Custom Expert System

Convert Excel to Access for a custom Expert System

We had previously helped to improve the performance of the ADEY product registration database for a different department within this company.

The Problem

Our client had an Excel spreadsheet which provided “expert advice” in the form of a printed report for their MagnaCleanse and MagnaClean water treatment systems. Test results were fed into this Expert System which provided a summary of findings together with a set of recommendations.

Although adequate for producing single results, our client wanted to keep a historical record of previous test results and recommendations, together with customer details. As temporary staff were used to enter data into the system they needed a data checking process. Unfortunately the current Excel spreadsheet did not do this.

The Solution

We converted the Excel spreadsheet to a custom Microsoft Access database as ADEY’s staff were already familiar with Access.

We took the existing expert system logic, buried in Excel formulas, and consolidated this into a single Visual Basic module within the Access database. In the process of doing this we were able to remove a few discrepancies that we discovered in the original expert system.

The new data model enables previous test results and recommendations to be stored, together with customer details. This historical data builds up meaningful and relevent information concerning both products and customers.

The form for entering test results incorporated custom validation to ensure all necessary data had been entered correctly. Our client had very precise requirements for the content and design of the Recommendations Report which we implemented in full.

With a more readable format it is now easier to check the rules.

We’ve always been happy with your service and Tony who has always been really helpful and prompt with his responses, so all good here!

Natalie Bowen, Project Coordinator ADEY Professional Heating Solutions