I wrote a script in PHP/CI that serves a page to show a basic view of company listings derived from another PHP script I wrote that performs ETL logic. Then I scheduled a cron job to ping the initial PHP/CI script using wget. When the initial script’s unique controller function is hit by wget, it iterates over the basic list to perform a giant serialized array compilation using many SQL queries to look up revenue information. After that, it fires PHP’s mail() command, routing an email through MercuryE’s relay logic through a secure smtp gmail connection to the business team that needs this information.
Prior to my awesome scripting, database, and systems analysis skills, the report in question took 90 minutes to manually compile using a SQL interface and Microsoft Excel. I just gave the business analyst back 7.5 hours per week – nearly a full workday – by automating some tasks and understanding the underlying model. It took me about 20 hours to write the scripts and do the research.