GrahamSystems Modernisation Using IceBreak

GrahamSystems deliver support and management of IT systems and business supplies to the SME corporate and public sectors.

When GrahamSystems were looking to modernise their IBM i (AS/400) applications to meet customer requirements they considered a number of options including screen scraping applications and moving to MS servers.

GrahamSystems realised that they would loose the stability that the IBM i offers if they moved their application to an MS Server environment and would also incur a huge amount of development to replicate the applications. There was also a consideration in terms of connections speed from the site offices to the head office which made the Server environment questionable.

And although the screen scraping products would deliver a reasonable, more user friendly presentation of the current green screen applications this solution would restrict future development. Other solutions that were considered required either major investment or restricted GrahamSystems to specific development environments.

It was at this point that GrahamSystems turned to SpaceTec and the IceBreak product, which had been recommended to them through one of their consultants.

Frank Doherty Senior Systems Developer for GrahamSystems said “We believed that IceBreak provided the greatest flexibility for development and could deliver in a shorter timescale than the other solutions we had considered.”

IceBreak would allow GrahamSystems to develop user friendly applications in a quick and cost effective manner it would also allow GrahamSystems to keep green screen applications for internal use in the head and site offices.

Patrick Race MD of SpaceTec said “IceBreak has more flexibility that other products in the same cost bracket and is far more cost effective than the larger well known IBM i development tools, this together with the ability to quickly develop applications with minimal training make IceBreak a very competitive product.”

Developing user friendly applications that can interact with current applications means that changes can be implemented immediately without compromising the functionality of the systems.

Users have seen an increase in performance and usability of the new applications. A main concern for GrahamSystems was how to deliver user friendly applications while maintaining the stability of the IBM i. IceBreak has delivered this and provided all the functionality normally associated with a MS Server environment.

Doherty said “As the users become more aware of what IceBreak can offer they are starting to have more input into the development of the applications which makes them truly user friendly”

GrahamSystems have considerable experience in RPG development and were able to develop their own applications after only three days of training.

Initially GrahamSystems will use IceBreak for workflow ability, archiving of documents and scanning of local and remote documents into the system

Doherty said “We will be aiming to redevelop all our business applications in IceBreak. Any future development of our business applications will hopefully be carried out in IceBreak.”

Patrick Race MD of SpaceTec said “GrahamSystems are using IceBreak to its full advantage, applications can be developed as and when needed and if requirements change the applications can be easily and quickly modified to implement these changes. For many of our customers once they have seen a demonstration of IceBreak they have immediately thought of areas where it could benefit them.”

GrahamSystem saw IceBreak in action at one of SpaceTecs regular seminar events, places can be booked by contacting SpaceTec.