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Arco Petroleum


Redesign and normalize database to industry standards.  Included a application which enabled users to easily enter sample information.

Students from the Montana School of Mines, located in Butte, were collecting information pertaining to the wetlands cleanup for the Butte Superfund Site.  Water samples were taken from pre-determined points within the Butte wetlands, and the samples were sent to a laboratory for evaluation.  The information from the lab was then entered into a Microsoft Access database.  Due to the complexity of the system, getting the data into and out of the system was extremely difficult and time consuming.  Some of the complexity had arisen from the use of traveling computers whose databases had to be read into the main database, and the sheer number of collection samples which had to be entered into the system.

Top Features:

  • Butte Superfund Site
  • Industry Standards
  • Easier Entry and Retrieval
  • Significantly Reduced Errors
  • Inter-Platform Compatibility

Arco Petroleum contacted Front Desk Software, L.L.C. for technical assistance with data collection, and Front Desk Software, L.L.C. was able to redesign the database and normalize it to industry standards.  In the changes made, the overall database size was reduced from 110 Megabytes to less than 10 Megabytes.  Front Desk Software, L.L.C. also authored a Visual Basic Application, which enabled users to easily enter their sample information into the system without users needing to learn how to navigate and use Microsoft Access.

Through communication between Arco and Front Desk Software, L.L.C., it was determined that several custom reports were required.  Front Desk Software, L.L.C. designed these reports directly to Arco’s specifications, including daily and weekly sample reports, which were unavailable in the old system.  The system included a function for making labels for individual sample containers.  The newly designed system also receives the laboratory results in electronic format and is able to import it directly into the database, thereby eliminating the need for someone to sit and key the data into the computer.

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