Discussion Enhancements

The AMS-Connect software is a powerful tool used by our clients for project management and task collaboration. With the Task and Database features of the software, multiple individuals, often working remotely and in numerous offices and sites, are able to efficiently collaborate on projects, access and share particular project information, and consolidate conversations, notes, and documents in secure workspaces.

When using the software for project management, users often need to organize discussions and conversations regarding the project into one place, accessible to all participating individuals. With the goal of improving communication and more efficient project planning, the Discussions feature allows for secure, private discussions that can be organized and categorized to save time and ensure maximum productivity.

The Discussions feature of the AMS-Connect software has recently undergone a significant user interface update (described below). Additionally, the user interface for those participating in discussions – whether creating new posts or responding to existing posts – has been significantly updated to provide a more modern and responsive experience. These updates include:

Updated Posting and Responding

Discussions are designed to be interactive conversations or question and answer sessions between users. A new topic may be created by users with the appropriate permissions, and posts may be added to that topic. Users can create new posts or respond to posts made by other users.

Refined Permissions and Dialogs

When adding new or modifying existing discussions, common functions including the Owner and the Created Date have been updated to inline capabilities. A user creating or modifying a discussion can simply begin typing a name into the owner field and it provides a list of potential users that match; and the created date now displays a calendar selector dropdown.

Similarly, the Allow to Participate options have also been improved.  Available groups will display in the list with checkboxes to allow for easy selection.  To also assign specific members, simply begin typing the member name in the provided box and select “to add.”

Categories and Color-Coding

Much like the capabilities of the Notes feature, discussions can also be assigned colors and categories.  In addition, the complicated layers of discussions from the previous version have been removed and flattened to simplify navigation.

The Discussion feature of the AMS-Connect software is a useful tool for ensuring project and workflow management is communicated and managed in a streamlined and resourceful manner. These recent updates positively impact efficiency and functionality, providing the user with updated resources for effectively organizing and maintaining project discussions.

Efficient Organization and Sorting

As we recently discussed in our last post, we have released a number of updates to the AMS-Connect software to improve functionality and usability.  These updates include sortable view lists and document folder relocation.

Our clients often use the “Database” feature as a task management and workflow solution tool to track progress and communicate duties for large or complex projects.  Keeping smaller subprojects and tasks arranged and structured can be a challenge, particularly when you have multiple individuals working on a large project.

Within a specific database, you can create different views of the data reflecting the particular set of tasks or status needed.  For example, a view can show all the outstanding invoices to be paid; another view can display pending orders; and many other variations.  For some databases, views will be used to define a workflow process, each view displaying the tasks that are currently in that step of the workflow.  You even have the ability to assign permissions to views restricting access to the records in that view to specific individuals or groups.

In previous versions, views were listed automatically in alphabetical order.  If the views represented different workflow steps, it was necessary to prefix the view names with a number or letter to display them in the correct order.

This latest enhancement allows the view list to be manually sorted in any desired order.  While the default would be in alphabetical order, the administrator can now re-order the views by simply dragging and dropping them.

In addition to this new ability to sort and organize views, you now also have the ability to change the folder location of a document linked within a database record, ensuring documents are properly categorized and organized within your workflow system.

These two updates provide users with more capabilities in organizing and maintaining an efficient flow of tasks and document management. The ability to move documents to alternate folders as necessary, and to create a customized order for your views ensures working with remote offices, employees, and clients is streamlined and effortless, all while maintaining high levels of security and tracking.

Database for Project Management

The “Tasks” feature of the AMS-Connect software is a great resource for collaboration amongst employees who require the need to communicate regularly, share notes, coordinate tasks, and track the statuses of projects they are working on as a team. This feature is also useful for creating basic workflows for project management, but often projects need a more customized approach when it comes to tracking progress and development.

This is where the flexible “Database” feature comes in. Unlike the “Tasks” feature which provides pre-set fields, the Database feature allows you to create custom-defined fields which can be tailored to the specific needs of your project. This powerful tool allows our customers the option to create their own customized databases for project management, collaboration, tracking, intranet functionality, etc.

Additionally, with the permission capabilities for views, you have the ability to create workflows complete with notifications when items are ready to be moved from one user to the next. When a user finishes their portion of a task within the Database feature, you can set the Database to automatically set the task to the next user in the workflow. Automatic email notifications can also be created, notifying the new user of this workflow change.

For example: your office is working on a client project that requires detailed management such as due date and milestone tracking, documenting the dates of communication with the client (e.g., the dates correspondence is mailed), fields for taking notes, automatic view permission changing, and the ability to upload and share documents pertaining to the project. With the database feature, you can customize these fields and permission sets to create a project management system that is completely tailored to your organization’s needs, or more specifically to the needs of that particular client or project.

In a recent update to the AMS-Connect software, a number of updates were released that enhance the usability and functionality of the “Database” feature. These updates include: sortable view lists; key field designation; and document folder relocation.

Continually updated to ensure maximum efficiency and custom features for end users, the database feature of the AMS-Connect software allows you to completely customize your database for ease of use and productivity. Contact us today if you need help setting up a customized database or to see if this tailored resource is what your company needs to take project management to the next level.