The key feature in version 2.5.0 is the new interface to the  Harland Simon Discovery RFID equipment tracking system. There is already a blog article about that (see http://www.e-quip.uk.net/2012/09/rfid-equipment-tracking-part-1/ and http://www.e-quip.uk.net/2012/10/rfid-equipment-tracking-part-2/ for details), so in this article I’ll concentrate on the other new features.

Aside from RFID processing this is a fairly minor release,  implementing some changes that our users have requested.

Equipment Mandatory Fields

Just as you can hide any equipment field from the equipment property page, or make fields read-only, you can now use the same mechanism to make fields mandatory. A new column has been added to the Field Restrictions tab of the Role Manager.

In previous versions there was a small list of equipment fields which you could make mandatory on the Asset tab of the Role Manager. Although this is still there it is redundant and will probably be withdrawn in a future version.

Equipment Changes

A new field has been added to allow you to record the actual replacement date of a device. The original Replacement Date field has been renamed to  Replacement Date (Planned).

A new Role option has been added which forces the model description to be displayed in the Equipment Type field of the general tab of the equipment property page. This option is useful when there are several variations of a model, with the variant being held in the model description. For example, there may be several versions of the model “VSM 300” with one variation having a model description of “NIBP” and another with a model description of “NIBP & SPO2”. On the asset property page for both devices the model field would show “VSM 300” while for each variant the text “NIBP” or “NIBP & SPO2” would be displayed in the Equipment Type field.

On the library tab, as well as displaying the location of the most recent loan, the person that the loan was for is also displayed.

PDF Designer Improvements

You can now optionally include the date and/or time that the report was generated in both the header & footer.

Personnel Changes

Two new fields, Whole-Time Equivalent and Annual Leave have been added to the staff tab of the personnel property page

Loan Changes

A new field, Indemnity Expires, has been added to the supplier tab of the loan property page.

With the exception of the equipment number, It is now possible to edit all fields of a closed loan.

Maintenance Event Improvements

A new reference data type, Maintenance Event Type has been added. This type support type classes. Currently the only maintenance event type class which supports built-in processing is “Battery Change”. When an event having a type with this class is completed the equipment battery maintenance dates are updated.

Spare Part Improvements

You can now display pictures for spare parts.

New Reports

Four new reports have been added to the Project screen. If you use a project to group together a number of PPM jobs, then you can now send memos to equipment users asking them to make the devices available, reminder memos and also lists of the  devices which you a) require, b) found and c)  couldn’t find or were not made available.

Order Screen Changes

Colour coding has now been added to the order summary screen:

Red: Delivery is one month or more overdue

Amber: Delivery is one week or more overdue

Green: The order has been fully delivered

Delivery Screen Changes

A new field, Delivery Note No has been added to the general tab of the delivery property page.

Summary

Version 2.5.0 is a major release as far as the RFID interface is concerned, but even for users without RFID this release continues the process of  constant enhancements to meet user requirements.