Forum Discussion

Matthew's avatar
Matthew
Icon for Iress Team rankIress Team
14 days ago

AMA: I'm Matthew Townsend, Xplan tasks expert and product manager at Iress, Ask Me Anything!

Got a burning question? Join me here on Wednesday 10th July from 2pm to 2:30pm.

With years of experience helping advisers, paraplanners and licensees streamline their task management on Xplan, I’m here to help.

Start popping in your questions below and Ask Me Anything!

Update: This AMA has now ended but please continue to pop your questions in the discussion forums and make sure you tag me at Matthew 

 

16 Replies

  • Jeremy-Gorniak's avatar
    Jeremy-Gorniak
    Visiting Enthusiast

    Hello Matthew,

    Some workflow software tools generate a visualisation of a workflow/thread; to make it easier to understand, or to allow for intuitive editing (e.g.: drag the box in the flow chart, instead of editing a long list of conditionally linked tasks). Could we ever see a feature like this in Xplan Tasks?

    • Matthew's avatar
      Matthew
      Icon for Iress Team rankIress Team

      Awesome idea and question Jeremy-Gorniak

      In the workflow research we heard a number of clients interested in something like this or we heard of friction points that could perhaps be solved by visualising the workflow.  In my view there's 2 elements to it as you kind of alluded to:

      1.  Visualising the workflow: so you can quickly see and understand the flow of the process, where you are at, what comes next etc.  We would be aiming to include something like this when we look at moderning the workflow layers in Xplan.  It then could be incorporated back into Tasks so you can find out where you are at and see that whole process right when you need it. 

      2. Building workflow: Possibly, this one we see coming later and we also think there's a number of ways you could go about solving this - a kind of drag and drop flowchart may be one way, but there could be others which we'd need to explore but still a ways away at this stage.

       

      So in short, yes something like this is part of our future thinking for workflows at least in terms of helping view and follow them :) 

  • jaclyn_bazin4's avatar
    jaclyn_bazin4
    Exploring Newcomer

    Hello Matt,

    Would appreciate your guidance on the situation where a practice may have previously used threads and no longer use them. However there are a number of incomplete tasks that are part of that thread. They wish to tidy up their database and start with new workflows. How do you best recommend they remove those threads without manually removing them one by one? The only option I can find is to abort the tasks (as they cant be deleted when part of a thread) however the thread still sits there in the current list.

    If not possible to do as a bulk action, is this something that is on the roadmap?

    Thanks

    • Matthew's avatar
      Matthew
      Icon for Iress Team rankIress Team

      Hi jaclyn_bazin4

      Sorry we didn't get to this one in the AMA and my delay in replying.   Unfortunately as you have suspected there aren't any bulk actions in this area that would suit this one.  The only options for the user would be to either:

      • Manually remove the threads - if you don't want to retain any of the thread or task data. OR
      • Manually abort the threads - this will retain the data but you will also need to bulk abort the tasks afterwards.

      You've definitely highlighted a good use case here for that functionality, it's something we've recorded down but it's not on the roadmap at this time.

      Thank you,

      Matthew

  • MatTenison's avatar
    MatTenison
    Icon for Advisely Board rankAdvisely Board

    Hi Matthew, I paid someone a couple of years ago to create our current threads in xplan. They're great as they automatically open up emails and file notes at specific times of the thread. If I want to make changes to these, where would I go and do you feel this is something most people could set up on without IT or xplan guru support? How would someone get started setting these up from scratch as can make a real difference to a business!  

    • Matthew's avatar
      Matthew
      Icon for Iress Team rankIress Team

      Hey MatTenison

      Thanks for kicking us off with a great first question and I couldn't agree more with you when you say they can make a real difference to a business.

      • You can find all your workflow (Threads/Cases) templates by searching for
        'Threads' in the navigation - it will be the first result that appears under Global - or by navigating to: Admin > Site > Templates > Tasks & Thread template > Threads
      • I'm not going to say there's not a learning curve because there is, but we see practices big and small creating and updating their own workflows without the need to hire others so its definitely achievable, deciding factor might be whether you have the time or not.  Editing existing workflows can be a simple way to start.
      • Keep in mind yYou can also export your templates (use the action menu dropdown next to each template) so you have a back up and removes some of the risk.
      • If you want to start from scratch my main tip would be to pick a simpler workflow or process, build that out, get your automations and then tackle some of the more complex ones.

       

      If you want to learn more there's a number of webinars and courses on the Iress Learning Centre that can help.  This one can be a good starting place:  https://learningcentre.iress.com/course/view.php?id=636

  • tl's avatar
    tl
    Curious Observer

    Hi Matthew,

    1. When an email is sent when completing a task (task outcome). Is it possible to have the email template open (to allow it to be edited) rather than send immediately?
    2. Under 'Classic tasks' I'm able to search by 'Case / Thread Template' which I find very useful. How can I do this using the new 'Tasks' hub.
    • Matthew's avatar
      Matthew
      Icon for Iress Team rankIress Team

      Hey tl

      1. This is a great use of the automation and to answer your question - yes you can.  when setting up the outcome and selecting to send email or sms from a template you have an option labelled 'prompt to edit', if you set this to yes, you will get the email loaded up in the Xplan email editor and can review/update before sending (managed to include a pic below).

      2. Unfortunately that filter is not there yet.  Tasks has a number of filters and we started by introducing the most used and requested one but we are getting more feedback for this filter and are looking to see when we might be able to bring this one over into the new experience.
  • Carolyn's avatar
    Carolyn
    Social Sightseer

    We don't have any tasks/threads set up on our site, is there a "best practice standard" guide to set up from scratch? Or are we best to have an xPlan consulting company come in and review our site to see what we need?

    • Matthew's avatar
      Matthew
      Icon for Iress Team rankIress Team

      Hi Carolyn

      Good question and as I'm sure there's other clients who could be in the same boat.  There are a number of resources on the Iress Learning centre that can help get you started with a view to understanding and building your own - they aren't all labelled best practice though - As an example, this one for an ongoing review process i've heard before was helpful: https://learningcentre.iress.com/course/view.php?id=348

      Probably one of the best all round workflow overviews I have seen was from Jessica-Lamb and you can find the session she did on this over on youtube here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-kih1A7rYMQ

      There's a lot of providers out there that could help review your workflow and set you up, let me see if I can track down a list of partners Iress recommends.  Alternatively, I wonder if the Advisely members might have some suggestions for Carolyn?

      • Carolyn's avatar
        Carolyn
        Social Sightseer

        Thanks Matthew, I will look up both of those, finding time is my main issue but keen to get it underway.

        I have heard of Enzumo & Umlaut Solutions - just considering if that would be easier or just as complicated.  Keen to hear if anyone else might have outsourced this portion to start with.

  • sarahburke38's avatar
    sarahburke38
    Curious Observer

    Hi Matthew,

    I somehow received an email re complete Review Automation from the South African Iress site. They sent through a review process for their users. I would want to use this - is there a reason why this sort of templating is not available to us here 

    • Matthew's avatar
      Matthew
      Icon for Iress Team rankIress Team

      Good afternoon sarahburke38,

      That's interesting, i'll need to look into what was sent over but that's really helpful feedback to know you liked the content and would like to see more of these kind of resources.  

      In terms of why we don't have that or move of that for here, sounds like this might be something we need to look into but in the meantime please keep letting us know what resources help and you want to see more of as this certainly guides us.  

      • sarahburke38's avatar
        sarahburke38
        Curious Observer

        Yes thanks it looked good and something we were immediately going to use rather than reinventing the wheel.  I have the email I just can't attach it here for some reason

  • Welcome everyone to an Advisely Ask Me Anything (AMA) thread!

    Here's how to get involved:

    1. Submit Your Questions: Just type them out and post now ahead of the AMA! This is a text-based event, so no audio or video is needed. Whatever Xplan Task Hub questions you have, Matthew will be here to answer during the scheduled time.
    2. Be Respectful: Keep it friendly and professional. Respectful dialogue makes the AMA enjoyable and informative for everyone.
    3. Stay Engaged: Feel free to follow up or ask about different topics as the thread goes on. The more you interact, the richer the conversation.
    4. Enjoy the Experience: Use this opportunity to gain insights, share laughs, and connect. Let’s make this AMA one to remember!

    Looking forward to all your amazing questions and let the asking begin!

    An exclusive badge is also available for participation in the AMA!