DATABASES

Databases are powerful storage and calculation units.
Proper integration of databases in your application can save you tons of work and will provide you live insight in your business.

Do I need a database?

Databases are powerful tools to store and view data. But the question is: “do you need a database?” The answer to this question is completely dependent on the kind of business that you wish to have. In many cases a good database combined with a simple front-end will save you loads of time in your work processes, analysis and communication. However are you self-employed and don’t have too much work on the administrative side you might be better of as you are right now. Normally a database application requires a healthy investment and as we know as soon as you start automating you’d like to automate more and more.

Around what price should I estimate?

Well this question is impossible to answer due to a lot of factors but the most important 2 are:
– There are unlimited different licences with a big bandwidth in costs.
– Are you going to host the database yourself or are you aiming to host in a cloud

Regarding our pricing it is very much dependable on your project, but if there is a concrete scope our project price will always be a lot cheaper compared with a price per hour.

Architecture

The Architecture of a database is essential to a durable database. Without it, you might have a product that works at the time but will not be able to be scaled up at the moment you want to scale up your company.

Example:
If you’re building a house, you can place the fundament only under the surface where you want to build at that time. Let’s say that in 5 years you’d like to build a big extension at the side of this house, the problem is that there is no fundament there and in case you need to start a construction site there (to construct a new fundament) the use of heavy tools might crack the walls of your house that is right next to this construction site.
Well, of course everything is fixable and with some plastering, painting, etc you will have your dream house anyway.
With a database iterations (1 iteration described in the example above) will happen over and over and over again. So a good architect will foresee the scalability and make sure that when your company is going to extend, the database prepared for changes.

Automatization

Databases are extremely powerful in doing calculations. So use them to do so!
In fact automating is nothing else then letting the database make decisions for you or execute processes for you. How are decisions made? …Correct by calculating them. Think about it, if you would try you can probably define your whole business process in 1 or multiple decision trees. The thing is that a database can make the same decisions, but faster, more consistent and at every time of the day. Most processes can actually be executed by the database as well (sending emails, handling payments, put notifications on your wunderlist), it just misses opposable thumbs to actually paint your house as well. We’ve spoken with many business owners over time and the general opinion is that it is scary to “not be in control yourself”. Maybe we can understand this fear, but be honest with yourself, Are you doing the same outstanding job if you had little sleep compared with a day where you’re well rested? Or is one of your employees doing an amazing job, but in case she would leave is the work going to be done with the same standard? In our opinion a guarantee for quality is only reachable by clear business processes which are well defined in code.

Indexing

Indexing is used to make your database find information fast (simple explanation: think of dog’s ears for your favourite recipes in a cook book). Even though indexing is a very powerful tool, we advise you not to go crazy with this. Indexes take up space so it might be wise to first build your database, then analyse what queries are asked a lot and what the actual path is that the database takes to find the answer to your query. Then build the essential indexes so you use minimal space and have optimal performance.

Testing

Every developer will tell you that testing is the least favourite part of his job. A good tester (like a good scientist) will try to prove that the code won’t do what is desired in ALL situations. In other words try feeding feeding a dog all kinds of things. When he eats the food, but doesn’t want to eat dirt the dog passes the test. If the dog fails it needs to be trained some more. Testing is essential for having stable results at a later point. For this reason, we advise everyone to have at least to people testing it and prevent them from communicating at the time of doing the tests.

Reporting

So after all previous steps, you have a beautiful database fill with priceless information. Now you’d like to receive this information in a way that you can actually reed it. Our preferred method (although it is a bit more work) is to make a dashboard so you can visualize your own reports by turning the knobs in the interface. Another way is to generate standard emails with clustered information on a periodic basis.

Database development price indication:

These prices are an indication and from project to project they might differ:

Small project
(+/-125 hours)

Medium project
(+/-400 hours)

Pay as you go
(price per hour)

Remote € 7500,- (€ 60 per hour) € 20000,- (€ 50 per hour) € 70,-
On-site € 10625,- (€ 85 per hour) € 32000,- (€ 80 per hour) € 90,-