How do I add a custom data object?

To add a new custom data object to SMB, go to the administration section and select “Custom Data Objects” from the “Employee Administration” section. On the page shown, click on the “Add New Object” link to create a new object.

When the detail page is shown, enter a singular and a plural title for the object. These titles are used to generate automatic links and headings in the system, so if you were adding training certificates as an object, you would have “Certificate” as the title and “Certificates” as the plural title.

Enter a description of the object and select where in the employee record you would like the object added. This ensures that only users with permission to access those modules have access to work with custom objects.

Next, select whether employees have access to this object. If they do, a menu option saying “My “ and the plural title will appear on the left hand menu – in our example, this would say “My Certificates”.

Now you can decide what employees can do with these objects. The first three options allow employees to add, edit and delete items freely, the second three denote that the employee can raise approval requests to add, edit or remove the objects. If you don’t set any options, then the employee will only be able to view. If you select both “can request” and “can”, then the request settings take precedence.

Finally, click “Add Object” to create the object and move onto the structure settings.

On the “View Custom Object” page, you can setup the columns to use in your new structure. To build up the structure, you add elements one after the other to define all of the data elements you wish to store. To add an element, click on the “Add Element” button at the bottom of the screen.
This will take you to a page where you can select the type of element to add, the name of the element, whether it is a required field and the forms/tables you want to display this element on. This functionality means that employees can see a cut-down version of the record if required, hiding some of the fields for admin use only. For example, in our certificate we want to have a date, a certificate title and a description as well as a comments field. For the date, title and description, we would say these are available on all forms, but the “Admin Comments” field might only be available on the admin “Add” and “Edit” forms.

Click “Add” to add the element and return to the structure page. You can repeat this process until you have built up the structure as you want. From the structure page. Once done, click on the “Done” button to return to the Custom Objects page.

On this page, you can check how the forms will be presented to employees and administrators by clicking the “Preview” button alongside your form. On the preview page, you can switch between the various forms to ensure that the right information is being shown to the right people.

Once you have finished working with your structure, you can now go to an employee’s record to view the new module. Navigate to an employee’s record from the “Employees” option on the main menu, then select the module you have added the object to from the large employee menu. At the top of the page you’ll see a link to the new module where you can add, edit and delete records as normal. If you have made the object visible to employees, you’ll also see the “My “ link in the main menu, where you can add, edit or delete (or request) as defined against the object.

Note: If you have set the object to require approval, then you will need to edit the permissions for any users whom you wish to give approval rights to. When you edit their permissions, either as an approver or administrator, you’ll now find a new column where you can select the groups they can approve for, as with other types of approval.

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