About You

One of the main sections on this web site has been titled "About You". It contains categories and articles that define what we believe could be important to you as a potential client of Torq Software and our software development expertise. Please feel free to provide feedback on this content or suggest additional content related to software development that is of relevance to you. We focus on you as the client so as to archieve the goal of:

Your Business Success through Software Development

Its not about the technology, but what it can do for you. The categories of articles that discuss how software development assists in achieving your business success are listed below.

Selling Software and Services

Selling Software and ServicesSelling low volume software products is not always a good business model unless you can charge particularly high prices. This can be a problem because software development is an expensive process. An alternative business model is where the software product sales are treated purely as an introduction to ancillary services. So if you have a services business and need some differentiation from your competitors, consider developing software product for your Clients which acts as a lead on to sell your other services.

Automated Client Interaction

AutomatedClientInteractionExcept for areas where a personal touch is beneficial, automating interaction with your Clients is a win for everyone. It reduces your handling costs, improves the consistency of services supplied and makes it easier for your Client to do business. This translates to making it easier for your Clients to purchase goods and services from you. An example of this is the orders/instructions import facility of the Iris Debt Collection System.

It allows the user to simply drag an email attachment into the Iris program from which the type of attachment is analyzed and different import routines are run. If the document is an order/instruction document then it is analyzed and a new job is created in the system ready to be handled by the business. Originally each of these instruction documents had to be manually typed. The automation of such a process saves on your staff's time and hence improves your bottom line.

Tailored Reports and Displays

Specialized ReportsReports tailored to your specific business needs can make a huge difference in seeing how your business is really working and then acting on that information. We can develop reports or program displays that may not be able to produced be in your existing software systems or are a combination of information from multiple software systems. This can provide you with concise and understandable information that is needed to run your business on a day to day basis.

An example of a report tailored to the needs of a particular business is the Active Job Trend Report. In this scenario, the business operated based on the completion of jobs i.e. units of work that are well defined and can be invoiced separately. The jobs take between a week or so up to a a number of months to complete. Because of the variation in job completion times, it was difficult for the business owners to easily see the flow of jobs through their business and by implication the cash flow.

The Active Job Trend Report was created to assist in the visualization of job flow through the business. The Y axis represents the number of jobs that are in progress within the business at a given point in time. The X axis provides a time scale. The area chart in the report is colour coded so that the proportion of jobs in different age brackets can be visually identified. At any given point in time on the report, the number of jobs in each age category can be visualized. In addition, trends in each age category can easily be seen.to



Colour Meaning
Green The job is less than 30 days old
Yellow The job is between 30 and 60 days old
Orange The job is between 60 and 90 days old
Red The job is between 90 and 120 days old


In the more traditional tables of numbers reports, we have regularly utilized drill down techniques where links in a report can be used to drill down into another report or the details of the data used in a summary figure. The following Client summary report displays information grouped by Client and then into a region sub-group. Each figure that represents a count of jobs in the report is presented as a hyperlink. Clicking on the hyperlink brings up a data grid of all of the jobs that contributing to the total figure. Its a quick and easy way of exploring the report's content and by implication exploring the operations of your business.

Clicking on the No Cost link in a Job Client Summary Report

Here's an example of a data oriented drill down after clicking on the "No Cost" total in the previous report. In this case, three jobs have contributed to the value in the higher level report. The application user can then follow through and view the details of those particular jobs in the system.


Integration with Accounting Systems

QuickBooksIntegrationMyobProfessionalDeveloperThe Accounting Software is often one of the key components of a modern business. It records and presents the financial information of a business. In the majority of cases, the Accounting Software used is a general piece of software that is not tailored for use in your type of business, let alone your particular business. We can integrate multiple systems in your organization so that information flows automatically between these systems with manual labour involved.

We've worked with Intuit's QuickBooks software and are a MYOB Professional Development partner. The automated integration between your non-accounting systems and your accounting system allows reports across all systems to be update and with reduced data entry costs. An example of such an integration scenario is the automated export of job invoice information from the Iris Debt Collection system to Quickbooks.

The export feature allows large blocks of completed work to be quickly and easily exported to from an operational system to your company's QuickBook's database. In the example below, all of the jobs that have been completed and paid for (finalized) are displayed. Your Bookkeeper can then simple select all of the finalized jobs and export them automatically to QuickBooks. In this scenario, a Quickbooks invoice is automatically defined for each job but other data synchronization approaches can be taken as well. The advantage of integrating your software systems with your accounting include:


  • No repetitive data entry
  • More accurate than manual approaches
  • Up to date and timely accounts data


A particular advantage of the QuickBooks integration work we've done is that it is fully networkable over a TCP/IP network. This allows your accountant or bookkeeper to be able to say keep the accounts on their laptop, VPN into your office network to perform the accounts data synchronization. Similarly businesses with multiple office locations across the country can integrate local office data with head office accounting systems.

Automate Processes

AutomateProcessesThe largest cost in most modern businesses typically are labour costs. Hence it makes sense to automate as much of your internal workflows as practical. Off the shelf software that performs this automation task is ideal, but often there simply isn't an existing software product that meets your automation needs. We can develop software for your business which automates workflows that haven't yet been automated.

A typical scenario is the use of standard Office products such as Word, Excel, Outlook and Visio. They provide a high level of functionality but are not targeted at particular industries. We can develop Office add-ins which enhance these Office products with functionality that is specific to your business. These will save your Staff from having to perform repetitive tasks which suck up time in their day which could be spent on more beneficial tasks. Note that many other standard Software products have APIs which we can use to extend their functionality and automate your internal processes.

An example of the development of an Office add-in is the MacroView Excel Addin product that we have developed. It extends the Excel functionality to communicate to MacroView systems. It allows information from MacroView systems to be easily and dynamically imported into an Excel spreadsheet. We can achieve the same functionality for any of your internal or external systems. This would allow you and your staff to quickly product Word, Excel, Visio and other documents without having to manually copy and paste information every time.

The MacroView Excel Addin extends Excel 2007 with an additional ribbon tab. For Excel 2003 and earlier, an additional drop down menu is included. These additional menu options provide the ability to specify what external data to be able to import dynamically and how the information is updated.

It allows dynamically updated individual values to be placed in individual cells and then referenced by the standard Excel calculation and display functionality:

Similarly, large tables of external data can easily be integrated and updated: