A brief history and executive summary
After more than 30 years in the corporate world designing electronic circuits and later implementing Information systems, we selected entrepreneurship and started a small information Technology business in Upland Ca in 1986. We started out assembling and selling custom made IBM compatible computers to small businesses and individuals. Since most people had no exposure to computers at the time we also filled the demand for training. The demand was high for DOS and windows and the few limited applications that were available. The demand was mostly on word processing and spread sheet analysis.
There were no accounting and production management software packages available for PCs as they were for lager computers and mainframes to help us with the basic sales and accounting needs. Thus we began with a home-grown manual accounting and Production management system to satisfy out immediate basic needs of a systems integrator and Retailer. In summary:
1) We had to obtain and record the Customer information.
2) Identify and translate customer needs into a Sales order.
3) Determine what components are needed for the order and find a supplier offering quality components at competitive prices.
4) Maintain inventory for “just in time” delivery of needed components. Prepare and receive Purchase orders and maintain Accounts Payable.
5) Prepare work orders for each work station to build sub-assemblies needed to complete the final assembly based on the BoM
6). Calculate the cost of the finished product-based cost of the components labor and overhead.
7) Assemble and compute the actual cost of the finished product.
8) Update and Invoice the Customer order.
9) Account for the cash received or maintain Accounts Receivable.
10) Update and manually produce financial and Sales reports.
We immediately began developing programs (in visual basic) to automate each one of the basic accounting functions first. General Ledger, Journal, Invoicing and purchasing functions, Inventory management and cash management. We witnessed improvement in productivity after we automated the basic Accounting functions and were motivated to continue with the plan to complete a complete server based integrated Accounting with Production Management system that included all the functions needed to make it a total solution for any entrepreneur who users parts and labor to produce a finished product.
We developed and integrated all the needed production management functions to the accounting modules in a simplified manner but consistent with the structure used by larger manufacturing entities. Inventory management with “just in time” ordering, Bills of Material, Work Orders, Work Station Routing cost, Payroll with Time and Attendance. We later added Fixed Asset management with depreciation.
Upon completion of all related functions we installed the package onto a home-grown PC server and discontinued the old manual system. This new system improved our productivity further served us well with Accounting, production and the in-house sales functions. We did however spend a lot of time taking sales orders a third party shopping cart and from orders received via e-mails or Faxes and manually entering them to our in house system.
By the end of 2003 we added Payroll Time and Attendance and Fixed asset Management with depreciation to the package. We added a shopping cart package and using Microsoft’s .NET framework we re-coded the package in basic script and Java for web based use. We integrated it to our domain Websba.com and thus enter orders and perform accounting functions from anywhere at any time. This increased our sales and productivity manifold. Additionally, we offered the complete functionality of the package on a subscription basis to other small business operators who in turn increased their efficiency and effectiveness without the need to invest in acquiring and maintaining hardware/software packages.
We have recently reconfigured the package to install on any domain with a Microsoft Windows web server connected to the web with a fast line. As it was mentioned earlier all sales and Accounting functions and data are seamlessly integrated into one data base that can be accessed securely from anywhere at any time using a web connected PC including a smart phone and or an iPad. The Microsoft access data base can be download for backup and off site safe keeping. We have also been uploading the data base back on to the cloud when needed.
There are currently three versions of the package available.: 1) The original websbaTM Accounting package that was installed onto our own home-grown server for private in-house use. This package can be installed on any private in-house traditional server and is named websba Plus and need not have Internet access. 2) The updated Accounting with Production Management package that was originally installed onto our domain, “websba.com “ can now be installed on any webserver under any domain name. Both websba Plus and websba.com can be configured to share data base on the installed server. 3) The WebSBM is a complete Small Business Management package that includes multi-company on-line shopping cart and a Fixed Asset management with several asset depreciation methods.