What’s New in Empire SUITE


Date: 04/19/2017


Summary:

Employee Extract


We’ve added the ability to use the employee extract as an employee import template. This is useful if you need to move a group of employees from one manager to another, or move a group of employees from one department to another. Of course you can always make the necessary changes in the Edit User page, but this enhancement allows you to make changes to as many employees as needed rather than one by one. We’ve also added the ability to select Active, Inactive or both Active and Inactive employees in the extract results. The Employee Extract is available from the Loads\Integration menu in Administration:


Employee Summary Report


Daily mode in the Employee Summary Report is now actually daily. You can select a date range independent of Summary Period, Approval Period or Calendar month boundaries. You’ll find the Employee Summary Report in the Timesheet under the Print menu:


Offices and Departments


You can now add codes to your office and department descriptions. You can also set an office or department status to ‘Active’ or ‘Inactive’ as appropriate. Please note you can’t change the status from ‘Active’ to ‘Inactive’ if there are still active employees or projects in the office or department. You can edit offices and departments from the Edit User page in Administration. Click the pencil next to the Office or Department name to launch the Modify page:


Resource Enhancements

Several new features have been added to Empire RESOURCE


Default Scheduling Configuration


Administrators can now save a default scheduling configuration for new RESOURCE users. From the Home page, click the RESOURCE link, then click the Gear icon at the right side of the toolbar to launch the Setup Options page and configure the desired settings:


Spilt Assignments


System Administrators can now define how many non-scheduled days in an assignment will create two separate assignments. For example, assume a resource has a 10 working day assignment spread over three weeks, with the middle week open.

If your system setting was 5 days, we would create two different assignments and show the assignment with two bars in Empire RESOURCE:

This is no UI for this setting yet, so please contact us so we can set the option for you.


Tool Tips

If you mouse over a resource assignment, you’ll see project manager information and comment details


Administrative Permissions

We’ve broken the Administrative permissions into different functional groups – employee, client, project and others - so your managers can custom tailor user security roles according to user responsibilities, and your requirements and business rules. For example, you can create a ‘Project Manager’ custom role which allows the user to modify any of the project attributes, but prevents the user from making any changes to client attributes.


From the Administration page, select Company, then Edit Permissions.

Click Administration from the Security Permissions Setup page role bar:

To modify the standard User or Administrator roles, or to add or a Custom Role, click the appropriate role, or select the desired custom role from the Custom Roles drop down list. Select the appropriate permission group from the list and use the On/Off toggles to include or remove the desired permissions.


Client Page and Dashboard


We’ve added a client page that allows users with the appropriate permissions to add a new client, modify existing client information such as client name, established date, code and managers. We’ve also added support for Consolidation Clients to support your customers and their subsidiary organizations. Click Project in the toolbar and then click the hamburger icon:


Then click the Client icon. The client page will display the clients associated with the projects you’ve selected in your project dashboard:

To add a new client, click Add New Client. To modify an existing client, click the appropriate client name. You can also type the client name in the client field to find the desired client if it’s not included in the display. When you select a client from the view, the application will display Client information such as the managers, status and active date.


You can also include charts (Time, Expense, Sprints) in the Client dashboard:

The Time chart shows the scheduled hours (red bars) and actual time (blue bars). The Expense chart shows incurred expenses, and the Sprints chart shows open and closed activities associated with the client’s projects.


To edit the client, click the Edit Client link:

You can manage billing contact information, as well as include the client as a subsidiary in Consolidation Client from the Edit or Add Client page. Each of the Client page fields – client long name, client short name, client code, date established, consolidation client and billing contact are controlled by security permissions. Users with the Add Client permission can add a client, but need ‘Activate Client’ in order to set a new client to active status.


New Project Dashboard


We’ve added new charts to the project dashboard. Select Project from the toolbar or Project from the Hamburger menu to launch the Project Main page:


At the right side of the page are icons for different charts:

The available charts enable your users and managers to see aggregated information based on the selected projects. Clicking the icons toggles the chart on and off in the display.

1. Counter

  • Project Count is the number of projects selected
  • Actual Hours is the approved hours for the selected projects
  • Actual Expenses is the approved expenses for the selected projects
  • Remaining Scheduled are the hours scheduled against the selected projects, including hours scheduled in the current month.

2. Forecast

Actual hours, remaining scheduled hours, estimate at completion hours, estimated hours and the percentage variance between the Estimate at Completion Hours and Estimated Hours for the selected projects are included in the Forecast chart:


3. Time and Resource

The Time and Resource chart shows the approved (blue) and scheduled (red) hours for the selected projects over time, in this example, May 2016 through October 2017:


4. Expenses

The Expenses chart shows approved expenses for the selected projects over time, in this example, from May 2016 through October 2017:


5. Sprint Progress

Sprint Progress displays the status – Open, Closed and Cancelled – for activities included in Sprints for the selected projects


6. Sprint Activities

The Sprint Activities chart displays activities assigned to the user which are associated with Sprints for the selected projects


7. Time and Resource by Office

The Time and Resource by Office chart shows actual (blue) and scheduled (red) hours by office for the selected projects since project inception:


8. Time and Resource by Department

The Time and Resource by Department chart shows actual (blue) and scheduled (red) hours by department for the selected projects since project inception:


9. Expenses by Office

The Expenses by Office chart shows the distribution of approved expenses for the selected projects across the various offices from project inception:


10. Expenses by Department

The Expenses by Department chart shows the distribution of approved expenses for the selected projects across the various departments from project inception:


11. Project List

The Project List chart includes hours, total revenue and total billed hours for the selected projects:


Automatic Session Time Out


For security reasons, we’ve added an automatic session time out feature to the Empire SUITE. After two hours of inactivity, your users will be logged out and returned to the login screen. (Please contact us if you prefer a different timeout setting.) Prior to the time out, the application will display a notification window with a countdown clock which includes an option for the user to extend their session without being forced to login again.

External Collaborators


Each Empire SUITE tenant will have at least one project created specifically for the tenant to suggest enhancements and log software bugs and track their progress toward resolution. Users with the appropriate permissions can create Activities and see the Scrum board for their Empire SUITE project.


Collaborators will have an External Project option in the project page that displays the WSG project for the tenant.


Collaborators will see a list of the projects ‘followed’ by the collaborator:


Collaborators can click Activities and see project issues created by the collaborator and the issue status


Collaborators with the appropriate security permissions can see an issue’s history, as well as re-assign the activity to other collaborators or to a WSG manager associated with the project. Collaborators can also view and reprint invoices WSG invoices created for the Collaborator’s account. Please contact us if you’d like us to configure your account to allow Collaborator access



Date: 12/26/2016


Summary:

View Disabled Employees


You can now view both Active and Disabled Employees at the same time in the Administration main menu page.


Users with Access to Administration rights will see the Employee View page when the user navigates to the Administration page. Check ‘Display Disabled Employees’ to show disabled employees.


Disabled employees are shaded gray. Active employees are unshaded.





Edit Employee Start Date


We’ve added a field to capture the employee start date when configuring new employees or adding them through the employee import:


The Employee start date prevents the employee or any user with access to the employee timesheet from entering time or expenses prior to the start date




Editing Security Permissions and Adding Custom Roles


Until now, the Empire SUITE included three standard security Roles – None, User and Administrator – and the security permissions associated with the roles were not editable by firm administrators. We’ve added the ability for Administrators to edit the permissions associated with the standard roles in each of the functional areas (Time and Expense, Administration, Resource, etc.) and firm administrators now have the ability to create new Custom Roles with user selectable permissions to better support each firm’s unique requirements.

EDIT PERMISSIONS

To add or remove permissions from the standard User and Administrator roles, select Edit Permissions from the Administration page Company menu. Select the desired functional area from the menu bar (Time and Expense, Administration, etc.) and the appropriate role (User, Administrator) and use the On/Off toggle next to each permission to customize the standard roles.

CREATE CUSTOM ROLES

Select one of the functional areas from the menu bar (Time and Expense, Administration, etc.) and click the 'New Role' button to create a custom security role.

Give the custom role a name, add the appropriate permissions and click Save when done.

Custom Roles can be assigned to employees from the Edit User page:

Changing Custom Field-based Security Permissions in Empire SUITE to Custom Security Roles

As noted earlier, the Empire SUITE included three standard security Roles – None, User and Administrator. Administrators also had the option to limit the Time Entry behavior for Users through this Setup area, located in Administration in the Tenant Owner's Account:

These setup options will be deprecated in the new release and replaced by the Administrator defined Custom Security Roles. That is, if you want to allow Users to Approve their own time and expenses, you can define a custom role that includes the Approve permission.

Some current Empire SUITE clients have implemented custom security roles for their employees and contractors through Custom Fields – that is, they have added custom fields to the employee import and the security permissions associated with those custom fields govern the employee's ability to use the application.

We will continue to support this methodology, but the goal is to move away from Custom Field based security roles into Application based Custom Security Roles. What does this mean to you?

  • If your new employee or edit existing employee import includes a security-based Custom Field, we will map the Custom Field to a corresponding
    Custom Role as part of the import process. You don’t need to make any changes to your import process.

  • If you edit an employee through the Empire SUITE Administration Edit User page, we will ignore the Custom Field value applied through the
    import and apply permissions associated with either the 'User' or 'Administrator' radio buttons or the Custom Role defined in Edit
    Permissions and applied in the Application Roles section.


For example, let’s assume you’ve used the employee import to add an employee with a Custom Field called ‘Time Entry’ which allows the user to enter time but not approve their own timesheet. However, if you set the employee’s Time Application Role to ‘Administrator’ using the radio button, we will ignore the ‘Time Entry’ custom field permissions and the user will now have all the permissions associated with the Time ‘Administrator’ role, which includes timesheet approval. Or, if you used Edit Permissions to create a Custom Role called ‘Self Approval’, which includes the ability for a user to enter time and approve their own timesheet, we will ignore the ‘Time Entry’ custom field permissions and the user will now have all the security permissions associated with the 'Self Approval' Custom Role.


View Company Information


You can now view the company’s Organization Chart and Company Usage in the Company side menu on the Administration main menu page.

Select Organization Chart to view managers and their employees. Select Company Usage to see how many employees used the system during a specific time period.




Oraganization Chart

Clicking the 'Organization Chart' submenu will bring up the organization chart for the entire company.

Click an employee to display their details.

Click the employee first or last name to edit the employee details. Make the appropriate changes and click Save to update the employee details and close the Edit User page.




Company Usage

Click Company Usage to bring up the usage chart. Hovering over individual bars will show the number of users in the system for that month.

We track the number of days each employee is 'Active' in a month and Usage is defined as the number of employees who had an ‘Active’ status for at least 15 days in any given month. For example, when we calculate October usage, we sum the number of employees who were active 15 or more days in the month of October.