Lets pretend that a very large company (revenue numbers with more than 8 figures) is looking to do a refresh on a software system, particularly the dashboard used by employees. This system was originally put together in the early 1990's to handle inventory tracking and storage across a variety of facilities (10+). Since this large company is now in the process of implementing some of these inventory processes with SAP they are in need of a major refresh.
The existing system:
- Microsoft Access project performs dashboard duties
- Unique shipping/receiving configurations at different facilities require unique forms and queries within the Access project
- Uses 3rd party libraries referenced by Access to directly interface with at control system (read: motors, conveyors, and counters)
- Individual SQL Server 2000 instances (some traces of pre-update SQL Server 6.0 documents) at each facility
- This system started as a home brewed inventory tracking scheme with a single internal sponsor who is still in charge of the technical direction. The original sponsor prescribing the desired deliverables that are being called for in the current RFP.
- The RFP describes a system based around a single Access project.
- Any suggestion that Access is ill suited for a project of this scope are shot down under the reasoning that "it works for the scope now".
Are there any case studies, notices, or statements that can be used to disuade this potential customer from repeating their mistake? Does Microsoft make any statements directly about when it is highly recommended to ditch Access?
EDIT: To answer some of the comments below, the system is getting a rewrite no matter what due to the need to integrate a even greater push towards the deployment of an ERP solution. Problems with the current solution involve additional maintenance of ODBC connections, Office deployments, deploying an Access file to hundreds of workstations, and about 15 years of someone who doesn't know how to program generating enormous amounts of technical debt.