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Integrated Inventory Management & Online Customer Order Processing System For Adonai African & Caribbean Shop By Livingston C. Turker Computing & Management Session 2005 / 2006 The candidate confirms that
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Integrated Inventory Management & Online Customer Order Processing System For Adonai African & Caribbean Shop By Livingston C. Turker Computing & Management Session 2005 / 2006 The candidate confirms that the work submitted is their own and the appropriate credit has been given where reference has been made to the work of others. I understand that failure to attribute material, which is obtained from another source may be considered as plagiarism. (Signature of Student)... 3 Summary The aim of the project was to design and implement an Inventory Management and Online Customer Order Processing Systems for Adonai African & Caribbean Shop. The shop specialises in selling African and Caribbean products, from groceries items to cosmetics. The shop also offers various services, which includes renting out African films and Money transfers. Adonai Shop currently use basic Ms Applications to manage inventory records and all business related processes. Due to the constantly changing business environment, which has led to an increase in the number of credit customers and product range available, Adonai therefore recorgnised the need for a system that would enable them in the processing of customer orders and managing the inventory records and also assist in the provision of other business services such as the renting of the DVD films and thereby improving the efficiency of business processes. The project required the developer to adhere to software project management techniques in order to successfully obtain the company s requirements, before designing, implementing, testing and evaluating the system. i 4 Acknowledgements I would firstly like to thank my project supervisor, Dr. Kristina Vuskovic for her assistance during the project and my project assessor Martyn Clark for his valuable feedback during the progress meeting. Secondly, I would like to thank Edison Bundy and Helen Robinson for the time and effort they have put into proof reading my reports. Finally, I would like to acknowledge Lennox Cummings and Monica Z. Wang for their kind words when times were hard. Thank you. 5 ii Table of Contents Contents... Page Summary... i Acknowledgement... ii Table of Contents...iii-v 1. Introduction Overview of Adonai Shop Problem Definition Project Aim The Objectives of the Project Minimum Requirements Possible Extensions Deliverables Project Relevance to Degree Program Project Schedule Progress Report Background research Methodology/Process models and technology selection Structured System Analysis and Design Methodology (SSADM) System Development Life Cycle The Waterfall Model The V Model The Spiral Model Methodology Choice Selecting appropriate Database System MS SQL Server PostgreSQL MySQL Selecting a Server Side Scripting Language Active Server Pages Java Server Pages (JSP) Hypertext Pre-Processor (PHP) Usability Issues Security Issues Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) Hosting/Web Server Selection Project Amendments Analysis Analysis of the Current Business Process Current Customer Ordering Process Current Purchase Ordering Process The Existing System Shortfalls of the Current System Analysis of an off-the-shelf Systems OrderWise Stockit! iii 3.8 The Business Analysis and IT Strategy IT SWOT (Strength Weakness Opportunity and Threats) User Requirements Requirements Gathering Techniques Functional Requirements Constraints Non-Functional Requirements Performance Maintenance Usability Design Process Modeling The Context Data Flow Diagram (DFD) of the Proposed System Data Modeling Entity Relationship Diagram The Database Schema Constraints Business Constraints Functional Dependencies Primary Key Constraints Domain Constraints Normalisation Boyce Codd Normal Form System Views User Interface Design Usability Design System Architecture Implementation Software Installation Database Implementation The Database Tables Primary Key Constraints Data Types Other Constraints Implementing the Ordering System The Ordering System Tables Displaying Categories of Items Displaying Items Information Implementing the Shopping Cart (basket) Adding Items to Cart (basket) Viewing the Shopping Cart (basket) Removing Items from the Shopping Cart (basket) Checking out Orders User Interface Implementation using Iterative Approach System File Structure Security and Privacy Passwords Session Enabling iv 5.6.3 MySQL Injection Vulnerability System Functionality Viewing, Editing and Deleting Records Adding Records Searching for Records Generating Reports Retrieving Customer Orders Checking Stock Level Retrieving Lists of Debtors Retrieving Products and Customer Details System Testing Sample Data Deployment Software Module Testing Black Box Testing White Box Testing System Integration Testing User Acceptance Testing Evaluation Meeting the Minimum Requirements Exceeding the Minimum Requirements Future System Enhancements Customer Online Accounts Creation Improved Administrator Features Automatically Generate Purchase Orders Customisable Interface and Page Layout Evaluation of Chosen Methodology Evaluation of Chosen Technologies Evaluation of Design Stage Evaluation of Implementation Usability Evaluation Comparisons to Alternative Systems Conclusion References APPENDIX A APPENDIX B APPENDIX C APPENDIX D APPENDIX E APPENDIX F APPENDIX G APPENDIX H APPENDIX I APPENDIX J APPENDIX K APPENDIX L v 1.0. Introduction This chapter details a general overview of Adonai African and Caribbean shop business strategy. It outlines the aims and objectives for the project, specifies the minimum requirement, possible extensions discussed and it identifies the deliverables. In addition, the chapter gives a brief overview of the project significance to the developer s degree program and a brief information on the layout of this report. 1.1 Overview of Adonai Shop Adonai shop specialises in selling African and Caribbean groceries and household products and also offers a number of services, which includes money transfer abroad and the renting of DVDs and VCRs of African films. The shop opened in 2001 in Leeds. The vast majority of Adonai products are export goods, although some of the products are purchased from other wholesalers in the UK mainland such as London and Manchester. The shop is currently managed by the staff, the manager and the till cashier. With the implementation of new e-commerce technologies, the manager hopes to expand the business and employ more staff Problem Definition Adonai shop is a small business striving to compete in a segmented market share. Sales revenues have gone up since the shop opened in Leeds. There are a number of regular customers in and around cities near Leeds that purchase items from the store on credit and their details are written on paper. Customers can place orders via the phone and the information is recorded on paper and then the store delivers to the customer s home. Sometimes paperwork goes missing and the customers don t receive their orders and this causes loss of business and trust from customers as they are often frustrated with the quality of service. The manager uses spreadsheets and physical stock check to manage inventory. This method has been deemed inefficient, as it is not often apparent when stock levels are running low. Due to the nature of the customers been served by Adonai shop, customers are currently not able to purchase items from home or browse the internet to see what is available, before driving to the stop only to find that the item they required has been sold out or has to be ordered from a supplier abroad. In addition to selling food and house-hold items, the store also rent out DVDs and VCRs movies and several of these DVDs and VCRs go missing without knowing who borrowed them last. Inventory is currently managed by spreadsheets and other basic software applications, which is not very efficient as most items go unaccounted for Project Aim The aim of this project is to develop an integrated inventory management and online customer order processing information technology solutions to manage inventory and daily services and transactions at Adonai African & Caribbean shop The Objectives of the Project The overall objectives are to develop a thorough understanding of Adonai s business process and analyse the current business strategy whilst developing methods for improvements by using appropriate information systems methodology to design and implement the new system. 9 1.5. Minimum Requirements Develop a prototype web-based ordering system. The web based ordering system should enable customers to browse stock availability. Develop a prototype inventory management database. The database should be able to store and retrieve stock information. The database should be able to store and retrieve customer details. The database should be able to store and retrieve DVDs details Possible Extensions The database shall be able to list stocks that are running low. The web based ordering system shall allow for the creation of customers account. The web based ordering system shall be able to take and process customer orders. The web based ordering system shall be able to generate receipts with order reference. The Inventory Management System shall integrate the functionality to loan DVDs to customers. The inventory management system shall implement login password and username for security. A User Manual. The Inventory Management System shall implement functionality to list debtors and their details Deliverables A database system that stores customer, items, DVDs, and order details. A dynamic website that allows customers to browse stocks and place orders The full project report Project Relevance to Degree Program The project is relevant to my Degree Program as it will enable me to put together and utilise a number of skills I have acquired throughout my degree course and also to develop new skills and insight into the development of e-business solution to support a small business. The project covers skills acquired from a wide range of the school of computing taught modules, which includes, Information Systems (IN11) and Software Project Management (SE22), which enables the application of appropriate methodologies, usability and time management consideration. Internet Systems Technologies (SY22), Advanced Databases (DB31and DB21) will help in the development of the database design and the web-based solution respectively Project Schedule The initial Project Schedule can be found in Appendix (B) and may be subject to change during the course of the project due to a number of uncertainties that might be encountered Progress Report I have met the milestones numbers 1-6 as indicated in the Project Schedule, which can be found in appendix (B). I have critically examined and understood the problem situation, and as a result, I have performed a preliminary research into what technologies, methodologies and tools that will be required to provide solutions to the problem. 10 I am currently in the process of conducting various feasibility studies and analysis of the proposed solution Background Research This chapter detailed a selection of different methodologies, technologies and indicates their level of importance in a given information system development. It also gives detailed justification of the chosen methodology that the project will adhere to. This chapter also looks at usability and security concerns and their importance to the overall proposed system Methodology/Process Models and Technology Selection An Information Systems Methodology is defined as a collection of procedures, techniques, tools and documentation aids which will help the system developers in their efforts to implement a new Information System (Avison and Fitzgerald [1]). There are a number of methodologies to be chosen from when developing an information system. Selecting which one to be used depends entirely on the nature of the project being considered. If the conventional Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) is to be used, therefore it is important that the chosen methodology covers all or the vast majority of the individual phases in the SDLC. Figure 1. depict various methodologies and their scope in terms of what aspects or phases of the SDLC they covered. METHODOLOGIES SDLC PHASE STRADIS YSM SSADM MERISE JSD OOA ISAC EHTICS SSM PI Strategy Feasibility Analysis Logical design Physical design Programming Testing Implementation Evaluation Maintenance LEGEND Phase addressed in detail Phase Not fully addressed Basics of phase addressed Blank: phase not covered at all. Figure 1.0 Source: Avison and Fitzgerald [1] As shown in fig 1.0 above, the shaded areas indicate that the methodology covers the stage in some details, which may include the provision of specific techniques and tools of support. An unshaded area means that the methodology addresses that area, 11 but in less detail and depth and the broken lines indicate areas that are only briefly mentioned in the methodology. 2.2 Structured System Analysis and Design Methodology (SSADM) SSADM is a methodology developed for and by the British Government for use in the Public Sector. This methodology is largely developed to cater for the implementation of database system, although it can be applied to other non-database systems (Avison and Fitzgerald [1]). As the vast majority of this project involves a database inventory management system development, it would be appropriate to consider or use this methodology along side others, in order to achieve the requirements of the client and the project. 2.3 System Development Life Cycle According to Chrisanthi Avgeron and Tony Cornford [2], the System Development Life Cycle (SDLC) is one of the more traditional approaches to software development, as the model has been used extensively for more than 30 years. (SDLC) is a model for developing a system based on traditional problem solving with sequential steps and options for revisiting steps when problems appear. However, the System development Life Cycle does has its drawbacks. It has been criticised as an inappropriate or over-rigid guide to information system development due to its linear pattern of tasks, which may result in inflexibility in software project management.(tudor & TUDOR [3]). Hughes and Cottrell [4] also explains that if a particular phase needs to be refined, the traditional SDLC methodology is insufficient. Although, Avgeron and Cornford [2] argued that the original linear form of SDLC has been modified in various ways to overcome its most dysfunctional aspects, such as the ability to effectively manage the long and complex development process. Also the life cycle provides a simple structure, which is easily understood and by following the life cycle it becomes easier to plan and manage that tasks of systems development. The SDLC Methodology can be useful when the production of deliverables are an end result, as it involves extensive requirements analysis is needed whilst using SDLC, the methodology slows down the project, as producing a solution could take longer than expected. Since the client (Adonai shop) has a clear idea of what the solution should perform, which is to manage inventory and enable customer to process orders online, therefore the requirements have been well defined and understood The Waterfall Model The Waterfall Model takes the main stages within systems development and represents them diagrammatically as a series of sequential steps with the flow of time and information from left to right Tudor & Tudor [3]. The major benefit of this model is that it allows project completion time to be forecast with more confidence than with some more iterative approaches allowing projects to be controlled effectively Hughes and Cottrell [4]. This feature would be useful in this project development as a later stage within the life cycle phases may reveal the need for some extra work at an earlier stage The V Model The V Model is also a diagrammatic representation of the life cycle, however, its additional strengths over the Waterfall Model are that the products, which result from each stage, are passed to the following stages and the products, against which various levels of testing of the system can be performed Tudor & Tudor [3]. Due to the nature 12 of extensive testing involved, this model would not be appropriate for this project due to the limited amount of time allocated The Spiral Model The Spiral Model according to Hughes and Cottrell [4], can be portrayed as a loop or a spiral where the system to be implemented is considered in more detail in each sweep. Each sweep terminates with an evaluation before the next iteration is embarked upon. A greater level of detail is considered at each stage of the project and a greater degree of confidence about the probability of success for the project should be justified, otherwise a decision to abandon the project would be reached. Avison and Fitzgerald [1] criticised this model as only the most important requirements are defined and implemented first. Following feedback from the client more sophisticated functionality is implemented. The major problem with this approach is that if the client has unintentionally missed an important requirement late into the development process, such changes could prove very costly. This can occur easily if the client, developer or even both parties misunderstand the requirements specification. More-over, this methodology is said to be more useful with large-scale projects. Therefore it would not be appropriate for this project. 2.4 Methodology Choice I have decided to use the SDLC methodology while incorporating an iterative approach borrowed from the Waterfall model in the implementation and testing phases. As I have earlier mentioned the client (Adonis shop) and the developer has a clear idea of what is required of the system, therefore revisiting analysis and design phases of the project extensively could result in bottleneck and valuable project time could be consumed unnecessarily. To ensure that the implementation provides a functional solution for the client, iteration will be carried out at Testing and Implementation phases respectively. See diagram below: Feasibility study Analysis Design Coding Test Implementation Maintenance Fig 2.0: system development life cycle and the water fall model 13 2.5 Selecting appropriate Database System According to C.J. DATE [5], a Database System is basically a computerised record keeping system; i.e., it is a computerised system whose overall purpose is to store information and to allow users to retrieve and update that information on demand. The information in question can be anything that is of significance to the individual or organisation concerned- anything in other words that is needed to assist in the general process of running the business of the individual or organization. Various database applications exist, such as MS SQL Server, MySQL, MS Access and PostgreSQL, but it is important to carefully select the appropriate application to use in any given situation as some lack sophisticated functionality to achieve a particular task, such as web-site connectivity MS SQL Server SQL is an example of a Transform-Oriented Language designed to use relations to transform inputs into required outputs. As a language, SQL has two major components: A Data Definition Language (DDL) and a Data Manipulation Language (DML) for retrieving and updating data (Connolyn &Begg [7]). MS SQL Server is a product of Microsoft Corporation. It is very efficient in optimising features such as Trigger Managements. Microsoft claimed that it is the next-generation Data Management and Analysis Software, that delivers increased scalability, availability, and security to enterprise data and analytical applications while making them easier to create, deploy, and manage (Microsoft.com [8]). Inevitably, all these features come at a price and also another down side to MS SQL is that it is not platform independence.
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