Coming soon: i2 version 2.14
Image 1: i2 Job Tracker Dashboard Tab
It’s been an exciting time at Paprika HQ. Spring is almost here and with it comes the pending release of i2 version 2.14. Our development team have set 2.14 loose on the Paprika guinea pigs and they are all busy testing it internally before it’s officially released to you next month. You may recall the leap from i2 version 2.12 to 2.13 was quite a big one, and our Client Engagement team have been working hard offering demonstrations to bridge the gap.
Looking forward, we expect the jump from 2.13 to 2.14 to be far easier as the comparative changes have been developed using the same design conventions as 2.13. This means the look and feel of i2 will improve in consistency and the new programs will function intuitively by mimicking functionality you’re already familiar with.
Here’s a brief overview of what you can look forward to in April when i2 v 2.14 escapes from testing:
New i2 programs…
We have spiced up 2.14 and added a little more pizazz with three new programs for you to get your teeth into. Here’s a brief introduction to the all-new i2 Job Tracker, Strategic Time Planner and Supplier Maintenance:
Job Tracker is job enquiry’s all singing and all dancing sibling. It’s comprised of numerous tabs, 15 to be exact, which allow agency staff to keep a closer eye on their individual jobs. Essentially it works as big job bag and makes all the information associated with the job easily accessible from within one program. It also offers a more visual way to view the data via the job dashboards and job detail tabs. Here, you can configure user definable graphs and charts, in much the same way as the dashboard functionality released in 2.13 (see image 1).
The popular graph functionality also appears in the ‘job detail’ tab, which has the potential to show foreign currency values and will map a line for the foreign currency value of the job too.
As you know, time against a job is another important element that needs to be tracked. To help with this we have created a ‘time’ tab which allows you to view forecast, planned and actual time. What’s more, time can be viewed by task, personnel or grade, in monetary terms or in hours. The Gantt tool can then be used to display time in an attractive Gantt chart format, as shown in the image below.
Image 2: i2 Job Tracker Time Tab (Gantt)
The ‘Timeline’ tab is another useful job tracker tool. It keeps a record of important dates, notes and tasks against a job by pulling them into one place and displaying them in a timeline format. It’s a great way of getting a quick overview of what’s been happening in the lifetime of the job so far.
Image 3: i2 Job Tracker Timeline Tab
You may be familiar with the ‘Job History Browser’ pre-set in previous versions of Paprika, and in the i2 Job tracker ‘Job History’ tab, this will appear as a hard coded graph. However, you now also have the option to create other job history graphs too.
Image 4: i2 Job Tracker Job History Tab
The other tabs in the new job tracker are pretty self-explanatory, with estimates displaying estimates in the new card format, the task tab showing all tasks against the job and the contacts tab displaying contact details etc. Additionally, the tabs indicated in a chevron pattern will launch directly into other useful paprika programs. The new Job Tracker aims to arm Account Managers with all the tools they need to handle their jobs effectively, and with greater visibility and from one central location.
I2 Strategic Time Planner (STP)
STP has now been developed in i2 and will replace the pre-existing version in main Paprika. STP is designed for those that want to forecast time and is particularly useful if you rely heavily on fixed retainer fee income. As you can see from the image below, the new STP enables you to forecast time against a job or task. The program will automatically show personnel associated with the job, plus you can add additional resources too.
Image 5: Strategic Time Planner
Time is forecast simply by adding the figures into the month of each personnel using the curser. You can change the visible timespan and plan for 6 months or for a year. Plus, there are the conventional buttons that allow you to copy hour’s forward, copy to other personnel, and drag and drop hours to move stuff around. It’s very fluid in design and you can switch from forecasting time in hours to forecasting the percentage of productive time instead.
Colour coding plays an important role in STP. Jobs are indicated in red, whereas Tasks are indicated in yellow. Personnel appear in blue and the colour key can be used to look at productivity targets whilst forecasting time against each individual resource.
Image 6: Strategic Time Planner Colour Key
You will be pleased to hear that Supplier Maintenance has now been added in 2.14. The new maintenance program looks and functions in much the same way as the other i2 maintenance programs. As more and more functionality is migrated into i2, our development team will continue to create programs that aim to achieve greater consistencies across the platform.
Enhancements to existing i2 programs…
Along with new programs being added, there are also improvements to what’s already available. Any client feedback we receive gets passed through to our Special Interest Groups, who are guardians of the system, they discuss any suggestions and progress them through to selection. The following enhancements have been added to the following programs in 2.14:
i2 Supplier Browser
- Now that Supplier maintenance has been added in 2.14, an option has been included which will take you directly from supplier browser into i2 supplier maintenance.
i2 Client Maintenance
- Payment terms are now integers and not 2 decimal places on display and entry (days to invoice, payment day of the month, days and payment terms)
- When selecting a foreign currency in the ledger code, the currency is now shown next to the client status.
- In the find modal, a column to display foreign currency clients has been added.
i2 Alert Details
- This has been rewritten with some new action buttons that launch into useful programs.
i2 SINV Entry
- Print options have been added for expense and time write-offs.
When can I upgrade?
2.14 is currently in testing and will become available for external release next month. If you would like to be one of our brave early adopters, you can register your interest with client services on email@example.com or call 01732 811600 to speak to a representative. The client services team will take your details and submit your request to our upgrade's department. A member of the upgrades team will get back in touch to advise on next steps and send the relevant documentation needed to upgrade. Every upgrade is planned and booked carefully to ensure the process runs as smoothly as possible. Please be aware that upgrades are offered on a first come first served basis and there may be a waiting list.