Beyond the TimeControl menu and the mighty ellipsis

We all know that TimeControl has a tremendous level of functionality and the degree to which TimeControl is configurable and flexible makes the possible options of functionality even more vast.  The challenge for our TimeControl designers is that most TimeControl users will only access the system for a few minutes a week or perhaps a few minutes a day.  Once it’s properly configured, the interest of 95% of users who only enter their timesheet of how flexible or how many clever features are in TimeControl are of no interest.

The User Profile area of TimeControl allows some functionality to be masked completely from different user profiles.  That’s a great start.  Whole menu items can be hidden from view from users who will never need to access that function.  The User Profiles configuration can also condition data so only the data that’s appropriate to a user is displayed.  That carries through down to the field level as well as in reporting and numerous other areas.  The goal is to present users with an easy path to getting their timesheet done.

There are other ways TimeControl displays key functionality and makes secondary functionality less obvious so it’s only available if users want access to it.

In the timesheet itself, a click on the Ellipsis “…” on the grid can show a whole separate level of functionality below the line item level.  This includes adding expense report details, adding notes, seeing information about the Activity or Charge Tables or viewing and progress Primavera P6 progress “Steps”.  This is also where a line item can be copied or deleted.  There are quite a lot of options there but they’re all activated only when someone clicks the ellipsis on that line.

In TimeControl Tables, you might see the gear icon to view options.  This too can carry all kinds of functionality.  When it’s part of a list such as a Charge Code Table list, the option can change the sort, change the hierarchy view and even select what fields to put into the list for search or selection.

In different places in TimeControl, the gear icon will similarly present configuration options that affect the view.  But if the view looks just fine to the user, they’ll never have an interest in clicking on the icon and they don’t need to.  They don’t need to be confronted by all those options.

In a variety of screens in TimeControl, the More menu option will present context appropriate options for manipulating data or changing the data view.  This might include expanding or contracting a hierarchy view, filtering or deleting the data or, in the case of TimeControl Tables, creating or editing Table Validation rules.  The More selection will be different depending on where you are in TimeControl when you click it.

TimeControl’s focus on user experience always guides us in the design of the system so keeping functionality layered in a way that the vast majority of users only have to see what they need from the system is critical to the system’s success.  Yet, having a robust selection of functionality for those users who need access to it is also key.  It’s just one of the many ways TimeControl adjusts to the needs of the user.