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Making the Life Cycle interactive

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Making the Life Cycle interactive

After all the Life Cycle pages have been created in Microsoft Visio and uploaded to PPO and the Life Cycle start up page has been set (for more information, see the following knowledge base article) the administrator can proceed in linking the different pages to each other and adding additional content and links in order to guide the user through the project methodology.

In order to edit the Life Cycle, the administrator will have to have access to the Edit Lifecycle function from their user group access settings. For more information on user groups, see the following knowledge base article.

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If the administrator has access to edit the Life Cycle, the Edit icon will appear on the Lifecycle >> View page.

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To make changes to the Life Cycle, click on the Edit icon. The Lifecycle >> Edit page will appear, with an icon to go back to the View page.

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When the administrator now clicks on an icon on the Life Cycle page, a Process Step box will open on the right hand side of the page.

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The process step box

The process step box allows for the following to be captured per icon / step:

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  • Title. Every step in the project methodology can have a title.
  • Description. Every step in the project methodology can be explained in detail. This will give the users an idea of what is expected of them at this step in the process.
  • Page. Users can be taken to a new Life Cycle page when clicking on an icon. This allows the user to click on the Pre-Initiating icon, for example, and be taken directly to a new Life Cycle page, showing the processes to be followed in the Pre-Initiating phase. This functionality will be explored in the next section in this article. If the user must stay on the current page in order to view the title, description and additional links, this field will simply display Current page.
  • Clickable. This field allows the administrator to identify whether users should be allowed to click on the icon to view the details underneath or not. If a link to another page or any additional details such as title, description and additional links are stored on the icon and should be seen by the user, this field must show Yes.
  • Links. This section provides users with links to documents, pages in PPO, reports, dashboards, websites and e-mail addresses, as explained in the following sections.

To edit the above items in the process step box, click on the green pencil in the top right hand corner of the box.

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The process step box is used to provide additional information or to link to other Life Cycle pages.

To add a link in the Links box, click on the Green plus. A new line will open underneath the Links bar every time the green plus is clicked.

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When the administrator clicks on the green pencil in the added line, the Add Link window will open. This window will be used for all links to documents, pages in PPO, reports and dashboards, websites and e-mail addresses.

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Linking to other Life Cycle pages

PPO allows administrators to link one Life Cycle page to another. This allows the administrator to show the overall project process on the start up page, then link to each phase individually as a separate Life Cycle page.

For example, the Pre-Initiating icon on the start up page can be linked to a separate Pre-Initiating process.

Click on the Pre-Initiating icon on the start up page:

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The Pre-Initiating process opens on a separate Life Cycle page:

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To set this up ensure you are on the Lifecycle >> Edit page, then click on the icon you want to add the link to. In the Process Step, change the Page to the destination page and change the Clickable field to Yes.

In this instance the Title and Description do not have to be completed, as the process step box will not appear when the user clicks on the icon, they will be taken directly to the new page.

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Linking to documents

Linking to documents is a useful way to provide users with required templates. When a document has been linked to an icon, the process step box will appear when the user clicks on the icon, providing the user with a link to the document in the Links section.

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When the user clicks on this link, the Document >> View page, for the selected document, will open.

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To set this up, open a second window of PPO. The one window should remain on the Lifecycle >> Edit page and the other window must show the Document >> View page of the document you want to link to.

From the Document >> View page, go to the URL and select and copy the URL from after the instance name (it will start with the word request, but excluding the back-slash). This is referred to as the relevant path. For more information on the relevant path and it's importance, see the related section later in this article.

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Then go back to the window where the Lifecycle >> Edit page is open. Click on the icon you want to link to the document, then click on the Edit Process Step icon (pencil) and complete the title, description, page and clickable fields.

Note that to provide users with links to documents, the page should stay on the current page. If the link is directing users to a new page, the process step box will not open, so users will not be allowed to access the document links.

Once the process step box has been completed, click on the green plus on the Links bar to add a new link. When the new line is added, click on the pencil. Paste the copied URL selection into the Link field and provide an appropriate description in the Description field in the Add Link window. Then click on the green cross to submit.

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The provided description will appear under the Links heading and will serve as a link to the document.

Linking to pages in PPO

Links can also be created to list pages, view pages and add and edit pages in PPO. This provides useful links to users who are required to perform some action on PPO.

The link will again appear under the Links section.

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To set this up, open a second window of PPO. The one window should remain on the Lifecycle >> Edit page and the other window must show the page in PPO you want to link to.

From the selected page, go to the URL and select and copy the URL from after the instance name (it will start with the word request, but excluding the back-slash).

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Then go back to the window where the Lifecycle >> Edit page is open. Click on the icon you want to link to the document, then click on the Edit Process Step icon (pencil) and complete the title, description, page and clickable fields.

Note that to provide users with links to PPO pages outside of the Life Cycle, the page should stay on the current page. If the link is directing users to a new page, the process step box will not open, so users will not be allowed to access the links.

Once the process step box has been completed, click on the green plus on the Links bar to add a new link. When the new line is added, click on the pencil. Paste the copied URL selection into the Link field and provide an appropriate description in the Description field in the Add Link window. Then click on the green cross to submit.

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The provided description will appear under the Links heading and will serve as a link to the PPO page.

If you want to link to specific list pages within PPO, access the following FAQ, which will guide you through the steps to follow.

Linking to reports and dashboards

Two options are available when linking to reports and dashboards: The link can open the report or dashboard parameters page, allowing the user to select their own parameters before viewing the report or the link can open the report or dashboard directly, not allowing the user to specify any parameters.

The same basic steps will be used to set up the report and dashboard links as were used when linking documents and PPO pages. Open a second window of PPO on the page where the link will point to. If the users must be taken to a report parameters page, then the second window has to be open on the report parameters page for the applicable report or dashboard. Copy the URL from after the instance name.

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If the link should open directly in a report or dashboard, open the report or dashboard in the second window and copy the URL from after the instance name.

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Paste the copied URL into the Add Link window.

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The provided description will appear under the Links heading and will serve as a link to the report or dashboard.

Linking to web sites

Administrators can create links to useful web sites as part of the life cycle process. To do this, click on the add link icon to open the Add Link window.

Enter the complete website address in the Link field and a description of the website in the description field.

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The provided description will appear under the Links heading and will serve as a link to the web site.

Linking to e-mails

Links can also be created to important e-mail addresses such as the project office e-mail address. To do this, click on the add link icon to open the Add Link window.

Enter the complete e-mail address, preceded by the word mailto: in the Link field and a description of the e-mail in the description field.

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The provided description will appear under the Links heading and will serve as a link to the e-mail address.

Importance of the relevant path

When linking to any page, report, dashboard or document in PPO, it is important to always use the relevant path and not the full URL.

The relevant path is everything in the URL from after the instance name (thus, everything after: http://www.ppolive.com/instancename/). This portion of the URL will typically start with the word request.

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The importance of the relative path is that, if the Life Cycle should ever be moved to a new instance name (for example, when a client chooses to re-brand) the Life Cycle will only work on the new instance name if all the links were implemented using only the relevant path. If the complete URL was used, the Life Cycle will display an error on every link.

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Editing existing Life Cycles

Life Cycles occasionally require changes after it has been set up and running for a while. Changes can be made to Life Cycle without having to recreate every page from scratch. For more information on editing existing Life Cycles, see the following Knowledge Base Article

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