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HMRC internal manual

Shared Workspace Business Manual

HM Revenue & Customs
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Item Types: Databases

Shared Workspace provides its own database facility which has many features that make it extremely flexible, quick and easy to use.

Creating a database is made easy by the onscreen step-by-step creation process that helps members design a database to fit their specific business needs. You must not exceed the limits detailed under Database Capacity.

Database types

There are three basic types of database as follows

Blank This is the basic database for creating a database from scratch.
Step Approval Based on a blank database these include a series of clearly defined steps. Each step requires approval before progressing to the next step.
Enterprise This is a specialised database that enables data to be collated from other databases within Shared Workspace.

Note: Where a database is created and the design is to be used more than once, the Shared Workspace Team should be contacted. They will create a template of the database for use within the service.

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Database access

Under no circumstances should any information with a marking of CONFIDENTIAL, SECRET or TOP SECRET be added to Shared Workspace SW03150.

Access controls SW07410 can be set at all levels within a database. This enables precise control over not only who can access the database, but also who can access individual database rows.

Note: The HMRC Business Authorising Officers of the Room are able to access all database entries.

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Database Design

Shared Workspace performs best when databases are kept to a limited number of rows. The recommended maximum is 2000 rows.

There may be times when more database rows would provide the best solution for business requirements and this can be addressed by creating a number of databases each with a limit of 2000 rows.

Databases with more than 2000 rows can be created but it is important to appreciate that certain functionality may be lost which would render the database unmanageable.

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  1. MS Access databases cannot be used within Shared Workspace SW07570 
  2. Data can be imported into a Shared Workspace database from files saved in Comma Separated Values (CSV) format.
  3. Data is exported from Shared Workspace in CSV format and accessed through MS Excel.
  4. Bulk transfer of rows can slow the service and must therefore take place outside the normal peak office hours of 08:00 to 18:00