Bill Watts - August 24, 2017
For the past several months, I have been working on a project to build a custom software application for DAC (Dealers Assurance Company), a leader in the in the service contract insurance industry.
DAC will use this software to assist with their accounting processes for monthly client statements. Currently, this accounting is an extremely complex and manual process. Going forward, much of the calculations and business logic will be handled by our custom software. This will reduce the low-level workload of the DAC accountants, allowing them to focus on more-valuable business activities such as oversight, data errors, forecasting, and troubleshooting, as well as provide management with a consistent and verifiable business process.
DAC's main office is located in Dallas, so all of my interactions with them had been via phone and email.
On Monday, I flew to Dallas to finally meet with DAC in-person. We are nearing the completion of the project, so this meeting would allow us to collaborate on the "finishing touches" and begin the training and go-live process.
I traveled to Dallas with Nick Sorrell, the head of this project and a fellow Cincinnatian. Nick worked extensively with DAC to map their complex accounting operations into clear workflows and data models, and then replicated that knowledge in SQL database tables and stored procedures. My role in this project has been to create an ASP.Net website to allow DAC employees to interact with the database. Nick has been a phenomenal leader and partner to work with.
My week in Dallas with DAC was absolutely wonderful. The DAC employees were unbelievably welcoming and friendly to me. In the past, I've worked with clients that showed no interest in getting to know me or being nice to me (since I'm just a consultant), but DAC was completely different. They gave me a comfortable work environment in their office, took me to breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day, and made me feel like a part of their team. One evening, Connie (a DAC employee) hosted a pool party at her new house, and I was included in the party. I was very happy throughout the entire trip. And, it was an incredibly productive work week for our project.
I loved getting to know the DAC people, and I hope that I get to have another trip to visit them soon. It feels great to work with great people :)