Allen Browne's Database and Training
for small business and not-for-profit organisations

Allen Browne's Database and Training

We create software tailored to the needs of small businesses and not-for-profit groups.

To see how we can help you, select the question you would like to ask:

  1. "What kind of software do you develop?"
  2. "How would it help me?"
  3. "What does it cost?"
  4. "What education and experience do you have?"
  5. "Can you train us in the software you develop?"
  6. "Can you support the software?"
  7. "I'm not in Australia. Can you develop software for me?"
  8. "Why give away all the tips on your website for free?"

"What kind of software do you develop?"

We create database software, using Microsoft Access. The software can be as unique as your needs. What do you need to manage? People? Services? Products? Machines? Schedules? Finances? Reporting?

Talk to us if you want your computer to be more than a word processor, but you have not found suitable software.

"How would it help me?"

  1. Reduced management effort
    Let the computer perform the mechanics and calculations. Focus your time and energy on the creative and decision-making aspects of management.
  2. Reduced data-entry
    So much effort is wasted keying in the same data! Here's a typical example: Does it make any sense to keep doing this?
  3. Instantaneous information
    Time is of the essence. A customer can be sold if you can give him his quote now. You can evaluate or demonstrate the viability of a concept if the figures are available now. Boards expect up-to-the-minute information for decision-making.
  4. Effortless Reporting
    Database software is very good at querying the data, filtering it, collating it, comparing it, analysing it and reporting on it from several perspectives.
    In one example, a not-for-profit group spent several days each quarter producing a report required for government funding. A custom database empowered them to manage their business each day, and then generated this report in less than one minute. The cost of the software could be justified on the basis of this report alone.
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"What does it cost?"

Cost varies widely depending on the size of the project. As a guide, a complete database solution is a few thousand dollars, rather than a few hundred. To determine whether this represents value for you, weigh up the time and effort you currently spend in managing your project.

We can also tackle projects or provide assistance at hourly rate where appropriate.

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"Couldn't you make more money writing software for bigger clients?"

Bigger clients and high-volume sales are certainly more lucrative. That's why it is so difficult to find a quality developer in this market. Our values are:

You make a living by what you get, but you make a life by what you give.

We need to make a living, but we are very happy to work on one-off projects with small businesses or not-for-profit groups. There is a deep satisfaction in empowering people.

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"What education and experience do you have?"

Allen completed a 5-year degree (B.Th.) in 1977, and began programming classes in 1980. In 1986, he began database programming with dBase III and later FoxBase (now Microsoft FoxPro).

He switched to Access when Microsoft released version 1. His first commercial Access application was completed in 1993, and is still in use today.

In 1995, SAMS Publishing asked Allen to write for them. With co-author Alison Balter, they completed Essential Access 95 (ISBN 0-672-30869-X) to coincide with the release of the first 32-bit version of Access.

His earliest Access training was a 1993 seminar with Ken Getz, co-author of the best developer's guide available, the Access Developer's Handbook. While Allen now trains others, he still attends conferences like DevCon 2000, organized by Adam Cogan of Superior Software for Windows. He holds the Certificate IV in Assessment and Workplace Training, a common requirement for providing training in Australia.

In 2001, Microsoft recognised Allen Browne as a Most Valuable Professional, and the award has been renewed each year since then. Fewer than 70 people worldwide hold the MVP Award in Access.

For information on some of the databases Allen has developed in the last eight years, see satisfied clients.

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"Can you train us in the software you develop?"

Certainly. We are happy to provide whatever level of training you need. We often find that people don't need much training, since every effort is made to keep it simple. We ensure:

If your experience places "technical person" and "communication skills" poles apart, you will be pleasantly surprised to deal with someone who has:

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"Can you support the software?"

Certainly. A support contract can be a good way to stay in touch and receive quick answers to any questions. We work hard at maintaining good relationships with our clients.

One of our design goals is to make your software as flexible as possible, so it copes with the future. Should you need another report or additional functionality, we are happy to work with you.

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"I'm not in Australia. Can you develop software for me?"

G'day from the land down under! :-)

That's no problem - assuming you want a database in English. We are happy to work through email. While we miss the personal contact, it is not as difficult as it may sound. The 100,000-word book Essential Access 95 was written entirely in email, with Allen Browne in Australia and Alison Balter in USA.

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"Why give away all the tips on your website for free?"

Any teacher finds joy in empowering people. Knowledge is never lessened by giving it away.

"In 1994, I began reading the newsgroup Some questions cropped up repeatedly, so I placed answers on a web page. The site has grown in response to the common questions.
"I never guessed that giving away my knowledge like that would enhance my life so much. Every day, through the public newsgroups and private MVP groups, I am in touch with some of the greatest Access minds, and in direct communication with Microsoft. This sharing has become the very lifeblood of this business."
Allen Browne, June 2002.

If you search at for author "Allen Browne", you will find tens of thousands of messages - questions, comments, and assistance to other Access users and developers.

Our greatest Teacher explained it this way:

"It is more blessed to give than to receive." Acts 20:35
"Whoever tries to keep his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it." Luke 17:33

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