July 26, 2010

Humanity Updates: Improved Notifications, Employee Schedule List View, and Smart Version Control


We just finished rolling out a new version of the Humanity employee scheduler which includes a number of highly requested features:

Improved Notifications

Not long ago we released a new notifications system which included the ability to easily toggle different settings for different notification instances. Due to limitation’s in the system we had very simple messages that were sent out without notification specific information included. For example: Action Links, Shift Details, etc.

For this reason, in order to maintain some of the functionality, we didn’t switch everything over. This left a fragmented system where not all notifications could be controlled by users. That has changed!

Starting now, all communications run through the same notifications system which means that all settings can easily be set to your personal liking.

( We also re-added the individual shift information back into notifications that had been lost when we made the initial transition. eg: Upcoming Shift Reminders, etc.)

You’ll also notice immediately tons of new options in your notifications settings:

Smart version checking

Humanity is a 110% web-based employee scheduling application which means that we can roll-out updates very quickly, and there are never any needs to download any software or anything at all! To deliver performance and a responsive experience we’ve chosen to use a web-technology called AJAX, that doesn’t require the web browser page to be reloaded while the application is navigated. This provides faster performance and increased usability; there is however one downside: When updates are made to core files, your web browser is still using the old versions – until your browser is either closed, or a manual refresh is done.

In order to maintain the ability to roll-out updates quickly, and keep communication open with you, we have implemented a smart version check that will auto-magically notify you with a small notice when a new version has been implemented since you last refreshed. This will allow you to finish what you are doing, and then grab the latest and greatest version by simply clicking on the link. It looks like this:

Employee List View

To streamline development and communication between both Schedulers and Employees we’ve made available the same list view for employees and have removed the ‘Schedule’ tab that used to be available on the top right. The biggest advantage here for employees is that they can now easily view in list mode shifts as far into the future as they have been scheduled (before we used to limit to 1 month)

Thanks for your patience while we rolled out these features and to everyone who was actively involved in the development process!