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An integrated Pricing Engine for package delivery

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  1. 1. An Integrated Service Pricing Engine For Package Delivery By MUSTAPHA SALIM Student ID: 0188 0000 8392 Project ID: T111/T015 BSc. (Hons) in Business Computing and Information Technology University of Wales SEPTEMBER, 2011
  2. 2. I. Declaration Project Declaration Form University of Wales The declaration form is to be completed and attached within the project dissertation. The student should read and sign the declaration. Student Particulars Name: MUSTAPHA SALIM Student ID: 018800008392 Project Title: An Integrated Service Pricing Engine For Package Delivery Major: Date: Computer Science SEPTEMBER 2011 Business Computing and Information Technology Student Declaration I declare that 1. I understand what plagiarism is; 2. The consequences of plagiarism have been explained to me by my institution; and 3. The project is all my own work and I have acknowledged any use of others’ published or unpublished works. 4. The project was completed over two semesters fromTERM 1 2011 to TERM 2 2011. 5. I had done backup of my coding and dissertation. Student Signature: _________ Date: _______________ AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 1
  3. 3. II. Acknowledgements I would like to express my sincere Gratitude to God who give me the time, straight and opportunity to complete this project. I would also like to give credit to my humble lecturer Dr.Teo for his enormous patient, remarkable and constructive guidelines giving to me for understanding and achieving my focus throughout the entire process of developing this project. Also my heart goes straight to my family especially my Brother Taufiq Mustapha for the support and encouragement given to me. I wish to also avail myself of this opportunity, express a sense of gratitude to my beloved parents for their manual and financial support, strength, and help and for allowing me to seize this opportune to study abroad. I would not conclude without giving credit to my friend Abba Lawal who tremendously helps me in completing this project AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 2
  4. 4. III. Abstract Online parcels delivery System plays a vital role in simplifying the business structure of parcels delivery. There is no doubt that the recent improvements in information technology has influence and restructure the way delivery system is done.One of the major achievements of the nowadays package delivery system is that, customer can use the pricing calculator of a website to calculate the price to be paid on each parcel before taking the parcel to the delivery company. This report explains the complete process of literature review, analysis, design and implementation of an integrated service pricing engine for package delivery system of a medium sized parcel delivery company. Using ASP.Net front end with a SQL backend, the system provides Customers with an efficient and reliable business portal for calculating parcel prices online. With a fully referenced review of the available literature on the topic, object-oriented analysis and design elaborated using the Unified Modelling Language, the report focus on documenting the stages of the system development. At the end of the development process, the aim of the project, which is to develop an integrated online pricing engine for parcel delivery, was achieved following the evaluation of the business, as well as the system’s objectives in the final chapter of the report. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 3
  5. 5. IV. I. Table of Contents Declaration .............................................................................................................. 1 II. Acknowledgements ................................................................................................ 2 III. Abstract .................................................................................................................... 3 IV. Table of Contents ................................................................................................... 4 1. CHAPTER (1) INTRODUCTION .............................................................................. 9 1.1. Background ..................................................................................................................... 9 1.2. Aim ................................................................................................................................. 10 1.3. Objectives ...................................................................................................................... 10 1.4. Idea Exploration ........................................................................................................... 11 1.5. Fact Finding Technique ............................................................................................... 12 1.6. Research Design ............................................................................................................ 12 1.7. Research Method .......................................................................................................... 14 1.8. Project Time Plan ......................................................................................................... 16 2. CHAPTER (2) LITERATURE REVIEW .................................................................. 17 2.1. E-commerce in the modern environment ................................................................... 17 2.1.1. Types of e-commerce ................................................................................................ 17 2.1.2. Business to Consumer (B2C) ..................................................................................... 18 2.2. Concept of Online Delivery System............................................................................. 19 2.2.1. Delivery....................................................................................................................... 19 2.2.2. Definition of parcels delivery ..................................................................................... 19 2.2.3. Categories of Package Delivery Services ................................................................... 20 2.2.4. Process of Package Delivery ...................................................................................... 21 2.2.5. Benefits of online package delivery system ............................................................... 22 2.2.6. Risk of package delivery ............................................................................................ 23 2.3. Pricing Engine ............................................................................................................... 24 2.3.1. Definition of pricing engine ....................................................................................... 24 2.3.2. Key components that determine the price of package to delivered. ........................ 25 2.3.3. Features of pricing engine .......................................................................................... 27 2.4. Case Study ..................................................................................................................... 29 2.4.1. Case Study 1: Feb Express ......................................................................................... 29 2.4.2. Case Study 2: Singapore ............................................................................................. 31 AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 4
  6. 6. 2.4.3. Comparison of Case Studies....................................................................................... 33 2.4.4. Review of Case study .................................................................................................. 33 3. CHAPTER (3) SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS AND ANALYSIS ............................... 34 3.2. System Requirement And Analysis ............................................................................. 34 3.2.1. Analysis Research Planning ....................................................................................... 34 3.2.2. Requirement Collection Plan...................................................................................... 35 3.2.3. Analysis’ Sample Design and Data Collection............................................................. 36 3.2.4. Summary of fact finding............................................................................................. 36 3.2.5. Conclusion of the Data Analysis ................................................................................ 49 3.3. Use Case Diagram ......................................................................................................... 49 3.3.1. Use Case Description ................................................................................................. 50 3.3.2. Detail User Registration Function .............................................................................. 53 3.3.3. Detail Parcels Registration Function .......................................................................... 54 3.3.4. Overview Detail Use Case of Users ........................................................................... 55 3.3.5. Overview of the Detail Use case For Administrator .................................................. 56 3.4. System Requirements specification ............................................................................. 57 3.4.1. Functional requirement............................................................................................... 57 3.4.2. Non-functional requirements ...................................................................................... 58 3.5. Conclusion of the analysis phase ................................................................................. 60 4. CHAPTER (4) SYSTEM DESIGN ........................................................................ 61 4.2. Architectural Design. .................................................................................................... 61 4.3. Sequence Diagram ........................................................................................................ 62 4.3.1. Login Sequence Diagram ........................................................................................... 62 4.3.2. User registration Sequence ....................................................................................... 63 4.3.3. Parcel Registration and Calculation Sequence ......................................................... 64 4.3.4. Administrator Sequence ............................................................................................ 65 4.4. Activity Diagram ........................................................................................................... 66 4.5. Module Design ............................................................................................................... 67 4.6. Database Modelling ...................................................................................................... 69 4.6.1. Class Diagram Description ......................................................................................... 70 4.7. Normalisation ................................................................................................................ 70 4.7.1. Unnormalized Form (UNF)......................................................................................... 71 4.7.2. First Normal Form (1NF). ........................................................................................... 71 4.7.3. Second Normal Form (2NF). ...................................................................................... 71 4.7.4. Third Normal form (3NF). .......................................................................................... 71 AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 5
  7. 7. 4.8. Database Mapping ........................................................................................................ 72 4.9. Screen Design ................................................................................................................ 72 4.9.1. Home Page Screen Design ......................................................................................... 73 4.9.2. User Login page Screen Design.................................................................................. 74 4.10. Chapter Summary ........................................................................................................ 75 5. Chapter 5: IMPLEMENTATION AND TESTING ................................................... 76 5.1. System Implementation ................................................................................................ 76 5.1.1. Hardware and Software Requirements ....................................................................... 76 5.1.2. Database Integration .................................................................................................. 77 5.1.3. Creating tables in the database.................................................................................. 77 5.2. System Testing .............................................................................................................. 78 5.2.1. Black Box Testing ........................................................................................................ 79 5.2.2. Testing Plan ................................................................................................................ 79 6. CHAPTER (6) EVALUATION AND CONCLUTION ............................................... 83 6.1. Evaluation...................................................................................................................... 83 6.1.1. Evaluation the System against the System Analysis................................................... 83 6.1.2. Evaluating the System against the System Design ..................................................... 83 6.1.3. Evaluating the System against the Development and Implementation ................... 84 6.2. Weaknesses of the System ............................................................................................ 84 6.3. Future enhancement ..................................................................................................... 85 6.4. CONCULUTION .......................................................................................................... 86 References .................................................................................................................. 87 Appendixes A: Sequence Diagram............................................................................ 90 Appendix B: Interface Design .................................................................................... 91 Appendix C: Sample Questionnaire .......................................................................... 92 Appendix D: System Testing ..................................................................................... 95 Appendix E: Turnitin Report .................................................................................... 103 Appendix F: Presentation Slides ............................................................................. 104 AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 6
  8. 8. TABLE OF FIGURES FIGURE 1: PROJECT TIMELINE ............................................................................................................................ 16 FIGURE 2: PROCESS OF PACKAGE DELIVERY ...................................................................................................... 22 FIGURE 3: COMPONENTS OF PARCELS PRICING COMPONENTS OF PARCELS PRICING ..................................... 25 FIGURE 4: PRICING ENGINE CYCLE ..................................................................................................................... 28 FIGURE 5: FED EXPRESS WEB PAGE ................................................................................................................... 30 FIGURE 6: SINGAPORE POST WEBSITE HOME PAGE .......................................................................................... 31 FIGURE 7: SING POST PRICING CALCULATION WEB PAGE ................................................................................. 32 FIGURE 8: RESPONDENT QUESTIONNAIRE RESULT ........................................................................................... 36 FIGURE 9: GENDER RESPONDENTS IN THE QUESTIONNAIRE ............................................................................ 37 FIGURE 10: AGE RANGE OF THE RESPONDERS .................................................................................................. 38 FIGURE 11: AGE RANGE OF THE RESPONDENTS ................................................................................................ 39 FIGURE 12: DIFFERENT AGE RANGE OF THE PARTICIPANT ................................................................................ 40 FIGURE 13: IS ONLINE PACKAGE DELIVERY SYSTEM IMPORTANT ..................................................................... 41 FIGURE 14: RESPONDENT VIEWS ON THE CURRENT ONLINE PACKAGE DELIVERY SYSTEM .............................. 42 FIGURE 15: IMPORTANCE OF PRICING ENGINE IN AN ONLINE DELIVERY SYSTEM ............................................ 43 FIGURE 16: IMPORTANCE OF TRACKING IN AN ONLINE PACKAGE DELIVERY SYSTEM ..................................... 45 FIGURE 17: WHAT FEATURE DO YOU THINK IS IMPORTANT IN AN ONLINE DELIVERY SYSTEM........................ 47 FIGURE 18: RESPONSE ON EFFICIENCY OF ONLINE DELIVERY SYSTEMS ........................................................... 48 FIGURE 19: USE CASE OF THE INITIAL STAGE OF THE SYSTEM ......................................................................... 49 FIGURE 20: DETAIL USER REGISTRATION FUNCTION ......................................................................................... 53 FIGURE 21: DETAIL PARCELS REGISTRATION FUNCTION ................................................................................... 54 FIGURE 22: OVERVIEW DETAIL USE CASE OF USERS .......................................................................................... 55 FIGURE 23: OVERVIEW OF DETAIL USE CASE FOR ADMINISTRATOR ................................................................. 56 FIGURE 24: SYSTEM ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN ................................................................................................... 61 FIGURE 25: USER LOGIN SEQUENCE DIAGRAM ................................................................................................. 62 FIGURE 26: CUSTOMER REGISTRATION SEQUENCE DIAGRAM.......................................................................... 63 FIGURE 27: REGISTRATION SEQUENCE DIAGRAM ............................................................................................. 64 FIGURE 28: ADMIN ADD AND REMOVE CUSTOMER SEQUENCE DIAGRAM ...................................................... 65 FIGURE 29: ACTIVITY DIAGRAM ......................................................................................................................... 66 FIGURE 30: MODULE DESIGN............................................................................................................................. 67 FIGURE 31: OVERALL SYSTEM CLASS DIAGRAM ................................................................................................ 69 FIGURE 32: INTERFACE DESIGN SYSTEM HOME PAGE ....................................................................................... 73 FIGURE 33: SYSTEM LOGIN PAGE....................................................................................................................... 74 FIGURE 34: DATABASE CONNECTION ................................................................................................................ 77 FIGURE 35: SAMPLE TESTING OF LOGIN 1 ................................................................................................. 79 FIGURE 36: SAMPLE TESTING OF LOGIN 2 ................................................................................................. 80 AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 7
  9. 9. TABLE OF TABLES TABLE 1: GENDER RESPONDENT’S QUESTIONNAIRE ...................................................................................... 37 TABLE 2 DIFFERENT AGE RANGE OF THE PARTICIPANT .................................................................................. 38 TABLE 3:OCCUPATIONS OF THE RESPONDENTS ............................................................................................. 39 TABLE 4: HAVE YOU EVER USE ANY KIND OF ONLINE DELIVERY SYSTEM ....................................................... 40 TABLE 5: RESPONSE VIEWS ON THE IMPORTANCE OF ONLINE PACKAGE DELIVERY SYSTEM ....................... 41 TABLE 6: RESPONDENT VIEWS ON THE CURRENT ONLINE PACKAGE DELIVERY SYSTEM ............................... 42 TABLE 7: RESPONDENT VIEWS ON THE IMPORTANCE OF PRICING ENGINE IN AN ONLINE DELIVERY SYSTEM ................ 43 TABLE 8: RESPONDENT VIEWS ON THE HOW DO YOU FIND THE PROCESS OF ONLINE PACKAGE DELIVERY SYSTEM...... 44 TABLE 9: IMPORTANCE OF TRACKING IN AN ONLINE PACKAGE DELIVERY SYSTEM ....................................... 45 TABLE 10: RESPONDENT VIEWS ON THE IMPORTANCE OF DIMENSION OF PACKAGE IN PRICING ENGINE .. 46 TABLE 11: RESPONDENT VIEWS ON THE IMPORTANCE OF DIMENSION FIELD IN A PRICING ENGINE .......... 46 TABLE 12: RESPONSE ON EFFICIENCY OF ONLINE DELIVERY SYSTEMS ........................................................... 48 TABLE 13: ACTORS IDENTIFICATION ............................................................................................................... 52 AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 8
  10. 10. 1. CHAPTER (1) INTRODUCTION 1.1. Background Delivery is a process of transporting goods; most goods are delivered through a transport network Cargo (physical delivery) are mainly delivered through roads, railways and airline network on air. (Wikipedia, 2011)This means there is a need to take on account on how to develop a system that will satisfy all the customer’s needs regarding their parcels delivery. This website is going to be design in other to handle the registration and pricing scheme of parcels delivery. A service pricing of packages to be delivered is a way in which a delivery company determine how much to be paid on each and every package to be delivered based on the pricing strategy of the company.A customer relationship management (CRM)will be included in the system to store customer previous information and transaction history.(Frank, 2004)Previous delivery information is important to customers because some customers usually ordered delivery of their parcels to the same destination in different time, so the customer does not have to enter the destination again. Also the system will have an enquiry section that will give customers opportunity to send enquiries regarding their parcels in order to check the status of their parcels delivery.The system will be designed considering that people are becoming more aware about the changes in technology and also they are paying more attention to the fast and easy process of sending and receiving their parcels, Convenience and efficiency are what fast-paced people want and expect nowadays from companies. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 9
  11. 11. 1.2. Aim The aim of the project is to develop a system that performs online delivery clearance for goods to be delivered; this would be accomplished based on two-dimensions. The first part is expected to orchestrate the process of automating the customer registration by nature of the parcel for quality and policy adherence. On the other part, the system would be able to automatically generate the total price of transporting the parcels base on dimension, volume, weight and parcels’ destination address. Similarly, the engine should incorporate both the functions to operate as a distinct system to streamline the business processes. 1.3. Objectives The following are the objectives.  To conduct a feasibility study that will point out with the strength and weakness of the proposed new system.  To conduct a literature review, this will contain the detail explanation about the company and also make good research on the other people research that is related to the proposed system, this would be accomplished by the use of books, journals articles and internet sources.  Requirement gathering and analysis, this is to check the background of any related system in other to understand the business requirement, this will be used to build a logical model of the new system by using fact finding techniques like questioner, interview and reading of manuals.  To design a good and comprehensive system according to the requirement specification gathered from the user (blue print) by converting the analysis into suitable proposed new system by the use of design tools, such as Use case diagram, Class diagram, Sequence diagram and entity relation diagram for the database.  The development (coding) this will be prepared by converting the design into workable system by the use of ASP.net for the front end and MY SQL SEVER for the back end. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 10
  12. 12.  The testing will be carried out after development; this is to test all the check all the validations of the system and also to authenticate the functional and non-functional requirement of the system.  Evaluation by evaluating the system this is to verify whether the system is build according to the requirement gathered from the user and also meet its aims and objectives. 1.4. Idea Exploration To stay up-to-date with technology and competition, there is a need to develop a system that will meet the need and expectations of the new generation of clients/customers. Service pricing engine is an accurate and secured engine that calculates the amount to be paid for the package delivery based on height, Weight, volume, and location of the sender as well as the receiver of the parcel. The pricing engine will play an important part of parcels delivery as it will ease calculation time taken in other to get the exact amount to be paid for the package delivery. As many are people are willing to spend more to get their parcel delivered without delay.The system is hence devised to be a fast and efficient method of calculating the price to be paid on each package to be delivered and also to capture the information of the customers and other useful data for fast and easy delivery registration and ensuring that their parcel is delivered in time without delay. The system will allow the customers to feed in their information, book order delivery, give feedbacks and store the customer’s information’s and also create several levels of security authentication. The System will strongly improve the readability, availability, easy retrieval, and searching of related parcels information in a punctual manner. SITES REVIEWED SING POST DHl UPS FED EXPRESS AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 11
  13. 13. 1.5. Fact Finding Technique Below is the fact finding techniques which will be usedto attain information from some certain peoplewho may include customers of different companies and also to look into someprevious researches works which is related to our research to get more accurate and reliable information that will helpin achieve the aims of the system.  Online Survey(Questionnaire)  Literature review  Online Survey(Questionnaire) In this part an online survey questionnaire will be distributed to various respondents which may include customers and employees of different companiesinto their email accounts, response of which will be used in data analysis, for effective requirement analysis.  Literature review Literature review is significant and in-depth evolution of previous research carried out by other researches. It is a digest or summary of a particular point of research. (Zinser, 2011) In this part of the research work, a review of various websites, journals and articles will be conducted, this is with a view to find good part of those sites and adopt them in our proposed new system, and discover the weaknesses of those sites so as to improve them in our proposed new system. 1.6. Research Design Initial Study Understanding the background problems of systemto see if there is possibility of solving them, a feasibility report will be produce which will include estimate of time, cost and benefit. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 12
  14. 14. Requirement Analysis The main purpose of this phase is to define the problems that need to be solved and also understand the information realm for the system as well as requirement function behaviour and interfacing, at the end system specification will be produced. System requirement design In this stage the design functions and operation are described in detail will include the system architecture, business rules, process diagrams and other documentation. The output of this stage will describe the new system as a collection of modules or subsystem. System Testing This is to execute the system in order to find and detect errorsand also test case and test planwill be prepared in other todocument test result report. Testing approach: Black box Testing In this testing approach the testerhas to go through the function of the system and he needs to know everything in the system such as how many functionsare in the new system, and also how each and every function works and etc. So the tester must acknowledge it. System Evaluation The evaluation process will be accomplished through the following steps.  Compare the test plan with actual test result  Debug and correct any system errors discovered  Evaluate the occurrence of error rate  Ensure the quality and reliability of the system AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 13
  15. 15. 1.7. Research Method The table below shows the project development tasks through which the objectives of the propose system state above can be achieve. Each stage segment will cover task essential for the development of the proposed system and a dexterous dissertation work. Stages Tasks - Project topic initiation - Stage1:Project Proposal Identifying and define opportunity to improve business operation - Identify significant assumption and constrain of the system. Stage 2: Literature Review - It is to critically evaluate what have chosen as a project topic. - Summarise syntheses and analyse the knowledge that already exist and what gasp occur related to our research. - To reveal similarities and differences, consistencies and inconsistencies in previous research. - This will be achieved with the help of journals article and internet sources Stage 3: System Analysis - Define and refine functional and data requirement and document them in the requirement document. - Development of a detail data and process models including system input output. - Developing the test and evolution requirement that will be used to determine the acceptable system performance. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 14
  16. 16. - Converting the analysis into design - Stage 4:System Design The architecture will be documented, as the system design specification in system design document. - Maintenance and implementation manual. - Converting the design into workable solution - Input output specification - Stage 6: System Testing Conversion and implementation plan. - Stage 5:System Development Security risk assessment plan. Data dictionary and operational instruction - Ensuring the functionality and interpretability of the system. - Ensuring the system meets the organisation and end user requirement. User training Data conversion - Change over plan. - Review system and finalize issue - Checks detect and correct system errors. - Stage 8: System Review - Stage 7: System Implementation Compile all the document together to complete the dissertation AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 15
  17. 17. 1.8. Project Time Plan TIME PLAN 2011 Activity Duration Feb march 1) Proposal 1 month 4) System Design 4weeks 5) Program Design 4 weeks 6) Development 1 month 7) Testing 3 weeks 8) Implementation 3 weeks 9) Completing Dissertation Aug 5 Weeks 3) System Analysis Jul 5 Weeks 2) Literature review April May Jun 1 month Figure 1: Project Timeline AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 16 Sept
  18. 18. 2. CHAPTER (2) LITERATURE REVIEW 2.1. E-commerce in the modern environment Though the idea of business model is potentially significant to all companies and business sectors, automating the business process has been a major problem to many companies and organizations. Based on the research on the current organizations and their economic and strategic literatures and after reviewing few books and articles on business models, with no any deep research in the topic, never the less several authors have provide some useful information for evaluation of business models. Most of the educational research on business strategies have being carried out in favour of E-business. As defined by Norton and Kaplan (2004), E-business is a way to carry out business processes in a systematic way using modern technology (Norton, 2004). Explanation of business model have thrive long time ago. For example, TapscottTicoll, and Lowy (2000) on their research they emphasize on the system, business-web or “b-web.” That is they purely concentrate on the suppliers, merchants, business service providers, infrastructure providers, and customers. Also Rappa (2003) define business model as the way of conducting business transaction in which a company or organization can stand on itself, in this article Rappa define business model as a way in which a company gains its income that its revenue and where it’s located in the value sequence of the company (Rappa, 2003). Based on the definition and explanation above it can ben understand that e-commerce is not only way in which a company conduct its business but also it is also the way a company can increase its income. 2.1.1. Types of e-commerce - Business to Business e- commerce (B2B) - Business to Consumer e- commerce (B2C) - Consumer to Business e- commerce (C2B) - Consumer to Consumer e- commerce (C2C) AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 17
  19. 19. The project: An integrated service pricing engine for package delivery falls under the sunshade of B2C type of ecommerce. As such we shall consider the B2C E-commerce in detail. 2.1.2. Business to Consumer (B2C) Business-to-Consumer (B2C) e-commerce emphases on direct transactions of business between the customer and business partners as defined by Dedhia(Dedhia, 2001), that is to say is the set of business transaction between the website and an end user, consumers can be able to buy or sell their goods at any time any anywhere provided they are connected to the internet. One of the key important aspects of e-commerce is convenience, that is, a customer can buy or sell his goods anytime anywhere, 365 days of the year. Furthermore beside all this advantage of e-commerce consumers still have fear over purchase in the internet. Example of business-to-consumer includes include small and medium companies that began life as Internet companies which carried out their business online as well as established “Click-and-mortar” and catalogue mail order retailers that added Internet retail stores to their existing businesses. Customer Relationship Management According to Robert Anderson (2001). CRM is a business strategy designed to help a company or organization to understand the needs and look forward toward satisfying their current and future customers (Anderson, 2000). As the marketplace competition among companies is going on efficiently and most of smart organizations are taking serious action on deriving customer service and satisfaction. According to EMS Corporations Efficiency in the business process is the key components of the CRM strategy (EMC-Copuration., 2008). CRM is being designed to enhance the whole company when managing the customer relationship management, the ability to derived the value from CRM project being grouped on the enterprise ability to influence and join together all these possible functions, technology and secured data in a way that enhance department synergy as well as comprehensive and dedicated advantage to customers. CRM as a whole is a strategy in which a company follows so as to have a good and successful relationship with its customers and business partners, according to Institute for direct marketing IDM the main AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 18
  20. 20. aims of CRM is to find a way which will enable you to deliver your goods to customers less cost and efficient way that satisfied your employees and customers at large (IDM., 2002) As Ron Swifta veteran in CRM stated in article, each company must decide what CRM strategy suites the company and to the future of its success in the marketplace. Types of CRM - Operational CRM - Analytical CRM - Collaborative CRM According to Elsevier (2006) all of the above three Components of CRM Support each other and work together developing a full and Successful CRM, which result in a better customer experience needs the combination of all those components stated above (Elsevier., 2006) And also a collaborative CRM gives room to a customer to contact the company. 2.2. 2.2.1. Concept of Online Delivery System Delivery The word delivery can be defined as an act of transmitting or conveying packages deliver as a shipment (TheFreeDictionary, 2011).From above definition it can understand that delivery is an act of transfer of goods or interest from one person to another. 2.2.2. Definition of parcels delivery Parcel delivery is the shipment of packages (parcels) or any high value mail as single shipments, most of the shipment services are mainly provided by private package delivery. Postal system services have also existed in competition within and in place of public postal services(Wikipedia., 2011). Package delivery is system which comprise of different shipment strategies like package shipment and express latter shipment, shipments have being improve effectively over the years. Drastic changes have being transpired considering the current technologies used in goods transportation, this was analysed based on in-depth analysis of the current marketplace and the range of service options that Delivery company offer which include the new transportation and communications technology that the current companies deploy. (Joy, 2011). AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 19
  21. 21. 2.2.3. Categories of Package Delivery Services There are many package delivery companies that offer a variety of services to satisfy their customer’s business needs. When looking to for a delivery company it is very important to know what exactly is the type of service they are providing, as Different Companies offers different services. According to (TransGlobalCompany, 2011) there are many Package delivery companies that specialize both on international and local delivery. Customers usually choose their delivery company based on the type of services as well as delivery prices the company offers. In this context there may be better to choose a smaller company for your local delivery which is mostly door to door delivery and a larger one for international shipping. But sometime you may prefer to have single delivery company so as to facilitate your record and build a strong working relationship. Ian Sheldon (2011) defines five services as the major services offered by delivery companies (Sheldon, 2011).  International Delivery : As the name implies the service somewhat gives it away, but this is all about providing customers with such an opportunity to delivered their good from one country to another no matter the requirement for transportation by air or sea. The International Courier service can be served in different ways such International Express (Next day) or Standard (5-7 days).  Same Day Express Delivery: This type of service is usually used whenever a customer wishes to send his package and want it to be delivered in the same day. This service often come in different options such as Same Day Courier, Express delivery and Bike delivery but actually they all provide same services delivering your parcels as the same day you end it but in different way (Sheldon, 2011).  Overnight Delivery Services: There are some certain instances whereby a customer want his parcel to be delivered over a specified period of time Thus, a good and reliable delivery service will get all parcels delivered within the given time frame, this specialized services need an overnight delivery service often transported by couriers during the dark hours and early morning this service can guarantee to get your parcel to its destination before a designated time the following day (Sheldon, 2011). AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 20
  22. 22.  Standard Delivery Service: This service is often seen when ordering products on the internet, if your delivery hasn’t got a time restriction then standard service is often the most cost efficient and suitable, however this type of service take 2-3 days longer than regular service time.  Customer’s package tracking service: According to Iren Sheldon Parcels tracking as the name imply is one of the services that most delivery companies today offer. This service allows individuals to track the progress of his parcel delivery. It helps identify any problem that may occur during the delivery process. After selecting tracking service option, the customer will be given a unique number to be used for the tracking. The number will be use true out the delivery process which helps the customer to track the real time process of his parcels(Sheldon, 2011). 2.2.4. Process of Package Delivery Transportation and packaging of parcels needs to be matched to its logistics system. All packages that have a high priority may not mix uniformly with the ordinary Packages. Arrangement of how to package parcels is one of the major areas of concern throughout the process of the delivery, considering the possible vulnerabilities that may occur during the process. There are some companies that open special department and employ specialist staff where their duty is to give customers the strategy or the guideline on how to package their parcels, they also provide package design and package testing services. There are facilities that are set up in airports considering the operational flow process of the airport. This elegance can be clearly perceived as the continues operation of all flights in some airport, first sorting and second sorting, reload of packages, and finally to the outbound flights(Jason., 2009). AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 21
  23. 23. The chart below describes the process of package being picked up, sorted and delivered to the end customer. SENDER COMPANY COURIER FLIGHT TO CVT FIRST SORTIN G (primary sort) WHEN IT ARIVES NEED TO UNLOADED TO CVT SENDER RECIEVER RECIEVER FINAL DESTINATION COURIER OUTBOUND FLIGHT SECOND SORTING (Secondary sort) RELOADED AT TERTIARY Figure 2: Process of package Delivery This type of structural process has been examined and guaranteed as a competitive way of delivery over the years, however this process has a capability were by the company can add a step to the existing hub when there is need. Although in some years back the process is very tedious considering the steps. Nevertheless, this process flow helps the companies to carry on developing by opening more areas that can handle lager capacity of customers. 2.2.5. Benefits of online package delivery system According to Karen C. Fernandez (2011)dedicated delivery times, specialization and individualization of parcel delivery services are the key features that certify a delivery company to be professional and beneficial to all customers. Delivery services have increase and gained a lot of attractiveness, using a delivery company for a customer who wishes send his package from one place to another will be a good option, whether you want to send your parcels locally or globally (Fernandez, 2011). As Joy Matthews (2011) stated in his article titled “Benefits of parcels delivery service” highlight the following as the benefits of online AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 22
  24. 24. delivery. “Packages can be tracked at any point of time, finding out real time information with regards to the package by SMS messages. Tax parcel identifiers have all the information about the package. It stores at least three years’ worth of documents of deliveries and also stores all data of past and current deliveries”.  Introduction of online delivery system helps in reducing traffic in Delivery Companies, customer’s satisfaction is desired by everyone. The automated pricing and calculation engine used in the web pages really helps in diminishing much traffic in delivery companies attend all customer without delay. As cited from (Comell, 2011).  Online Delivery system gives customers an opportunity to register their parcels and make payments online at any point of the day. This is a very big advantage for customers and the company at large, and also it provide absolute time framework which gives the company the chance to expand its business.  With the use of online delivery system, the company data and information is more secured and reliable, since the customer’s information is already been stored in the database. Using online delivery system reduces the rate of data lose which helps to increase the confidence of the companies as well as the customers(Comell, 2011). 2.2.6. Risk of package delivery After all what already describe above as a benefit of online delivery, there are some risk that are associated with the system. Below are the major risks that most likely occurred during the process of delivery.  Packages may get damaged There are some certain instances whereby parcels get damaged or spoiled during the delivery process, delivering parcels in their original condition is not always possible but, also delivering package by the customer himself is not solution to the problem. In a situation like this a parcel delivery service helps greatly. Usually the company provides their customers with the services that guarantee the safe of their parcels. In this present environment Most of the service providers operate online, which makes it convenient for AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 23
  25. 25. their customers. Also most of delivery companies offer insurance in each and every package they send. This ensures that you recover any losses in case of an unfortunate accident(CollectMyParcel, 2011) .  Package may be lost. Each and every delivery company has their own measures in dealing with packages that get lost before reaching the destination. In the first instance before customer send any package he has to check and see what procedure the company have in place whenever a parcel get lost. Usually the customer has to read all the terms and condition of the delivery company before confirming his order. Must of the good parcel delivery companies will have this information easily accessible from their websites.  Delivery to wrong address. Delivery to wrong address usually occurred because of lack of correct address of the receiver. One of the ways to overcome this risk is the sender has to double check and confirm the receiver address before send the package most especially when the item is very important, and you don't want it to be undelivered, lost or going to the wrong destination. It take times to recover and it was really disappointing sometimes it takes weeks or even month the worse scenario case is it cannot be recovered anymore. 2.3. Pricing Engine 2.3.1. Definition of pricing engine Pricing engine is an application for a real time calculation of reference prices of packages based on certain criteria. Parcels pricing Engine is based on a client-server architecture which allows the automatic pricing of parcels, using inputs from user. The system is designed to support the concurrent operation of several users and to sustain real time calculation of several parcels. Pricing Engine allows a minimal number of users to operate efficiently, the system are control by several security checks which produce result based on the input entered by the user. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 24
  26. 26. 2.3.2. Key components that determine the price of package to delivered. Understanding how pricing of parcels is calculated can to some extend very difficult for a customer to understand. But the best way for a customer who wishes to be familiar with the method is to get all the breakdown of the pricing list of the company. Though some companies provide too much information for both regular and fulltime customer hence trying get pricing list. Every customer who wants to understand the Pricing scheme needs to settle dawn and carefully go through the whole process which may contain large amount of information. By the article contributes by Envista and Co (2010), they outline 8 key components that determine the price of parcels (Envista, 2010) Figure 3: Components of parcels pricing Components of parcels pricing  Published Rates(list) - Published is a rate: Published rates are non-discounted rates this is used in a situation whereby the customer did not have established pricing with the delivery company or if you he is a very small shipper. - Counter rates: this is used when a customer wanted to send a personal package and did not have an established account number he would be charged Counter Rates. Counter rates can be charged at the shipper’s retail locations, - Negotiated Rates: This are rates that contains various discount types on Service Levels such as base discounts, matrix (or weight/zone-based) AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 25
  27. 27. discount. Negotiated rates are rates that are negotiated based on a number of factors in the marketplace. (Envista, 2010).  Service Level: Identification of cost starts at the service level; Different companies use different zone definitions. For example a special zone for UPS might not line up exactly with FedEx. Therefore, you cannot say that your cost with UPS is the same with FedEx for a particular shipment unless you price them out with both companies.  Weight/Zone Based Pricing: The third factor is Weights and Zones. All delivery companies use a zone and weight based pricing formula to price their services. That is to say they divide weight into one pound increments, typically from 1 to 150 pounds, and the country and the world, into a series of zones. A zone is like a large zip code grouping. Your zone is driven by your origin and destination(Envista, 2010).  Accessorial: The next area in pricing is Accessorial, which as sometimes referred to as Other Charges or Additional Shipping Fees. There are well over 80 Accessorial today and these help determine the price. Some Accessorial can be negotiated and if you have negotiated rates it’s important to see if you have any discounts on specific Accessorial.  Service Charges: Service Charges are a small component of pricing. A Service Charge typically won’t affect the cost of an individual delivery but will be added to his bill if he has an account with one of the companies. Typical Service Charges would be weekly pick-up fees and late fees if warranted.  Package Attributes: Package Attributes play an important part in pricing. An attribute could be the size or shape of the parcel or the size and shape of the packaging. All the companies use Dimensional Weight Pricing to price irregular or very large packages. Each company has certain rules that govern irregular size delivery or packages in non-corrugated packaging. If you are sending something like this it’s very important to understand the accessorial and surcharge definitions, as your cost could significantly increase and additional surcharges could apply. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 26
  28. 28.  Surcharges: The last key factor in determining your price is Surcharges. The main Surcharge today is the Fuel Surcharge. As the fuel prices across the world have rollercoaster in the last few years all parcel carriers utilize a Fuel Surcharge. However, bear in mind that the transportation charges and surcharges applied could be different based on different list rate charges, different application of the charges, or different contractual discounts. The most obvious thing would be to choose the lowest transportation charge. But, if you did not factor these factors the price could actually be higher(Envista, 2010). 2.3.3. Features of pricing engine  External structure of a pricing engine: is the physical interface where the user or customer interacts with the engine, the engine contains set of fields/attributes that are used for calculating price of parcels to be delivered. Different companies have different structures of pricing engine and also some companies may have some special features. A distinctive pricing engine contains number of fields that calculate the price based on dimension, volume, origin and destination of the parcel (eoracleapps, 2011)  Internal structure of a pricing engine: Pricing engine is a flexible, expendable module that gives room to setup a common source for setting up rules to derive prices of a parcel based on the information enters by the user, after calculating then produces result accordingly. Below diagram show the Internal Structure of Pricing Engine AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 27
  29. 29. Figure 4: Pricing Engine Cycle As shown in above diagram the engines have two different types of processing activities each time the process executes. .  Selection engine component: this component evaluates thequalifier rules which the user/customer has established, and based on those rules chooses thequalified pricing actions’ that the calling application may need to apply thetransaction they were processing when they called the pricing engine (eoracleapps, 2011).  The second activity is the calculation engine: The calculation engine will not start processing until the Selection engine component has completed his first task of selecting appropriate pricing action for the transaction. The main task of this engine is to perform all necessary calculations needed to compute delivery prices(eoracleapps, 2011). AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 28
  30. 30. 2.4. Case Study 2.4.1. Case Study 1: Feb Express Situation Fed express was established in late 1960’s by W. Smith a young business man, it was maintained by 36 different branches within U.S. the company find it difficult using pen and paper for registering the parcels to be delivery during that period of time. In early 1987 the company enhances its services by installing over 200 customer automation devices one in each branch premises, thus enable the customer’s weight their parcels and print the air bill for the parcels. This is done in other to standardize the business process of the company. But after few years the company feels that they need a new alternative which will reduce much traffic in the company and satisfy customer’s needs (FedExpress, 2011). Solution In the year 2005, Fed Express outsources an IT development department to develop and come out with a better Delivery System process for the company. Fed express develop a new System based on online delivery system which enable every respective customer to register his parcel and calculate the amount to paid for the delivery by entering the details of the package e.g. Address of the Origin, destination, weight, Dimension of the parcels and etc. As part of the program, the company defines a way in which they advertise themselves in the website, this approach reduces much traffic in company and also satisfy the customer’s needs (FedExpress, 2011). The new system also develop in more step by step manner then before, which satisfy the almost all the customer’s needs. By using online approach, the old system is already out-dated. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 29
  31. 31. Result By taking the online approach, Fed Express gains the ability to improve its services. The system also makes it possible for customers to track their parcels in order to see the progress of their packages. In addition, the establishment of the new online delivery system which include the delivery registration as well as the pricing engine that contain the all necessary fields/attribute needed for the calculation, this enables the customers to have a better way of calculating the price of their parcels to be delivered using the pricing engine in the company’s website. Despite its good design and its attractiveness, the whole website failed to provide Back button link not available which cause navigation inefficient and inconvenience. (FedExpress, 2011). Figure 5: Fed Express web page (FedExpress, 2011) AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 30
  32. 32. 2.4.2. Case Study 2: Singapore Situation Singapore Post formally known as (Sing Post): Is a government owed delivery Companywhich provides both local international postal services. The company also provides logistics services in the local market and global delivery services. Sing Post offers products and services including postal, agency and financial services through its post offices. Today, Singapore has 62 postal offices, around 40 postal agencies. And also maintain more than 800 licensed stamp vendors(SingPost, 2011). The below webpage is the homepage of Singapore post office which contain list of services the company offers. Online delivery system is becoming more popular because every day more people becoming computer literates and they are more compatible with internet services. The customer will first visit the Sing post website which will directly take him to the company’s home page, once the customer have access the home page, there are different links of services to choose from. Figure 6: Singapore Post website Home Page (SingPost, 2011) http://www.singpost.com/ AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 31
  33. 33. The below webpage is the Sing post pricing engine page which contain some few links and two fields. The two fields are Destination and weight which are use for the calculation of the price of parcels. The page has different links that will link you to some functions of the system such as find postal code which contain searching fields for a customer to search for a specific postal code. Services is another link which will link you to see different services provided by the company, so if visitors require any help may easily find out without having difficulties questioning, another attractive feature is the tracking services a customer can track and see the progress of his package from anywhere provided he is conned to the internet. Figure 7: Sing Post Pricing Calculation Web Page (SingPost, 2011) Result Based on deep observations on the above website it was revealed that it lacks a certain futures or I may say the website needs to be improved. Though the interface design is good, including all the links are placed in such a way that users will not be confused when trying to navigate through. But the pricing calculation area has only two fields, Destination and Weight of the package, although the calculation needs to collect detail information of the package. Despite its good design and its attractiveness, the whole website failed to provide Back button link not available which cause navigation inefficient and inconvenience. Therefore this implies that there is a room for improvement AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 32
  34. 34. 2.4.3. Comparison of Case Studies In Case Study 1: Fed express, all the necessary fields that are needed for a good and comprehensive engine are present in the system such as: the Origin, Destination, Dimension, and Volume of a Parcel. This makes the System to be complete and as such, can be used to calculate the price of any sort of parcel. While in Case Study 2: Sing post, there are some not all these inputs are needed to calculate the parcel price. In this case, only the weight and destination of the parcel is required. Although the engines is working but because of the lack of necessary fields that will give the detail information of parcel this makes the system to be inefficient. In case study 1: The author intends to explore and review the whole systems. But unfortunately some part of the system cannot be accessed and reviewed, unless by providing fed express account number during the process of registration, but never the less some major features have being reviewed and examine. While in case study 2: The website does not have any restriction when trying to go through the System, as such all the required pages has being reviewed. In both case studies 1 and 2: In the two related websites, despite their good design and attractiveness the websites failed to provide back button link. 2.4.4. Review of Case study Critical review of two related web sites had conducted in this stage in order to acquire the knowledge that will help to study and identify the strength and weaknesses of the System. However, to have the entire necessary functional requirement that will help in developing a good delivery system which wills overcome the problems faced by the current package delivery system, a thorough analysis and justification of the requirements is needed. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 33
  35. 35. 3. 3.2. CHAPTER (3)SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS AND ANALYSIS System Requirement And Analysis As the literature review has being completed, Now the analysis stage, the main objective of this chapter will be the description of new system requirements, determine where and how to find the requirements, thorough analysis of the findings will be done in other to come up with feasible set of requirements useful for defining the accurate scope to commence the design of the new system. In this part, the developer analyses the trends of nowadays delivery System, as today majority of people knows how to interact with different kind of online delivery system. Through this process the analysis will be done in other to understand how much importance online pricing engine contribute to the delivery system and what feature that most people love to use and new feature that people would like to have in the entire delivery System. This will be done in other to give better understanding what people want for a new delivery system with a pricing engine. 3.2.1. Analysis Research Planning As already stated in the first chapter online questionnaire survey will be used as a fact finding technique. The survey will be prepared online, by the help of a website that facilitate the user to make a survey and polling online, with the help of the tools that already provided, it makes a lot easier to type in the question to be ask and to generate the report. The set of questions given will be short and precise, as it is only to know what people think about the most important feature in any delivery system website and what new thing that they want to have in a new delivery system website. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 34
  36. 36. 3.2.2. Requirement Collection Plan During the process of requirement gathering in other to find accurate information, questionnaire has been used as a way of gathering information from customers of different companies, how the current system are being processed and to find the view of the respondent, with the help of the questionnaire. Questionnaire: Is a form containing set of questions that are used for gathering facts from the large amount of peoples while maintaining some control over their response. Features of Online Survey  Information is gathered by asking people questions through the use of their emails or web.  Information is collected either by having the interviewer’s ask open ended question where the interviewee can describes his view or opinion, or closed ended question which the interviewer specify options to a question then the interviewee has the privilege to select among the provided options.  Information is collected from the subsets attributes of large population of people to describe as sample (Babbie, 2009) Where to collect data Functional data: while completing of the initial stage, the functional data will be gathered from the following people. - Customers of different companies - Employees of different companies All the required information regarding the system will be gathered using the questionnaire, which will sent online. The Survey Question The questions, which are intended to be giving to some customer and employees of different companies, will only consist of 12 questions. Below is the sample online survey form, which would be sent. Link to the survey form: https://spreadsheets.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dDZTZTBsQy1laDZYRU dmaEg4U0NwVFE6MQ AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 35
  37. 37. 3.2.3. Analysis’ Sample Design and Data Collection The sampling technique that will be used in this data collection is simple random sampling. The target audiences of this survey are those people that interact with different kind of delivery system website. The allocation of the sample survey questions will be around 40 people, as this considers enough to know the majority views of people regarding different delivery system websites. The data collection of this survey will be conducted in few days by sending the survey form to the intended people through their email accounts. By using internet as a medium to distribute the survey question, views of people can be collected from different countries which make the sampling to be more random and fast. 3.2.4. Summary of fact finding Below is the summary of what was uncovered during the fact finding using questionnaire. Questionnaire data Analysis Before analysing the respondent view’s, is vital to come with the summary of their responses as Follows Figure 8: Respondent questionnaire result AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 36
  38. 38. Respondent of the Fact Finding: 1. Question: Specify your gender Male 25 63% Female 15 38% Figure 9:Gender respondents in the questionnaire The question is being distributed based on percentage, 60% males and 40% are females. Both genders play a vital role in helping me to find out their interest in the proposed system, this can be seeing in the below table. Table 1: Gender Respondent’s Questionnaire Sex Number of Number questionnaire sent participants Male Female 25 15 of Percentage 25 15 AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY 63% 38% Page 37
  39. 39. Q2. Age Range of the Responses 8-25 9 26-35 21 36-45 4 46-55 5 56-Above 1 23% 53% 10% 13% 03% Figure 10: Age Range of the Responders The above graph shows the different age range of the participant. Where the details description is as follows in a tabular form; Table 2 Different Age Range of the Participant Age Range 18-25 Number of 9 respondents Percentage 23% 26-35 36-45 46-55 56 to above 21 4 5 1 53% 10% 13% 03% By the above age range of the respondents we derived that all different age are participated, even though is not equal participation but the gap is very low, this pointed out that people are supporting the propose system. This respond, improved the author’s intention of developing a system that all age ranges will be happy with it. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 38
  40. 40. Q3. Occupations of the respondents Civil servant 9 23% Business 22 55% Student 9 23% Other 0 0% Figure 11: Age Range of the Respondents occupation Civil servant Number of 9 respondents Percentage 23% Business Student Others 22 9 1 55% 23% 03% Table 3: Occupations of the respondents Above bar chart captured the respondent’s information in terms of the occupation they are currently undertaking, the details description of the respondents are as follows. Nine (9) of the respondents are civil servants which means they are employee of different companies or government agencies, this gives rise of having 23%. Twenty two (22) of the respondents are people that are undertaking various businesses this give them the highest percentage of 55%. Nine (9) of the respondents are students of various schools this gives them 23% of the total respondents. The last batch of the respondents is others, where they only occupy 3% of the respondents. These enable the author to know that most of the people that are interacting with delivery companies are business gurus. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 39
  41. 41. Q4. Have you ever use any kind of online delivery system Yes 36 90% No 22 10% Figure 12: Different Age Range of the Participant Response Number of respondents Percentage Yes 36 90% No 04 10% Table 4:Have you ever use any kind of online delivery system The above chart captured the respondents’ views for the above question where as 36 people answered (Yes) and 4 people answered (No) which means they have never used any kind of delivery system the percentage of the responded is 90% and 10% respectively. The major objective of this question is to understand how often nowadays people are using online delivery system. This will increase the confidence of the author while developing the system. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 40
  42. 42. Q5. Is online package delivery system important Yes 40 100% No 0 0% Figure 13: Is online package delivery system important Response Number of respondents Percentage Yes 40 90% No 00 0% Table 5: Response views on the importance of online package delivery system The above chart captured the respondents’ views for the above question where as 40 people answered (Yes) and 0 people answered (No) this means nowadays people really like online delivery System, the percentage of the responded is 90% and 10% respectively. This gives the author clear impression that majority of people understand the importance of online delivery system. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 41
  43. 43. Q6. How will you rate the current online package delivery system Excellent 23 57% Good 9 23% Natural 4 10% Bad 0 0% Very bad 0 0% Figure 14: Respondent views on the current online package delivery system Criteria Percentage Excellent Number of Respondents 23 Good Neutral Bad Very bad 09 04 0 0 23% 10% 0% 0% 57% Table 6: Respondent views on the current online package delivery system Above chart captured the information of people (respondent) about the current online package delivery system, where 23 people select excellent and offered with 57%, 9 people filled good and gate 23%, 4 peoples choose neutral and offered 10%, none of the respondent take bad and very bad therefore their percentage is 0% respectively. The above respondent views increased the authors concern and called his attention over the challenge of developing a comprehensive online delivery system which com with current delivery system. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 42
  44. 44. Q7. Online pricing engine is important to package delivery system Strongly agreed 31 78% Agreed 4 10% Partially agreed 0 0% Not agreed 0 0% Figure 15: Importance of pricing engine in an online delivery system Criteria Percentage Excellent Number of Respondents 23 Good Neutral Bad Very bad 09 04 0 0 23% 10% 0% 0% 57% Table 7: Respondent views on the importance of pricing engine in an online delivery system Above chart analyses the views gathered from several people on the importance of pricing engine in a delivery system, where 23 strongly agreed with the statement, this covers 57% of the total response, 9 people selected good which offered them 23% of the total respondents, 4 of the respondents filled neutral which means they are not in either of sides this gives them 10%, lastly no one have chosen bad and very bad. Based on the above response it clearly shows that Pricing engine is very important in the delivery system, this call the attention of the author to put more effort in developing the proposed new system. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 43
  45. 45. Q8. How do you find the process of online package delivery system Excellent 70% Good 6 15% Average 2 5% Not good Criteria 28 0 0% Percentage Excellent Number of Respondents 23 Good Average Not good 09 04 0 15% 5% 0% 70% Table 8: Respondent views on the how do you find the process of online package delivery system Above graph captured responder’s views about this question: How do you find the process of online package delivery system in terms of the above options. Where 23 people out of the respondent select excellent this enable them to have 70% , 9 people filled good this give them 15% and 4 people filled average this give them 5% and none of the respondent select not good. So by the respondent answers above this give author impression that the current process uses in delivery system are convenient as such will be considered during development stage. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 44
  46. 46. Q9. Do you think that tracking of parcels is important in an online delivery system Agreed 33 83% Not agree 01 3% Figure 16: Importance of tracking in an online package delivery system Response Number of respondents Percentage Yes 36 90% No 04 10% Table 9: Importance of tracking in an online package delivery system As most of the major package delivery companies’ offer tracking services, the author intends to get views on the importance of service, 36 of the respondents think it important with 90% of the total response, 4 people among the respondents think is not important with 10% of the total response. From the above views it can be clearly understood that nowadays people prefer tracking services, this will be taking into consideration. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 45
  47. 47. Q10. How will you rate the importance of the following field in an online delivery system Origin Dimension Destination Table 10: Importance of dimension of package in pricing engine Criteria Number of Respondents Percentage 1 0 0% 0 1 1 34 0% 3% 3% 85% a pricing engine 2 3 4 5 Table 11: Respondent views on the importance of dimension field in a pricing engine Criteria Number of respondents Percentage 1 0% 0% 2 0% 0% 3 0% 0% 4 2% 5% 5 33% 83% AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 46
  48. 48. Based on the above response it clearly shows the importance of the above fields (origin, dimension and destination) in pricing engine, as such will be considered for the development of good and comprehensive pricing engine. Q11. What feature do you think is important and need to get more attention in an online delivery system. Tracking services 34 94% Online customer support 36 100% Integrated XML services 33 92% Other 0 0% Figure 17: What feature do you think is importantin an online delivery system. Above chart captured the response view’s as the question took 4 options for them to select their choices, where 34 out people of the 36 select the tracking services which is 94% of the question. All the 36 people that fill the question also go for online customer support which is 100% of the question. 33 people also go for integrated XML Services which gain 92% of the question. The last among the list is other which fails to get any respondent. So by analyzing the above response it is revealed that 100% of the respondent support the online support system, this implies that nowadays people prefer a system with customer support services. The question is being asked in other to gate better understanding what new features people want for a new Delivery system. This will enables the author to produce a system with highly users support and to meet all their requirements of users. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 47
  49. 49. Q12. Online delivery system is an efficient and cost effective means of delivery in comparison with traditional delivery system Agreed 36 90% Not Agreed 0 0% Figure 18: Response on efficiency of online delivery Systems Response Number of respondents Percentage Agreed 36 90% Not agreed 0 0% Table 12: Response on efficiency of online delivery Systems The above chart captured the respondent’s views on the efficiency of the nowadays delivery system as compared to traditional delivery system. This views shows that almost all the people prefer the modern way of delivery over the traditional way of the delivery, which is the online delivery system. The output derived from the respondents shows that all the 36 people that attempt the question agreed with the statement with 90%. For the above question or respondent views allow the author to pick out that traditional delivery system is inefficient and time consuming process and there is need to come with the system that will help the customers in reducing such difficulties. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 48
  50. 50. 3.2.5. Conclusion of the Data Analysis After the data had been analysed, there are some conclusions that can be made in this analysis. This development of the online delivery system website will be based on facilitating the user in registering and calculating the price of his/her parcels. The website will have at least three major and basic features registration of parcels, calculation of parcels price as well as checking of delivery status whether is delivered or not. 3.3. Use Case Diagram After the successful completion of the data analysis, the system developer can set out the basic functionalities of the system. In the first level the functions of users, Administrator will be drawn together in the use case later on the functions will be decomposed so it can gives better understanding in developing the system. Figure 19:Use case of the Initial Stage of the System AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 49
  51. 51. From the diagram above, it can be understand that every user have the basic functions for User Registration, Login, Parcels Registration which is extend to parcels pricing calculation and also after registering he can check his delivery status, log out. Similarly, the System administrator also has his own functions where the administrators can Login manage the users account information; manage the database that includes the delivery order information and the remaining functions of the users. All functions in the above initial stage would be decompose and explain in detail in later use case diagrams. 3.3.1. Use Case Description PROCESS 1: Login The function of login use case is to allow the user to have access the system components and features. All the two actors can use this panel to login into the system. PROCESS 2: User Registration User Registration process allows the users to register to the system. Any user can access this function and register himself as a customer, after successful registration the user will get his user Id and password. The administrator is responsible for managing the registration system. This function will be explained in detail in the below section. Process 3: Parcels registration After successful registration the user can use his/her user Id and password to login to parcels registration page (this is extend to the pricing engine function) where the customer can register his parcels and also can use pricing engine calculator to get the amount to be paid for the delivery. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 50
  52. 52. Process 4: Check Delivery status After all the due process of registration and a successful payment for the delivery the user can check his delivery status whether it is delivered or not using his/user id and password to log in to the panel. Process 5: Cancel Delivery Order The function of cancel order in use case is used for customers that wish to the cancel their delivery order. This is achieved by sending cancellation request to the company. The administrator is responsible of managing the feedback of the request. Process 6: Manage Users accounts. All the registration details of the users can be manage by the administrator such as view user information, add new user, search user, edit and update user information. All the functions will be explained in later below section. Process 7: Manage Database Administrator can use this panel to control/manage all the users information regarding their parcels delivery order, this is a function whereby the administrator can view delivery order information, search for order information, edit and update information lastly he can delete any delivered order information. This will all be explained in detail in the upcoming section. Process 8: logout The function logout in the use case is to use allow the user /administrator to sign-out from his/her account. All the two actors can use this panel to logout from the system. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 51
  53. 53. Actors Identification The following table identifies the actors of integrated pricing engine for package delivery. Actor Description Administrator Is a special kind of user of the system who involve in access control of the system and the data Maintenance for all the system components. User Users of the system who involve only In enquiring information such as user registration, pricing parcels calculation registration and with checking of delivery status. System The system collects information from the user and generate result example: In the pricing calculation the user only provide the system with the details and the system calculate and generate the result. Table 13: Actors Identification AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 52
  54. 54. 3.3.2. Detail User Registration Function Figure 20: Detail User Registration Function In home there will be quite a simple function, where from there users may go to registration, Registration form, after registering the user can view own profile, update registration details and change password. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 53
  55. 55. 3.3.3. Detail Parcels Registration Function Figure 21: Detail parcels Registration Function In parcel registration and postage calculations function, the user has to login first after then register his parcels and use the postage calculator. The user can also check delivery order status. While using postage calculator the user provides the information to the system and the system calculate and generate the result. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 54
  56. 56. 3.3.4. Overview Detail Use Case of Users Figure 22: Overview Detail Use Case of Users As shown above is the overview of all the functions of user. The system will be developed based on the use case drawn above. This looks complex and complicated, but it will be explain more in class diagram. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 55
  57. 57. 3.3.5. Overview of the Detail Use case For Administrator Figure 23: Overview of Detail Use Case for Administrator The above use case diagram is the overview of the administrator’s functions where the development will be based on the functions above. The administrator can manage all the AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 56
  58. 58. functions of the customers such as the Customer registration and Parcels registration. The administrator has to login first and he can add new user, search and view user profile, Edit and update user information and then also he can search and delete user. The administration also have the privilege to manage the parcels registration function where he can search and view order detail, edit and update order details and also he can search and delete delivered order. 3.4. System Requirements specification Requirements specification are the set of requirements gathered for the development of the system, this sought of requirements are categorized into two different classes, the first one is the functional requirement of the system which contain the necessary function for the system to be used by the user and perform the task that are expected to do, then nonfunctional requirement which specifies the behaviour of the system. 3.4.1. Functional requirement Functional requirement refers to what the system should do "A requirement specifies a function that a system or component must be able to perform." This can said to be the set of functions that will enable administrator and users to perform a specific required task, if the system does not perform those requirements are considered to be failed system (John., 2011). System Requirements 1. The system would simplify the registration process of parcels as well as the pricing calculation of the parcels to be delivered; this will reduce hectic working exercise of the employees. 2. The system must allow user to register as a new customer. 3. The system must allow user to Login as an existing customer. 4. The system must allow user to view his registration details 5. The system must allow user to edit and update his registration details 6. The system must allow user to change his password 7. The system must have the login function that will allow different user to login and perform different functions. 8. The system must allow the user to register his parcels and use postage calculator AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 57
  59. 59. 9. The system must be able to calculate the price of parcels based on the user input 10. The system must be able to give the output of the calculation 11. The system must be able to save the result of the calculation 12. The system must be able to keep track of the status of parcels whether is delivered or not. 13. Allow authorized administrator to login. 14. Allow the administrator to register a new customer. 15. Allow administrator to search for customer information record. 16. Allow the administrator to view customer information. 17. Allow the administrator to delete customer. 18. Allow the administrator to edit and update customer information. 19. Allow the administrator to view delivery order details. 20. Allow the administrator to edit and update order details. 21. Allow the administrator to search order details. 22. Allow the administrator to delete delivered order 23. The system will be capable of performing the functions which where design for the storing the customers and parcels records. 24. The system shall provide a section, which will give the users the ability to send suggestion regarding their parcels delivery. 25. The system must allow administrator to generate reports for all the traction history. 26. The system must be able give customer his previous transaction history 27. The system must enable user/administrator to logout from the system. 3.4.2. Non-functional requirements A non-functional requirement specifies how the system should behave, according to John j. (2011) "A non-functional requirement is a statement of how a system behave; it is a constraint upon the systems behaviour”(John., 2011). On the other hand a non-functional requirement, are often simply a number of requirements that does not cater all user requirements that are not clearly express as functional. From the definition above it can be understood that non-functional requirements are the set of AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 58
  60. 60. requirement that are not part of the functional requirements but they are expected to provide users with support and work efficiently and in convenient and work effectively. The following are set of requirements:  Reliability: Is the ability of the system to perform its required functions under stated conditions for a specific period of time.The Constraints of the run-time behavior of the system can be considered under the following: - Availability: This refers to the availability of services when requested by end-users, how often the system fails to deliver the service as expected to the end-user. - Dependability: Dependability of the system is also another issue to be considered to the delivery system i.e. the ability to deliver service that can justifiably and be trusted by users at any specific time. Reliability techniques can be divided into two categories: Trending and Predictive - Trending reliability: Tracks the failure data produced by the system to develop a reliability operational profile of the system over a specified time. - Predictive reliability: Assigns probabilities to the operational profile of a system; for example, the system has a 5 percent chance of failure over the next 60 operational hours. (SW-Assuarance, 2011)  Performance: Is use to specifies the amount of time taken to complete specified tasks provided by the user, the performance of the system usually defends on the speed of the network and also speed of the computer system in general. The system would be developed based on the following criteria. - Response requirements: The system should respond to the user as fast as possible, it should also have a timing bar indicating progress of a search or computation.. - Output requirements: How much system can accomplish within a specified amount of time. (Nixon, 2000) AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 59
  61. 61.  Security: This refers to the protecting of the system from unauthorized access. System security focuses on ensuring the availability and correct operation of the system. This system will be developed with the security requirements included to ensure that only unauthorized uses can access the system. Below are the proposed security requirements for the system - There will be a strong authentication before access the system data and also only the administrator can have the permission to alter the data in the database. - A back up copy of the database must be maintained at least every day after working hours in a secured location. - All esteemed data must be encrypted before sending over the network. (Nixon, 2000)  Accessibility: The system will be design with good user interface for easy access  Modifiability: The system allows modifications and editing if there is any errors  Maintainability: The system should be easy to maintain.  The system should be able to hold a number of concurrent users at a time  It should also tolerate high transaction entry rate. 3.5. Conclusion of the analysis phase This chapter describes the system requirements analysis, requirements of the system are critically analyse, the primary data have been collected using the fact finding techniques, the online survey has been use for collecting data from customer’s and employee of different companies. The secondary data are gathered using the research method i.e. based on the reviewed similar system, and then eventually, the functional and non-functional requirements of the system are also identified. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 60
  62. 62. 4. CHAPTER (4)SYSTEM DESIGN 4.2. Architectural Design. Architecture design is the design process for identifying the sub-systems that make up a system as well as the framework for sub-system control and communication. This system is designed based on the functional specification defined earlier on as well as some additional features that will enhance the quality structure of the system. Below is architectural design of the system which the overview structure of the proposed system. Simple Login User Interface Data collection Reports Verify Overall Inventory Details Order Details Search Engine User Information Receiver Details Parcels details Services Servicess SQL DATABASE Servicess Figure 24: System Architectural Design AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 61
  63. 63. 4.3. Sequence Diagram In this section, sequence diagrams have being used to display the interactions between user and system. The main interactions are system login, user access control and the database. 4.3.1. Login Sequence Diagram Login User Database Top Package::User Click Validator Validator Status Success Figure 25: User login Sequence Diagram The user initiate the process by clicking on the Login Form and enters the UserID and password, the system then send a request to the database to check whether his userid and password existed. If the userId and password exist, then the system will automatically logged him/her in to the system and if it doesn’t exist the system will automatically return the to the Login Form and display an error message. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 62
  64. 64. 4.3.2. User registration Sequence Registration Form Controller Validator DAO Top Package::User Select() Registration Return Result: Boolean Validate Return Result: Boolean Comfirm Registration Validate Return Database: Boolean Registration Return Result:Boolean Return Result:Boolean Figure 26:Customer Registration Sequence Diagram The function of this sequence diagram will start when the user click on registration button and it contains five participants. The first participant is the key starter of the system. If all required fields were filled successfully, the system will send the information to the controller where the controller will return result to the Form. When the Form confirmed the information by sending a validation request to the vvalidator, then the validator will check if all the data types were filled correctly. The validator will then pass the request to the DAO to check. The result will be returned from the DAO to the Validator where the Validator return the result to the user Form. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 63
  65. 65. 4.3.3. Parcel Registration and Calculation Sequence Parcel Calcculation Top Package::User DAO Select() Validator Get Last OrderDetails Return Result Calculate Parcel Save Details () Confirm Display Total Figure 27: Registration Sequence Diagram The function of this sequence diagram will start when the user click on Parcel calculation link, the link will direct him to the order page where he/she can choose to view previous order history or to proceed to calculate the price of another parcel. The user can choses to go for another parcels calculation, the validator will validate the user and then proceeds to t calculation page. After the successful calculation the user the result will be sent to the DAO and them it will also displayed to the customer. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 64
  66. 66. 4.3.4. Administrator Sequence Admin Users form Uers controller Validator DAO On click(): Add Employee(): add users Return Result Boolean Validate employee validate users return result boolean On click Confirmation Add Employee(): add users Return Result Boolean retreive users ID (Emp ID) Retrive Employee (ID) Return result Employee ID Valid users ID valid Employee ID Exist users ID exist return result Boolean Remove Employee(): remove users () Return Result Boolean Figure 28: Admin Add and Remove Customer Sequence Diagram The above sequence contains five participants where the admin is the initiating the process, after login with valid user name and password then Admin can execute several functions such as adding and or removing users from the Database. In all the above processes, the System communicates with the controller; while the controller usually returns result to the Administrator in the users form to ensure the specified task or tasks are achieved. The administrator will then confirm and send the validation request to the validator participant, this is to ensure all data is interred in a valid data type, then the validator will forward the result to DAO for checking, the data access object (DAO) will then take the result to administrator through of validator and controller. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 65
  67. 67. 4.4. Activity Diagram This shows the graphical representation various activities and actions which can support both choice and action concurrently. Activity diagram is used to describe the work flow of components in a system step by step. Parcel Delivery System Home Page Get Registration * Login * View Profile Intercept Previos Calculation Details Intercept Add Order Figure 29: Activity Diagram The activity diagram shows the steps in which a customer follows to register and calculate the price of his parcels to be delivered. Firstly when the user visits the system it will direct him to the home page. The user has to register to before he/she will perform any transaction but if he is already a registered user he/she may login to the system to his previous order detail or to carry out another transaction. AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 66
  68. 68. 4.5. ModuleDesign The diagram below describes the module design of the system. The design represent the entire system components, the authenticator package comprises classes that handles validation, user access level and user authorization. The registration package is responsible for handling the registration and issuing user ID and password. The admin module is responsible for management of all the transaction of customers. The data security module is used to provide all the necessary security features to the database. Parcel Delivery System Informative Site Admin Authentication Customer Registration User Profile Data Base Login Parcel Calculation Data Security View Parcel Record/ Delivery Status Figure 30: Module Design AN INTEGRATED SERVICE PRCING ENGINE FOR PACKAGE DELIVERY Page 67

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