Time-Warner Telecommunications Corp (TWTC), one of the nation’s leading providers of managed networking solutions across 30 states, nearly missed a lucrative market opportunity due to limitations in its ordering software, when new laws were passed allowing it to pursue the residential consumer market.

The Challenge: Business constraints due to software limitations

TWTC’s original ordering system was built to support business customers only, lacking the flexibility and scalability to support new business markets. When new laws were passed enabling TWTC to pursue the residential market, its limited, legacy commercial ordering system did not provide the functionality needed to support residential orders.

As a leading provider of network services, TWTC knew it needed to be first to market to capture the bulk of the new consumer opportunities opened up by the telecommunications deregulations act. But it needed to move quickly to build a switched ordering database system with the functionality needed to support the consumer phone service.

Many of the solutions initially considered by TWTC required not only a substantial investment in infrastructure, but, more importantly, a substantial amount of time to develop and deploy. That was not an option if TWTC wanted to capture the lion’s share of the new residential market, and also limit its liability and costs associated with the new venture.

The Solution: Microsoft Access database design for rapid prototyping and development

Enter Help4Access and its solutions built on expertly modified Microsoft Access databases.

Help4Access built a SWAT team of application architects and developers to collaborate with TWTC’s Order Fulfillment group. Through this collaborative effort the SWAT team was able to quickly build a working prototype Residential Ordering System from scratch by building a Switched Ordering Database (SODB) using the power and RAD (Rapid Application Development) capabilities of Microsoft Access.

After successfully demonstrating the prototype’s ability to support the TWTC consumer phone ordering service, the team was able to rapidly develop and deploy a full-scale production ordering system allowing TWTC to successfully enter this new market and immediately begin seizing market share. Key success factors included the close working relationship between Help4Access and key business stakeholders, as well as the iterative development life cycle.

According to Sasha Froyland, founder and CEO of Help4Access, “70 percent of other consulting companies’ custom Access database design projects fail to come in on time, within budget or fail to meet the original business requirements. Help4Access’s success rates are much much higher because of two things: 1) the Rapid Application Development capabilities built into Microsoft Access, which enables development at lightning speeds,  and 2) our world-class senior consultants, who know how to expertly modify Microsoft Access to the point it can compete with vastly more expensive enterprise solutions.

““By directing a SWAT team of cross-functional skills consisting of database administrators (DBAs), developers and business analysts, Help4Access was able to build a solution from the ground-up in much less time than a traditional software development project on a non-Microsoft Access platform. That gave TWTC the competitive edge to get to market first.”

The Benefits: Fast time to market to capture critical market share

Help4Access’s ability to quickly prototype, build and deploy an expertly modified Microsoft Access solution designed specifically to met TWTC’s requirements provided the critical advantage needed by TWTC to capture significant market share right at the start of the telecommunication deregulation era.

The new system was so critical to Time Warner’s success that the Vice President of TWTC announced at an annual meeting that the Microsoft Access-driven residential order system (SODB) developed by Help4Access was one of the single largest contributors to TWTC’s ability to beat the competition to market with residential service offerings.

“We’re very proud to be part of TWTC’s incredible success story” says Sasha,“by rapidly prototyping an deploying an Microsoft Access-centric solution, we were able to deliver the functionality needed for TWTC to successfully capture a significant new market share.”

Help4Access is an MS Access developer and leader in custom database application solutions delivering its expertise to the ecommerce, healthcare, financial services and education.

Since 1997, Help4Access has  provided scalable database applications and Microsoft Access support for Fortune 500 companies such as Wells Fargo, Hewlett-Packard and Google. To learn what we can do for you and your business, contact us today!