How to Customize Dashboards with Bulletins in Apricot Software
Reports and bulletins are two Apricot features every administrator should focus on. Both are highly customizable and when used to their maximum they make Apricot software significantly more valuable. Bulletins in particular are a feature that are often forgotten about, yet they can enhance the Apricot user experience, streamline workflows, and make your Apricot database unique to your organization.
The Benefit of Apricot Bulletins
Apricot software bulletins are infinitely customizable and when built correctly they can be the starting point for system navigation, data entry, and dashboard reports in your Apricot database.
Apricot Bulletin Types
There are three primary types of bulletins in Apricot software.
Announcement bulletins communicate messages to Apricot users. Create announcement bulletins with the standard bulletin HTML editor to provide instructions to staff or notify a group of users.
2. Navigation Shortcuts
Navigation bulletins reduce the number of clicks when navigating in your Apricot database. A navigation shortcut can streamline data entry of Tier 1 and Tier 2 records. Navigation shortcut bulletins embed a URL in an HTML button.
3. Dashboard Reports
Dashboard reports display Apricot reports in bulletins. Display the chart or rows of a report in a bulletin by setting a bulletin to the “report” type (instead of HTML). Apricot dashboard bulletins can display any report in the Apricot reporting system.
Read our article on bulletin use cases for more information on these three types of bulletins.
How to customize bulletins
Get the most from Apricot bulletins! Implement bulletins with these four tips and best practices.
1. Manage bulletins in categories
Bulletins, like reports, are organized into categories. Categories are like file folders that contain groups of bulletins.
Bulletin categories will make Apricot software administration easier. Instead of assigning bulletins to users one at a time, bundle bulletins into categories and assign them to permission sets in batch.
2. Set the bulletin visibility timeline
Announcement and report dashboard bulletins may have an expiration date. The expiration date is a date in the future when a bulletin is no longer valuable to users.
Instead of remembering to deactivate a bulletin, set a start date when the bulletin should be visible and an end date when it should no longer be visible to users. In addition to start and end times, arrange the order of bulletins by dragging and dropping them within the bulletin administrator page.
Use the combination of timing and order to customize the design of the “My Apricot” tab.
3. Collapse bulletins with large profiles
Some bulletins are large. When a bulletin dominates the home screen, use the “Start Collapsed” mode to minimize a bulletin. This forces a user to click the bulletin to open it.
Collapsing bulletins increases the visibility of other bulletins on the “My Apricot” home screen.
If you use the collapse feature for bulletins, make sure to add descriptive titles to all collapsed bulletins. Bulletin titles should reflect the purpose of the bulletin so when a bulletin is collapsed a user knows what will be shown in the bulletin when it is opened.
4. Customize user access to bulletins
Use bulletin design and permission sets to customize the look and feel of a user’s home screen in Apricot. The order of bulletins, the visibility timeline of bulletins, the type of bulletin, and a user’s permission sets affect the design of a user’s “My Apricot” home screen.
Each individual user in your Apricot database can have a different home screen experience with bulletins. An administrator can set up a unique bulletin layout on a user-by-user basis or set up a unique bulletin layout by groups of users.
- User-by-user: Build a set of bulletins specifically for a user. Create a single permission set for that user and assign the specific bulletins to that single permission set. When the user needs access to a new bulletin, an administrator will modify the user’s permission set to include the new bulletin.
- Group: Build a set of bulletins specifically for a group of users. Place the bulletins in a bulletin group specifically for that group of users. Add new bulletins to that bulletin group over time. The users that have access to that bulletin category will see the new bulletins without an administrator needing to modify the group’s permission sets.
Customize Apricot dashboards
Add bulletins to your Apricot database if your Apricot dashboard is blank or it contains no actionable functionality. Bulletins can take your Apricot database to the next level. They are a fully customizable function that can streamline navigation, maintain open communication in your organization, and put actionable information at your fingertips.