SharePoint Migration and Maximising Office 365 Investment
Representing the interests of a huge number of clients from media, technology and creative industries, high-profile law firm Lee & Thompson have been a client of Chess Digital since 2012. We initially assisted with the migration of SharePoint 2007 to SharePoint 2013, and since then have been helping maximise the potential of their Office365 environment.
Currently, our consultants and developers are tailoring the SharePoint experience to allow the company to take advantage of new and innovative features. This includes the design and build of a cloud intranet allowing for the migration of the organisation from their existing on-premise setup. Among the significant benefits this will provide is the ability for users to access the internet using mobile devices.
The next phase of enhancements will include the introduction of Teams, Flow and Forms and the configuration of SharePoint online to allow effective collaboration with external parties. Microsoft's Power BI service will make it easier for Partners to access and view accounts information clearly, dramatically simplifying several complex business processes.
Migrating Existing ASP.NET
Chess Digital have been proud to work with BT on the development of the web service which supports their Challenge Cup employee engagement programme. Rolling out to over 6500 users globally, the Challenge Cup is an annual competition designed to encourage employees to develop and deliver ideas that improve customer experience.
Having undertaken a Requirements Elicitation session with the Challenge Cup team, from a technical perspective, the challenge was to migrate existing ASP.NET into a state of the art structure, where the UI is built as an Angular 5 single page application and communication with the SQL Server database handled by a stateless WebAPI service.
The development team re-used most of the existing application's business logic code, integrating this into the service, resulting in an application that is dramatically improved in terms of performance, has less code duplication and will be easier to extend and scale.
You can find out more about the Challenge Cup here https://vimeo.com/275868326
Migrating Various CRM/ERP Systems into a Single Integrated Platform
The large amount of small businesses the Chess Group have acquired over the years has resulted in the collection of a large amount of information, records and documents. To manage the complexity associated with the integration of data sets originating from different organisations, and to streamline the business processes associated with a rapidly growing company, we created ‘My Portal’. The customer-facing application allows people to access relevant information stored in an internal Portal database and manage tickets, sign quotes and coordinate callouts alongside other key business processes. Everyone in the Chess Group uses My Portal regardless of division or location.
Development of My Portal has been in line with the ‘One System Single Truth’ initiative, meeting the business’s objective of satisfying all divisions requirements with one solution. To create My Portal, various CRM/ERP systems were integrated into a single platform. A change of this scale and significance does not come without teething issues and six months down the line we have actively collated and implemented change requests from our staff team of over 400 people across the five divisions.
My Portal has been a hugely beneficial development for the whole Chess group. The simplified and standardised customer-centric approach maximises productivity, reduces errors and provides customers with the best experience possible. During the phased migration the organisation has continued to function with minimal disruption. The innovation underpinning not just the development of the software, but in the rollout and product management of a live system has been ground-breaking and a prime example of the scale and criticality of projects we can design, build and deliver.
Using SharePoint to Streamline Business Processes
A Chess customer for over 10 years, Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd are a Scottish Government-owned organisation who provide the ferries, ports, harbours and infrastructure which run the necessary services to Scotland’s west coast, the Clyde Estuary and the Northern Isles.
With the objective of tightening up fault reporting processes and increasing the accuracy and speed in which incidents are dealt with, CMAL engaged Chess to design and build a remote management system to support internal communication and coordinate task management.
Developing customised SharePoint site templates with integrated dashboards drastically boosted efficiency and transparency of internal project management processes. Implementation of SharePoint workflow services helped manage and automate incident reports. Using the system, CMAL can now complete reports on SharePoint which notify relevant individuals and provide the necessary information relating to repairs. If required, SharePoint will also notify specific third-party suppliers, alerting them of a defect and its location. The improvements have significantly improved the speed in which incidents are dealt with and how effectively CMAL engage with suppliers.
A mobile application was developed which allow CMAL staff members to take photographs, tag relevant metadata and upload them to SharePoint. These tags can be searched for on SharePoint, making it easy to visually track progress of both projects and repairs in real-time.
Using Umbraco to build focuspoint.org.uk, a student friendly website for FOCUS West
FOCUS West is the largest division in Scotland of the National Schools for Higher Education (HE) Programme. Their mission is to widen access and maximise the number of pupils progressing to Higher Education.
Individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds can face significant barriers when it comes to accessing Higher Education. They may lack the relevant support from families and peer groups to help with applications and discuss options, resulting in a process that feels daunting and isolating. It was essential for FOCUS West to provide pupils a way of communicating HE opportunities in an aspirational, engaging and practical manner, replacing a paper-based process reliant predominantly on face-to-face interaction.
Chess consultants hosted design-led innovation workshops with the FOCUS west team to understand and document objectives for the service and to co-design potential solutions. The resulting digital service encourages pupils to discover and discuss options with fellow students in a safe and secure environment. A number of engaging and interactive tools are made available, including an integrated psychometric test that helps define goals and act as an intuitive journey planner, mapping the path to a successful application.
The pioneering web portal, which successfully signposts routes, pathways and contacts for both pupils and stakeholders has significantly helped demystify, simplify and improve HE opportunities for young people.