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Development Update, August 20, 2010

Completed a significant renovation of the Inform module, moving it to Version 5.0.  Inform is used to gather primarily text-based information.  This renovation focused on simplifying the interface for users, and completing a number of reliability enhancements based on user feedback over the past 12 months.

To accommodate these changes we also moved the main Benchmark module to Version 10.0.

Categories: Development.

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Development Update, August 17, 2010

Upgraded the “reviewer matching” capability, which faciliates matching reviewers to proposals based on the correspondence between proposal characteristics and reviewer expertise categories.  The upgrade enhances the ability to selectively display information about the proposal and the reviewer, and provides more flexibility in specifying expertise categories using a matchingProperties.xml file.

Categories: Development, Innovation.

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Development Update, August 11, 2010

Recent updates include:

Benchmark Module: Added support for specifying the colours associated with recommendation / decision outcomes that will be displayed on the Decision Management menu and various other ProgramAdmin Dashboard menus and charts.  This provides more flexibility in customizing the wording of initial screening / recommendation and decision categories and the associated colours which provide the ability to assess status at a glance.  Decision categories, related wording and colours are configured in a decisionProperties.xml file.

Register Module: If authorized by a Service sponsor, the system can now enable users whose subscription to a Service has expired to self-renew their subscription for an additional year. Subscribers wishing to renew a subscription will no longer need to contact and wait for a manual renewal.  Activation of this function is specified through a Service Property.

Categories: Development.

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Development Blog, August 1, 2010

Welcome to the first post of the ERDP™+ / BenchmarkAction Development Blog!  Our intention is to update this page periodically with news about significant platform enhancements.

One of the most important enhancements is, of course, this site and its companion sites: and, all of which were launched on August 1, 2010.

Development efforts made in the last year include the following:

  • Making the platform fully bilingual
  • Support for document uploads
  • Ability to specify a submission deadline by time of day as well as date
  • Ability to serve up assessment criteria selectively based on segmentation categories.  (This is important in situations where proper evaluation of proposals depends on using different criteria subsets)
  • The ability to display applicant segmentation categories in decision support visualizations
  • Generation of standard pdf reports and archives that may include various combinations of applicant data, review data, and decision outcomes, including uploaded documents
  • Introduction of sophisticated protocols that facilitate matching reviewers and applications based on applicant segmentation and reviewer expertise categories
  • Ability to upload applicant and review data via spreadsheet templates to accommodate situations where online access is not available
  • Support for a “grouped entity” part that displays entity properties in groups (this is useful to split up a large number of questions relating to entity properties across multiple pages, such as may be required when gathering a large set of environmental impact data, for example)
  • Integration of a simplified version of value stream modelling functionality (this is used, for example, to provide a simply model of environmental and economic impacts based on applicant claims)
  • Introducing an optional “metaEntity” Menu on the ProgramAdmin Dashboard that enables tracking related proposals or projects along different stages of a decision continuum
  • A function that enables defining a set of Mandatory Criteria and positively checking applications against those criteria in order to ensure that only qualified applications are assigned reviewers
  • A new multimenu_radio question type that enables an applicant to choose only one item per column (useful for specifying priorities)
  • Improvements to multimenu_quant questions that provide a mini-spreadsheet capability (useful for collecting budget analysis)
  • Addition of a broader range of read-only Dashboards supporting new types of admin users, including procurement officers that require the ability to monitor application and review status
  • Streamlining the data architecture supporting reviewer expertise categories, and other enhancements to reviewer registration including loading pre-existing data
  • Moving self-assessment, registration, and application activity statistics to a separate Statistics Menu in the ProgramAdmin Dashboard, which speeds page loading for the other ProgramAdmin menus
  • Reliability enhancements to the register module
  • Various additions to customized reporting

We’re pleased with this progress: but there are plenty of additional enhancements on our short, medium, and long-term Roadmaps.  Stay tuned!

Categories: Development.

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