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Qualified

Custom Unique Identifiers for Activities & Projects - Setup by Admin for Consistent Naming Conventions

Matt Chabot 5 months ago in System Administration updated 4 months ago 3

Almost every firm utilizes some sort of unique identifier to associate with project or piece of collateral. Currently, Aprimo user’s only option is to create a custom EA with no restrictions on a required format for the input value other than character length. This makes it extremely hard to have consistency with the unique identifier structure because the system doesn’t require that the structure is upheld. Additionally, because the users can input anything they want, it causes duplication of historical identifiers which causes lots of downstream issues when we try to apply it to other systems.

Having the functionality to create firm specific custom unique identifiers will create a huge value add for Aprimo as the system of record.  It will strengthen customer's dependence on the system to initiate projects and act as a central hub for connections to other systems.  

Proposal:

A system admin can configure a specific EA to generate a unique identifier for each new project through an EA configuration setting. You can configure the settings so that when a new project is created, it will generate a unique identifier for the new project based on the naming properties you configured.

Configure a Unique Identifier:

On the EA settings page, click make a unique identifier.

  • On the EA details page, in the Name field, specify a name for the unique identifier you want to create. For example, if the unique identifier is going to be used by the Finance Department for high risk projects , you could enter ** Finance Dept (High Risk) **.
  • In the Description field, type a description of the u. For example, Use this unique identifier to create high-risk projects for Finance.
  • In the Project ID section, you need to enter information that will be used to create a unique Project ID for your projects that are created through the unique identifier template:
  • In the Prefix field, you can enter characters that will be at the start of each generated Project ID. For example, you may want the Project ID for projects created through the Finance Department EPT to begin with FIN_. This field is optional.
  • In the Starting Number field, enter a number that will serve as a starting point for Project IDs that are going to be generated for this unique identifier. For example, enter 10001 if you want the first Project ID to be 10001. This field is required.
  • In the Postfix field, you can enter characters that can be used to append your Project IDs that are generated by this unique identifier. For example, if the unique identifier is used to create only high-risk projects for the Finance department, you could enter _HR. This field is optional.
  • In the Minimum Digit Padding field, enter a number of digits that you want to have for newly generated Project IDs. For example, if you enter 3 and have a Starting Number of 1, then the first three Project IDs that will be generated are 001, 002, and 003. If you enter 5 with a Starting Number of 1, the first three Project IDs that will be generated are 00001, 00002, and 00003.

For example, with the sample settings used in the procedure above, the Project IDs generated through the Finance Dept (High Risk) unique identifier will be:

  • FIN_10001_HR
  • FIN_10002_HR
  • FIN_10003_HR
  • Etc.

Best Practices

For larger organizations, it is a good idea for the Project admins or PMO to agree upon a Project ID naming convention and a numeric range to ensure uniqueness. Additionally, it is also a good idea to document the unique identifier settings for reference. For example:

Other best practices to consider:

It is important that you come up with a naming convention on how you want to segment your Project IDs before starting the configuration of your unique identifiers to ensure uniqueness across different unique identifiers.

A Project ID can be edited if it is added to a Project Detail page. You can use this approach to perform ad-hoc edits of the Project ID value if needed. As always, ensure that there is a standardized naming convention in place to ensure uniqueness of your Project IDs if you need to make ad-hoc changes.

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/projectonline/create-unique-project-ids-for-my-projects-in-project-online

Hi Eric - I would say that what I'm trying to accomplish is more than just enforcing formatting. While enforcement is a requirement, the 'Starting Number' referenced above is a system generated one that counts up from whatever number the Admin sets it to. Additionally, the 'Prefix' and 'Postfix' could be setup to allow for custom string selections like the ones mentioned above or you could add in a system generated <<Date (MMYY)>> field as an option as well.

The idea you referenced with your link is very similar and I think trying to accomplish the same thing. I don't mind combining the two ideas if you think that is beneficial. Let me know if you have any further questions or if you would like to schedule a call to discuss.

Qualified

This is a topic that comes up with a subset of our customers regularly.  We do have options with custom code logic to solve for this but we have been discussing more productized solutions as well.

Matt, your idea is more just enforcing formatting for data entry.  Other customers actually want the identifier to be dynamically generated using rules/expressions.  The following ID is similar to your request but is more about automation.


https://voice.aprimo.com/communities/42/topics/1183-numeric-ea-should-have-a-feature-to-automatically-set-unique-default-value


The question I have is can we build something that will be dynamic enough to support all the possible variations or will this still fall to custom logic everytime in order to meet all use cases?


For example Matt, what if another customer wants to have two different numbers included, or they want to include the current year in their number, then your format model above would be too restrictive.


Definitely open to further discussing options around this but want to make sure we approach it the right way.

Also, I might merge these two topics together but want to get feedback first before I do so.

Hi Eric - I would say that what I'm trying to accomplish is more than just enforcing formatting.  While enforcement is a requirement, the 'Starting Number' referenced above is a system generated one that counts up from whatever number the Admin sets it to.  Additionally, the 'Prefix' and 'Postfix' could be setup to allow for custom string selections like the ones mentioned above or you could add in a system generated <<Date (MMYY)>> field as an option as well.  

The idea you referenced with your link is very similar and I think trying to accomplish the same thing.  I don't mind combining the two ideas if you think that is beneficial.  Let me know if you have any further questions or if you would like to schedule a call to discuss.