Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Free OTM trial now expanded

The free OTM trial terms have also been upgraded to enable longer evaluation periods for those who need them to decide on a project management platform. A three month evaluation period is now available instead of the previous 30 days. This will facilitate better acquaintance with the features of the OTM environment for those with long decision processes or busy daily routines. Up to 5 projects can be managed in the trial period, allowing critical project scenarios to be evaluated thoroughly. Any number of users (project manager logins) can be set up during the trial period, so the evaluation can involve all potential users in a team or organization.

Those who have evaluated the software in the past are welcome to have a "second look" at the many new features which have been introduced in recent months, such as greater customizability of standard texts, more client interface languages, sophisticated invoicing options, additional archiving options, greater legal security with online proposal acceptance and more. Just contact LSP.net with your request, and your old trial account will be re-activated for another three month evaluation.

For contacting LSP.net with your request, please click here

Saturday, January 15, 2011

_changelog OTM Update 4.0 – 2011-01-17

1) Saving line item templates and importing line item lists
Line item lists include the service, possibly the language pair, service-specific text blocks, rates, areas of specialization, etc., without references to files and quantities.
They are imported into current projects from other projects or templates which have been saved especially for this purpose. A saved template can be used as a “price list”.
(a) >Line items: line item lists are imported into current projects from other projects or from saved templates.
(b) >Manage templates: naming, renaming, deleting and releasing line item lists
(c) >Project management >Line item summary: saving a line item list as a template for use by other project managers in the same organization. (PM users with administrative or supervisory rights always see all of a company’s templates.)

2) Web interface for mobile access
Access is now possible via iPhone. Running OTM in the smartphone browsers enables you to handle basic administrative tasks for project management:
- View project requests and assign them for processing
- Block project management
- Read e-mail
- Read reports
- View customer profiles

3) “Copy file” function
>File repository
>Project documents
>Customer documents
It’s now easier to copy a file from one area to another. You can choose to save the file copy directly in the >File repository, >Project documents or >Customer documents.

4) >Project documents function upgraded
Additional information, functions and sorting options

5) Select user interface display time zone
Schedules and deadlines will be shown in the user interface for project managers and resources in the time zone selected by the user.

6) Date entry in ISO format
Dates and times (for example for deadlines) are now entered using the ISO format: YYYY-DD-MM hh:mm

7) Shortcut to the project summary
On the overview pages and the project summary box, an icon now appears before the project number. Clicking it takes you directly to the project summary without the need to use the dropdown menu for navigation.

8) >Job file functions now use AJAX
It is no longer necessary to refresh pages manually after changes are made, such as evaluating a results file or accepting a delivery file. The changed information is displayed immediately.

9) Warning if the default deadline for jobs is changed
If jobs are already saved in a project, after a project manager changes the default job deadline a warning appears indicating that jobs previously created are not automatically updated and may require manual attention.

10) >Order >Generate invoice function updated
The page for generating invoices (as well as payment requests, partial invoices and credit notes) was redesigned. An HTML preview of the PDF document is now included, and an editable e-mail message is now shown if the document is to be sent by e-mail.

11) Differentiated display of first and last names
It is not clear in all languages what the first and last name of a person is, for example when the name consists of more than two words altogether. Now last names are indicated by the use of bold type.

12) Delivery of certified documents
As of OTM 4.0 resources can no longer be searched globally by the criterion of being court-appointed. Instead, it is determined based on the service and language pair whether the criterion for the delivery of certified documents is relevant.
Since there is no uniform rules that apply internationally to this issue and the legal situation cannot be generalized, an additional query is made for qualifications and the agency which granted authorization.
Current resources who were listed as being sworn will be requested to provide more specific information when they log in to their service pages.

13) >Bookkeeping – Display of the posted amount instead of the remaining amount

Outgoing invoices which follow a payment request which has been settled will no longer show the unpaid amount remaining as “0” but instead will indicate the posted amount in the bookkeeping overviews.

14) Wizard for quantity unit differences between items in a quotation and the corresponding jobs
If a project uses quantity units for a job given to a resource that differ from those used in the quote or invoice for the customer, OTM offers assistance in conversion using factors or allows other amounts to be input manually.

15) Various other minor improvements were implemented.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

New Guided Tutorials for Online Translation Management

In order to support our growing user community in mastering the essential processes for successful management of a language services business with the Online Translation Manager (OTM), we are creating a series of guided tutorials in which common workflows are explained interactively, step by step in a test project using the software.

At the other end of the tutorial project correspondence is a “live” support staff member, so any difficulties or specific questions can be handled quickly and easily.

The first two tutorials cover quotation requests via the OTM web form and include file uploads, correspondence, quotation, project acceptance, assignment to a translator (the OTM user in the case of a freelancer or translating PM or another translator if the OTM user is an outsourcer), delivery of the finished project to the client, invoicing and closing the project with a request for feedback.

Other guided tutorials deal with project requests which arrive via e-mail with varying degrees of information. These tutorials are an excellent way for those who test OTM on a free 30 day trial to get up to speed quickly on critical processes.

Other important sources of information for learning to use are the webinars in German and English offered by LSP.net, static web tutorials covering various aspects of use and the comprehensive context help in the program, with its innovative display technique that allows you continue to work alongside and benefit from the explanations. LSP.net support staff are also available during CET business hours to answer questions by e-mail or telephone.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

OTM as a 'best practice' case study at "sosocon 2010"

"Shared knowledge. Better Business." - this is the motto of the European Software Solutions Conference ("sosocon"), which will take place in Hanover, from November 30 to December 2, 2010. On the first day of the conference, LSP.net will present its SaaS solution OTM as a 'best practice' case study for smooth customer business processes.    more ...

Friday, October 8, 2010

_changelog OTM Update 3.1 – 2010-10-11

  1. Date formats in the project manager interface
    In the project management interface, dates are now always displayed in the ISO format, for example: 2010-09-27, possibly with time information added. The entry fields were adapted accordingly.
  2. E-mail threads repositioned
    In the project navigation menu, links to the e-mail threads were moved under >Project summary. The corresponding tabs are thus found at 
    >Project summary >E-mail (customer) and >Project summary >E-mail (resources).
  3. Revision of >Reports >Cash flow
    The data for receivables (invoices) and payables (remuneration) will be displayed graphically based on the projects entered; this will be seen by users with corresponding authorization.
  4. Address formats
    The address formats of many countries are unique. Depending on the country, individual elements like postal code, city, street address, etc. are arranged in different ways. OTM adapts to the relevant customs and provides international users with the accustomed formats in each case. All this is flexibly designed so that new information on formats for specific countries can be added and implemented in updates that follow.
  5. Knowledge base
    The knowledge base in the project management module has been expanded and currently contains the following elements: videos, Q&A, sample service pages for customers and resources, links to the OTM blog, change log and LSP.net news.
  6. Accounting entry when invoices are sent by e-mail
    When an invoice is sent by e-mail, an entry is automatically made in the accounting module in the field for comments and status changes. This information indicates when and by whom the invoice was sent.
  7. Automatic assignment of projects to the sole project manager
    If there is only one project manager in the company, then new projects are automatically assigned to that person. The corresponding step in the project switchboard is no longer required.
  8. Transparent initial download of delivery files
    PMs can see under >Files >Job files whether a delivery file has been downloaded by the customer, more specifically by a contact person in the customer’s organization. (The person who first downloaded the file is indicated.)
  9. Removing the “new” label for files in the file repository
    Project managers can manually remove the “new” label for files in the repository. (It makes sense to do this if, for example, an administrator takes a project himself as a PM and has already seen the files.)
  10. Configurable defaults for sending e-mail notifications
    For a series of important e-mail messages to customers, the configuration can be set to send these messages or omit them by default. The project manager can change these settings in each individual project.
    The general defaults for all customers of the company are under >Administration >Preferences >E-mail options. In case other settings are to be applied to customers or individual contact persons, the appropriate changes can be made in >Customer administration >Preferences or >Customer administration >Customer contact persons.
  11. T&Cs in languages other than the project language
    The general terms and conditions of business for a company or agency are not always available in all languages used for handling projects. When a quotation is created, project managers have the option to attach T&Cs to the quotation even if the language of these terms differs from the project language.
    If T&Cs are available in several languages other than the project language, a corresponding selection can be made. For example, consider the case where the project language is Dutch, but the T&Cs are available only in English and German. The PM can choose to attach the terms and conditions in English or German to the quotation in Dutch.
  12. T&Cs can be viewed under >Team
    The currently valid general terms and conditions of business for customers and resources, if present, can be viewed under >Team in all the languages for which they are available.
  13. Language selection for e-mail when involving resources
    In >Administration >Resource management, when the invitation e-mail is sent, there is an option available to select the language for each individual mail.
  14. No VAT information from EU resources if they belong to a non-EU agency
    It is only required to enter VAT information for agency resources located in the EU if the agency is domiciled in the EU. 
  15. Information for freelancers when the delivery of result files is completed
    When the delivery is completed (the last outstanding result file is uploaded), resources with project-related remuneration receive extensive information regarding the creation of the payable voucher.
    This main purpose of this information is to increase the awareness that it is unnecessary and counterproductive to create documents for this purpose outside the system.
    The necessary data for a job are already present in OTM, and regardless of whether the credit note is generated by the agency or a resource invoice is created by the freelancer, the necessary document can be created quickly and cleanly in OTM.
  16. Configurable services in the quote request form
    The services listed on the quote request form can be selected under >Administration >Preferences >Project management settings. Services which are not selected (checkboxes not marked) do not appear on the quote request form.
  17. Include e-mail in the project documents as a PDF
    E-mail from customers can be converted directly into a PDF document within a project and then stored under >Project documents (in the project summary). This is useful, for example, if the customer has already placed an order in a simple e-mail message and is not to be requested to submit an order form. This type of order is then better compliant in some cases with the formal legal requirements for contractual relevance.
The next OTM update is scheduled for January 2011.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Version 3.0 of the Online Translation Manager (OTM®) sets new standards in online project management for language service providers

Berlin, August 3, 2010 – LSP.net, the provider of unique solutions and quality management tools for the language industry, today announced the production release of its workflow solution OTM 3.0. The new version offers significantly expanded functions for the LSP online project management platform.

LSP.net CEO Ulrich Scheffler explained, “The new release enables our licensees to customize project communication with their customers individually in any language. We have also continued to optimize the business components of the software to offer users unobtrusive guidance for commercial correct processes. OTM is an all-round solution for language service providers and sets new standards for online project management with respect to functionality, transparency, security and availability.”

Along with the standard system languages English, Spanish and German, customer interface components for the OTM platform are now also available in Dutch and Portuguese. And the new OTM localization interface enables additional language localizations to be added quickly and easily.

The Online Translation Manager (OTM) directs and manages project processes for translations, editing, localization and desktop publishing. It is an expert software as a service (“SaaS”) system that is simple to operate and is available around the clock. All you need is an Internet connection.

OTM service starts at only € 29 per month. A free 30-day trial of OTM 3.0 with full functionality can be requested at the LSP.net web site.