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UniPhi Blog

Major Changes #3: Dropbox Integration

UniPhi Software, 19 Aug 2019

UniPhi 15 brings a brand new way to share information from UniPhi with non-uniphi users. This method uses dropbox as the intermediary and hence is great for sharing large files or maintaining document sets to align to your ISO accredited processes.

After initial user feedback, the workflow for this was simplified to allow a user to manually select a Dropbox folder to push the UniPhi document to. The share to Dropbox icon appears at the finish step of a document, when in the view document page and as a portfolio option in the documents register.
Share a document from the view document page

Share to Dropbox a single document at the finish step

Bulk Dropbox share from documents register


One side outcome from this development is the introduction of a share icon and the tidying up of the view document toolbar.
Share icon cleans up the view document toolbar

We're not sure where this functional will lead us but am sure that our user base will be feeding information back to us to expand and improve on this new capability.

 

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Major Changes #2: PowerBI Embedded

UniPhi Software, 07 Aug 2019

We have been combining the visualisation capabilities of Power BI with the data capture capabilities of UniPhi for 18 months now. This is streamlined through the connection of the two applications via UniPhi's REST API. This means that there's no clumsy extraction, transformation and load process from source systems to Power BI to create or more importantly refresh the data.

This development has been the most exciting thing since we first began developing UniPhi 15 years ago. The outputs we've been able to create have led to better machine learning algorithms on project status, simpler and more intuitive interpretations of the portfolio data captured and infinite flexibility for our end users to create the reports they desire.

One of the challenges, however, with Power BI is the ability to share what you create. Users need Power BI Pro subscriptions and security is a challenge as models need to be created for each workspace. We have solved this problem in UniPhi 15 through the utilisation of Power BI embedded. This feature allows us to embed the UniPhi Power BI workspace into our own application and is now available, for free, in UniPhi 15.

This new capability, added to the ability to publish to other organisation's Power BI workspaces means that we now can clearly see the death of the PDF status report, and long may it be buried, raised again, cremated and then buried as it is a very poor way to deliver very expensive consulting information. An expanded blog post on this pending death will be coming soon to our distribution channel near you.

Viewing your Power BI workspace is easy to access by:

 1. Clicking on the hamburger


2. Go into Reporting > Power BI Dashboards

3. View and navigate dashboards through the sub-navigation bar


 

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Little changes #10: Suppliers and Principals

UniPhi Software, 05 Aug 2019

Another unicry moment we have been working on solving has to do with the contract and resource module. We have now created a new search drop down in contracts so you can add suppliers and principals directly.

In previous version of UniPhi, to be able to select a principal and supplier to your contract, you had to:
  1. Add contract in Resources module
  2. Go to the Contracts module
  3. Add contract and select principal and supplier
The great unicry moment was when you went straight to step two and the supplier wasn't on the team. You then had to cancel creating the contract, go to the resource module,  add them in (some project managers couldn't do this - even more frustration) and then go back and start again.

However, now in UniPhi 15,  just add the contract then search the entire resource pool for the principal and supplier! Note, they will not be added to the resource team, just be suppliers and principals to the contract itself. This is due to most principals and suppliers being contacts that are not communicated with outside of invoices.

We have articulated this new method below:

1) Add Contract
UniPhi 15 Contracts Module - Add Contract

2) Add details & select Principal & Supplier from drop-down search
UniPhi 15: Add New Contract - Principal & Supplier Search Drop-downs

3) Save!

Another side benefit to this is that the resource team doesn't get clogged with "accounts payable" suppliers which can be as many as 100 or more on large construction projects.

 

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Little Changes #9: Resource Allocation Improvements

UniPhi Software, 29 Jul 2019


Introducing bulk allocation of roles to people or people to projects! System administrators will be crying for joy as the management of resources across a portfolio has now been infinitely improved.

In UniPhi 15 you can head into the Resource tab and select a project from the drop-down list.
Resource Tab - Select Project

Once in that Project you will see an Edit button.
Resource, Project - Edit Button
 If you click this button you will then be presented with your entire list of people and the entire list of roles you have for that project.

Resource, Project - List of People and Roles
 You can then easily go through and select any combination of roles a person has on a project, for as many people you have on that project and hit save! A handy new bulk allocation of roles function.

The other bulk allocation option we have created involves selecting an individual person from your Resource list. Once in that contact screen, you can select Projects from the sub-navigation bar.

Contact in Resources - Project Sub-navigation
Once in the Project sub-navigation of that contact, in this case Annie Lennox, click the Edit button.

Annie Lennox - Edit Button
Clicking Edit will present you with a Project Role Matrix for this contact. This matrix lists all the projects in your system and the roles available for these projects.

Project Role Matrix
Then you can simply select what role this contact is for as many projects as this person is in and hit save, which will bulk update that person's project list - nice and easy!

These new bulk update features will help reduce time spent on resource allocation and provide yet another simple user experience.

 

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Major Changes #1: My Work

UniPhi Software, 26 Jul 2019

If you attended the My Work Memoriam you will know that it is now being laid to rest and a new way of working in the system is being introduced. UniPhi 14 and prior had what we originally thought was a clever feature of only including private documents in someones My Work space. This led over the years to our second most comment help ticket..."Where's my document gone". UniPhi 13 made this even more obtuse with the removal of the My Work tab.

Pre-UniPhi 13, there was a My Work tab located in the top navigation alongside My Portfolio and Portfolio.

UniPhi 12 - My Work, My Portfolio & Portfolio Tabs

In this version having My Work made more sense as it was easy to navigate between tabs, however when the new interface was brought out, My Work became a filter chip accessed via a 3 click process in the pop-up modal filter.

UniPhi 13-14 - My Work Chip
The three click process of accessing My Work is seen below:

UniPhi 13-14 - Portfolio Modal Pop-Up, View Select
The documents module in UniPhi is unique in that it not only is a container module for unstructured  documents to be shared with the inherent version control and sign off workflow that this implies, but it is also a content generator, integrating all the content that exists elsewhere.

To support a robust process documents in UniPhi follow a publishing workflow. Initially they are private so that the person creating the document can make sure they are happy with the content before others can see it.
Creating New Document in UniPhi 13-14
For new users, this publishing process takes a bit of getting use to and hence, when they first create a document and do not move the status beyond private, they would struggle to find it again as it was locked away in the My Work section.

UniPhi 13-14 - Document Module Portfolio View

UniPhi 13-14 - Modal Pop-Up, Select My Work View
UniPhi 13-14 - Documents Module in My Work View
These two issues have been the main two drivers around changes to My Work and aside from the fact that taking away another piece of the system always creates a feeling a loss - hopefully the way we have changed this functionality will get a good response. It should make it easier to use our product, especially for new users.

My Work in the Summary Module

Now when you log into UniPhi 15, you will see that you are automatically logged into the My Portfolio view (see the My Portfolio chip).

UniPhi 15 - My Portfolio View
This view will give you the usual dashboard of My Portfolio which has all the projects you are working on, usually a smaller list than the main portfolio list. The first new addition to replace My Work functionality is Tasks and Sign Off the sub-navigation.

UniPhi 15 -  Summary Sub-Navigation: Tasks & Signoffs

Additionally there is now no My Work in the modal, only My Portfolio and Portfolio, which have moved to being a radio button select option (will be expanded upon further down).

UniPhi 15 - New Pop-up Modal with no My Work

When you click into Tasks, you will see the tasks of everyone working within your portfolio.

UniPhi 15 - Tasks Screen
To view your own tasks, select your name from the "Assigned To" drop-down.

UniPhi 15 - Assigned To Drop-Down

This will give you the exact same view as the My Work Summary that existed before and you can toggle between managing people or managing your own work through that process.

UniPhi 15 - New My Work Screen
For CEOs and senior general managers, you can bookmark this page and log straight into Sign Offs to review and sign off documents that need approval.

UniPhi 15 - Sign-offs

This has now reduced these functionalities down to one-click once getting into the system as opposed to the four clicks it was previously.


My Work in the Documents Module

How we have handled this change across the rest of the system, is that we have just brought in a filter within My Portfolio.

For example, when you go into Documents, you will have all your Private status documents in your list.

UniPhi 15 - Documents Module
This is because the Edited By filter defaults to your own name, giving you the exact same screen as the My Work Documents screen.

This filter can also be used to filter to all documents or by user, so you can toggle between views.

Now if you create a document and don't finish it immediately, it will just appear in your list and doesn't require any tacit knowledge about how to find a secret list.

Obviously, if someone else accesses the same project, they wont be able to see your private document as they are pre-filtered out, solving a 15-year old support ticket problem.


My Work Throughout the Rest of the System

Going across each module in the system, you will see the same concept. 

In Issues you filter the Assigned To filter to yourself to get the My Work screen.

UniPhi 15 - Issues Module, Assigned To Drop-down
This screen will include any Issues where you have an action assigned to you, whether the overall issue is assigned to you or not. For example in the screen below where the issue belongs to Dennis Adams or Jane Smith.

UniPhi 15 - Issues My Work Screen

UniPhi 15 - Individual Issue with Actions


The same thing happens within Risks. When Assigned To is filter to yourself, you will be presented with all risks, including the ones where you have been assigned a mitigation step.

UniPhi 15 - Risks Module
So when you are in My Portfolio and you are checking the Assigned To yourself filter, you are getting all of that information. That filter also exists within the Portfolio view, as portfolio managers might also want to look across the portfolio and view which tasks exist, for who and when due.


Third & Final Change

The third and final change we've made to My Work mainly effects Revenue, Contracts, Costs and Issues and is an enhancement around the modal.

This change has to do with the ability to see the projects where you are in a certain roll.

For example, when logged into the Contracts system as a program manager you have a bunch of projects that you can see contract values on.

Then if you went into a random project and click on a contract, you get the details on that contract but you may not be able to add a new variation or create a progress claim on it as you aren't a program manager on that project.
Contract that User can't edit
This is something we get a lot of feedback on as people want to simply see the contract they can manage. 

The way that we have provided a solution to this came about from the drop-down in the modal looking a bit silly without My Work. This is particularly true for those with project manager or team member access levels as they only have My Portfolio. Therefore to solve this, we have introduced a radio option button in the white space to the left to toggle between Portfolio and my Portfolio.

UniPhi 15 - New Modal Radio Buttons
Users simply have to tick the button of their choice.

Additionally, the filter has now been replaced with a My Role filter.

UniPhi 15 - New My Role Filter
UniPhi 15 - New My Role Drop-down and Select
This drop-down will list all of the roles you have in in UniPhi, be it a project manager, job captain, project lead, design lead or whatever other title you've been given to manage a project. You will then be able to select that role from the drop-down list, click apply and then be presented only with issues, risks, revenue, costs and contracts of projects that you can actually do stuff on, edit, add, etc, solving the issue of viewing projects you can't edit. 

 

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