Job Task Manager PRO

Introducing the Job Task Manager Pro add-on

Discover an enhanced way to manage tasks within your ServiceM8 system with Job Task Manager Pro.

This add–on is the second member of family that also includes Job Task Manager, and Job Template Task Editor.

This add-on helps you to maximise the use of one of ServiceM8’s most underrated features by enabling you to edit ‘active’ job tasks, change their due dates, and reassign them to different staff members right from the ServiceM8 Online Dashboard. You’ll be able to find all active job tasks across your entire ServiceM8 system, and even perform bulk-actions on multiple selected tasks at a time. You can also  export the list of tasks into a CSV, Excel, or PDF file should you want.

With this add-on, you can gain better control over how active job tasks are being managed across your entire ServiceM8 system .

Find it in the ServiceM8 add-on store ($8.99 /mo)

FAQ

For Job Task Manager Pro, we have implemented some form of user access control. This is because any valid staff member with access to the ServiceM8 system, irrespective of their Security Role, has the ability to login to the ServiceM8 Online Dashboard and view / launch add-ons from the Add-on menu. This is in contrast with the Job Task Manager add-on, where you can control whether a staff member can access the Dispatch Board or job cards via Security Role settings (and therefore access the add-on via a job card).

There are a couple of methods to grant access to the Job Task Manager Pro add-on

  1. Using a specific ServiceM8 Security Role
  2. Applying specific words to a staff job title

Method 1: ServiceM8 Security Role – Default Business Owner Role / Default Finance Role

If the staff has a Security Role of either 'Default Business Owner Role' or 'Default Finance Role', they will be able to successfully launch Job Task Manager Pro from the add-on menu.

Method 2: Job Title – Manager / Admin

We have also made it so if the staff member has the word 'Manager' or 'Admin' in their job title, they will also be able to launch Job Task Manager Pro from the add-on menu. We introduced this method because some businesses have managers and administrators who need to be able to access the add-on, but also not have the Security Role of Default Business Owner Role or Default Finance Role.

In parallel to developing the Job Task Manager Pro add-on, we also developed Job Task Manager. 

In a nutshell, Job Task Manager Pro allows you to work with all active tasks across your ServiceM8 system, but it cannot manage completed tasks. Whereas Job Task Manager allows you to manage completed tasks, but it will only work with tasks in one job card at a time. 

At a surface level, they both look and behave in very similar ways. In fact we originally intended this to be one single add-on. However, it became clear during development that there were two distinct motivations for task management. One group of testers had a focus on managing a job almost like a project, with multiple task dependencies and staff and an overall deadline to meet. The other group were admins trying to reign-in a lot of various unfinished or unassigned tasks spanning across multiple jobs in their systems, and were struggling to quickly locate the specific tasks they were looking for and ended up creating unnecessary duplicates. So, rather than make a single add-on trying to be both things to both groups, we split it up into Job Task Manager (single job card focus) and Job Task Manager Pro (system-wide focus).

Both have their advantages over the other.

Job Task Manager Pro can manage any active task across your entire ServiceM8 System. Job Task Manager can manage active and completed tasks in a single job card.

Job Task Manager Pro can give you a broad view of all task and task statuses, but has a big dependency on using your browser cache to work. Job Task Manager is fast and with a very small dependency on the browser cache, but will only give you a view of tasks related to a single job.

Job Task Manager Pro works in a dedicated 'full window' mode. Job Task Manager will launch from the job card as another floating window in the Dispatch board.

Depending on your needs, one add-on may suit you more than the other. Or, maybe you'll benefit from having both. 

One of the features of Job Task Manager Pro is the Task List Table search row, conveniently located directly below the table header row. Implementing this search row proved to be a challenging task, but we managed to integrate it successfully, albeit with a couple of minor quirks.

Firstly, you may occasionally notice the search row disappearing. However, this can easily be remedied by simply re-sorting any column in the table, which prompts the search row to reappear.

Secondly, you may find the process of typing text into the search fields to be less than smooth. We acknowledge this minor hitch and kindly ask for your patience as we continue to improve this feature.

Despite these minor hitches, we decided to include the search row due to its significant benefits. We believe its inclusion enhances user experience, outweighing any potential drawbacks.

One key limitation of Job Task Manager Pro, compared to Job Task Manager, is its inability to manage Completed tasks. This is primarily due to the API overhead it would encounter if tasked with searching for all Completed tasks within a system. Given that there could potentially be several thousand tasks marked 'Completed', the API threshold limits would be exceeded, rendering the add-on inoperable.

In contrast, Job Task Manager is designed to only search for tasks associated with the specific job card it was launched from. Therefore, it only needs to process a small subset of task data. This design makes it feasible for Job Task Manager to handle both Active and Completed tasks, as it is unlikely for a single job to contain several thousand tasks.

To summarize, Job Task Manager Pro is exclusively designed to work with Active tasks. However, it's essential to note that Job Task Manager Pro has its unique advantages, including the capacity to perform bulk actions, a feature not present in Job Task Manager.

These add-ons use ServiceM8 API's to fetch the tasks and related information to present them into a Task List Table for you to then manage and edit. 

If you are using the Job Task Manager Pro add-on, you may see a significant delay of all the tasks populating the Task List Table for the first time. This also happens if you have recently cleared the cache.

These delays are caused by a number of reasons, but mostly by the number of staff in your system, and the quantity of 'Active' tasks that need to be filtered. In a nutshell, the more you have of either, the longer it will take to initially populate the Task List Table. 

If this does happen, our advice is to be patient and wait a minute (literally 60 seconds) or try again.

This affects the Job Task Manager Pro add-on more than the other add-ons (Job Task Manager or Job Template Task Editor).

This happens when the add-on is trying to pull through too much data too quickly. The add-on is only allowed to make certain amount of API calls - either 180 calls per minute or 20,000 calls per day. If the add-on hits these limits, the data transfer is temporarily paused and you will get this error message. For a ServiceM8 system with a lot of tasks and staff, changing the Task Filter too often and too quickly may  trigger this limit and error message.

These threshold limits are outside our direct control. But, to help avoid this condition, we've done a couple of things:

  1. We've enabled a local cache which stores already fetched data into your browser. This significantly increases the performance of the add-on and reduces the amount of API calls it needs to make over the internet.
  2. We've built in a certain amount of API 'throttling'  to curb the number of API calls to 3 per second (180 per minute). This will not eliminate the issue, but it does help to reduce the chances of hitting the API threshold.

If possible, we recommend you avoid clearing your cache too often, as caching the data into your browser is what makes this add-on feasible.

If the add-on was to fetch information from your ServiceM8 system each and every time you changed the Task Filter, the system would literally grind to a halt because of the API threshold limitations.

To avoid that from happening, the add-on is enabled to 'cache' data into your browser, called 'localStorage'. This technique significantly speeds up the performance of the access to your data, because it is no longer having to fetch it over the network via the API, and fetches it from your PC's browser cache instead.

The following information is cached –

  1. Staff member information
  2. Company information
  3. Job information
  4. Task information

So, to answer the question 'What does the Clear Cache button do?', it effectively wipes all the information out of the cache and starts again from scratch. Clearing the cache will significantly slow down the performance of the add-on until such a time it has had a chance to re-cache the information. Because of the number of jobs and records the Job Task Manager Pro has to query across your entire ServiceM8 system, it relies heavily on using this cache to provide acceptable performance. Because of this, we would not normally recommend you clear the cache too often.

But why would you want to clear the cache to start with? 

Some businesses have IT security policies that may require users to ensure cached information is removed from the browser at the end of a session. Others simply worry about having that information stored in their browser given the risks we see today in the cybersecurity space. Or, perhaps they needed to access the ServiceM8 Online Dashboard from computer that they wouldn't normally use, so making sure they clear the cache after they've finished is a sensible idea. There are many reasons why you may want to clear the cache.

As a rule of thumb, if the computer you are using is your normal work computer, and it is being protected against malware and viruses, then it's usually ok to leave the cache alone. If you are uncertain, then play it safe and clear the cache once you've finished accessing ServiceM8 and the add-on for the day. 

The Clear Cache button only removes data that was fetched and stored by the Job Task Manager Pro add-on. It will not remove any other data you might already have in your cache used by other programs and applications. Only the following cache information is removed –

  1. Staff member information
  2. Company information
  3. Job information
  4. Task information

If you need to flush your entire web browser cache of data not related to Job Task Manager Pro, use your browser's normal options to do so. 

Each of our add-ons are currently designed as ServiceM8 Serverless add-ons, which means they are hosted directly by ServiceM8.

There are many advantages to providing you access to our add-ons this way, and we prefer this approach.

However one limitation is that the add-on will need to be  re-authenticated every 15 minutes.

While this might feel disruptive at first, extensive user experience testing has indicated it does not really detract from the overall goal of providing the functionality the add-on intends to provide.

Depending on the future success of this and our other add-ons, we may look at moving them to our own managed server environment.

In the meantime, you are prompted twice before reauthentication is required - at the 12 minute mark urging you to save any current edits; and again at the 15 minute mark where reauthentication must take place in order to continue using the add-on.

Unfortunately, the answer is no, it is currently not possible to open a job card from the add-on.

This applies to all add-ons developed by all 3rd parties, not just Job Task Manager Pro. If managing the job tasks for a specific job is important to you, then check out our other add-on, Job Task Manager.

The add-ons have been tested across a range of platforms, including the ServiceM8 Online Dashboard app, Chrome, Edge, and Safari browsers.

One of the export options available is the ability to print the Task List Table. Unfortunately, this option does not appear to work with the ServiceM8 Online Dashboard app.

If the ability to print out a hardcopy is important to you, then we recommend you open the ServiceM8 Online Dashboard from a browser instead.

As of this time, we are still in the development and testing stages of the Job Template Task Editor add-on. 

We believe that this third member of the Job Task Manager family of add-ons will nicely round out the suite of tools you will need to effectively manage your ServiceM8 Job Tasks.

 

 

While we have taken every care and effort to create this add-on, as with any technology there comes a risk of data loss. By subscribing to and using any of our add-ons, you are agreeing to our Terms and Conditions (T&C), and End User License Agreement (EULA), together with our Privacy Policy. These can be viewed here

Manage one Job or All Jobs.Your Choice.

Job Task Manager

Job Task Manager is designed for managing all tasks in a single job card. Launched directly from the job card, it operates as a floating window within the Dispatch Board. 

Job Task Manager has three filters (Active tasks, Completed tasks, and All tasks) and allows you to update, reassign, reactivate, or change the due dates of tasks. 

This add-on is ideal for managing simple project jobs with distinct stages.

JTMP logo

Job Task Manager Pro

Job Task Manager Pro is accessed from the Online Dashboard ‘add-on’ menu and offers a full-window experience.

Job Task Manager Pro’s main advantage is the ability to manage all active tasks in the system, regardless of the job card they’re attached to. You can update, reassign, change due dates, and even perform bulk actions across multiple tasks all in one go. 

Note: add-on manages ‘active’ tasks only.

JTTE logo

Job Template Task Editor (in development)

Job Template Task Editor is an advanced add-on designed to help you manage and edit tasks inside Job Templates.

With this add-on, you can modify tasks inside Job Templates, including their names and assigned staff members, or remove tasks entirely.

Note: there are some limitations due to the lack an available ServiceM8 API to manage Job Template objects.