CASE STUDY – Mobile Telephony Pre-Market Deployment Assessment

This case study was delivered through Dunstan Thomas and Ascent (Malta)

The Opportunity

Following an intensive selection process, Dunstan Thomas selected Ascent Software in Malta for their offshore software development needs. 

“Our selection was driven out of the need to increase resource numbers whilst not compromising on quality. In the past we had used Indian offshore companies. The experience was not wholly positive, with communication, culture and levels of skill key among the factors. 

Working with Ascent has been a completely different experience all together. The very proximity of Malta to the UK coupled with the excellent educational standards and fluent English communication, make Malta a very compelling proposition for UK based companies. We have been pleasantly surprised by the levels of sophistication not only technically but also in the maturity of Ascent’s management and process. We shall continue to use Ascent to deliver our products and look forward to a long fruitful relationship” says  Chris Read, Chairman of Dunstan Thomas “ We are confident that Ascent Software can offer a variety of value added services which we can leverage to strengthen our position in the market place”

Project Brief

Ascent Software was commissioned by Dunstan Thomas to upgrade and maintain an existing web portal of one of their larger clients in the mobile telephony industry. The web-based application acts as a repository and also a work environment for such client to communicate with all major mobile handset providers.

The solution is a tool for communication between these parties in order to enhance market research prior to deploying new mobile products and services to the market. Communication takes place on two levels – marketing and technical. The application provides a sophisticated mechanism to allow multiple users worldwide to provide, exchange and approve of details regarding new products and services before they are commissioned to go live.

Ascent’s Contribution

Ascent Software was primarily responsible for understanding the existing code base, re-factoring the entire application and optimising the database back-end. Subsequent parts of the project involved the creation of an automatic email daemon and the enhancing of the UI.

Once the code base was absorbed, Ascent embarked on the task of re-factoring major parts of the application. As a result of poor initial software design, scalability was starting to become an issue, which is why Ascent was first commissioned with such a task in order to enable further development.

Optimisation of the existing solution was necessary to speed up the extraction of data throughout the portal as well as for data retrieval for reporting. Ascent migrated business logic from the portal to the database in stored procedures, as well as optimised such stored procedures. 

The automatic e-mail daemon was required to allow users to request reports to be sent to them rather than downloading, which sometimes took a long time to generate the file to even allow the download in the first place.

With regards to the enhancing of the User Interface, new features were developed for the system (e.g. the ability to investigate current status of a change notification) and existing ones enhanced (e.g. adding filters to the administration pages). At the team’s suggestion, an audit log was also built into the system to keep track of all movements.

The project was developed using C# and ASP.NET using some XML-based processes.