Government agencies often face development problems as complex as those seen in enterprises. So when the Scottish Renfrewshire Valuation Joint Board needed to build applications to manage electoral rolls and real-estate valuations, it turned to the best data integration tool it could find --- Alpha Anywhere. Alpha Anywhere offers a low-code environment for building applications that can integrate with a variety of databases. Because of Alpha's low code environment, complex database apps can be built without needing a team of developers.
The Renfrewshire Valuation Joint Board handles a great deal of complex, fast-changing data, and must keep all the information accurate and up to date. The board has only two people in its IT department, even though workload has increased over time because of how complex the electoral process has become. The board must maintain a variety of voting lists for different types of elections, including for local councils, UK and Scottish Parliaments, referendums, and the European Parliament. The board wanted a new system for a variety of purposes, including for managing the electoral register, the sales data for houses, real-estate valuations, and more.
Turning to Alpha Anywhere for Data Access
David Findlay, IT Support Officer for the Renfrewshire Valuation Joint Board, had used Access for development work before he worked for the board. At the board, though, he turned to Alpha Anywhere, and found it far superior to Access.
"Alpha Anywhere is much easier to use than Access," he says. "I found myself able to develop very complex applications very quickly. There was practically no learning curve. I was particularly impressed by its scripting capabilities."
He built numerous database applications for the Board with Alpha Anywhere. One manages the electoral register. Another handles recording house sales. One application manages the valuation process. He also built a powerful application that handles the complex workflow for the board. The workflow application uses a SQL database backend and a front-end Web application built using Alpha Anywhere. It lets staff quickly handle a wide variety of transactions related to real estate. The previous application was difficult and time consuming to use.
The applications built with Alpha Anywhere allow the board to handle complex functions far more easily than previously, and without adding to staff. Productivity has improved. No money had to be spent on hiring outside developers.
"One major benefit is that because of Alpha Anywhere, we can develop applications ourselves, without having to go to a third party," Findlay says. "That saves us money and time and puts us in charge, rather than having to depend on someone else. I can also make changes to applications quickly, rather than waiting for someone else to do it.
Summing up Alpha Anywhere's benefits, Findlay says, "Government data can be difficult to manage and maintain, but Alpha Anywhere makes it easy for us. Not only does that mean that our jobs are easier, but people who live in the district get better governmental services as well."
For more details, read the full case study here.