New features in Replicon

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

Timesheet & Time Off

Punching

Payroll & Compliance

Project, Billing, & Costing

System

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Timesheet & Time Off

Ability to manually adjust time off

Payroll managers can now be allowed to make ad hoc changes to users’ time off balances. While time off is usually allotted using time off policies, manual adjustments can simplify such tasks as correcting balance errors or adding compensatory time off.

To allow manual adjustments, enable Make Time Off Balance Adjustments in payroll manager permission profiles. You can remove a day by including a minus sign (-) before the value.

 

Next/previous options in timesheets for approvers

We’ve added icons to timesheets in the approver view, which can help them navigate from one timesheet to the next more quickly when completing approvals.

 

Default break type

Administrators can now set a default break type within punch policies and in/out timesheet templates. Setting a default break can save users time when punching or when entering breaks in timesheets. Plus, it saves user’s with only one assigned break type the hassle of having to select it each time.

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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Punching

Multiple punch types can be associated with each punch custom field

Previously, each punch custom field could only be associated with one punch type – Clock In, Clock Out, Start Break, or Transfer. This forced some of our customers to duplicate certain punch custom fields, which complicated reporting.

Now, we allow you to associate each punch custom field with as many punch types as you like, by enabling the check boxes in the Collect This For Punch field in punch entry policies.

Ability to display custom fields for Transfer punches with the old or new punch

Previously, if a punch user transferred to a new task or activity, any Transfer-type custom fields they completed for that punch would appear in the details for the pre-transfer out punch.

Now, administrators can choose where those punch details display, by selecting In Punch or Out Punch from Display Transfer Extra Field with within punch entry policies.

 

Time punch audit trail report

We’ve added a report template that allows you to track changes made to punches.

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Payroll & Compliance

Show sub-groups in search results in the Payroll Workbench

In the Payroll Workbench, when you search for a group (Location, Department, etc), we now offer an option to return all sub-groups of that group, rather than simply that parent group alone.

For example, if you search North America with the Show Sub Location On Search option enabled, Canada, Mexico and the US, and all of their child groups, will be returned.

This new option saves payroll managers from having to scroll through the full group list, or search sub-groups one by one.

 

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

Configurable assignment of all users to new projects

In the past, when you created a new project in Replicon, All Users were automatically assigned to it. If you only wanted a sub-set of resources to have access to the project, you had to manually remove the All Users option.

This was annoying for those customers who, for most projects, didn’t want to grant access to all users.

Now, we’re giving you a choice. You can leave this setting as is if, for most of your projects, all users need access. Or, you can choose to have no users assigned to all new projects. 

This is a system-level setting, configurable on the Project Settings page, that applies to all new projects.

 

Ability to automatically assign new project team members to all tasks

Previously, project managers had to manually assign new team members to each task, which was time-consuming, especially on large projects.

Now, project managers can choose to assign any new resources to all existing tasks, on a per project basis. This ensures new resources can enter time against all of a project’s tasks.

To enable this feature for a project, you'll need to go to the Project Info page, and select Assign them to all tasks in the When Adding Team Members field.

 

Limiting who can be assigned to a project team, by group

We’ve finished rolling out our limiting team assignments by group feature, which we previewed on Sep 22. Project managers can now specify the groups (locations, divisions, etc) whose members can be assigned to a project team.

This feature makes finding appropriate resources quicker and easier, and reduces the risk of setup errors.

PMs will need Team Restrictions permission to use this feature. Once permission is enabled, new Assign Team From group fields will display on the Project Info page. From those fields, the PM can select the groups whose users can be assigned to the project.

This new option is available in our TimeBill Plus, Project Portfolio Management, Professional Services Automation, and ProjectTime Plus products.

Note that:

  • This new feature replaces the old option that allowed a PM to only add groups to which they were assigned to project teams
  • On the Project Info page, the pre-existing fields that limit who can access the project are now grouped under a Project Belongs to label, as we mentioned on Oct 20

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

You can now filter time by project name or project code, depending on which you use as a unique identifier, when using the Time Workbench. This is useful for customers who need to expoert time for specific projects only; it saves them from having to filter for those projects post-export.

 

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.

 

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System

User dynamic custom fields

We now offer a dynamic version of user custom fields, in addition to the existing fixed user custom fields, in Replicon.

Unlike with fixed fields, you can add as many dynamic fields as you want. Plus, you can attach files to user dynamic custom fields.

Like fixed user fields, dynamic user custom fields display on the main page of user profiles.

You can set them up at Administration > Employees and Organization > User Settings.

Refer to Creating custom fields for more information.

 

Custom value separator options for imports

You can now choose to use a different multiple value separator when using the data import feature, in case your data includes the default pipe separator. This option is available by clicking the Settings icon on the import page.

Note that, currently, only the pipe separator works for task and group hierarchy imports.

 

Short Time Entry ID field available in Time Workbench file formats

We now offer a new Short Time Entry ID field for inclusion in Time Workbench exports. This 20-digit numeric value is useful in systems that don’t support the complexity of our existing Time Entry ID column.

Note that this field only supports time entries; it does not support time off and punches.

 

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.

 

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