Project Panorama puts a “Projects” menu item into your WordPress admin interface. Once installed, you can create individual projects by navigating to the projects menu item and selecting “Add Project.”
Each project has it’s own project page, which can be seen by editing the page and selecting “view project” or going to “All Projects” and clicking the “view” link underneath a the project title (must hover to see.)
You have a few settings to adjust how your projects are displayed, these can be accessed by clicking the “settings” link in the Projects menu. You can change the page url from /panorama/project-name to anything of your choosing, for example /clients/project-name. You can also upload a logo to be displayed on all project pages.
After installation, the most common first steps would be to:
- Create accounts for your clients through the WordPress user menu – Give them a role of “subscriber” if you don’t want them to edit projects or “project owner” if you do
- Create a new project by going to Projects > Add New
- Fill out the project details and add your clients to the project
- Send your clients a link to their project dashboard at http://www.yourdomain.com/panorama (unless you changed “panorama” to another word in the Panorama settings menu)
- Repeat for all of your projects
Elements of a Project
Each project has the following optional elements:
A general overview of the project.
Start and End Date
This will display as a timeline on your project page allowing you to compare project completion progress compared to elapsed time.
You can upload key documents to the project which your client (or team) can mark as approved, in review, rejected or in revisions. Documents can be uploaded files or links to webpages, dropbox folders, etc…
If your projects aren’t intended to be public you can assign users to them (paid versions only.) Not only will this restrict projects to the users you choose, it will create a dashboard for said users at http://www.yourdomain.com/panorama (unless you change the slug.) Once they login to that page it will display a list of all active projects they have been assigned to and any tasks they’ve been assigned to.
You can specify three or four billing milestones. These milestones are displayed on the larger project timeline so your client or team can keep track of the next milestone.
Phases and Tasks
Almost every project can be broken down into key phases. Each phase has different tasks and objectives. Within each phase you can specify tasks and a description.
Tasks can be assigned to users if desired by enabling access restriction and assigning users or teams to the project. Once they’ve been added to a project, you’ll be able to select a user to assign the task.
If you have auto calculation turned on, the phase total and project total will automatically updated based on task completion. You can adjust the weighting of each phase by specifying the number of hours the phase will take or setting a phase weight. Read more about auto calculations below.
Each project has the ability for discussions. This uses the WordPress comment system so any plugin that enhances said system will also work with Panorama. We recommend the subscribe to comments plugin for example.
Panorama supports project types, which essentially are categories for your projects. This helps administer your projects from the backend as you can filter your project listing by the type of project it is. This also allows you to create a custom listing of projects on the front end using our project-list shortcode.
Equal Auto Calculation
You can choose to have Project Panorama calculate the total progress of your project by computing the completion of all phases. This method presumes that all phases are approximately equal in terms of time and effort. Likewise, you can choose to have the progress of each phase calculated by adding task completion.
If you measure progress in hours (or days), you can indicate the number of hours each phase will take. This will inform Panorama how long each phase is relative to each other. Then as you complete tasks it will more accurately indicate progress.
Weighted Auto Calculation
If you wish, you can choose to adjust how much each phase contributes to the total progress. For example, if you have two phases, Phase A and Phase B, Phase B might take twice as long as Phase B. In this case, you wouldn’t want the progress of the phases to contribute an equal amount to the total project completion. To fix this, you would adjust the weight of the phases.
The way weighting works is you can give any phase less weight than the others. So if Phase A takes half the time as Phase B, you would adjust Phase A’s weighting to 50%. This would mean that Phase A will contribute 50% less to the total completion than Phase B. If you adjusted Phase A’s weighting to 25%, it would mean that Phase A takes one fourth the effort as Phase B.
Weighting is intended to be an approximation, not exact figures. We may adjust the way this functions in the future.