The Management Structure feature allows you to set up and manage a hierarchical relationship between the clients in your database in order to see who reports to whom, and who is supervising whom.
This is done by allowing each client to have a 'parent' client (manager / supervisor), and / or to have 'child' clients (subordinates). Each person can have only one manager / supervisor, but there is no limit to the number of subordinates a person can have.
There are two places you can set up the relationship between clients:
- On an individual basis you can specify who a client's manager is in the Client Wizard.
- In the Management Structure Manager you can manipulate the hierarchy in more complex ways, such as setting multiple clients as a person's subordinates, or replacing a person completely in a certain position in the hierarchy, while keeping the hierarchy above and beneath them intact.
A field has been added to the first page of the Client Wizard to allow you to select the person who this client reports to. Clicking the dropdown arrow or typing in the field displays the client search panel. It is also possible to add a new person to the database using the on-the-fly button to the left of the field.
The wizard will check that the client being selected as manager is not:
- Already selected as a subordinate of the current client.
- The current client.
If either of these is the case, an error message will be displayed and the Next button on the wizard will be disabled.
Management Structure Manager
The Management Structure Manager allows you to view and make changes to the entire management structure. Access this manager by going to Manage > Management structure or clicking the icon on the toolbar.
- Only clients who have a supervisor specified, or who are set as somebody else's supervisor, are shown in this manager.
- As a client can have only one supervisor, each person can appear in the tree only once.
- There is no limit to the number of levels in the hierarchy.
The right-click menu against each client gives you a number of options to allow you to manipulate the hierarchy:
Add Child Clients
Rather than setting each individual client's supervisor in the Client Wizard, it is possible to find the supvervisor in the Management Structure Manager, and indicate who their subordinates are, either individually or in bulk. Simply find the supervisor in the tree, right-click on their name and select Add child clients. The regular client search panel will open so you can search for the clients you want. Use Ctrl-Click or Shift-Click to select multiple clients.
If the client cannot be set as this person's subordinate, they will be marked in red, and the Next button will be disabled until they are removed from the list. This would occur if the person being made a subordinate is:
- Already set as the supervisor's manager (or the manager's manager, etc.)
- Already set as the supervisor of other clients (as this would move them and all of their subordinates into a new place in the the tree.)
If you want to remove someone's supervisor, right-click on their name and select Clear parent. This will have the following effect:
- If the person does not have any subordinates of their own, they will be removed from the hierarchy tree completely.
- If the person has their own subordinates, they will be moved to the top level of the hierarchy, and their subordinates will remain beneath them.
Replace with Another Client
This option can be useful if a supervisor has left or been moved to another position, and another person will be taking over supervising all of their subordinates. In this case, right-click on the name of the supervisor and select Replace with another client. The following will occur:
- The new client will now take on all the subordinates of the replaced client.
- If the replaced client also has a manager, the new client will have their manager changed to reflect that.
- The replaced client will now have no manager and no subordinates, and so will disappear from the tree.
Note that the replacement client cannot be:
- A subordinate of the client being replaced.
- A client who already has subordinates.
Two different reports are available by right-clicking on a client in the tree:
- Direct children report - shows only the people directly beneath the selected person in the tree:
- Structure report - shows the entire hierarchy of people underneath the selected person:
- You can also change a person's position in the hierarchy by dragging and dropping them onto the person who is to be their new supervisor. You cannot drag a person onto one of their own subordinates, as this would create a circular reference.
- If all of a person's subordinates are removed, and they are not the subordinate of someone else, they will be removed from the tree. You will need to click the Refresh button to see this change.