GlobalVision Systems Solutions – Report Manager ™
Organizations such as banks, credit unions, stockbrokers, etc. receive hundreds of reports every day from their IT departments or their data processing service providers. Since printing, storing, and searching through paper reports is expensive and time consuming, using electronic reports has become the current trend.
Reading these electronic reports online may be easy for employees residing at the same location where the file server is located because today’s local area networks provide a data transfer speed of 10 Mbps (i.e., 107 bits per second) or higher. However, reading electronic reports is a very unpleasant experience for employees working at remote sites because most organizations use a data transfer speed of 128 Kbps (i.e., 1.28 x 105 bits per second) or lower for its communication links between the head office and the remote offices. As a result, a person at the remote office may need to wait for about 16 minutes to open a report file, which other persons at the head office can open within 10 seconds. This kind of long waiting period at the remote offices can severely impair the morale and efficiency of the employees and adversely affect the customer service quality. In addition, if there is a new computer in the branch or some problems reported in the branch, the technical staff needs to travel to the branch to install the report software on the new computer or debug and fix the problems there. The overhead increases very quickly as the organization grows.
Report Manager™ (US patent pending) is designed to resolve these annoying and costly problems. It converts the information contained inside a report into the database of a web server. Instead of waiting for the download of the report file, a remote user can use a browser to read the information he/she needs from the web server through the Internet or the Intranet. There is no need to install any software into the users computer, thus the system maintenance is tremendously simplified. With Report Manager™, an organization can tremendously save time and cost, boost morale and efficiency, and ensure customer satisfaction and business success.
The standard client-server computer network architecture requires a server computer to store all the data for the client computers to access. When a client computer opens a report file for a user to read, the whole report file needs to be transferred from the server computer across the networks to the client computer. As a result of this file transfer mechanism, the time required to open a report file for reading is proportional to the size of the file, and is inversely proportional to the data transfer speed.
Since telecommunication companies charge expensive service fees for communication links with high data transfer speed, most organizations can only afford to use 64 Kbps or 128 Kbps communication links for their remote offices. At 128 Kbps transfer speed, it takes about two to three minutes to transfer one megabyte of data through the link. At 64 Kbps transfer speed, the required time to transfer data will double. Many report files are at the size of a few megabytes. Therefore, it is very frustrating for a user at the remote office to wait for five to ten minutes just to get one answer from the report. In addition, when this huge amount of data goes through the communication link, all the other data transmission related activities slow down because the bandwidth is mainly occupied by this bulk data transfer. This problem is aggravated when image files are also involved. Consequently, customers’ complaints will arise and the organization’s reputation will be negatively affected.
Report Manager™ is designed to resolve this problem through an innovative approach. Since the communication link speed cannot be increased easily due to the cost concern, the only available option to obtain a faster response is to reduce the amount of data transferred through the communication link. One solution to reduce the amount of data is to send only a small fraction of the file, instead of the whole file, through the communication link according to the user’s needs. Report Manager™ has incorporated an intelligent algorithm to determine the location of the fraction in a file before sending that specific fraction of the file through the communication link.
In practice, a user at a remote office can use an Internet browser to log into the web server of Report Manager™. After passing the security check, a report directory with time log is displayed for the remote user to choose the report that he/she is interested in reading. Once the report is selected, Report Manager™ automatically extracts the data from the report and displays it page by page through the web server. Since only one web page of information will be transferred to the remote office at one time, the amount of data going through the communication link is relatively small. The response time is typically within a few seconds for each web page.
If a user has a specific interest, he/she can use the search engine provided by Report Manager™ to identify the specific web page that he/she needs. Instead of the whole report file, only the interested portion of the file will be sent to the remote office through either Internet or Intranet. A user can also print the report or export it to Excel. Report Manager™ is compatible with Windows, Unix and Linux client. Not only the users in the remote offices but also the users in the head office can use their Internet browser to access the web server of Report Manager™ to further improve the response time.
Report Manager™ can transform a legacy report storage server of an organization into a state-of-the-art, net-centric information provider. It uses the familiar Internet browser as the user interface and requires very little user training and system maintenance. It saves time and money, and boosts overall morale and efficiency. With Report Manager™, a company can enjoy a quantum leap to greater success by using the most advanced information technology without spending money and taking risks to replace the legacy systems of the organization.