When using Projects, one of the primary purposes of a Task Item is to enter and collect data. Some of this data will only be relevant while the Project is being completed. However, other data entered into a Task Item can be valuable to reference elsewhere—for example, when generating a report or applying filters based on Task Item responses. PensionPro utilizes Project Fields to allow a firm to determine which responses can be referenced outside of the Project in features such as Blast Email and Merge Documents.
Tier Availability: Business
Security Rights Required: Maintenance
- Managing Project Fields
- Tagging Task Items
- Viewing and Using Project Fields
- Frequently Asked Questions
As the name implies, Project Fields turn data entered as part of the Project Workflow into fields that may be referenced in various areas of PensionPro. These areas include the following:
- Plans and Projects: Project Fields can be quickly reviewed from views on the Plan and Project tabs, without needing to open the Workflow.
- Reporting: A dedicated report—Project Field Values—returns Project Field data as its primary function.
- Fetch: Project Fields can be added as columns to return the data in custom-built reports.
- Merge Documents: Project Field data can be quickly inserted into document templates.
- Blast Email: In certain cases, Project Fields can be used as columns and filters when selecting recipients. Additionally, Project Field data can be pulled into a Blast Email subject or body as a Merge Field.
- Power Tools: In certain cases, Project Fields can be used as columns and filters when selecting records.
For example, a Task Item used to record top-heavy percentage could be tagged with a Project Field. If the TPA wanted to send a Blast Email alerting clients that their plan was approaching the 60% top-heavy limit, they could first use the Top-Heavy Percentage Project Field to filter Plans with a percentage above, say, 50%. They could also use a Merge Field within the Blast Email body to include the Plan's current Top-Heavy Percentage in the email.
Managing Project Fields
Project Fields are managed within List Values, the Maintenance area that controls the customization of dropdown fields in PensionPro.
To manage Project Fields:
- Navigate to Maintenance > List Values. A new List Values tab opens.
- Expand the Core > Project view categories in the list on the left.
- Select the Project Field view.
The Project Fields grid displays all available Project Fields. New Project Fields can be created by selecting Add at the top-right of the grid. Existing Project Fields can be edited by hovering over the desired entry in the grid, then selecting Edit on the right-hand side. Each Project Field uses three pieces of information:
- The Name of the Project Field
- An optional Description
- Whether the Project Field is Active
Project Fields cannot be deleted, but may be made inactive if no longer relevant. Inactive Project Fields can be viewed by selecting More > Show Inactive at the top-right of the grid.
Tagging Task Items
Once a Project Field is created, it is used in a Project Template to "tag" a Task Item. After the Project is launched, the response for that Task Item will be saved to the Project Field. Responses are recorded across all launched Projects.
To add a Project Field to a Task Item:
- Navigate to Maintenance > Templates. The Project Templates tab opens.
- (Optional) If creating a new Project Template, select Add at the top-right of the grid. Use the Add Template window to save the new Template.
- Double-click on the appropriate Project Template to open its Summary view.
- Select the Workflow view from the list on the left. The Project's Task Groupings display in the grid.
- Double-click on the relevant Task Grouping to drill down to the Task level of the Template.
- Double-click on the relevant Task to drill down to the Task Item level of the Template.
- Hover over the desired Task Item, then select Edit on the right-hand side. The Edit Task Item window displays.
- Set Project Field to the name of the new Project Field.
- (Optional) Select Show On Project Summary and/or Show On Plan Summary to allow the Project Field response to be referenced quickly on the Project or Plan tab, respectively.
- Select Save.
The new Project Field will be used for all Projects launched from the updated Template going forward.
Project Fields can also be added to Project Templates that are imported from Excel workbooks. Use Column I of the worksheet to specify the Project Field for any Task Item row. Additionally, use Columns J and K to specify whether the Project Field will be shown on the Project or Plan tab; these must be entered as either TRUE or FALSE.
When importing the Project Template, the Project Template Import Tool will ask if missing Project Fields should be added automatically. If Yes, PensionPro will create a new Project Field if any name used on the Template does not match an existing Project Field. If No, PensionPro will return an error if a Project Field named on the Template does not match an existing Project Field. This can be an easy way to add new Project Fields, but note that PensionPro will create new Project Fields entries if there are any misspellings on the Template.
For more information on working with Project Templates, refer to the article Project Templates.
Viewing and Using Project Fields
Once a response has been entered for a Task Item tagged with a Project Field and subsequently saved, it is made available in various places throughout PensionPro.
The Plan and Project Tabs
Both the Plan tab and the Project tab have the Project Fields view, which populates with any Project Field responses saved to Task Items. The Project tab displays Fields relevant to the Project, whereas the Plan tab displays Fields across all of the Plan's Projects. Information in the Project Fields grid includes Field name, the saved value, and the Project's name and Period End date.
As the Plan tab shows Fields across multiple Projects, it contains one extra setting: Show most recent, which is found at the top-right of the grid. When this option is set to 1, PensionPro will only display the most recently-saved value for each Project Field. When set higher than 1, older values will also be included, up to the number specified by this option.
Other PensionPro Features
This article will not discuss the specific use of Project Fields in each relevant PensionPro feature; instead, refer to the article that applies to the feature in question. The following is meant to provide a more generalized understanding of the use of Project Fields.
Across most of PensionPro's features, a Project Field might be utilized in up to three ways:
- As a column, where each Project Field response represents a single record under that column
- As a filter, where records can be removed from a list of results based on the Project Field value
- As a Merge Field, where the Project Field's value can be pulled in based on situation
Where Project Fields are applicable, PensionPro will generally contain them within a category labeled Project Fields. In some places, this may be a sub-category of Project. Project Field names are prefixed with PF: to easily identify their origin.
Project Fields are not available if Project data is not relevant. For example, Project Field filters cannot be used on a Blast Email with the All Contacts mailing type, nor can Project Fields be used in a Merge Document Template with Plan as the data source.
Frequently Asked Questions
- My current template does not have Project Fields tagged to Task Items. Can I update my Template to bring over the Project Fields for launched Projects?
No. Updating the Template will only affect new Projects launched; it does not affect previously-launched Projects.
- Can I rename an older Project Field if it is no longer being used?
This is not recommended, as any responses already tied to these Project Fields will be retained and may cause confusion. Instead, it is better to make the older Project Field inactive, and use a new Project Field in its place.