Product Update

July 26, 2001

1. Resources: graphical utilization dashboard, book resources permissions, view resource profiles permissions.

Graphical utilization dashboard. Project managers, resource managers, executives, and resources can now use a new utilization dashboard to view hours and percentage resource bookings to projects, and assignments to specific tasks on those projects. Managers can get quick visual answers to questions such as, "Can I staff this resource on new projects?" and, "Is this resource overbooked?" Users can visually monitor their own schedule to manage their time assignments. For more detailed information on which projects individuals are working on, the manager or user clicks on the bar graph in the dashboard. Users access the resource utilization dashboard by navigating to Resources>Resources> [select user ID]>Utilization.

Book resources permissions. Account administrators who set up users and roles can now limit an employee's ability to view, create, and modify bookings. For example, project and resource managers can be enabled to create and modify resource bookings while other resources can be set up only to view their own project bookings. Account administrators can configure roles by navigating to My Account>Account>Roles>[select role].

View resource profiles permissions. Account administrators who configure roles can now enable or disable employees’ access to viewing their own resource profiles. So, for example, consultants can be given permission to continuously update their profile of skills, experience, and location preferences to ensure that they are booked to the most appropriate projects. Or, if a company only permits managers to modify resource profiles, roles can be configured to permit only certain managers access to modify resource profiles. Account administrators can configure roles by navigating to My Account>Account>Roles>[select role].

2. Projects: project locations.

Project managers and other user who set up new projects can now specify the location of a project. Like all the fields in OpenAir, the location choices are fully configurable. So, for example, your company can assign projects to offices such as Boston or Los Angeles. Or, your company could also assign projects to regions such as West Coast or East Coast. Managers can then run reports by the project location. To configure the locations for your company, navigate to My Account>Account>Locations. To assign a project to a location, navigate to My Account>Account>Projects>[select project] or to Projects>Tracked>[select project]>Edit project.

3. Opportunities: create project revenue and cost estimates, navigation enhancements.

Create project revenue and cost estimates. Project managers, partners, sales managers, and other executives can now create project-level revenue, cost, staffing, and profit estimates. Managers can use the estimation tool to better price projects to ensure optimal profitability. Managers navigate to Opportunities>Estimates>New Entries:Create dropdown select Estimate. Then managers can plan the estimate based on project phase, create proposed staffing including resource rates and costs, and estimate expense amounts by expense types such as airfare or as a flat percentage of total engagement price. Once managers have estimated each portion of the project, they can review the total estimate for problems and then modify any part of the staffing, expenses, durations, etc. to update the total estimate amount.

Navigation enhancements. We have streamlined the navigation of the Opportunities module to enhance usability. A few of the new enhancements include more intuitive tab navigation, a more comprehensive summary view of prospects and associated deals and to dos, and tighter integration of prospects and contacts.

4. Reports: renamed tab, missing timesheet report, project location report, other enhancements.

Renamed tab. Users of reports in the Reports>Other tab will find that it now has a new name: Reports>Advanced to reflect the growing number of high-level reports OpenAir offers.

Missing timesheet report. We have added a department column, department filter, and a user filter to the missing timesheet report in Reports>Advanced.

Project location report. In conjunction with adding a new location designation for projects, we have added a new report called the project locations report. Located in the Reports>Detail tab, the report displays the name of the project and location of the project.

Project reporting enhancements. We have added client and project columns in the actual vs. planned hours project report, the overbudget/late task report, and the user task report.

5. Suite-wide: smart dropdowns, new location for layout tabs, custom field enhancements.

Smart dropdowns. Users will now experience faster page loading and more appropriate choices in client and project dropdowns in OpenAir. We have added a feature that limits the dropdown choices to 30 and "remembers" the most recent and popular choices for those dropdowns. The result is that users first see the selections that they are most likely to need, so they save time navigating through the application.

New location for layout tabs. Users with permissions to modify layouts for timesheets, expense reports, Gantt project views, invoices, etc. will find the "Layout" tab in the upper right hand corner of the screens renamed "Options." As we continue to enhance the configurability of layouts in OpenAir, new layout configuration options will appear in the Options tab.

Sequence custom field. We have added a new Sequence custom field type. When added to a form, the Sequence field automatically assigns a number and then automatically increments the number as new forms are created. As with all custom fields, the Sequence field can be used on all the forms in OpenAir to keep track of users, expense receipts, projects, etc. To create a new Sequence custom field, users with permission to create custom fields navigate to My Account>Company>Custom fields>New Entries: Create dropdown Sequence field.

Enforcing uniqueness on custom fields. We have added the ability to enforce unique numbers and/or words to be entered into custom fields. For example, if your company uses a custom field to record users' social security numbers, account administrators can now ensure that no duplicate SSNs exist in the system. To enforce uniqueness for a custom field, navigate to My Account > Company > Custom fields >[select custom field] > [check Unique checkbox].

Decimals and date custom fields. Account administrators can now set date custom fields to default to the current date. Plus, on currency and numeric custom fields, administrators can now specify the decimal precision to be used in the fields. Administrators navigate to My Account>Company>Custom fields to create and modify custom fields.

6. Timesheets: pre-populate data on timesheet grid.

Users can now create a timesheet, type in clients, projects, tasks, etc., without entering any hourly data, save the timesheet, and then come back to the timesheet and view all the pre-populated clients and projects. This feature allows users to set up their timesheet at the beginning of a time period so that data entry later in the week is easier. To use this feature, create a new timesheet, populate the data, and save the timesheet.

7. Expenses: mileage display and accounting code on expense reports; expense item entry can be required on receipts.

Mileage display on expense reports. Administrators can now configure their company's expense reports to include a column to display mileage amounts. Navigate to Expenses>Options>[select mileage from the columns to display].

Require expense item selection on receipts. Administrators can now require users to select an expense item when creating receipts. Navigate to My Account > Company > Settings > Expenses options and check the "Require an expense item selection on receipts" box before clicking on "Save."

8. Suite-wide: data filters.

OpenAir has added data filters that help create, modify, and maintain a user's ability to view certain types of data, such as project and clients. Administrators or other users who have appropriate permissions can configure filters so that, for example, all users in one department have access to the same set of clients and projects. Plus, our new filter maintenance improvements means that users are prompted to add items to filters whenever a new client or project is added. To set up filters, navigate to My Account>Account>Filter Sets.

9. Would you like to see previous OpenAir product updates?

Click here to browse previous product updates including all new features, modules and functionality.

10. Suggestions, problems or questions?

As always, please contact us at or 888.367.1715 (outside the U.S. and Canada, call 617-351-0226). We want to ensure that OpenAir improves your company's bottom line.