools to automate the full software systems development lifecycle
- Accelerates the project with clear guidance, templates, deliverables and useful examples
Customer: Strategic America
Application: SMP- Strategic Market Planner®
Platform: Microsoft .NET, SQL Server
Strategic America is an integrated marketing services agency that provides solutions in advertising, public relations, design services, media placement, direct mail, database marketing and e-business. The SMP-Strategic Market Planner® is a web-based planning and placement product/application. The system provides Strategic America greater control over the distribution of media content and prices. It also provides greater security and tracking of requests and queries related to the data.
The SMP has played a key role in helping Strategic America achieve their vision of representing 20 national brands, expanding their reach with companies such as Lennox Industries, Sprint Nextel, Xerox, and others. SMP gives Strategic American an easy-to-use advantage over its competitors.
As quoted by Strategic America CEO and Chairman, Mike Schreurs, "It's the most exciting tool at Strategic America today. It gives dealers permission to create, plan and place their own advertisements, quickly and efficiently - giving them a strategic competitive advantage."
Some high level features include:
- Web Services
- Secure Login/Unique URL
- Media Analyzer & Planner (Client/Dealer)
- Ordering (Client/Dealer
- Continuous Ordering for Multiple Media Types
- Order Review
- Order Submission via e-mail
- Order Confirmation (Screen and e-mail)
- Order Reporting: History and Actuals
- Calendar Feature Option
- Web Site
- Profile Management
Customer: Petroleum Marketers & Convenience Stores of Iowa (PMCI)
Application: Application: “RIN Alliance"
Platform: LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP)
RINAlliance is a web-based renewable fuel compliance application open to all blenders and marketers registered with the EPA. The RINAlliance system provides confidential management and reporting services on behalf of registered blenders, reports direct to EPA and aggregates marketable RINs for convenient brokering to Refiners and Importers. The application has played an important role in helping PMCI not only meet the requirements imposed by the EPA, but also to provide a valuable service to their customers by assisting them in the recording of this renewable fuel data.
- Internet-Based System
- Secure and Confidential Data Handling
- Computerized Data Base
- Easy Access - 24/7
- Electronic Compliance Reports
- Internal Security
- User Friendly Terminology
- PTD Creation Function
Benefits to client/end-users:
- Compliance with Federal Laws and Regulation
- Eliminates In-House Development Costs
- Eliminated Independent Audits Expense
- Operated by Industry Specialists
Customer: National Pork Board (NPB)
Application: NPB “Checkoff Application”
Platform: ASP.NET (web-based) data entry application written in C#.NET
The Checkoff Application is among the highest priority applications within the National Pork Board (NPB). The Checkoff Application is used to record hog sales in order to determine the dollar amount pork producers must submit to NPB. These funds are used by NPB as it “harnesses the resources of all producers to capture opportunity, address challenges and satisfy customers”. Prior to Alliance Technologies, the existing Checkoff Application was on an unsupported platform, and needed to be replaced in order to ensure supportability. Additionally, the current process included inefficiencies and potential errors caused by manual intervention that could be mitigated through an improved, more streamlined application.
The Checkoff Application was built to make it very simple for even non-savvy computer users to complete in order to make the transition from the paper-based to electronic based model more likely to succeed and be used by the marketers.
- An integrated and intuitive solution greatly enhancing usability and functionality.
- Modular application to make future enhancements easy.
- Back-end analysis & exception reporting based on the data entry and business rule processing.
- Replace existing canned reports in MS Access and Crystal Reports with SSRS 2005.
- The ability to push deposit data into Great Plains.
- Improved quality and efficiency for the current services provided by NPB.
- Resolution of current defects and improved exception handling significantly reducing the amount of time required to support the application.
Customer: Central Iowa Power Coop (CIPCO)
Application: Rebate Processing Software
Platform: ASP.NET (web-based) written in C#.NET
CIPCO hired Alliance Technologies to create a software application to help manage processing and tracking of energy efficiency programs provided for their member organizations. CIPCO is Iowa’s largest cooperative energy provider serving 13 rural electric cooperatives and associations throughout Iowa. CIPCO is headquartered in Cedar Rapids, with offices in Creston, Des Moines, Montpelier and Wilton.
Rebate Management Process
CIPCO’s member cooperatives submit data for energy efficiency rebates on behalf of their customers. The process for submitting this information had consisted of using a mix of paper forms that were mailed and database files that were emailed to CIPCO.
There were 3 cooperatives and 15 municipalities that were strictly using paper forms which were submitted to CIPCO at the end of each month. Another 9 cooperatives were entering the collected data into database files that were emailed and imported into the main database managed by CIPCO. Additionally, the coops using database files were required to submit paper forms for several new programs that were added in 2010.
Once everything was collected at CIPCO, summary information from the paper and database forms were entered into an excel file for monthly processing while all of the data collected on paper forms were later entered and merged into the main database by CIPCO staff. This entire process involved several steps and was error prone. Also, if there was ever a change to the structure of how the data was to be collected, all 9 database files had to be updated individually. In addition, the databases were housed on a platform that was becoming unsupported, was limited in terms of number of fields and could be affected by an upgrade to the computer Operating Systems.
Choosing Alliance Technologies
The main reasons why CIPCO chose Alliance Technologies for this project:
- The turnkey software programs available for their industry were not flexible enough and were not designed to handle the volume of transactions that CIPCO had to manage.
- CIPCO wanted to customize a system to be simple for the cooperatives to use. They wanted to minimize the number of steps for logging in and submitting the rebate request and associated data.
Key Benefits and Quotes
Russ Steven, Energy Solutions Manager, CIPCO
“Rather than waiting until month end and dealing with stacks of paper and sorting through larger data files in a short time period , we can now process a manageable amount of information on a day to day basis.”
Reduced paper consumption, increased efficiency:
“By processing online we no longer have to wait to receive faxes and forms in the mail and a lot less paper is consumed. Instead of storing forms and supporting documents in files and boxes, everything can be found on the computer. When you consider that duplicate documents are typically stored at both the cooperative offices and at CIPCO, the effect of this is doubled.”
Speeds up the time for turnaround of rebate requests:
“The processing of rebate requests has reduced from up to 2 months down to about 1 week -- sometimes within 1 day. Our cooperatives can typically cut a check to their members a week after submitting the online forms -–knowing that the request has been approved for payment from us.”
Accuracy of the data has been greatly improved:
“We can now accurately match what’s been paid back to the system.”
Improved Tracking and Data Retrieval
“If someone from one of our cooperatives calls CIPCO about a particular member or rebate request, we can both pull it up on the system and review the same information while on the phone - before we had to dig through stacks of paper to retrieve information and then give them a call to discuss the matter.”
”Alliance has shown a genuine interest in trying to understand our industry and our organization. This has allowed them to respond to our needs and provide us with a good software solution that is both simple and efficient.”