Portfolio Skills

Delve into our background: Browse through a selection of our projects based on our skills and see some of the innovative software, applications and web services we have created for and with our clients. We develop for many platforms and work with Windows, UNIX, Linux and OS X servers.

PwC – Pulse, Profiled Business News

PwC – Pulse, Profiled Business News

PwC Global Services

Pulse – Profiled Business News

PwC – Pulse: Profiled Business News

PwC is an international accounting and consultancy company, providing high quality tax, assurance and advisory services. Their consultants therefore rely on direct access to up-to-date, reliable and relevant business news.

Prior to the arrival of Pulse, PwC Nederland employed six information specialists. Their task was to keep consultants up-to-date with the latest business developments. Firstly the specialists gathered news from various premium sources, such as Factiva, Lexis Nexis, and Gartner. They then combined the information, producing about 60 weekly newsletters. Each one focused on specific lines of business. This approach was obviously time-consuming. What is more, 60 newsletters could not cover every line of business. Which meant PwC consultants often resorted to Google, spending 26% of their time searching for information online. An inefficient method that produced results of doubtful quality.

PwC was convinced they could address this issue more effectively. Therefore they approached BSL. We have experience with knowledge management solutions, business intelligence and search. As a result our developers came back with a custom-made news-alert system. Called Pulse, our software delivers profiled news alerts to thousands of consultants within PwC.

Pulse: Smart Business News
“In order to introduce Pulse as a global service, we have worked with many different teams, each with their own technical and functional requirements. These wishes all had to be supported, making my work on this project both challenging and varied.”
Peter

Java/Sr. Software engineer, Bright Side of Life

Pulse Smart Business News

Business Intelligence, a custom solution

BSL designed and developed Pulse using Oracle ™ and Exalead technology. It imports around 80,000 new articles each day from global news services (Bloomberg, Factiva, Forrester, Gartner, Lexis Nexis, ISI…). It also imports local news sources, along with RSS feeds, selected website contents, and Twitter. Pulse imports articles from over 10,000 sources, updating the Pulse database in real-time. But Pulse isn’t just a database. It also classifies, indexes and maintains profiled news feeds for PwC employees.

Just four information specialists now manage over 1,000 profiled business news feeds in the Netherlands. PWC consultants subscribe to these feeds via the company’s website. But also via email and smartphones. And our technology ensures that every feed provides reliable, high quality content. Which means PwC consultants are at the top of their game when they meet their clients.

PwC first rolled out Pulse in the Netherlands, but its success has led to international growth. It’s now used in more than 20 countries. With over 10,000 users, and more than 30,000 subscriptions to news feeds. Most noteworthy is that over 92% of users would recommend Pulse to their colleagues! And PwC management teams are also equally enthusiastic. In PwC Germany the cost of briefing consultants decreased by 95%. Their consultants save time, they’re well-briefed, and they can focus on clients – not on Google searches. This success has been rewarded. Pulse has won two prestigious business awards.

Business Intelligence, a custom solution

BSL designed and developed Pulse using Oracle ™ and Exalead technology. It imports around 80,000 new articles each day from global news services (Bloomberg, Factiva, Forrester, Gartner, Lexis Nexis, ISI…). It also imports local news sources, along with RSS feeds, selected website contents, and Twitter. Pulse imports articles from over 10,000 sources, updating the Pulse database in real-time. But Pulse isn’t just a database. It also classifies, indexes and maintains profiled news feeds for PwC employees.

Just four information specialists now manage over 1,000 profiled business news feeds in the Netherlands. PWC consultants subscribe to these feeds via the company’s website. But also via email and smartphones. And our technology ensures that every feed provides reliable, high quality content. So PwC consultants are at the top of their game when they meet their clients.

PwC first rolled out Pulse in the Netherlands, but its success led to international growth. It’s now used in more than 20 countries. With over 10,000 users, and more than 30,000 subscriptions to news feeds. Most noteworthy is that over 92% of users would recommend Pulse to their colleagues! And PwC management teams are also equally enthusiastic. In PwC Germany the cost of briefing consultants decreased by 95%. Their consultants save time, they’re well-briefed, and they can focus on clients – not on Google searches. This success has been rewarded. Pulse has won two prestigious business awards.

Pulse Smart Business News

“As we all know, time is precious. I’m using Pulse on a daily basis, because it saves me so much time. It is easy to scan the news and then drill down to the full article if necessary. I have subscribed to several feeds that keep me up to date with all the news which is related to my Clients and the Industry.”

Sr. Consultant, PwC

At BSL, you’re at the right address for…

Search expertise

BSL has expertise with many search and business intelligence technologies, including Autonomy, Exalead, Oracle Text, Elastic Search and Sybase FTS. The full contents of documents can be indexed. We use language intelligence and semantic search techniques to recognize words, sentences, concepts and synonyms. These technologies ensure that we can find and select the most relevant information, even from millions of documents.

Award winning software

Pulse has won two important international MPF business awards. In 2008, the Best Use of Technology Award. And also the Best Collaboration Across International Borders award in 2013. The jury of the MPF award ceremony praised the simple way in which the ‘knowledge and management platform’ enables efficient collaboration between international teams.

Innovation and experience

Although Pulse started as a Dutch project, it has become a worldwide success within PwC. It was recently upgraded to a global service. Which goes to show that no bridge is too far for BSL to find suitable solutions for challenging projects.

This is a great example of BSL creating a custom solution designed specifically for a single client. And it’s grown to become a global solution! If you’ve got ideas for your own web applications or service, then why not get in touch – no strings attached!

Martyn Simpson

Director, Bright Side of Life

ABN AMRO SRS – Signature Registration System

ABN AMRO SRS – Signature Registration System

ABN AMRO

Signature Registration System

ABN AMRO SRS – Signature Registration System

ABN AMRO is a large international bank with branches in more than 60 countries. They provide a wide range of services to individual payment account holders, small businesses and multinationals.

Important decisions within ABN AMRO are often confirmed by means of a Power of Attorney that is assigned to individual employees. In order to manage transactions between branches, as well as between ABN AMRO and third parties, it is essential that both the signatures and the authority of employees can be checked, irrespective of the location. We were asked to design a system that would improve this process in an efficient and safe manner. Our developers came up with a customized solution: Signature Registration System (SRS).

ABN AMRO Signature Registration System
ABN AMRO Signature Registration System

Powers of Attorney

BSL has developed SRS for the purpose of managing signatures and Powers of Attorney. It is used by ABN AMRO employees throughout the world. There is a continued need to introduce new technologies and improvements to meet the demands of the bank. So we’ve regularly extended and improved the application since SRS was commissioned in 1998. As a result, it still meets the latest requirements, and is a key resource within the bank. The latest version of SRS supports the entire workflow of applying for a new Power of Attorney. It also manages changes or updates to an employees’ authority, and the delivery of information to the local Chambers of Commerce.

It’s a challenging project. SRS now carries out many administrative tasks entirely automatically. As an example: we’ve integrated our software with the ABN AMRO personnel administration system (SAP HR). So double entry of personnel details is no longer needed. We’ve also ported the application from Windows to web applications. We had to meet the strict requirements and guidelines applied within ABN AMRO when designing the web interfaces. In 2016, we migrated the system to a private cloud.

 

Powers of Attorney

BSL has developed SRS for the purpose of managing signatures and Powers of Attorney. It is used by ABN AMRO employees throughout the world. There is a continued need to introduce new technologies and improvements to meet the demands of the bank. So we’ve regularly extended and improved the application since SRS was commissioned in 1998. As a result, it still meets the latest requirements, and is a key resource within the bank. The latest version of SRS supports the entire workflow of applying for a new Power of Attorney. It also manages changes or updates to an employees’ authority, and the delivery of information to the local Chambers of Commerce.

It’s a challenging project. SRS now carries out many administrative tasks entirely automatically. As an example: we’ve integrated our software with the ABN AMRO personnel administration system (SAP HR). So double entry of personnel details is no longer needed. We’ve also ported the application from Windows to web applications. We had to meet the strict requirements and guidelines applied within ABN AMRO when designing the web interfaces. In 2016, we migrated the system to a private cloud.

 

ABN AMRO Signature Registration System

At BSL, you’re at the right address for…

Keeping up with change

We design our software so it can evolve with the changing wishes of our customers and the market. The SRS system is an excellent example of this strategy. ABN AMRO has successfully used SRS for many years, through many technical changes. This long-term success is largely due to the ability of our developers to respond quickly to the changing wishes of the bank. In close cooperation with ABN AMRO, we designed and developed a completely new SRS web application in 2013.

Safe and secure applications

We develop safe and reliable systems. During the SRS project, we introduced comprehensive security measures. So protecting the database contents and ensuring the integrity of data. SRS uses the central ABN AMRO authentication system, as well as our own set of user profiles. As a result, the authority and functions available to users can be strictly controlled.

Database expertise

We have many years experience with delivering multimedia database solutions. The flexibility of our modular approach means that we can integrate our solutions with your current infrastructure. And thanks to the BSL developed software and applied database technology from Oracle, SRS is fast, reliable and easy to use.

“It has been an interesting challenge over past years to improve the working process and make it more efficient. We achieved this by looking critically at this process together with the client. As a result, we were able to translate requirements and goals into perfectly-fitting solutions.”

Eric

Software Architect , Bright Side of Life

TMG – Vrouw.nl

TMG – Vrouw.nl

Telegraaf Media Group

Vrouw.nl Online Magazine

TMG – Vrouw.nl 

TMG wanted to establish a digital platform designed for modern Dutch women, aged 30 -55. This resulted in the creation of the highly successful ‘vrouw.nl.‘ website. A platform about real women and real stories. Firmly linked to live events, using real women alongside experts who speak on their behalf. During the development of the website, TMG discovered that they did not have enough experience and knowledge of Drupal in house. So they started looking for Drupal CMS specialists to help them. BSL was the ideal partner, thanks to our years of knowledge and Drupal experience.

Digital platform vrouw.nl development - TMG

“The flexibility of Drupal is an important reason for clients to consider this CMS. Drupal is very suitable for extensive corporate websites, such as websites with a customer portal or an online magazine in which forms or downloads can be added.”

Roderick

Front-end Developer, Bright Side of Life

Digital platform vrouw.nl development - TMG

Drupal CMS specialists

Two of our experienced Drupal CMS specialists have helped to create this modern, high-quality TMG website. As part of a SCRUM team, they designed and developed many Drupal modules. In addition, they integrated the Drupal website with content produced within the TMG editorial systems. The site was developed over a series of two-weekly SCRUM iterations, with each ‘Sprint’ based on the requirements defined in the product backlog. In a time frame of less than 3 months we delivered a responsive, high-traffic website that is compatible with almost every browser. The website attracted more than half a million visitors during the first month after the launch.

” During the first month after the site was launched, VROUW.nl reached more then 1 million unique users. That was just the beginning. 2,213,135 users visited the site in April 2016, 42% via mobile, 20% via tablet and 38% via desktop. With these results, VROUW.nl is in the top 3 of most popular websites for women in the Netherlands within three months.”

TMG

At BSL, you’re at the right address for…

Drupal expertise

Our developers are happy to work with Drupal. It offers a lot of flexibility compared to (for example) WordPress. They can perfectly reproduce any visual design using Drupal. In addition, Drupal makes it easy to give different users access to separate parts of the website. This is useful, for example, in the development of corporate websites. Different users can independently and safely edit their own sections.

Agile software development

By adopting Scrum – part of an Agile approach – you will reach the finish line sooner! Frequently applied to software development projects, Scrum offers short clear project phases/goals and a step-by-step introduction. The most important tasks are carried out first and there is flexibility throughout the development cycle. As a result, changes can be made during the development, and team performance is enhanced.

Responsive websites

The number of mobile website visitors is increasing every year. Therefore, it was a requirement that we created a responsive website. This means that users enjoy the same optimal web experience on every type of screen and device. As a result, the new ‘vrouw.nl‘ is fully responsive. A website where 57% of users visit the site via their mobile, 20% via a tablet and 23% via their desktop.

You’re welcome to get in touch with me if you have a project in mind, or want to discuss how best to approach your next development project.

Caroline

Relations Manager, Bright Side of Life

WCC Group – Recruitment Website

WCC Group – Recruitment Website

WCC Group

Recruitment website

WCC Group – Recruitment website

WCC Group is a large software company that focuses on identity management and personnel matching. To help meet fast-growing international demand for their services, WCC needs more personnel. But recruiting good technical personnel is a challenge right now. Which is why WCC was looking for new ways to make potential employees aware of their company. And they came up with the innovative idea of developing a dedicated recruitment website. First they hired in a design company to create the design, then they approached BSL to develop the website. WCC wanted the recruitment website up and running as soon as possible – they needed new talent fast!

WCC Recruitment
WCC Recruitment Website

Drupal website with AFAS integration

Within just a few short weeks, our software engineers developed and launched a complex recruitment website for WCC. By using a Drupal CMS, they were able to recreate the chosen design down to the smallest detail. WCC had one key requirement: make the application process as easy as possible. Both for their own HR team and for the candidates. So our engineers developed a new Drupal module to communicate with the HR system from AFAS. This means any job applications that are received are processed by the website, and sent immediately to the HR team. What’s more, the WCC team can easily add content and new vacancies themselves – anytime, anywhere!

The WCC recruitment website includes animations too. We adapted these animations to work on any screen size, to ensure all visitors to the site have the same user experience, no matter what type of device they use. Fortunately our developers know all the tricks…..

Drupal website with AFAS integration

Within just a few short weeks, our software engineers developed and launched a complex recruitment website for WCC. By using a Drupal CMS, they were able to recreate the chosen design down to the smallest detail. WCC had one key requirement: make the application process as easy as possible. Both for their own HR team and for the candidates. So our engineers developed a new Drupal module to communicate with the HR system from AFAS. This means any job applications that are received are processed by the website, and sent immediately to the HR team. What’s more, the WCC team can easily add content and new vacancies themselves – anytime, anywhere!

The WCC recruitment website includes animations too. We adapted these animations to work on any screen size, to ensure all visitors to the site have the same user experience, no matter what type of device they use. Fortunately our developers know all the tricks…..

WCC Recruitment Website

“For WCC, a fast growing company, attracting new staff is very important. That’s why we wanted a modern, fresh looking career site that can be used on all platforms. And created with Drupal. BSL has done that perfectly. Throughout the project BSL kept us informed, and they were flexible when we needed a little time. And all that within budget. Fantastic!”.

WCC HRM Team

Human Resource Management, WCC Group

At BSL, you’re at the right address for…

Drupal, a flexible CMS

Drupal is a flexible CMS, used by small companies, multinationals and all sizes in-between! It allows customers to easily maintain their own website contents. What’s more, a Drupal website can be hosted anywhere so is easy to manage. Our developers can use Drupal to create complex websites in just a few weeks.

Fast delivery, short communication lines

One of the most important aims of the project was to launch the recruitment website as quickly as possible. Fortunately, BSL has a great reputation for delivering reliable websites and software – fast! Our short lines not only help speed up communications internally, but mean we can quickly and efficiently handle customer feedback and updates as well.

Responsive websites

BSL fully understands the importance of a responsive design. Because more than 50% of potential website visitors use mobiles, and tablets. Each part of the website must therefore look good and work properly on every type of device. BSL guarantees optimal user experience on any platform.

“A challenging project! Transforming detailed design ideas from a design bureau into a responsive website with animations and links. And all in a short space of time. This type of project is challenging, and provides plenty of opportunity for further self-development.”

Roderick

Front-end Developer, Bright Side of Life

NBD Biblion – MIPS Media Production System

NBD Biblion – MIPS Media Production System

NBD Biblion

Media Information and Production System (MIPS)

NBD Biblion – Media Information and Production System

NBD Biblion offers products, services and expertise in the field of media and content. They are the largest supplier of information and purchase advice for Public Libraries and (school) media centers in the Netherlands. They also supply many of the books available in libraries. For this reason, hundreds of new titles of books and other media arrive at NBD Biblion every week. Each title is then classified and reviewed by NBD editors and reviewers. As a result they can provide up-to-date information about every newly published title.

We created the Media Information and Production System (MIPS) specifically for this purpose. A custom title registration and production system  for managing many NBD production processes. NBD Biblion now uses MIPS to describe and catalog hundreds of new titles every month. In particular the software regulates and monitors the planning and workflow. It  can therefore monitor the progress of each title through the system. In addition, the software manages payouts to reviewers, exporting the details for processing by Equens.

NBD Biblion - Media Information and Production System (MIPS)
NBD Biblion - Media Information and Production System (MIPS)

Oracle Text search technology

We firstly produced a complete functional and technical design. This was based on use of a central Oracle database and advanced search technology. Our engineers then went on to develop the Media Information and Production System. MIPS consists of a number of customized Windows applications, web applications and web services. We initially made use of Autonomy for indexing and classifying the database contents. However, we later introduced Oracle Text search technology. This is a standard part of Oracle, and is ideal for indexing unstructured text/XML information. We could therefore combine both structured (SQL) and unstructured searches, making data more easily accessible.

Oracle Text search technology

We firstly produced a complete functional and technical design. This was based on use of a central Oracle database and advanced search technology. Our engineers then went on to develop the Media Information and Production System. MIPS consists of a number of customized Windows applications, web applications and web services. We initially made use of Autonomy for indexing and classifying the database contents. However, we later introduced Oracle Text search technology. This is a standard part of Oracle, and is ideal for indexing unstructured text/XML information. We could therefore combine both structured (SQL) and unstructured searches, making data more easily accessible.

NBD Biblion - Media Information and Production System (MIPS)

MIPS Connectivity

  • PICA (OCLC) – part of the title data is maintained using the Common Automated Cataloging System (GGC). In MIPS this data is imported and integrated with content that is maintained within MIPS. When exchanging data with other systems, title data is merged and exported as if from a single source.
  • MoM (More over Media) – MoM is closely connected to MIPS. It serves as a publication platform for the delivery of reviews, text abstracts and author profiles.
  • Website reviewers – MIPS includes a web application for use by third parties who enter and update reviews.
  • FRS asset management system – a link has been developed with the BSL asset management system FRS. FRS manages multimedia documents, such as book covers, tables of content, flap texts. The integration means covers  can be retrieved and displayed using the title, author, ISBN and other search attributes. 

At BSL, you’re at the right address for…

Expert in search technologies

BSL has expertise in using a range of search technologies. These include Autonomy, ExaleadOracle Text, Elastic Search and Sybase FTS.  These technologies can index documents, spreadsheets, webpages and multimedia so that the entire content can be searched. The search engines use language intelligence to recognize words, sentences and synonyms. As a result, our software can find contents almost instantly. Even within archives containing millions of documents. We can also use automatic classification and semantic technologies to select the most relevant information. And to extract meaning from the content.

Continuous improvement

We have made many improvements since we first delivered the Media Information and Production system. In particular, we have also added many new features. These changes usually arise from feedback from the NBD Media production team. Not only from the content managers, but  frequently from content editors/reviewers too. NBD Biblion consequently uses MIPS within more and more production processes. As a result, the content is re-purposed. Furthermore, we have also integrated the system with external processes and systems.Third parties have access to MIPS information using web-service API’s designed and developed by BSL.

Simplification of complex processes

The Media Information and Production system transforms the complex workflow procedures and media management activities carried out by NBD Biblion into a series of easy-to-use software modules. Using this unique system, another key point  is that NBD Biblion can now manage the entire production workflow in-house.

It was a wonderful and challenging project. We created the functional / technical design, the Oracle data model and user interfaces. We’ve integrated MIPS with many systems, including links to national web platforms using XML and web-services. It’s  included many facets of modern ICT projects, and used successfully by our customer for many years. We’ve continuously enhanced MIPS to meet their changing needs, and changing standards. It’s a system about which all of us are very proud.

Eric

Software Architect, Bright Side of Life

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