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Microsoft Access or Something Else?


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#1
thelochjessmonster

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:) Hi! Ummmm.... I'm a web tech, but my boss asked me to build what he calls a "database" for him. So basically I need a customer database and I have NO CLUE what I'm doing... I'm just tinkering with all kinds of programs and completely lost. What program am I supposed to be using to build this database... I have microsoft access, but I couldn't figure it out. I downloaded Python and pHpMyAdmin, although now that I have, I don't know why.... Could some one please give me a sense of direction??? Just let me know what I need to use, and where I can learn to use it!

Thanks so much :)

Jessica
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#2
Neil Jones

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Perhaps you should clarify with your boss exactly what he wants a database for, what he wants to store in it and what use it's going to be.

Access is the best example of a database but its not exactly the most user friendly program to go with if you haven't used it before. Python is a scripting language for writing programs and phpMyAdmin is a database driven solution for websites. You don't need this.
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#3
thelochjessmonster

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Well he basically just wants a database to store customer's information, you know name/address/phone numbers/what work we did for them/a place for notes/ that kind of deal? I appreciate your reply, so now I can atleast delete half of these programs off my computer (except python because I'm kind of starting to get the hang of it, even if it's not what I need it's kind of neat!). Please help... I don't know anything about access!!! xo
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#4
dsenette

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you might get your boss to check out ACT! by sage software....it's basically a prebuilt software package to do exactly what he's asking to do...it's a type of software called CRM (Customer/contact relationship management) that helps agregate all your company info about customers, work orders, suppliers, contacts etc... into one place that everyone can access etc.. even integrates with outlook so you can all share the same address book and such..

i've personally not USED the software but i've helped out a friend who uses it heavily at work and it's a relatively easy package to work with
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#5
thelochjessmonster

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Yeah he's really not digging the idea of paying 230 bucks for some software he's not sure about. He says if I can't figure out another (free) way to make a database then I need to use the Microsoft Access that he's already paid for....

I hate this man.
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#6
dsenette

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ah management....hehe ACT is GUARANTEED to have everything he wants (AND MORE) already built in

other than that...access would be the easiest method for a small database of customer information.....the step up option would be SQL....

i suggest going to the bookstore and getting some books on MS access....it's a really easy program to learn....
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#7
rstones12

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A couple of things here to determine your best solution. It sounds as though you need a central place to store customer information that the office/employees can access.

Perhaps you should clarify with your boss exactly what he wants a database for, what he wants to store in it and what use it's going to be.

This would be the first step of the process before you get yourself do deep into something that is not going meet your expectations or requirements.

CRM can consist of very basic information to very complex solutions, you will need to determine what value does this bring to your company and customers.

Just Google "CRM" and you will have more information that you will know what to do with.

ACT is a solution if you have a few users in that office and it supports remote users as well.. As long as you get the Premium Version and your boss will pony up the dollars for it.

If you are stuck with Access here are a couple of template links that will get you started.

Access 2007
http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/templates/TC012253431033.aspx?pid=CT101428241033

Access 2003
http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/templates/TC010178391033.aspx?pid=CT101426031033

Here are a couple of CRM's that you might want to take a look at.
http://www.sugarcrm.com/crm/

http://crm.zoho.com/crm/login.sas

Good Luck... :)
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