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    Building a Payroll Database and Management System

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    Building a Payroll Database & Management System
    I am presenting this information in an effort to educate our management on the scope of a potential project to maintain our own payroll database. The purpose of this project is to make everyone familiar with the process, so we can make a good decision regarding the next steps of this project.
    The first issue is to familiarize everyone with some terms and their meanings. We are going to look at this from a relational database viewpoint. To give you an idea of this concept, we are all familiar to some extent with Excel. Excel is a database, but it is a two dimensional database. (Spreadsheet, 2005) In our case, we will need a spreadsheet for each one of our employees. Think of this as a stack of spreadsheets, which constitutes a three dimensional database. This is what our company will need.
    We will need to first plan our database carefully. We will need to define the fields in our database. The fields are like the cells in a spreadsheet. They hold the information. Fields can be very specific, or more general. The field that holds the state for instance will need to be limited to 2 letters, and be restricted to letters and not numbers. Other fields, for instance the field that holds the last name may need to be a variable length since surnames vary so much in length. A primary key will need to be identified for each record. This needs to be a non-repeating field, which will be a unique identifier for each record. This will help the computer keep track of each individual record. We can use each employees social security number or an employee number, as long as they are non-repeating.
    Once we collect all of the necessary information, we will have a responsibility to protect this information, because it is highly sensitive, and the company could be liable if it were to fall into the hands of individuals with ill intentions. We will need to ...