PPM Express Digest: What’s New in August 2023?

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We want to announce the latest updates for PPM Express in August! 

Our hardworking team has significantly improved our platform by introducing new features and functionalities. 

These updates simplify your project management tasks and help you achieve your goals. This month, we proudly present six remarkable updates for PPM Express:

  • We will update the Progress Calculation Settings and change how we display Progress for the PPM Express Schedule.
  • We have implemented a new connection type with limited access and without Admin consent for Planner and MS Teams.
  • We now support cross-project linking for Jira connection.

We’ll provide detailed information about each update and guide you on maximizing our platform’s potential. 

Let’s have a closer look!

We will change how we display Progress for the PPM Express Schedule

In this release, we’re making changes to how progress is calculated for PPM Express tasks. These changes won’t affect tasks imported from external systems. 

You can choose the calculation method that suits your organization’s needs, whether it’s based on Effort, Story Points, or manual input. The project’s progress will now be displayed as a percentage by default instead of the number of tasks.

Project settings in PPM Express

To set up the progress calculation method, go to Project Settings in the ellipsis menu. You can choose from three options:

  • Effort: Progress is calculated using Completed Work divided by Effort, multiplied by 100%.
  • Story Points: Progress is calculated using Completed Story Points divided by Story Points, multiplied by 100%.
  • Average Progress: Progress is the average of Progress percentages from “leaf” tasks.

If you change the calculation method, it will be applied immediately:

  • Task groups and Project Progress will be recalculated based on the new method.
  • Summary tasks will be recalculated when you trigger the “Calculate Progress” function.
  • Non-summary tasks will be recalculated or remain unchanged based on the new rule.

Note: If you use Story Points or manual input for Progress, make sure to update your settings after the release for accurate progress display.

We have implemented a new connection type for Planner and MS Teams

Now, you can use a regular connection account to link PPM Express Projects/Programs with a Planner plan or add an MS Teams connection without needing admin consent. However, this type of connection for Planner has some restrictions as it doesn’t provide full access to Planner data.

For a Planner restricted connection:

  • To add a restricted connection using a regular account, go to the PPM Express project you want to link and select Planner -> Add new restricted connection -> Use your regular account to connect to Planner.
Microsoft Planner connector settings in PPM Express
  • Only plans where the connection account is a member will be available for linking.
  • Make sure to open the selected plan in Planner at least once; otherwise, it won’t appear in the list in PPM Express (due to an API limitation).
  • You can’t access groups or create new plans from PPM Express with this connection type.
  • If needed, you can grant Admin consent by clicking on the lock sign next to the connection name.
  • For more details, check the “How to add Planner connection” article.

Regarding MS Teams restricted connection:

  • PPM Express allows you to link projects, programs, portfolios, or challenges to Teams groups and receive notifications in the Teams app for PPM Express actions.
Work together menu in PPM Express to connect MS Teams
  • Linked Teams groups won’t synchronize data from Teams to PPM Express projects.
  • Notifications from PPM Express will be sent to the Teams application: Teams and Email notifications
  • With the restricted connection, there are no limitations in terms of data or Teams channels that can be linked, compared to the connection with Admin consent.

For more details, refer to the “How to link Teams app to PPM Express” article.

We now support cross-projects linking for Jira connection

Now, PPM Express enables you to link multiple Jira projects to a single PPM Express project. You can link entire Jira projects or select specific Jira issue types to manage various teams’ tasks as one project in PPM Express.

Here’s how to do it:

  • The linking process is the same as with a single Jira project, but in the Project field, you can select several projects for linking.
Jira connecting configuration for cross-projects
  • Note that only projects belonging to the same Jira issue type scheme can be added to one PPM Express project. Jira associates each project with a unique issue type scheme, even if the scheme contains the same issue types. To ensure proper calculation of project-related settings like Project Progress, Project Status, Rollups, and Storypoints, all linked Jira projects must share the same Issue type scheme.

To associate these projects with the same scheme in Jira:

  • Go to Jira -> Gear button -> Issues -> Issue type scheme.
Issue types menu in Jira for cross-projects adjustment in PPM Express
  • Open the menu next to the required scheme and associate the selected projects with the same scheme.
Similar project association with the same scheme in Jira for cross-project creation in PPM Express
  • Optionally, you can also select the boards of these projects for linking to import Jira Sprints from the selected boards to the Iterations project section. This way, only sprints from the linked boards will be considered during data synchronization.
Linking Jira projects in PPM Express
  • If needed, you can select the Parent Issue to link the PPM Express project to selected issues and their sub-tasks instead of the entire project.

For more detailed instructions, please refer to the “How to import/link projects from Jira to PPM Express” article.

Essential improvements and fixes that make all the difference

At PPM Express, we are dedicated to continuously enhancing our platform for the best user experience

In addition to major updates, we’ve made impactful improvements across various areas, streamlining workflows, boosting data security, and improving accuracy. 

Stay informed about the latest advancements this month:

Key improvements you don’t want to miss

Let’s discover the latest enhancements we’ve made to PPM Express that can help streamline your workflow and enhance your productivity:

  • We added an option to switch the default authentication option from Email to Office 365 on the Tenant Settings Page.
  • We relocated the Access Settings from the People Management page to the Tenant Settings page, specifically within the Organization Authentication section.
  • We extended the Executive Power BI Pack.
  • We will now display Project Progress in % instead of the number of tasks going forward.
  • We moved the “Calculate automatically” setting to the Project Settings.
  • We introduced an Archived date field on the Archived Projects page.

Crucial fixes you need to know about

We’ve made some crucial fixes to PPM Express recently that ensure the security, accuracy, and reliability of your data:

  • We resolved the issue where the Timeline was not fully expanded for the “Projects” and “Programs & Projects” sections.
  • We replaced the link for Webinars on the Quick Start page.
  • We fixed the display issue where Number and Slider values were not shown correctly in Bulk Edit.
  • We addressed the problem where Key Dates were not filtered by type in the Import Items panel on the Roadmaps Dashboard.
  • We corrected the behavior related to drag and drop of PPMX tasks when sorting.
  • We resolved the case where a predecessor task remained on the task pane after deletion.

We’re thrilled to share these exciting updates to PPM Express with you! 

If you would like to receive an email notification with an extended features overview a few days before the upcoming release, please fill in the PPM Express Release Notification Form. And with our trial, it’s easier than ever to try out our platform for yourself and see how it can benefit your team.

PPM Express Digest: What’s New in August 2023?
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