Tag Archives: Primavera timesheet

TimeControl 8.1 now available!

TimeControl and TimeControl Industrial version 8.1 are a major update to the TimeControl 8 family of editions with significant new and enhanced features.    We’re delighted with the new version.  You can find out more details on the website at TimeControl.com/features/latest.

Mobile Materials

tci_mobile_materials.jpg_350x281For TimeControl Industrial Users we have now added the ability to enter non-labor data from the field using the free TimeControl Mobile App.  Along with the already existing Timesheet and Crew Timesheet functionality, this version now allows material consumption, equipment usage and production accomplished to be entered into TimeControl using a mobile device.

The free TimeControl Mobile App is available on Google Play for Android devices and the Apple Store for iOS devices.

Enhanced Calendar View

Calendar_View4_300x162We’ve rewritten the Calendar View to be more useful as an operational tool as TimeControl expands with more project planning and control functionality.  The Calendar View now allows for multiple tasks per row.  Also, items which span more than one day are now made into a longer bar which we’re loving in the office!

Integration with Project for the Web

ProjectForTheWeb_300x189In TimeControl 8.1 we have added integration with Microsoft’s newest addition to its Project Family “Project for the Web” with import only integration (Microsoft doesn’t support sending data back yet).

 

A new wave of reports

TimesheetImages_240x162We’ve included numerous new reports in this version which are all templates that you can adapt to your own needs.

 

 

And so much more.

Find out all about the new version at TimeControl.com/features/latest.

If you are a TimeControl or TimeControl Industrial on premise client with a current support and maintenance agreement, you can download the new version at no additional charge at: TimeControl.com/support/updates. TimeControl Online subscribers will be notified about their updates in the coming weeks and will then be updated automatically.

TimeControl Handles Resource Assignment Progress in So Many Ways

One of the key advantages of TimeControl is its ability to update planned tasks with the actual progress.  Gantt_and_Phone_300x200We often think of managing the progress of resource assignments in the simplest of terms: I assign you to do something, you tell me when you’re done and how much time you spent.  Yet, real life presents us with so many different resource progress options.  We won’t cover the many aspects of resource assignment management here and will, instead, look at just resource assignment progress.  We’ll cover just a few of the many ways TimeControl deals with resource progress by looking at specific business challenge scenarios here.

It’s more than just hours

TimeControl has always had the ability to go beyond the hours.  In some cases, costing of resource assignment progress is critical.  TimeControl is excellent at that.  In some cases you will want to identify the work remaining (Estimate to Complete) as a percentage or hours.  In some cases you will want to distinguish the assignment progress with the task progress.  TimeControl manages that as well.  In some cases you will want to go into more detail than the task assignment and TimeControl allows for lower entries with a summarization to the task and the assignments.  In some cases, there are progress costs that are both for labor and non-labor.  TimeControl’s expense entries or, in TimeControl Industrial, materials entries can handle that.

When transferring data to a project system, the options include hours, assignment progress, task progress, and costs.

A person does the assigned work of someone else

An assignment is made in a project management system and assigned to a particular person.  It turns out that someone else now completes the assignment even though they weren’t assigned to it themselves.  How can TimeControl manage that?

This is something TimeControl has had to deal with since its infancy in 1994.  When data is transmitted back to the project management system, the project manager has a choice:

  1. Do they wish to reject actuals in this situation or;
  2. Do they wish TimeControl to create an assignment in the project management system.

The results are quite different and the best choice is dependent on your project management process and what your project managers are happiest with.

In option 1, the actuals which can find no assignment with that individual will be rejected and those rejections will appear in a log.  Then the project manager will have to go to the project management system and alter the assignments to remove the first person and insert the second person.  Then the transfer can be restarted and those previously rejected records will go through.  For some project managers this is ideal.

In option 2, there will be a new assignment created in the project management system in the associated task.  The result will be a task that has one assignment for person 1 with no progress and another assignment for person 2 with completed progress.  Project managers then have to create an exception report to highlight tasks with progress for the last week but with assignments that have no progress.  Then they will have to decide how to alter the assignments to best reflect what actually happened.

One of the things about TimeControl that is handy is that this is not a global setting.  One project manager may be more comfortable with option 1, the other with option 2.

A person does work at different rates at different times of the day

This is a common request and we are often asked why project management tools don’t offer more options with rates in their systems.  The short answer is that when you are planning, you typically don’t think of all the rate variations that are likely to appear in real life.  It’s not something that occurs because you plan for it.

Let’s say a person works on multiple projects.  On project #1, they are billed at $75 per hour. On project #2 they are billed at $60 per hour.  TimeControl handles that easily by having multiple rates.  But, you say, what if they are billed at those rates but we pay them the same internally.  Again, no problem.  Each rate code can have multiple values associated for things like Internal Cost, Billing Value, Project Average Cost, etc.

Ok, let’s say there is one project and someone is working at different rates for different situations.  For example, we cost them at one rate when the weather is good and at a hazard rate when the weather is bad.  TimeControl handles this easily.  It allows the same task to appear multiple times in the same timesheet so that you can enter values like the Rate Code or other User Defined fields for that same task.  When this information is sent back to the project system, the project manager has the option to send the costs as well or just to send the hours.   The choice depends on what the internal costing process is for the project manager and the company but TimeControl will maintain the auditable values at a detailed level no matter which option is selected.

A person works as part of a generic or role definition of resource

When looking at resource assignments in a project system, project management software vendors would love it if you only made assignments at the individual level.  This is largely due to the licensing advantage to those vendors as each individual will now have to look at the system to see their tasks and then those people will need to purchase an individual license.  That’s all understood but this method then disables one of the project management systems’ most powerful tools: resource leveling.  Resource Leveling at an individual level makes no sense.  The algorithms and concepts are most effective when we use generic or role-based resource assignments.  If we do that and leave individual assignments as a separate exercise for team leads, you can end up with a project/timesheet disconnect.

Not in TimeControl.

In TimeControl for each employee, there is an option to say what resource code that employee is associated to.  That can be an individual resource code.  That’s certainly the easiest.  But, it can just as easily be a generic or a role resource.  Then when progress from that person is recorded, it is sent to the project system not as an individual but rather as the role or generic resource, aggregated with all other employees who are defined to that role or generic resource.

A person works part of the day as one resource and another part of the day as a different resource

In this situation, we have people who have different roles in different parts of the day.  Perhaps someone is a designer in the morning and billed at one rate but will be working as a documentation specialist in the afternoon and billed at a very different rate.

TimeControl handles this with the optional “Line Item Resource”.  When activated, a user can select in their timesheet what resource code they would like associated to each line.  That leaves them as many choices as are appropriate to their situation as you wish.  When data is sent back to the project system, the resource progress will be sent back line-by-line, assignment-by-assignment with the resource codes that were chosen.

And…

Of course, we’re not done.  Sometimes it seems that there are as many resource management scenarios as there are clients and having a tool as flexible as TimeControl means we’re almost always able to adjust to accommodate a particular resource process.  Plus, for many, many, clients sometimes simplest is best and none of these more involved scenarios apply.  In this case, you can reduce or even remove resource assignment and progress management altogether.

Talk about Resource Progress are sprinkled all over the TimeControl.com site or, if you have a specific challenge you’d like to talk to us about, contact us on the Contact form.

 

 

 

De-centralized Project Management and Centralized Timesheets with TimeControl

wp_decentralized_centralized_300x383The most common notion of Enterprise Project Management (EPM) systems means that all users access a single centralized system for all related functions.  This concept became popular in the late 1990s with the rise of ERP systems.  Project Managers have been asked to store their data and adopt the centralized project management system.

Yet there are still millions and millions of individually run project management tools running on desktops or even as services in the cloud but not part of a centralized project management process.

That might be fine for each project manager but when it comes to a process that needs to be centralized like timesheets, we run into a bigger problem.  The result is that one aspect of the enterprise such as Finance insists on a timesheet for payroll for all personnel.  Another department insists on a timesheet for all users for HR to track time off and another department needs a billing timesheet for all users who contribute to billing time.  Each project manager might need to deploy their own timesheet system for their teams.

It can become chaos in a hurry.

We’ve just released a white paper that deals with this exact business challenge.  It’s called “De-centralized Project Management and Centralized Timesheets with TimeControl”.  It’s free to access and it’s available right now as part of our ongoing efforts to show how to realize the benefits of TimeControl. If you are interested in having project managers continue to use multiple systems but need to have one timesheet to bring all the actuals together for different purposes, you’ll find this paper of interest.  The white paper can be downloaded from: https://www.timecontrol.com/pdf/whitepapers/centralized_decentralized.pdf.

For more free resources on enterprise project management and enterprise timesheet systems, go to: TimeControl.com/resources.

TimeControl timesheets and Primavera project management make a winning combination

TimeControl and Primavera have a long history together.  First paired in 1997, HMS Software has ensured it’s TimeControl has had a continuous link to every version of Primavera since.  For those users who need a Primavera Timesheet that supports both financial and project processes simultaneously there is no better selection.

TimeControl includes links using direct database-to-database connections for Primavera Professional and Primavera EPPM and a Web connection link for Primavera EPPM so all the basis are covered whether Primavera and TimeControl are in the cloud or on premise.  The bi-directional link moves projects, tasks, resources assignments and progress to TimeControl then sends back hours, costs and progress.

Primavera clients who need a single timesheet to update not only the task progress in Primavera but also Payroll, Billing, Finance, Job Costing or HR use TimeControl to provide multi-purpose timesheet functionality that will allow a single point of timesheet entry and multiple corporate uses at the same time.

Some of the benefits of integrating TimeControl as your Primavera Timesheet include:

  • Automated Business Validation Rules
  • Expense tracking
  • Extensive Rate Management with unlimited rates per person and multiple values per rate
  • Management of Vacation, Sick Leave, Personal time banks
  • Crew Timesheets (with TimeControl Industrial)
  • Material consumption, Equipment usage and Production accomplished (with TimeControl Industrial)
  • Management of Banked Overtime
  • Included integration with Oracle-Primavera Pro, EPPM and many other project systems
  • The free TimeControl Mobile App for tablets and smartphones
  • Missing timesheet management
  • Multi-lingual interface
  • The Matrix Approval Process for Labor Actuals™

TimeControl is available as a subscription in the cloud or for on-premise deployment or.

HMS has a free information portal with white papers, video lessons, slide presentations and factsheets on our website at: http://primavera.timecontrol.com.

 

The new TimeControl Mobile App includes Crew Timesheets!

In the lastest updated of TimeControl, enhancements to the free TimeControl Mobile App include new functionality for Crews.  When the Mobile App links to a TimeControl Industrial  license, additional functionality becomes available.  Providing that the user has security profile access to these functions, they can now create, and edit a Crew Timesheet.  In addition, the user can Approve or Reject Crew Timesheets as part of the approval process.

The Mobile App also allows the user to Add or Remove Crew Team Members.

Field Data Collection often occurs in areas where Internet services are spotty.  If a connection is lost, the TimeControl Mobile App continues working offline until the Internet is restored and then synchronizes with the main TimeControl system.

The TimeControl Mobile App is available at no charge on the Google Play Store for Android phones and tablets and on the Apple App Store for iOS devices.

You can find out more about Crew Timesheets at: Industrial.Time
Control.com/features/crew-timesheet.

TimeControl Industrial 8 now available

With the successful launch of TimeControl 8 only a few days ago, we’ve now released TimeControl Industrial version 8.  The TimeControl 8 version already included numerous features that will be of interest to all TimeControl Industrial clients.

crew_tsentry_3There are also some features very specific to TimeControl Industrial in this edition.  Some of these include:

Crew Timesheets in TimeControl Mobile

TimeControl 8 includes the free TimeControl Mobile App and TimeControl Industrial users can, for the first, time create and edit Crew Timesheets and edit Crew members while mobile.  With nearly half of the total global workforce expected to be comprised of mobile employees by 2022, these new features in TimeControl Industrial Mobile will be welcome.

Manage Crews in TimeControl Mobile

Not only can supervisors and team leaders create crew timesheets while on the go, they can also use the TimeControl Mobile App to update team members.  A team lead who is out in the field with their crew can start their shift by updating their crew and then updating Crew Timesheet information as the day progresses no matter where they are.

Support for TimeControl Mobile when disconnected from the Internet

TimeControl Mobile has been enhanced so that if connection to the Internet is interrupted; something that can occur more frequently in remote construction sites, the App will continue functioning and will automatically syncronize with the central application as soon as a connection is re-established.

Mobile Views

The TimeControl Mobile App includes dynamic data analysis for management of all timesheet data under their control.  Instant graphics in numerous formats will enable rapid decision making based on where time is being spent.

The upgrade is available to existing on-premise clients with a current support and maintenance agreement at no additional charge from the TimeControl upgrades site at: Industrial.TimeControl.com/support/updates. TimeControl Industrial 8 will be upgraded automatically for TimeControl Online subscription clients in mid-July.

For further information, please visit Industrial.TimeControl.com or email info@hms.ca.

TimeControl case study with WHP Engineering 

We’re delighted to tell you that we have just finished collaborating with WHP Engineering on a greate case study describing how this UK-based engineering company has implemented TimeControl to improve operational efficiency in the organization.

WHP Engineering specializes in precision engineered solutions for the biotechnology, pharmaceutical and other clean process manufacturing industries.  It has grown more than 135% since 2017.

WHP has deployed TimeControl in part due to its integration with both Oracle Primavera and Sage and are delighted with the results.

“The fact that I can see what projects people are spending their hours on and what they’re delivering for those hours is crucial,” explained John Wheeler, WHP’s Engineering Manager. “If we hadn’t made the change to TimeControl, we certainly wouldn’t have the level of key business metrics that we’re getting now.”

You can read the case study in its entirety at: TimeControl.com/why-timecontrol/case-studies/whp or to see more case studies, go to: TimeControl.com/why-timecontrol/case-studies.

Read the new White Paper on Integrating TimeControl and Primavera

Oracle_GoldPartner_300x80Oracle-Primavera EPPM administrators know that a Primavera timesheet for task updates is already included when you purchase the EPPM Team Member license. But there are many business scenarios where using a third party timesheet will maximize your Primavera effectiveness.

TimeControl is a multi-function timesheet that is already integrated to both Oracle-Primavera EPPM and Primavera Pro.  It was created to bring timesheet functionality even further.

Imagine one or more of these scenarios:

You need a timesheet but you are using Primavera Pro on the desktop, not EPPM on the server or in the cloud

TimeControl already includes complete integration with both Primavera EPPM and Primavera Pro on the desktop. You can support as many desktop users as you wish and even have a mix of EPPM projects and remotely managed projects on Primavera Professional integrated at the same time.

Your rates are different per client or per project or per task

TimeControl has extensive rate management functionality allowing an individual to have an unlimited number of rate codes. An employee can have different rates for different projects, different rates for different roles on the same project or different rates for different tasks all on the same timesheet. Not only that, but for each of those rate codes you can maintain multiple values so tracking the internal cost, billing value and average project cost can be done all at the same time.

You use Roles rather than individuals in Primavera for Resource Scheduling

TimeControl supports the notion of work at the role level, the generic resource level and the individual.

You are working at a different level than the project tasks

TimeControl allows you to summarize Primavera activities into higher level TimeControl Charge Codes or to summarize TimeControl Charge Codes to Primavera activities. This lets the timesheet function at a different level than the project schedule.

Same timesheet for Primavera and Payroll and HR and Billing and R&D Tax Credits…

This is TimeControl’s key design feature. It is an auditable timesheet that is designed to be multi-purpose.  TimeControl fulfills multiple timesheet requirements from the same timesheet at the same time.  It’s perfect for Finance, HR, Payroll, Billing, and governance as well as integrated with Primavera.

You need to enter timesheets for a whole crew at a time not just individuals

Need to enter a high volume of timesheet data for field personnel who don’t even have access to a computer? TimeControl Industrial is our field data collection version which allows you to enter Crew Timesheets, Material consumption, Equipment usage and even production accomplished and integrate that information with Primavera.

TimeControl 6 / Primavera 6 Solution Portal

We have just published a new White Paper in our free TimeControl / Primavera Resource Portal where you’ll also find webcasts, factsheets, white papers, slide presentations and other information. You will see how integrating TimeControl and Oracle-Primavera allows a single timesheet to be used for multiple purposes.  You can read the new White Paper at: Integrating TimeControl and Primavera. or, go to the Portal at: Primavera.TimeControl.com.

TimeControl 7.4.1 is now available!

We’re delighted to tell you that TimeControl 7.4.1 is now available for download.  This version updates TimeControl, TimeControl Industrial, TimeControl Online and the free TimeControl Mobile App.  TimeControl and TimeControl Industrial clients with a current support and maintenance agreement can download the new version immediately at TimeControl.com/support/updates.  HMS is preparing for the upgrade of TimeControl Online which will happen automatically in the next 2-3 weeks.  TimeControl Online customers will be notified a week in advance of the update.

There are many new features to be excited about.  Here are some of the highlights:

Charge Hierarchy

TimeControl now supports multiple methods of displaying a hierarchy of charge codes.  TimeControl has long been recognized for supporting hierarchical charge structures but the new functionality takes this to a new level.  Field hierarchy permits hierarchy to be built from multiple user defined fields in the Charge Table and you can create multiple breakdowns then switch them on the fly when you’re searching for charge codes in the timesheet!

Numerous new API methods

We have made extensive additions to the TimeControl API making it even easier to integrate TimeControl as part of an overall corporate environment.

Mobile Debit/Credit Adjustments

The TimeControl Mobile App now allows Debit/Credit update Adjustments.  This allows supervisors and administrators to open a Posted timesheet and apply adjustments to that timesheet and release those adjustments to Posting.

Mobile Posted Expenses and Attachments

The TimeControl Mobile App now includes the ability to view the expenses that are attached to a posted timesheet in the past as well as any attachments that might have been associated to the timesheet or expenses.

Assignments

We have made major changes to the Assignments Table.  Assignments can now be made as part of a person’s full time availability so one person could be put on two tasks simultaneously at 50% of their availability each.  You can also now have the assignment start and finish be dates other than the charge start and stop so assignments that were meant to occur only during part of the charge can be defined that way.

Administrator configuration enhancements

We have taken numerous elements of the TimeControl configuration and moved them from the TimeControl.INI file into the Administrator System Preferences and User Profiles functions.  This will make a huge difference for TimeControl Online environments where some of these features had to be managed at the server level.

New User Profile Features

There are numerous new settings in User Profiles that allows TimeControl’s configuration to be tailored to the person or group with that User Profile setting.  These changes include all-new Super-User reject and Modify rights .  You can also change how the Timesheet List appears, allowing only a certain number of weeks in the past or future to display.  A new Highlight feature helps when adding a timesheet by highlighting the current week or the last missing week for a new timesheet.

Control Period Create Times

When creating timesheets, TimeControl allows the number of periods in the past and the future to be constrained to avoid accidentally creating a timesheet in the wrong period or in a period when Finance is not expecting it.

Copy Hours

We’ve made it possible to control who is allowed to copy hours when creating a new timesheet using the Copy Timesheet function and activated the ability to copy hours.

And…

There’s so much more.  We’ve done a lot of work on high volume capacity, improved performance, added more revision auditing, and improved usability across the application.

Find out more at TimeControl.com/features/latest

HMS Software and Oracle extend their technical alliance for a 20th consecutive year

Our relationship with Oracle started from several places at once back in 1997.  HMS became an Oracle Technical Partner that year because of the then-new support of the Oracle database by TimeControl 3.  We were very excited that year to announce that TimeControl was officially a client-server product.  Ah, the good old days.  That same year in that same version of TimeControl, we announced our new link with Primavera’s project management product, P3.  Shortly after that Primavera released P3 for the Enterprise (P3e) and our timing was such that TimeControl was the first product of any kind to link to that new product.

In 2008 those extended relationships blended together when Oracle purchased Primavera.  By then we had other relationship with Oracle products as well with support for MySQL and links to JD Edwards and Oracle E-Business Suite.

Fast forward to 2017.  Oracle and HMS have announced that HMS will be an Oracle Gold Partner from 2017 to 2018 making this the 20th consecutive year of our technical relationship and we couldn’t be prouder.

“This relationship is an example of the win-win that technical alliances are supposed to deliver,” explained our President, Chris Vandersluis.  “Oracle is able to extend the functionality and expertise to their clients through HMS and HMS is, in turn, able to get privileged access to Oracle’s technology and staff.  The clients we have in common benefit from this relationship as do both companies.”

The evolution of TimeControl has been able to take advantage of this relationship with ongoing support of multiple database versions and products in the Oracle family as well as links between TimeControl and Oracle EBS, PeopleSoft, JD Edwards and, of course, Oracle-Primavera P6 Professional and Oracle-Primavera EPPM. Announcements have been made in just the last few weeks about new functionality in the links between TimeControl and Oracle-Primavera EPPM.

Some of TimeControl’s value-added benefits when linking with Oracle-Primavera include: multiple rates per employee, automated business rule validations, automated workflow, missing timesheet notification, simultaneous support for multiple versions of Primavera, both a browser and mobile/tablet interface and matrix timesheet approvals with HMS’s unique Matrix Approval Process for Labor Actuals™.

HMS is delighted to be celebrating our twentieth year as an Oracle Partner and look forward to our relationship continuing for many years to come.

For more information about TimeControl and how it links to Oracle technologies, visit the TimeControl Oracle Solution Portal at: http://www.timecontrol.com/use-cases/oracle-portalor contact HMS at info@hms.ca.