Monday, June 23, 2008

What's new with Time and Labor 8.9? Schedules

First off - Time and Labor 8.9 is not vastly different from Time and Labor 8.8. There are no breakthrough changes and transitioning to the new version is seamless. That is not to say that the product has no enhancements at all! This post discusses one important feature change that has happened - Setting up and using Work Schedules.

8.8 Scenario:
In 8.8 Schedule creation was a 4 step process. The steps follo
wed were:
Create Shifts --> Create Workdays --> Create Schedule Template --> Create Schedule Definition.
After creating the schedules, a Schedule Calendar Build process had to be run to create the whole Schedule Calendar.

8.9 Scenario:
Creating a schedule in 8.9 has been reduced to a One Step process!! In 8.9, creation of shifts and workdays have been made optional and the concept of a schedule template itself has been removed. In 8.9, one can create a schedule by directly entering the work hours of each day on the Schedule Definition page. This has greatly simplified the creation of Schedules in 8.9. Another caveat is that the Schedule Calendar creation process has been obsoleted. It is no more necessary to build a schedule calendar now, the calendar is auto-built by a view 'SCH_CLND_DTL_VW'.

New Feature: The most significant change in 8.9 related to schedules is the inclusion if a new definition - Schedule Group. In 8.9 and above, it is mandatory to create a schedule group before a schedule definition is created. One Schedule Group has to be created for each Setid. As all schedule definitions are keyed by Setid, a Schedule Group will act as a higher key to control the access to schedules to various users. The Schedule Group set up page is shown below:

This new definition has the following functional fallouts:
  • A new field has been added in the Workgroup definition page called Schedule Group and it has to be filled before selecting the appropriate Work Schedule.
  • Schedule Group has been added as a new field in the 'Assign Work Schedule' and 'Assign Work Schedule to Group' pages. In these pages also, a Schedule Group has to be defined first before entering the Schedule id value.
In short - the major changes in Time and Labor 8.9 for Schedules are:

  • A single step schedule creation process compared to a 4 step one.
  • A new definition called Schedule Group introduced.
  • Schedule Assignment at employee, group and Workgroup level requires an extra field now - Schedule Group.
  • New page in ESS and MSS to view the schedule assignment of the complete month
Major tables related to schedules:
Shift Definition - PS_SCH_SHFT_TBL
Sched. Calendar View - PS_SCH_CLND_DTL_VW
Schedule Assignment - PS_SCH_ASSIGN

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