What's new in Quarter 2
Roadmap Releases and Maintenance
Whilst we have always been very reactive to our clients requests for new functionality, we have had to improve our processes around our maintenance and release cycles. This was to ensure more time was made available for effective testing of code changes of the fundamental codebase. This means all clients updates can be released in a timely and stable way.
Monthly Maintenance Releases
We are fully aware of the inconvenience that software bugs cause our clients and we react to resolve these as quickly as possible. We would, of course, like to never introduce these issues to live systems, but the very nature of these mean that bugs may only become apparent under certain circumstances and this can unfortunately be once an update has been released.
Previously, software issues were handled by our development team alongside new feature developments, which could impact both the speed at which fixes could be applied and of course our development schedules for new functionality, as well as how quickly the overall updates could be applied. We now have dedicated developers as part of the Support Team and all Maintenance releases are now managed by the Customer Services and Support team independently of our Roadmap Releases.
What does this mean for you? Maintenance Updates are now scheduled to be released on a monthly basis, meaning that in the case of Critical Issues, software patches can be applied as soon as a fix is available and any other issue resolutions will be applied within a maximum of 6 weeks (allowing for testing and release timescales).
Quarterly Roadmap Feature Releases
All new features will be developed according to our Roadmap and will be released on a quarterly basis (available the first week following the end of the quarter). The Roadmap has been planned and prioritised based on functionality enhancement that apply to the majority of our client base and the direction in which we would like the product to develop, individual client demand for specific functionality and general demand that is evident in the learning industry.
We have mapped out our Feature Roadmap up to Quarter 2, 2018, and allowed sufficient flexibility to add new feature requests to this plan, should they arise over the next few months. We also realise that circumstances change, so may alter development priority. Based on overall client demand the RoadMap is very much a working plan. We welcome your suggestion for new feature or enhancements, so please raise these with your Account Manager or speak to them for a copy of the current Roadmap.
Widgets and Reports
We have created Widget and Report functionality (as far as possible) so that new developments are not reliant on a Quarterly Roadmap Release and can be just uploaded to your system as soon they are available. Where these are particularly complex, the generic codebase or WebAPI functionality may require alteration and therefore will need to be scheduled as part of the Roadmap release. Please discuss any requirements with your Account Manager for further clarification.
As part of your quarterly Account meetings, please feel free to discuss any requirements, make any suggestions or ask to review the Roadmap and discuss update schedules.
New Features in the Quarter 2 Roadmap Release
The Learning Library functionality has been completely revamped to bring you an innovative way to search and view all available Activities.
Activities now show alphabetically in list or grid format with a thumbnail image. Each snapshot details the name of the Activity, the feedback score, short description and the Activity status for your user profile.
Clicking on the thumbnail takes you straight to the Activity Details page where you can view more information and launch or book the Activity.
In addition to being able to free search for an Activity, you are now able to filter Activities by categories, Type, Status (e.g. completed, passed, attended etc) and for those with multi-lingual systems, by Language.
You can also Sort your results, alphabetically, by rating or the date the Activity was added.
We have modified the Manage Venues functionality to add a Venue Search facility and also added some further functionality around Locations and Venue Resources. These can all be accessed under the Administration tools under the Manage Classes.
Manage Venue Location
We have simplified the way Locations can be added in relation to Venues and created Manage Venue Location function to enable easier management. Locations can also now be added, edited, deleted or archived, allowing Venues to be organized by Country, Area, etc.
For convenience, new Venue Location can also be added via a quick link in Manage Venues.
We have added the ability to associate Resources with a Venue. These can be configured as either a Room or Equipment Type and will be available to select as part of Schedule Management. When creating a schedule, the Administrator can select a resource associated with that Venue and book it as part of the Workshop. When booked, the resource will no longer be available to other schedules for the same time period, allowing simple management of Room or Equipment at a Venue.
The On-the-Job Activity Type replaced the old Review Type in our V3 version of the system, which allowed Managers and Trainers to run activities on a delegate, such as an evaluation or to record the fact that some 1 to 1 training had occurred.
We have enhanced this with On-the-Job Activities. These not only continue to provide the ability to upload SCORM content for the Manager or Trainer to complete against a Team Member’s Training Record, or just provide a means of manually updating a 1 to 1 mentoring or training activity that has taken place, but also allow the g delegate to upload documents, images or videos as evidence against the Task for the Trainer to review.
On-The-Job Activity Management
This new feature makes accessing a Team Member’s On-the-Job training quick and easy. Simply Search for users from the Team Management via the Team Menu. The results now show an additional icon to access any On-the-Job Activities for that individual.
Click on the icon to access a full list of On-the-Job Activities that have been assigned to that individual, allowing you to launch and update their record. (Please let us know if you would like this functionality enabled).
You can now create a direct link in another LMS to launch our Learning Journeys. We can create a Magic Bean SCORM package that acts like any 3rd Party SCORM course and can be loaded on any SCORM compatible LMS. This will launch a Journey on glo™, recording users progress and reporting back progress and completion to the launching LMS database. Ask your Account Manager for more information.
Following the Q1 Release of the new Activity Details functionality, we have made further improvements following Client Feedback, such as quick access to Joining Instructions, improved configuration for showing / hiding features, etc. Ask your Account Manager for more information.
New Widgets and CMS items in Q2
As part of our development roadmap and in response to client requests, we are adding new Widget and Content Management (CMS) Item functionality on an ongoing basis. Widgets provide snapshot information, or quick functions that can be added to Portal or Dashboard pages via Content Management, to make regular information and tasks quickly accessible. CMS items allow new layout or functionality to be added to portal content
Schedule Availability Widget:
Add this Widget to your home page to allow the administrator to easily see any Workshop/Webinar Activities that require a new schedule to be created based on there not being a schedule that has the required capacity.
The relevant Workshop/Webinar Activity will be shown with the fullest at the top with the ability to view the schedules for that Activity or to add a new schedule. There will be filters to restrict the list by Activity type or category or by Activities that have a future schedule or not.
Staff List Widget
The Staff List Widget provides a full list of staff members based on the Manager’s access level, allowing quick access to manage profile changes or mark leavers
Recent Schedules Widget
Recent Schedules provides a list of recently completed schedules to allow quick marking of Attendance to Workshops. Configuration options allow you to decide the date range within which you can list previous or upcoming Schedules
Change Request Approval Widget
The Change Request Widget provides quick access to a list of Profile Change Requests that have been sent to the Administrator for Approval (works in conjunction with Change Request Approval functionality when enabled). The list also provides a one click quick function to Approve or Reject the request.
New User Approval Widget
The New User Widget provides quick access to a list of New User requests or Registrations that have been sent to the Administrator for Approval (works in conjunction with Registration Approval functionality when enabled). This function also provides the ability to quickly review any existing user records with similar names to prevent duplicate account generation and a one click quick function Approve or Reject the request.
News Slider Widget
We have added a News Slider Widget to present any news items that have been added via the CMS (works in conjunction with the New CMS Template and Item)
News CMS Template and Item
This new CMS Template and Item allows you to create a chronological News feature page on your Portal. News Items automatically populate the News Slider, which can be added to your Home Pages. Ask your Account Manager for more information.
Journey Picker Widget
The Journey Picker Widget provide the ability to choose and launch Journeys that are assigned to a user. This can be added to a Home Page to provide quick access to available Journeys.
New Context Sensitive Help files have been updated and can be made available by request. These are accessed on each page via the ? icon and provide User or Administrator Help in simple Text format. All Help Files have been created using Generic terminology and will require adapting where Terminology has been customised.
Help files can be edited using the Manage Portal Content functionality to tailor to specific requirements. Contact your Account Manager for more information.
Resolving Issues with SCORM ‘Complete’ Statuses
For a long time, we have been plagued with an ambiguity in the SCORM standard for updating the status of an Activity that has previously been Completed. Some would say that it is the responsibility of the Activity to dictate if a ‘Completed’ status should be over-written by an ‘InComplete’ status, if a user decides to launch an Activity for a further time, whereas other would claim it is the responsibility of the LMS to prevent this. In some cases, this is defaulted in the 3rd party Authoring tool, such as with Articulate Storyline.
We think you should have a choice, so we have added some configuration controls within the Activity Management functionality to allow you to decide what you want to do. You can now set an Activity to ‘Overwrite a Complete Status’, ‘Run the Activity in Review mode and maintain a Complete Status’, Prompt the User to Choose what they want to do’ or ‘Lock the Activity when Complete.
For more information, ask your Account Manager
Speed, Usability and Performance Optimisation
As we develop new functionality and resolve issues, we are constantly looking at ways to improve the speed of the system and optimise performance. This means that we not only try to find better ways to optimise our code to make glo™ faster and more efficient, but also address any usability and styling issues to reduce the time and ease to complete tasks. This includes adding more friendly system messages when things don’t go quite as we expected.
This development is ongoing, so if you think we can improve those regular tasks you think could be easier, then please let us have your suggestions, by raising these with your Account Manager or our Support team.
In the Q2 release, we have been optimising data calls and maximizing the use of caching to improve speed to load pages and run reports, as well as a improving a number of styling and usability issues.
Enhancements to Learning Journeys
We have improved the Map style journey navigation. The map now starts zoomed out to show whole map without any gaps and will zoom in when a pin is clicked.
Pins that navigate to other chapters, pages or journeys, now show different icons for the status of the chapter, page, or journey, indicating whether they are Completed, Not Started, In Progress etc
A new Navigation Item has been added to Guide Style Journeys. Back and Next buttons has now been added, which will take you back to the previous page or forward to the next page in the journey (by default) or you can navigate to any page in the journey via the configuration controls. If the Next or Previous page is Locked ort unavailable the button is automatically disabled.
Adding new Activities to a Journey has been simplified with the addition of a function to Filter Activities by Type.
The LMS will now audit changes made via Hierarchy version of Manage Organisation. The Manage Organisation Audit Report shows what has been Added, Edited, Deleted or Moved through the Manage Organisation Interface.
A new Standard Report has been added. ‘Personal Development Plan’ shows how many people have achieved each status for their Personal Development.
If you require any further support then you can submit a support ticket by selecting help then online support from the top menu of your glo™ learning platform.