The way team member capacities and time off is represented in Parallax is changing. Read below to see how and prepare your organization for the new workflow.
Organization Schedule will be set in the customization settings
The current “hours per week” setting in Configuration will be spread evenly between Monday – Friday for the new organization schedule. This will happen for all FTE, Contractor, and Placeholder employees in the organization.
This means a standard 40-hour work week setting will be converted into 8 hours per day.
Holidays will move to a dedicated Time Off settings page
Holidays are becoming a standalone module that can be managed via the dedicated Time Off page in your Settings menu. This allows for a simple interface for you to control your organization’s holiday calendar and block off dates in shaper views so team members don’t get allocated work when the office is closed.
This new Time Off settings page will be where you will go to add, remove and edit any holidays moving forward.
Exclude Employees from the Holiday Calendar
By default, all team members will include holidays in their capacity calculation. This includes FTEs, Contractors, and Placeholder records. If you would like to prevent the holiday calendar from blocking off availability for a specific team member (for example, any part-time employees), this setting can be accessed on the individual team member’s Employee Settings page.
Converting Internal Projects to Time Off Plans
Internal projects that are currently being used to plan and shape for time off will need to be migrated over to the new time off structure. To generate these allocations Parallax will build past PTO by first leveraging the actual hours recorded to the internal project (if they exist), and will back on any plans if actuals are not available do not. From the new Time Ooff settings page you will be able to select the internal project you would like to convert to time off
Warning: The internal project converted will be archived and excluded from internal projects in Parallax. This action can not be undone.
Managing time off in Parallax
Going forward, time off will be managed from the new time off-row that now exists in the shaper for individual projects, or in the assignments view using Edit mode. Parallax will assume any planned PTO will be actualized so the need to sync recorded PTO time from timesheets is no longer relevant.
Introducing Target Utilization
The current billable capacity field will populate the new target utilization. We have split this field out to support planning a higher capacity each week in order to achieve the target utilization over time. This best practice accounts for the inevitable variance in employee time week over week in order to average the target utilization for reporting periods.
Alerts are driven off a variable total capacity and billable capacity for shapers
To calculate capacity we start by looking at the employee base from employee settings. We then account for any holidays and paid time off by subtracting that from the base amount to get the total capacity. Example: 40h base - 8h holiday and 8h PTO = 24h total capacity. To calculate billable capacity, we look at the billable capacity percentage from employee settings and take that percentage of the total capacity.
When you add a plan in shaper that is greater than an employee's total capacity you will see the shaper cell turn red. When you see a red bar alert appear over a cell, the employee has been planned over their billable capacity. These are the same alerts that Parallax users are familiar with, we just now use the employee base and subtract holidays/time off to get the capacity.
Updates to the People Page
People Page Alerts
The people page is becoming more user-friendly by allowing different thresholds to be set on the alerts. Simply click the pencil icon to type and adjust threshold numbers to alert on. We have also added a new “Time Entry Needed” alert to let managers know when members of the team need to submit their hours. The “Low allocation” and “Low utilization” alerts will be based on billable utilization while the “No work” and “Possible burnout” alerts will use the total utilization.
People Page Table
New utilization columns have been added to the table so managers can quickly see their team's utilization performance and forecast over time to compare it against utilization targets. Parallax allows users to select which two variables are compared in the new "Variance" column. This option can be selected via the hide/show filter. Variance options include:
- Planned Billable Utilization vs. Actual Billable Utilization
- Planned Total Utilization vs. Actual Total Utilization
- Target Utilization vs. Planned Billable Utilization
The hide/show filter allows users to customize the people page table. By default, Billable Utilization columns are shown while Total Utilization columns are hidden. Feel free to turn on/off columns to create a table view that fits best for your team!