New features in Replicon

This topic gives an overview of all the new features added to Replicon for the past several months.

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Timesheet, Time Off, and, Punching

Custom timesheet help links

You can now provide users with custom information about timesheet components right on their timesheet. This is useful for customers with company-specific requirements for completing timesheets.

To add custom help, add the URL where your custom help content is hosted to a supported component. When a user clicks the help icon for that component:

the content for that URL will display in a side panel, or in a new tab:

This feature is supported for most configurable timesheet components, and is available in these enterprise products:

  • Workforce Management
  • Professional Services Automation
  • Project Portfolio Management

Please refer to Adding custom help links to timesheets for more details on where custom links are supported and on how to set up the feature.


Daily Hours report

This new report template can be used to check users’ total scheduled and worked hours each day. It includes all days, even those with no time entered, so managers can identify who hasn't entered time.

This template is available in Replicon and Polaris.


Ability to submit individual time entries

With this feature, a user can submit individual time entries on their timesheet before their timesheet is due, which speeds up billing. They can submit entries as soon as each task is complete; any entries still open when they submit the timesheet (or when it is auto submitted) will be submitted at that time.

Configuring this workflow

This option can be enabled for users by checking the Submit time entries option in their Time Distribution Grid or In/Out + Allocation configurable timesheet template.

You’ll also need to create and assign time entry approval paths in user profiles.

Approving and managing time entries

For approvers and billing managers, time entries act a lot like timesheets, though managers must select the Time Entries option in the top, right-hand corner of their Timesheet list page to see individual entries.

Exporting time entries

You can find entries to export using the Time Entry Approval Status filter in either the Time Workbench or Time Entry Details report.

This feature is available in:

  • TimeBill Plus
  • Professional Services Automation
  • TimeCost Plus
  • Professional Portfolio Management
  • ProjectTime Plus
  • Polaris PSA
  • TimeBill Plus for Salesforce

Please note:

  • Timesheets must be submitted before invoicing of entries within Replicon or Polaris can occur, even if all entries have been approved
  • If you have custom validation rules that apply to time entries, they may need to be upgraded for use with this feature
  • Time entries are not available via the Payroll Workbench, since payroll timesheets are usually only exported whole

Please refer to How does submission of individual time entries work? and Submitting individual time entries ahead of timesheet submission for more information on configuring and using this feature.


New options when copying data from the previous timesheet

We’ve added two new parameters to our two ‘Previous Timesheet’ timesheet population methods in Replicon and Polaris PSA.

If you leave these new parameters set to off, timesheets will continue to populate as they do now. But, if you turn them on, auto-population will change, as outlined below.

New parameter #1: When retaining entries also copy previous entries

This option is only applicable if Retain Entries is set to ON. Previously, with Retain Entries on, data would only be copied if the destination cell in the new timesheet was blank. Now, if you turn on this new option, data for populated cells in the new timesheet is copied -- into a new timesheet row. This allows new entries to be retained, while all data from the previous timesheet is copied over.

New parameter #2: Only copy entries that have time data

In some scenarios, projects and tasks that have no hours entered against them are copied to new timesheets, based on the population settings in effect. Now, if you don’t want entries without time copied, you can enable this new parameter.

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Payroll & Compliance

New compliance rules

Default pay rules:

  • Belize, Colombia, Indonesia, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Russia, and Ukraine

Timesheet validation rule:

  • Restrict time to user task assignment dates

Time off validation rules:

  • Validate user assignment to project/task/activity
  • Restrict multiple booking durations in leave year

Time off accrual rules:

  • Yearly/Monthly Accrual with Expiry & Rounding

  • Yearly accrual based on weekly scheduled hrs

  • Yearly accrual with qualifying event
  • Time off in lieu expiry

Conditional approver rules:

  • Escalated to next supervisor after specified time (for expenses)
  • Project manager approves time (for timesheets)


The ability to copy compliance rules

You can now make a copy of any of the timesheet validation rules,  time off validation rules, punch validation rules, or punch rounding rules (in addition to timesheet validation rules, which we announced last week). This functionality may be useful in case you want to base a new rule on an existing one, or retain variations of two similar rules.

To make a copy of any rule, select the rule on its list page, then click More > Make a Copy:

 Or, click the Make a Copy of this Rule link located at the bottom, right-hand corner of the rule’s page.


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Project, Billing, & Costing

Default billing rates

If a resource is assigned multiple billing rates for a Replicon project, you can now choose which rate is selected by default; this can save resources time and improve accuracy when they complete their timesheets. Default rates can be set on the Team tab, for each project.

Task dynamic custom fields

We now offer task dynamic custom fields in Replicon and Polaris. Fixed task custom fields are still available. The dynamic versions of these fields are unlimited in number, and offer additional functionality, like file attachments.

Project filter in the Time Workbench

Both Replicon and Polaris PSA administrators can now add, update, or delete skills using the in-app import feature. You can add or modify the name, description, category assignment, and enabled status for each skill via import.


Ability to import skills

Both Replicon and Polaris PSA administrators can now add, update, or delete skills using the in-app import feature. You can add or modify the name, description, category assignment, and enabled status for each skill via import.

Approval Status parameter in Polaris PSA bill plans

If you use Polaris PSA, you can now specify that only approved time billing items are available to bill. The approval status parameter can be set independently for each Time Billing rule you add to a project’s bill plan.

If you don’t update this option, it will remain set to Any (the default), meaning all approved and unapproved time that meets all other bill plan criteria will be available to bill to clients.


Ability to use Code as the unique identifier for projects or clients

In the past, a project’s name always served as its unique identifier in Replicon; that is, the Project Name field allowed Replicon to distinguish each project from all others. That meant the name field had to be unique for each project.

But, this caused issues for some of our customers, who integrate with third party tools that use code as the unique identifier, and who sometimes duplicated project names.

Now, you can choose to use Project Code as the unique identifier in Replicon, instead of name. If you choose code as the identifier:

  • Each project must have a unique code, and
  • Code becomes a required field (shows with an asterisk)

Note, the name field is still required since name is used throughout Replicon – names just no longer need to be unique.

Also note that this feature applies to clients, too; Client Code can now be set as the unique identifier for clients.

You can update project identifiers at:

  • Administration > Projects > Project Settings

And client identifiers at:

  • Administration > Projects > Client Settings

All existing projects (or clients) must be assigned a unique code before you can change this option. You can use our import tool to easily assign codes.


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Default values for dynamic custom fields

You can now set a default value for dropdown, text, and numeric dynamic custom fields in Replicon and Polaris. If you set a default, the field will be automatically set to that value when the field displays for users.

Defaults can be set for the following types of dynamic custom fields:

  • Timesheet (row, cell, and timesheet level)
  • Time off
  • Punch
  • Projects

You can set the default when adding a custom field to an item (timesheet template, time off type, punch entry policy, or on the Project Settings page) not when you create the field; that way, you could assign a different default to each item. Timesheet level fields can only be populated with defaults using the Replicon API.

Fixed custom fields already supported default values.


Hidden custom fields

Some Replicon and Polaris PSA customers set up custom fields to store identifiers that are needed for integrating with other applications. However, they don’t want these fields to be visible or editable by users.

To meet this requirement, we’ve introduced timesheet, time entry, and time off hidden dynamic custom fields. These fields are available in reports (like the Time Entry Export report), in Time Workbench exports, and via the API, but are not visible when users enter time or time off.

To add a hidden field, add a field on either the Timesheet Settings or Time Off Settings pages.

Fields added from these locations are hidden by default, and aren’t visible to users unless they are added to timesheet templates or time off types. You can only edit values for these custom fields using the Replicon API – see the Projects API page for the needed operations.

Fields added directly from timesheet template and time off type edit pages are always visible to users.

The ability to add schedule custom fields in the app 

You can now add schedule custom fields from within the Replicon application. Previously, you had to use the API, or get Replicon Support to add them for you.

You can add schedule custom fields at Administration > Schedules > Schedule Settings.


Group-specific welcome messages

You can now send department- or region-specific welcome notifications to new users. However, note that group-specific messages are only sent to new users added via import or integration, since those methods allow you to assign groups when users are added.


Optional custom display name for users

If two users have the same first and last name, Replicon appends their login name (in brackets) to their full name, so administrators and others can distinguish between the two users.

However, this solution doesn’t work well in some cases, such as in SSO implementations that assign an alphanumeric code as the user’s login name. Such codes are hard to recognize or remember.

So now, we’re offering a custom display name option you can set up in the user’s profile; it can be their nickname, their department, or whatever helps you identify who they are.

Then the custom name will be appended to the user’s full name, instead of their login name, wherever their name appears.

The loginname will still be appended to duplicate names if you don’t provide a custom name.

Note that custom names do not appear where Firstname and Lastname appear in separate fields (e.g. in certain reports and in batch notifications).

This feature is available in Replicon and Polaris PSA.


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