While database is technically not a subsystem, the group of team members working with this large project are taking steps to overhaul and consolidate GTMS archives and project management practices to improve the overall efficiency of the team. Project management involves planning, implementing, executing, controlling and facilitating the completion of a goal by a team in a specified timeframe. In the case of GTMS, this correlates to the implementation of software to aid in the planning, execution and timely delivery of a formula-style race car for FSAE competitions. Members working to improve the team’s project management will work mainly with the team’s upcoming database site, Rollbase, and main webpage.
What We Do
This year there is a heavy emphasis on Rollbase work. The project management aspect of the database is close to its first release version; continuous improvements will be required once the code is completed, along with bug repairs as the year progresses. Additionally, thirty years of archives need to be uploaded to this application, so an in-depth organization plan is required. Many of our lost records will need to be located. Based on feedback from team members, requested improvements or modifications will be documented and added to an overall design plan. Eventually, Rollbase will be added to a mobile app for all users to access. This platform will streamline project management and facilitate knowledge transfer as leaders graduate.
The team’s web page must also be maintained. Information must be kept up-to-date, and there are several improvements that can be made. This is fairly open-ended, and members can propose and pursue any improvements or modifications they choose.
The Rollbase platform for GTMS was created June 2017 as a long-term solution to this previously inconsistent style of record-keeping (a result of the quick turnover time in membership that is the nature of a student team). At the time of its presentation to leadership, it contained a basic project management system, preliminary archive organization layout, multi-functional calendar, basic contacts organization, and an ordering system for both business and manufacturing. As of July, Rollbase was green-lighted to be built and organized for full release Summer 2018. This has since been revised to allow for testing and development. Predicted release coincides with the F2019 competition cycle.
Rollbase is a cloud-based application for database creation. It is extremely user friendly and easy to learn. Based on object-oriented programming, minimal coding is required depending on the desired complexity. Database creation is centralized around a well derived plan and feedback from team leads before implementation begins to ensure that its layout and organization is most logical for the user’s needs.
Future Goals and Projects
Sponsor relations have been organized and the sponsor has agreed to provide GTMS with its own private server, which should be up and running soon. Our short-term goal is to get the project management system operational and released for all members to use for the F2019 build year. Major projects to follow include organizing and building the archives page into the application and to start building the mobile app. Additionally, with Slack being a popular team-wide communication platform, we will be looking into the possibility of building an app that would allow for integration between the two.