Alfred G. Jacques

http://www.ajacques.com

al@ajacques.com

Ready to Market Product Development, Timely IT Project Completion, Usable Software Architecture

 

 

A Senior Consultant with over thirty years experience in the Computer Industry delivering mission critical enterprise systems, I can help you bring your company’s projects to completion on time and within budget.  My background includes asset discovery, tracking and management, commercial product development, multi-project management, business requirements analysis, software architecture and design, communication systems, database integration, cross-platform and platform independent environments, and making use of new web technologies to lower IT costs.

 

Asset Management for the Bottom Line

Asset Management is only useful if it can demonstrate a change for the better on the bottom line.  A plan that simply spends money to demonstrate an effort is being made does not prove that the effort is worthwhile.  Each company’s uniqueness is what makes its own vision work and make money.  Likewise, each company has a unique complement of assets to help it fulfill its unique vision.  To make Asset Management pay off, you need tools and procedures in place that work together to help due diligence for the handling of all assets in the company with the related effects to depreciation, lease maintenance, IMACS (installation, moving, adding, changing, and disposing services), physical accounting and more.  I can help you acquire and implement a viable Asset Management plan.

 

Usable Software Architecture

All software projects should include an architectural plan.  Whether you can afford to perform this work before your project is launched into development, or if you have come upon the rocks of unplanned disasters, a solid plan going forward is the basis for completing any software project.  But software architecture must be usable to be successful.  A plan may be elegant or it may incorporate the latest technological fads.  But does it provide the use of the system that your customers want to see?  I can help you create a usable software architecture at any stage of your project.

 

Ready To Market Product Development

Software products are more than computer programs.  Today there are multiple methods available to purchase and receive software products.  A ready-to-market product includes all of the installation, documentation, options, support and upgrade systems required to make it stand-out as a professional piece of work.  Your product may need web-packaging, physical packaging, re-branding or distribution credits, or even physical manuals for your users.  I can help you create the packaging and the procedures for recreating the next version of your software product.

 

Timely IT Project Completion

Projects rarely meet their targets in terms of budget or time.  Often the real question is; how bad is it?  The solution requires a re-evaluation of the original goals of the project, and hard choices about what is to be delivered and what can be jettisoned.  Many times projects are side-tracked by what would be nice to have – and the impact such desires have upon the foundation of the work.  I can help you put your projects back on-track to deliver real requirements in an orderly and timely manner.

 

 

Project History:

 

Here are a few samples of my project experience:

 

 

Custom Add-in and Interface Development

 

Created custom add-in code for various products and interfaces between unrelated product lines to help scientists reduce duplicate data entry.  This included code in C++, C#, Java, Visual Basic 6 and VB.NET, and interfaces between COM and .Net environments.

 

Sample Code for API Documentation

 

Wrote over 1000 code samples; using a proprietary application program interface to a major chemistry software product.  Translated C++ signatures into VB.NET and provided VB.NET sample code.  This was well received at both the software company and at their customer sites.

 

 

Automating Secure File Transfers

 

Created a self-identifying system to monitor and securely transfer files as they are created from a multiple CPU and multi-partitioned mainframe network to a PC server using Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP).  Files are renamed to provide a record of where and when they were captured.  Failures are repeated up to a limit on a delayed basis.  If files do not transfer, they are picked up on the next cycle with any new files.  All parameters are user controllable but do not require operator intervention to install – CPU ID and partition number are discovered on the machine wherever the programs run.  This project eliminated 95% of the labor used to transfer and check the files manually.

 

 

Tracking Assets across Multiple Systems

 

Expert assistance and custom code provided to various customers; combining asset tracking data from diverse systems including mainframes into database products and XML.  Interfaced mainframe applications with PC based enterprise databases using self-discovery scripts to correctly report point of origin on any CPU and Partition without operator intervention.

 

 

Asset Movement across the Internet

 

Expert assistance and custom code provided on various confidential government projects; monitoring and evaluating data from multiple sources.  Work involved packet level communications, router and switch traffic, and IMACS completion records.

 

 

Bringing Manufacturing Systems into the 21st Century

 

A new company was created out of the remains of a bankrupt business.  I directed the redevelopment and implementation of Information Services including a plant-wide order tracking and inventory system that covers 12 diverse departments.  The new infrastructure is a distributed network of PC Servers and workstations using 90% of the old equipment without upgrade.  The software applications work on the company’s Intranet and allows limited customer access to data via a secure Extranet.  Many applications were based solely on example reports from the old systems and have been hailed by the user community as far better than what was available in the past.

 

This project was accomplished at a fraction of the maintenance costs of the old system.

 

 

Best Asset Discovery Software in Industry

 

Here, I was responsible for a team of System Developers creating best-of-breed software that examines a corporation’s computers and retrieves inventory data including serial numbers, cpu data and speed, bios versions, disk capacity, software applications, user information and more.  The software is based on architecture I developed to cross platforms and provide customizable reporting.  This team developed the most highly regarded package in the industry and it works on 20 different operating system platforms.

 

Regular duties included personnel administration, inter-departmental projects, determining priorities, project planning and tracking, interfacing with customers on key issues, presenting product plans and information, and on-time delivery of key enhancements and new products.  Represented the company at conferences – showcasing the product and speaking to large audiences about the value and use of this data to control and manage IT assets.

 

 

Forecasting for high-volume products without additional Data Entry

 

Designed and managed development of a reporting base for product forecasting.  This involved the interface of IBM Mainframe computers, Hewlett-Packard mini-computers, PC's and a WAN with connections in Phoenix, Oxford and New York.  Communications, Networking and Security issues had to be coordinated and were successfully solved.  Reduced time to forecast over 60,000 different product packages from two weeks to fewer than two hours.

 

 

Past-Due Account Collection using layered Software

 

Designed and implemented an in-house system for collections that automatically loads data from non-networked VAX computers via electronically captured reports.  This system supplements the existing account handling with an in-house collection agency and provides automatic updates to the legacy database using dynamic scripts for an unlimited number of accounts.  As the collectors speak with customers they perform normal account management as a simple by-product of recording their efforts in the collection system.  Scheduled reports are captured and analyzed for routing to collectors by Dealer/Store or to outside agencies as in-house collection efforts are exhausted over time.

 

 

Insuring Valid Mortgage Insurance Applications

 

Provided expert training and communication services to access various real-estate Multiple Listing Services (MLS) across the country.  Several different packages exist to facilitate MLS – the customer relies on their own comparable sales data by accessing these services.  I created a system that could be managed through a single interface to access any MLS system.  This data is used by the customer to check comparable sales data on applications.  It exposes fraudulent and questionable applications.

 

Different platforms and database systems are involved here using VAX and Sun computers, Oracle and Sybase databases.  This system was instrumental in dramatically decreasing the response time for comparable property searches.

 

 

Saving a Mandated Project

 

Managed a turn-around project where the entire in-house staff had left the company.  This included massive enhancements to the MANMAN manufacturing system (by ASK Systems) required for a government contract.  Took-over a second development project and enhanced an in-house Manufacturing and Productions Management System (MPMS).  MPMS supports 60-100 concurrent users providing daily input to Purchase Orders and Requests for Quotations, managing the material procurement functions for many dissimilar projects.

 

 

Connecting a Manufacturer, a Sales Channel and a Customer

 

Interfaced an IBM System/36 to a Honeywell DPS6 using the PICK operating environment and to an IBM 3090 (Sierra) using VTAM/VMS.  This was a real-time interface connecting a paper-forms supplier, an envelope manufacturer and a regional bank.

 

 

Quick Conversion Support

 

Provided expert support for the implementation of a major Order Entry System.  This system was converted and enhanced as a commercial package from an HP-3000 IMAGE system to a VAX system using ULTRA/RDB/OPTIBASE.  50 new reports and an on-line reporting menu were added to the system using COBOL, DCL and DECForms.

 

 

Developing MLS systems for Urban Areas.

 

Interfaced a PC graphics system with a network of larger computers including VAX, IBM and Amdahl for the SST project.  Data entered graphically from the PC was used to look-up entries in an ORACLE database on the IBM, which in turn was used to scan requirements in a file on the VM/UNIX system on the Amdahl and to run related calculations on the VAX.

 

Developed a property exchange tracking system for a specialized brokerage in San Jose and Sacramento, California.  This system captured data from both MLS boards (using the BULL system), matched qualified properties (going beyond the limits of the boards by analyzing captured data) with clients and prospects and automatically generating necessary offer proposals.

 

Maintained and enhanced a medical clinic billing package on a multi-processor PC based SCO/UNIX system.

 

Commercializing in-house Services as a Profit Center

 

Organized and directed a new computer services division of an international freight forwarding company to provide in-house and commercial data processing services.  Installed DEC and IBM systems on TYMNET for nation-wide access.  This covered customs duty information, warehousing data, warehousing operations, scheduling and tracking, insurance and accounting.

 

 

 

Environment Summary:

 

Think you have an environment that is too esoteric, or too complex?  Here is a sampling of systems where I have experience:

 

HARDWARE:

Amdahl, Apple, Compaq, Control Data, Dell, Digital Equipment, Hewlett-Packard, IBM Mainframe, IBM Sierra, IBM-PC (and many other brands), NCR, Siemens Nixdorf, Silicon Graphics, Sun, Unisys

 

O/S’s:

AIX, HPUX, IRIX, LINUX, Mac OS, Mac OSX, MS/DOS, NCR, Netware, OS/2, SCO, SINIX, Solaris, SUN/OS, TRU64, UNIX System 5, VM/CMS, VMS, Windows 3.x, Windows 95/98/ME, Windows NT/2000/XP/2003, z/OS

 

LANGUAGES:

ADO, ASP, Assembly, C#, C++, C, CGI/Perl, Cobol, Fortran, HTML, Java, JavaScript, .Net, Pascal, PHP, Rexx, VBscript, Visual Basic, XML, XSD, XSLT

 

DATABASES:

DB2, dBase, Informix, Microsoft Access, MYSQL, Oracle, PostgreSQL, SQL Server, Sybase

 

APPLICATIONS:

Asset Tracking/Management, Billing, Collections, Conversions, Communications, Content Management, Desktop Management, eCommerce, ERP, Insurance, Inventory, Manufacturing, Real Estate, SNMP Discovery, Web Design/Interfacing

 

Want help with your project?  Send an email to al@ajacques.com or call me at (919) 602-5037.

 

- Al Jacques