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Improvements and New Features for BlueWorx

Improvements and New Features for BlueWorx

We’ve just released Support Pack 6 for BlueWorx! This release is packed with a mix of new features, improvements and bug fixes. Zag strives to make BlueWorx work right for you and bring business value to the industries you serve. So many thanks to the following customers who, along with our partners and the wider Zag team, provided the inspiration for some of the improvements and innovations included in this release:

  • Department of Conservation, New Zealand
  • Fonterra, New Zealand
  • Hydro Tasmania, Australia
  • Orica, Singapore
  • Powerco, New Zealand

This page outlines only a selection of the updates, for details of all changes please see the SP6 release notes in the Release Details Forum [access restrictions apply].

What we didn’t do

With lots to do in this release and some major improvements not anticipated but delivered, there was some forecast items that we didn’t get to. This was signalled in some recent updates, the last of which are here 8 November 2019 – Pending SP6 Release Update.

Syncing

A large improvement delivered in this release as beta functionality, is the ability to sync in the background (for delta syncs) and to allow background syncs to occur periodically on order change or outbox content.  The changes in the release are ‘phase one’ in improving the options and performance of syncing, and we have introduced it as beta functionality under a new ‘Zag Labs’ concept. This is where we have new and emerging functionality that you can optionally use, but need to test to ensure that it works right for your organisation and people. It might, for example, be something you deploy to a pilot group of users to begin with.

Automatic Syncing

If activated, the regular checks of SAP Order Changes or Outbox contents, will trigger a background sync. This will only occur when you’re not in a detail screen (i.e. when you’re in a menu or list screen). Because it’s silent, when it triggers there’s nothing to see but a spinning sync Icon:

User Initiated Syncing – Move to Background

When you initiate a sync, pressing the sync button as before, you now have the option do either a sync (current standard), a full sync or do a download only sync – i.e. don’t send your outbox items:

And then, where it’s a delta sync, once started you can move it to the background and continue to work:

My Assets

Prior to this release we had a FL list screen and an Equipment list screen. That meant that anyone wanting to find something needed to readily understand which list to go to…. so we set about making it simpler. In this release we have combined the FL and List screens under one, know as My Assets.

Here’s the new screen when searching for assets containing ‘air’:

Searching for assets based on distance from you

We have also included the ability to search for items based on their distance from you. This means that, if you have maintained a lat/ long for a FL or Equipment, you’ll be able to better identify the asset without necessarily having to have the related map data.

Here’s the new screen with the Distance function enabled, searching for assets containing air that are within 2000m of my location:

If you’re on a mobile device, you also get the compass function, so you can see the direction to the asset, confirm its the right one and ‘walk it down’:

The Existing Functional Location and Equipment List Screens

The existing Functional Location and Equipment tiles and list screens are still there in the application, they are just hidden now. If you’ve made customer changes to those screens then you can unhide them as required, or (recommended) look to move that functionality into the My Assets List. Moving forwards we will not spend any more time on the FL and Equip list screens, but rather focus on making further improvements to this new My Assets screen, including things like FL and Equipment Type and Category multi filters.

Maps

This has been a major area of improvements in this release, both in terms of the screens and usability and the underlying sync logic and approach.

Display

We have completely updated the display settings for displaying Notification, Orders, Inspections, Functional Locations and Equipment. You can now select to turn on an off layers and filter the type of objects based on key fields:

The layer data selection has also been improved. It now shows that a selected layer, due to zoom level, is visible based on an orange/ green value:

In both cases the users selections are saved on exit on the map for next use.

Synchronization Improvements

We have done a lot of work on improving and optimizing the download and storage of map tiles and layers (when on mobile application and with feature enabled). Based on our testing the changes we have made will dramatically improve the sync time related to map data in two ways. Firstly on download of tiles and layer data for a general area and region and then on subsequent download for assets in those regions. The degree of sustained improvement will be greatest where the map tiles and layer data is reasonably static in nature.

Device Settings

We have improved the device settings layout. This is a feature that some customers and users may not be that aware of and is accessible from the footer right hand button:

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Note that the content changes between mobile application and desktop. For further details see: Settings

Change User Profile

Customers asked to be able to change the active profile/s from their assigned profiles. This new feature allows users to proactively change what work and assets they receive, without creating an admin overhead. For example workers going on and off reactive maintenance from regular preventative maintenance.

To enable this to be allowed there’s a new switch ‘Profile Activation’ in the BlueWorx User Admin settings. Once enabled users can activate and deactivate assigned profiles from the App Settings (footer right hand button on main menu):

At least one active profile must be maintained, and the user must then sync with SAP to apply. Any profile changes will result in the full sync.

Want your supervisors to be able to effect this change? We got that covered too! From the BlueWorx Crew component, if authorised, supervisors can maintain the active status of profiles of their crew:

Inspections

Inspection Notification

If you raise a notification related to an Inspection then this is indicated on, and accessible from, the Inspection Question List, and from the Question.

Duplicate Inspection

You can now copy and existing Inspection for the same technical object. At the request of a customer, this allows you to undertake multiple inspections against a single Equipment or Functional Location within a Work Order or Equipment or Functional Location sync period.

Question Rules

In the previous release we introduced Inspection Rule functionality. In this release we have improved on that functionality to allow action on negative and positive evaluation of rules – i.e. to show or hide questions based on a single rule.

Orders

Order Document Indicator and Assigned Personnel

A new paperclip document icon in the Orders List now shows that there are documents maintained for an Order:

If you select the Person icon when online, a call to SAP will display the assigned personnel for the Order Operations:

Order Operations

We have added a sort/ group by Work Centre to the Order Operations list:

Order Creation System Condition

You can now enter the Systems Condition when creating a field Work Order:

Order Objects List

The functional location description, in addition to its reference, is now displayed on the Order Objects list:

Order Documents – Notifications, Functional Location and Equipment

Now on the Order, you can see and access any documents from the associated Notification, Functional Locations and Equipment. This saves the user from having to access each of these in turn to find relevant documents:

Notification Documents

A document icon in the Notification List now shows that there are documents maintained for a Notification:

Materials

Search

We improved the functionality for searching for materials to default the Plant and Storage location values from the Users SAP Parameter ID values (WRK – Plant and LAG – Storage Location… where maintained):

Equipment Material Exchange

When you do an Equipment Material Exchange, there is now an admin setting to set what stock condition the returned material should be receipted into:

Requisition and Reservations Plant

There is a new configuration option that allows you to default the Plant for a Requisition and Reservation to either the Orders Planning or Maintenance Plant:

Crew

We have made some UI layout improvements for the Crew List Tab in the Crew List to improve the layout and button selection:

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BlueWorx User Maintenance Rest API’s

Based on customer requests to allow external maintenance of BlueWorx user data, we’ve created a series of Rest API’s using Neptune Planet 8 functionality. This means that you could create/ deactivate/ delete BlueWorx users from an external system, like SAP Identity Management, thereby reducing the BlueWorx admin effort.

User API’s in Neptune Cockpit:

For further details see: BlueWorx User API’s

Support Site Improvements

With the growth of functionality in BlueWorx we’ve taken the opportunity coinciding with this release to breakdown the content areas on [this] support site. That work has been done specifically to make it easier for you to find what you’re looking for. So if you can’t find something, or you think we could explain something better, then please let us know via a support ticket from this site: