A commonly asked question of web developers is how long it takes to develop and launch a website. The response to this often depends on the size, scope, and sophistication of the project. It is imperative for web developers and project managers to establish specific objectives and pursue a timeline before embarking on the project. The objectives and timeline help maintain focus and expedite planning, and ensure the ultimate delivery of the projected results (LaGreca, 2021).
A website project timeline documents the most important milestones representing the main phases of website creation. Accordingly, every phase should be allocated a set duration that matches the activity’s size, scope, and intricacy. There is also a set of objectives, or dependencies, that require accomplishing for each phase. A timeline outlining the specific activities and dependencies is seen below.
|Description||Start Date||End Date||Dependencies|
|Planning & Discovery||8/6/2021||7/7/2021||Creating site-map
Define milestones and timeline
|Web Design||8/7/2021||7/9/2021||Development of a landing page
Define database tables
|Content Creation & SEO||8/9/2021||22/11/2021||Appealing style and functionality|
|Development & Coding||23/11/2021||22/1/2022||Placement of content|
|Beta testing||21/2/2022||20/3/2022||Proper functioning of all elements|
|Ongoing improvements||Indefinite||Indefinite||Improving interface and links to new pages|
The planning and discovery phase forms the project’s foundation for success. Without discovery as the primary component of the project, it is challenging to identify the duration required or the cost of completing the project. Website project managers should ensure discovery is a key module of the site development process. The following elements should be included: research, definitions document, creative brief, technical briefs, detailed architecture briefs, discovery sessions, site map, and wireframe.
The design phase is initiated after research and planning. This phase should involve the creation of mock-ups for presentation to the client. The project manager should use the mock-up to ensure it is what the client expects (Gordiyenko, 2015). Doing so will help the project manager determine the functionality required by the client. The visual mock-up should include desktop and mobile views, homepage design, and internal page designs.
In addition to functionality and an aesthetically pleasing design, the project manager should ensure the website has appropriate and relevant content for the intended users. In this instance, the intended users are the Widget Sale Company employees. Typically, the activities in this phase overlap with other phases. The content should include: calls to action, key messages and incorporate appropriate titles and headings.
Beta testing should be conducted once the development of the website is completed. That is, the fully functional site should be tested before public launching. The project manager should ensure that they review and receive feedback from the initial participating employees and the company’s accounting department. They should ensure that there is proper anticipated functioning across devices and screen sizes. Moreover, the website should function and look as per the specifications of the company. Notably, the development and launch of the website should not be the end of the project, considering that all 2,500 employees of the company will require use of the website eventually. Therefore, the project manager should ensure the website is regularly maintained with the necessary updates provided.
The database analyst has the responsibility of organizing information. To ensure they execute their mandate successfully, the database analyst needs knowledge of different programming languages. For this project, the analyst needs to make sense of employees’ travel expense information for presentation to Widget Sales Company administration through the company’s website. Considering that the firm is an international company, the analyst will likely perform most of the work independently. However, considering the information is sensitive to the company budget, the analyst should frequently confer with database administrators to ensure the requisite information is entered into the database for analysis and in the manner required by management.
|Table Name||Variable||Data Type||Restrictions|
|Employee||Employee Name||String||Not applicable|
|Employee||Costs Allowable||Boolean||Strictly Yes or No values|
|Costs||Hotel Arrive Date||Date||Valid date|
|Costs||Hotel Depart Date||Date||Valid date, more than date arrived|
|Costs||Number of Days Spent||Boolean||Valid trip days, equal or less than recommended|
|Costs||Round trip airfare||Boolean||Maximum amount allowable|
|Costs||Car rentals||Boolean||Maximum amount allowable|
|Costs||Miles drove in private car||Miles||None|
|Costs||Parking fees||Boolean||Maximum amount allowable|
|Costs||Taxi fees||Boolean||Maximum amount allowable|
|Costs||Conference registration fees||Boolean||None|
|Costs||Hotel fees||Boolean||Maximum amount allowable|
|Costs||Cost of meal||Boolean||Maximum amount allowable|
Those who have attended a business seminar or conference are likely aware that the earlier one registers, the lower the price. Those registering later for the conference are likely to pay higher prices. Timing is, therefore, a factor in how much one pays. These and other factors, such as parking fee differences, should be carefully considered by the database analyst when performing their duty to give the company management accurate information. If the program is not efficient or lacks a repeatable process, the travel costs could change to the detriment of either the company or the employee.
To improve website effectiveness, the database analyst will require segmenting the information into three parts: the pre-trip, the on-trip, and the post-trip. The pre-trip part should take care of multiple users, and the expense management system will provide diverse functionalities to the different employees. The database administrator will be capable of including many users. They will be assigned roles in accordance with their authorization levels. This way, the employees will have access only to the information to which the administrator grants them access. For instance, a manager may enter travel allowance while a regular employee may only enter other costs without an allowance since the company only provides travel allowances to managers only. With such a system, the database analyst will not need to sift through the entire database. The analyst will also require implementing travel policies of the company within the expense management system. By using the feature, the analyst will be able to configure the travel expense management system according to the company’s travel policies. These may include expense amount limits to per diems (Ashika, 2021). The component will also help curtail the misappropriation of funds. Divisions of the company have different expenditure stipulations and overhead limits. It will therefore be possible to implement policies for every division.
For on-trip, the database analyst will develop an email receipts forwarding platform in conjunction with the developer. The feature will allow employees to forward electronic receipts to the address embedded in the travel expense management system. For this, the system will create expense transactions for receipts, such as those issued for hotel accommodation. The analyst will also capture costs in an itemized manner. This will allow employees to itemize the costs using the travel expense management system. That is, multiple costs will be itemized as line items, and the employees will be able to categorize the costs easily. It should be easy for the employees to apply accurate tax rates for every line item. For instance, when the trip ends and the employee signs out of a hotel, they are handed the bill for accommodation, parking and room services. With the itemization of expense feature, every expense itemized in the bill can be entered individually with the appropriate tax rate on every item.
For post-trip, the database analyst will automate expense report creation and submission. The unreported costs arising from a specific date will be automatically clustered to form a report. The report will then be spontaneously forwarded to the respective approver. The analyst will utilize advanced analytics so that the analyst will be able to capture and track all the funds spent. They will also be able to view travel costs. The expense analytic reports will allow the analyst to observe the costs of individual employees. They will view parameters such as the location, department, and expense category. This should also allow for the identification of policy violators. It will be possible to identify the areas where travel expense funds are mainly spent.
For the program developer, the automation of online booking tools is an essential component of the company’s website to manage costs. These require a high degree of customization to provide the options within organizational expense policies (Solomon, 2020). Considering the wide range of costs employees are likely to incur during a trip, the developer must ensure that the employees can use their mobile devices to interact with the website.
The website will comprise three web pages. The home page will contain information about the company, the mission, and the vision. It will also contain a login for employees to enter and access the user detail interface (Willems, 2020). Once the employee enters their login credentials, they will be redirected to the next page. This page will display the customized table where the employee will enter details of the costs. At the bottom of the table will be a display of the total expense. At the bottom will be a “view report” button. Considering that each category of employees will have a limit of money they can spend on each item, excesses will be flagged. Once the “view report” button is clicked, it will redirect the employee to the report page (Sharma, 2020). Here, the employee can view the items for which the company policy has been violated and those that meet the spending criteria. The employee will have the option to go back and review the costs entered. At the bottom of the report page will be a button to submit the report.
def Car rentals (hours):
- Computes the maximum allowance for taxi fees using MAX_TAXI_FEE * hours
- Obtains the taxi fees from the user
- Adds the taxi fees to totalCosts (a global variable used for tracking the total amount spent by the traveler).
- Evaluates if the taxi fees surpass the allowable amount.
- Displays the allowable taxi fees
def Personal car (Miles):
- Computes the maximum mileage for private car using MAX_PERSONAL_CAR_FEE * miles
- Obtains the personal car mileage from the user
- Adds the private car mileage to tot alCosts (a global variable used for tracking the total amount spent by the traveler).
- Evaluates if the private car mileage surpass the allowable amount.
- Displays the allowable private car mileage
def Hotel fees (dollars):
- Computes the maximum allowance for hotel fees using MAX_DAILY_FEE * days
- Obtains the hotel fees from the user
- Adds the hotel fees to totalCosts (a global variable used for tracking the total amount spent by the traveler).
- Evaluates if the hotel fees surpass the allowable amount.
- Displays the allowable hotel fees
- Computes the maximum allowance for parking fees using MAX_DAILY_FEE * days
- Obtains the parking fees from the user
- Adds the parking fees to totalCosts (a global variable used for tracking the total amount spent by the traveler).
- Evaluates if the parking fees surpass the allowable amount.
- Displays the allowable parking fees