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Elements Of Time Homepage
This is the elements of time homepage. The phrase "Elements of Time" helps to categorize what this page or section deals with. An element of time may be any number of different things and may be defined by you and your corporation. Basically, this section is a giant toolset or wrapper that can be customized to meet your needs. It could be a customer time clock, an appointment book, a scheduler of sorts, a dispatching solution, a payroll timesheet for employees, a mini blog, a general reminder system, packaging, job costing, etc. The cool thing is, you get to name it, you get to set it up, and then you get to use it over and over again. You can search it, display it, add to it, create new templates, invoice time, quote time, and generally work with almost anything that has a time element associated with it.

This page is divided into three main parts. The top contains links, buttons, and navigation. The middle section is the search criteria form and the bottom of the page is the time search results. The results section has four different views (report types) in which to view and work with your data. They are the calendar view, the time slot view (daily break-down), the grouped view, and the detailed view. You are allowed to switch back and forth between the different report types at will.

Going back to the top of the page (links and navigation)... There are a number of preset links that help you view daily and weekly time slot and detailed reports. Two really important links are the advanced time search and the add/edit master time templates (admin) links. If your corporation does customer billing (for time), there is also a handy link to the grouped customer time report. That report shows what has and has not yet been billed. Each sub section or page has it's own help file to help with the tasks at hand.

The middle section is the basic search form for elements of time. The search form may be hidden until requested. Use the "show/hide search criteria" button to interact with the form. The search form has a number of fields to control the date range (time periods), the report type view (calendar, time slot, grouped, and detailed), and other data filters. This search form helps you get "what you want to see" and choose "how you want to see it". There are lots of options to control the date range, the calendar block size (cell size - xs, sm, med, lg, xl), and the time slot rate and frequency (10 min, 20 min, 30 min, 1 hour, etc.). You may even set the starting and ending time ranges for the time slots to show.

There are also a couple special options that allow you to show/hide all daily stats and subs and show/hide the customer log notes and follow-up notes. If these options are used, the main report will show the filtered data (according to the search form) and will also show the unfiltered data or a mini grouping of the daily stats and subs and/or the user-maintained customer logs, where applicable. The different show/hide selections are a great way to make sure that nothing slips through the cracks. If used, they will pull back "all" daily data (regardless of other filters and settings).

The default display settings for this page may be altered by changing the corp-wide settings for time. This means that by using the corp-wide settings page, you can change the defaults for the date range, report type view, block size, start/stop values, block frequency, show/hide extra details, etc. This allows your corporation to customize the look and feel of the report to suite your needs. For example, say you like the time slot view the best (as compared to the calendar), you could change the corp-wide settings so that this page always shows that view first unless changed on the fly by you. Any of the default corp-wide settings may be overridden on the fly but they exist to help with the default display values for the page.

Once the data is displayed back to you (in any of the four report types or views), we recommend that you click around and experiment with the tools and options. Go ahead and click on things (icons & links) to see what they do. Nothing will be canceled or deleted from this page. If anything, the links and icons, will help to add new elements, filter data, or drill-down to the next level. The more you are willing to click and experiment, the more this tool will become easier to use and navigate. If you get lost, open the show/hide search criteria button (search form) and tell the page what you want to see by resubmitting the form. The page is setup to switch back and forth from piece to piece or from view to view very easily. It is very possible that you may be jumping from month to month, week to week, and from day to day. The more you embrace the free flow of data, the easier time you will have using this tool.

In general - Here are how things work with elements of time...

1. You need to setup a master time template. This allows you to create and name the element of time that you would like to use. The templates also control the settings that will be used for the main elements of time. Think of the templates as a cookie cutter for time objects. There is a link at the top of the page to help setup and create templates. You must have the admin permission in order to setup the templates and settings. You only need to setup the master template once and then you can use it over and over again. For example: Say I wanted to create an appointment book. I would create the master template and call it "Appointments". I would then assign things like use a start date, use a start time, use a customer assignment, use a color, etc. All of these settings become part of the master template definition. Basically, instructions of what to do and how to play. Remember… this is the cookie cutter not the actual cookie.

2. Once you have one or more master templates setup (create as many as you wish), you will be able to add the actual elements of time (real data, events, or values). We encourage playing around with the settings (on the templates) to see exactly what is needed. Once you start adding actual time elements, you are on your way. All of the other features and search options will start opening up once there is data to play with.

Here are the steps to add actual data to the system...

1. Click the button that says "create new element of time".
2. Choose the template that you want to use. For our example, that would be "Appointments".
3. Start adding the actual data and add the element of time to the system. This includes dates, times, assignments, notes, etc.
4. Once added to the system (main element) you will get a new time id number. You could then invoice, quote, add subs, add more notes, change things, search, tie the time to other things, etc.

For a full list of the tools, features, and functions of time, please see the help file for the add/edit master time template page or the help file for the add/edit subs or functions of time.
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