Expand my Community achievements bar.

Come join us for our Coffee Break next week on top takeaways from Adobe Summit!

Contouring in Workload Balancer - How will end users see it?

Avatar

Level 10
Hi everyone, Vazgen's here, Senior Product Manager over the Workload Balancer solution. As we are working on adding the contouring capabilities to the Workload Balancer, a question arises - how will end users see that their hours have been contoured? We have several ideas in mind, but wanted to bring this up to community for discussion. Possible solutions we came up with so far: - Workfront Home Calendar view - Email notification with a summary of hours planned for today - Workfront notification - Push notification on the mobile app - A new field on task details page that shows the hourly breakdown - Update stream message Feel free to add any ideas you have! Vazgen Babayan Senior Product Manager
Topics

Topics help categorize Community content and increase your ability to discover relevant content.

13 Replies

Avatar

Level 10
Thanks Vazgen, I like all of those suggestions, have another , and would rank them in this order (sharing my reasoning) : 1. create two new built-in user views (so anyone can drop it into any user report, similar to the User Login view) that show Planned Work For Today and Planned Work For This Week (highly reusable) 2. Workfront notification (universal audience; all that great notification taste, with none of the email/push extra calories) 3. (Optional) Email notification with a summary of hours planned for today (broadest external to Workfront audience) 4. (Optional) Push notification on the mobile app (broad external to Workfront audience) 5. A new field on task details page that shows the hourly breakdown (requires "looking") 6. Workfront Home Calendar view (limited audience) 7. Update stream message (too easily lost / scrolled out of sight) In a related matter... As our "https://store.atappstore.com/product/capacity-charting/" Capacity Charts , Resource Contouring (private), Scenario Planning (private), and "https://store.atappstore.com/product/ubertimesheet/" UberTimesheet (as of next release) solutions all depend on Workfront's underlying Contouring API calls, would you please confirm that those API calls (and out of curiosity, the underlying data structure) will NOT be changing as part of the improvements you are considering (and keep me posted, if you suspect they might, at some point)? Regards, Doug Doug Den Hoed - AtAppStore

Avatar

Level 10
Thanks for the feedback, Doug! Those will change moving forward, although both versions will work so long as we haven't deprecated the current version of the Scheduling tool. I'll reach out to you with more details on the new object and it's API capabilities. It would be very helpful if you could send out what calls do you use to leverage the existing API object. Vazgen Babayan Product Manager

Avatar

Level 10
Thanks Vazgen, We use the full CRUD on the current contour data, reading, deleting, adding, and updating contour information on Tasks (and Issues, as I recall). Regards, Doug Doug Den Hoed - AtAppStore

Avatar

Level 10
I only like Doug's first solution but really since our users will hopefully move away from My Work into Home, it should somehow show up on the worklist (filter and grouping for planned today/planned tomorrow or maybe separately being able to filter/group due today/tomorrow... sorry I'm moving out of scope here), or as Doug mentions, a report view representing their work. I think most users here won't really care. I sometimes see users have 100 tasks a week (all a few minutes long) -- these people know what they have to do and aren't really interested in knowing how much time they need to spend on it as much as what they have to do that day. There's a lot of rote or repetitive work. I'm more interested in hearing how you plan to contour, since we struggle with both the resource planner and the workload balancer to find a way to automatically set a priority in a list of tasks that can be based off where the project is from, the due date, the project priority or condition fields or... well, give us something other than alphabetical order, really. And since there are a certain set of tasks where their planned hours will never ever be split among multiple days, would love a better way to indicate this as well (unless there's already a way that I missed somehow). I apologize for the tardy reply. It's been a busy month. And then I had to consult with our architect to find out what contouring meant. :) Thanks for your time. -skye

Avatar

Level 10
Thanks for the feedback, Skye! That's a really interesting setup, as that means that the users have a fairly straight understanding of what are the tasks they are going to complete and at the same time they go into the granularity to specify tasks to the minute level. I can totally see how managing this via contouring can become really manual. Overall, the current first phase of contouring is going to be purely manual, however, moving forward we plan to add automation and recommendations based on historical data. On the prioritization topic, that's something I want to research further as there is a debate on who should allocate that priority to individual tasks and what factors are being considered for that. If you're willing, I would be interested in having a call on this topic, as well as understand how Workload Balancer reflects the setup you have mentioned. This link can be used to schedule time on my calendar directly: "https://calendly.com/wf-product-research/workloadbalancer">https://calendly.com/wf-product-research/workloadbalancer Thanks, Vazgen Babayan Product Manager

Avatar

Level 10
very true. It doesn't matter that a piece that we are creating might be done in 4-8 hours. What is being indicated here is that the piece has to pass through a certain number of hands (say, create - review - rework - finalize - distribute) and even if it only spends 15 minutes in each set of hands, we span 3 buildings (plus remote workers). so each set of hands is assigned a task in workfront and as each task is completed, the next set of hands is notified. It's deadline driven, e.g. publish at 1pm / 5pm. So the value workfront holds is to be able to say there are 100 such pieces scheduled for this week, every set of hands has to do its task 100 times, and where in the project timeline each piece resides -- plus associated reports to track metrics on these pieces. I'll set up some time. Secretly, I'm hoping that what you're developing can find application within the project timeline as we need better ways to automatically compress and extend the entire timeline without tweaking durations. -skye

Avatar

Level 10
Hi Vezven, Workload balancer is quite usable function. But if we see the possibility to move the task as in Legacy view under Team for the same user is very helpful. It could be most functional if the same functionality is added here also. Since we will get challenge once legacy is removed. Just an idea. Regards Kundan. Kundan Kumar KGON - (Kverneland Group Operations Norway AS)

Avatar

Level 10
So talking with a bunch of people, here are our thoughts, both are based on Workload Balancer: Adding a widget in Home that is above the right info panel that is the Balancer filtered to just that person and shows them all the contouring the RM did Being able to add the Balancer to a dashboard (like you can with Resource Planner) that can have the $$USER.ID filter so we can put it a dashboard for business units now using Home. The one concern about Balancer though is how it sorts the tasks. For some people, they have to hit Show More Projects a bunch of times to see everything for the day. If there was a way to change the sorting to task start date to eliminate the white space, it would be perfect. Anthony Imgrund FCB

Avatar

Level 10
Thanks Anthony and Kundan, We are going to add the ability to share the Balancer view with others, as well as plan to add it under Team Working On and Project Staffing tabs. @Anthony Imgrund , specific to your concern on sorting, we are going to make a change on sorting so that both projects and tasks are sorted similarly and aim for a cascading view of information, to bring the work scheduled on the same day together. Thanks, Vazgen Babayan Product Manager

Avatar

Level 10

Thanks for info Vezgen. But just to re-confirm, are you going to add the ability to move task for the same user in the time line. Please refer the attachment. Awaiting for your response. With Regards, Kundan.

Kundan Kumar KGON - (Kverneland Group Operations Norway AS)0690z000007ZgvLAAS.jpg

Avatar

Level 10
Way back in the AtTask days, the calendar used to do that. It caused SOOOO many problems. Sometimes the date changed when the person meant to just drag n drop to another person Move the task recalculated a whole timeline and really messed up deadlines. For my department leads and resource managers, just moving in between people is the best option. And date changes need to be done by the project manager so that they can see how the rest of the schedule is affected. Anthony Imgrund FCB

Avatar

Level 10
I agree Anthony, but if the there is only one guy as resource manager. Then possibility to avoid. Just a idea. WIth regards, Kundan. Kundan Kumar KGON - (Kverneland Group Operations Norway AS)

Avatar

Level 2

in my organization both methods are needed. The best option in my opinion would be a hotkey select for moving the task horizontally (e.g. hold shift and drag), and normal drag/drop functionality to move task between users. As for showing the contouring to the user, why is there no user assigned hours for tasks - the home view is meant to be tailored for the user, being able to show how many hours is planned for that particular user on a task seems pretty basic. Thanks!