The new visual reporting system added in SI 2017 will prove a valuable addition for business managers who seek to analyze trends across projects, vendors, products and their own team. Our Business Intelligence (BI) engine drives these capabilities and elevates SI 2017 to new heights. Out of the box this new reporting capability will begin to highlight key indicators within your business. For companies with a history of projects built in SI, the visual reporting adds a layer of analysis capabilities not previously available. For newer users, it may take several months of creating proposals and working on projects in SI before the full value begins to be clear.
Project Progresses are a key component to defining visual reports. Project Progresses are assigned to projects and help you and your team to understand the status of each project. Is a project in “Estimating” or has it been “Approved”? Or was the proposal “Rejected”? By default, SI ships with a simple list of five Project Progresses to assign to your projects. The default progresses are:
While these progresses are a good start at helping us understand the state of our projects, maybe some additional information will prove useful. Adding a handful of progresses to fill in a few gaps will begin to shed light on information previously difficult to determine. Let us make some modifications.
How to Add Project Progresses:
- Click Start → Setup → Control Panel.
- From the Control Panel, find the Project section and double-click Project Progresses.
- In the Project Progresses window, click New and type the name of anew progress:
- For this example, use a name like “Pending”. Notice this new progress is added to the bottom of the list.
- Now we should place this progress between “Estimating” and “Approved”. Press the “Move Up” button until this is accomplished.
- Continue adding Project Progresses until your list looks something like the example below.
Enhanced Project Progresses list:
You could also consider the Project Progresses that make sense for your business and to what level of granularity you would like to be able to see your projects’ statuses. Then add your own list.
Understanding the status of your project pipeline (both in terms of total projects and volume in dollars) can provide insight into the health of your business. The Dashboard interface, which gives you access to the visual reporting features, offers reports such as “Sales Volume (Pipeline) By Stage” or “Sales (Pipeline) By Stage”. Both reports use Project Progresses as the key grouping value. One report shows total dollars and the other shows total projects, by progress.
Here are a few examples:
Now, with our updated list of Project Progresses, we can run the same set of visual reports again, and get more detail about our project pipeline.
Here are the results:
To take advantage of the additional Project Progresses, you will need to clone some default visual reports and setup the filters to be the set of progresses.
Cloning Visual Reports in the SI Dashboards Interface:
- From the SI Home page, click Dashboards. Also, from the Project Explorer, click Dashboards.
- From the Dashboards interface, right-click on a report and select Clone. Modify the name of the report as necessary.
- Next, right-click on the cloned report name and select Edit.
- From the Edit Dashboard window, select Filters.
- In the Filters window, deselect “Statuses” and select “Progresses”.
- In the Progresses section, choose the Select All button.
- Click Save and Close.
These tips are simply an introduction to the SI Dashboards, visual reporting and the Business Intelligence engine. We encourage you to take a deep dive and explore the power of these new features.
Here are some helpful links with additional information: