EnergyCAP 7.0.5 release notes

It's been an exciting February and March at EnergyCAP. We've enjoyed seeing our customers dive into EnergyCAP Version 7, and we've appreciated the feedback and suggestions that you have provided.

We've been working hard to integrate all of the features of Version 3 into Version 7 while also making improvements and adding some frequently requested features along the way. The latest release of EnergyCAP Version 7 (7.0.5) is now live, and it contains some significant new functionality and features that you can begin using now! This release also includes some notable features related to User Roles and Bill Approval that have been highly-requested for years.

Here are a few of the most significant updates that you'll see the next time you log into EnergyCAP Version 7 (full details below):

  • EnergyCAP Version 7 now includes a redesigned set of User Roles and Permissions to make managing user access easier and more understandable! Each new User Role has a description built-into the application that explains the purpose and Permissions associated with it. Additionally, your organization can now create and manage their own custom User Roles within Version 7. A separate article with additional details about the new EnergyCAP Version 7 User Roles and how existing users are assigned to these roles is coming soon.
  • We’re continuing to improve the Bill Entry process based on your feedback/suggestions. We made several enhancements to assist with keyboard-only entry including the ability to use the “Enter” key to switch between fields and streamlining the selection of a Billing Period and Accounting Period when using your keyboard. If you only have one “cost” line item on your bill, we now automatically populate it with the Total Cost of the Bill. We’ve also added selectable calendars to the date fields, so you can scroll through the calendar and click to select specific dates.
  • NEW WIDGET: The Building Performance Comparison Widget provides a year-over-year comparison for your facilities. This widget provides a quick comparison of how your recent costs compare with the same periods one year earlier. A use trend also highlights any differences in the usage pattern between the last two years. This widget is helpful for tracking the performance of each Building within a Building Group or within a particular section of your Buildings & Meters Hierarchy (Buildings are automatically sorted from most costly to least costly).
  • NEW WIDGET: The Commodity Performance Comparison Widget provides a year-over-year comparison of your spending, use, and unit cost for each Commodity. This widget provides a quick comparison of how your recent costs compare with the same periods one year earlier. A use trend also highlights any differences in the usage pattern between the last two years. This widget is helpful for tracking the specific Commodity details for a single Building (Commodities are automatically sorted from most costly to least costly).
  • We’ve made dashboard widget titles longer, so you can provide more descriptive text.
  • Channels can now be easily created and managed within Version 7. Channels also have a new optional “Channel Import ID” attribute that can be used to properly import data from metering systems that assign each data type on a Meter its own unique identifier (alternative to using the Meter Import ID which applies to all Channels on a given Meter).
  • A new “Maximum Approval Amount” setting can be configured for each user – this can be used to limit the approval rights of a user based on the total cost of each individual Bill they are trying to approve.
  • We’ve introduced new Bill Permissions to prevent users from accidentally updating Bills that have been Approved and/or Exported. You can now easily restrict a user’s ability to modify Bills after they’ve been Approved or Exported to an accounting system.
  • We’ve made two changes to how Bills are approved and entered in Version 7 to simplify the process for users and provide additional consistency throughout the application:
    • All Bills must now be entered in a Batch. In Version 3, you could turn off “Batch Processing”, but we still tracked your Bills in Batches behind the scenes because of the reporting and tracking benefits of Batches. In Version 7, we are removing the option to turn off Batches – all Bills must be entered/imported into an open Batch. This makes processing and reporting consistent for all our users. If Batches are something new for you, don’t worry – we will prompt you to open a Batch the first time you enter/import a Bill, and your Batch will stay open until you decide to close it.
    • Bills will no longer auto-approve when the Approval System is turned off. In Version 3, you could turn off the Approval System (turn off the option to have users approve Bills) – however, this option was confusing to some users because we would auto-approve all Bills as soon as they were entered. In Version 7, you can still turn off the Approval System – but we will now leave your Bills alone after they are entered. Your Bills will stay un-approved and you won’t see messages on your Bills about them being approved by a system user.
  • We’ve redesigned the “Properties” pages on Buildings, Meters, and Accounts to better highlight the most relevant information and provide easy-to-understand feedback when important settings are not yet configured. GL Record information is now fully visible and can be edited from the Meter Properties page.

As you can see, we've been pretty busy recently. Thanks for all of your suggestions and feedback — they keep us going and help us make better decisions about upcoming enhancements.

New Features/Improvements

  • Implemented new User Roles and Permissions that can be viewed and managed within Version 7. [ECAP-4295, 5529, 5530, 5597, 5638, 5639, 5640, 5668, 5669, 5708, 5733]
  • Bill Entry improvements for keyboard navigation and to streamline the entry process. Added a selectable calendar to date fields. Better messaging for unbalanced Bills. [ECAP-5116, 5525, 5526, 5527, 5567]
  • New Building Performance Comparison and Commodity Performance Comparison widgets for Dashboards. [ECAP-5263]
  • Create and edit Channels on Meters. This includes a new Channel Import ID attribute that may be used to uniquely identify a specific Channel when importing reading into Version 7. [ECAP-4178, 5435, 5574, 5599, 5606, 5620, 5666]
  • New, easier process to create and edit Buildings. [ECAP-4685, 4772, 5670, 5673, 5691, 5712]
  • Redesigned Account Properties. [ECAP-4184, 5429, 5432, 5434, 5688]
  • Redesigned Meter Properties. [ECAP-4185, 5428, 5429, 5430, 5431]
  • Redesigned Building Properties. [ECAP-5667, 5671, 5672]
  • Dedicated Energy Projects tab created on Buildings and Organizations (moved from the Properties pages). [ECAP5736]
  • When the “strong password” option is selected for a user, any temporary passwords set by an administrator must also comply with the strong password rules, and the user must always reset their password during their next login after their password has been modified by an administrator. [ECAP-5174, 5746]
  • A new “from” email address is used to send Reports (reduces occurrence of emails being marked as “spam”). [ECAP-5598]
  • Additional Meter and Building Group management APIs. [ECAP-4825, 4827, 4828, 4836, 5578]
  • Extending the timeframe when a Meter is associated with a specific Account will also extend the associated Rate and Template assignments. [ECAP-4886]
  • Users may not modify certain settings on their Topmost Place and Topmost Cost Center (prevents unintended data inconsistencies across the Buildings & Meters Hierarchy and Accounts Hierarchy). [ECAP-5459, 5464]
  • Additional details regarding User and Database settings available on the User Profile screen. [ECAP-5465]
  • Available actions in Bill Lists are more consistent with status of the Bills within the Bill List. [ECAP-5472]
  • New Maximum Approval Amount attribute available when creating/editing users. The approval APIs have also been updated to honor this setting. [ECAP-5473]
  • APIs that support bulk Bill actions have been updated to provide feedback regarding the number of Bills attempting to be updated and the number of Bills that were successfully updated (e.g., Approve, Un-Approve, Void, Un-Void, Hold From Export). [ECAP-5474]
  • Implemented new Permissions that prevent unauthorized users from modifying Approved and/or Exported Bills. [ECAP-5477]
  • Implemented a new Maximum Approval Amount setting that prevents users from approving Bills over a specified Total Cost. [ECAP-5473, 5543]
  • Bills must always be entered in Batches (Batches provide additional reporting and management options). After a Batch is opened, it will remain open until closed by the user. [ECAP-5488]
  • When the “Bill Approval Process” has been turned off in a specific database, Bills are no longer auto-approved – this simplifies processing and reduces confusion within Reports and other workflow processes. [ECAP-5489]
  • Added a “Search” option when managing Users. [ECAP-5492]
  • A separate window is opened when downloading a file or running a Report. This allows the user to perform other actions in the application while they wait for their file to be downloaded. [ECAP-5523, 5622]
  • Active Directory Federated Services (ADFS) integration. [ECAP-5528, 5637, 5765]
  • Improved the “Generate Bill Import File” feature in Bill Lists. [ECAP-5542, 5557]
  • Improved upgrade notifications and process. [ECAP-5585]
  • Longer dashboard widget titles. [ECAP-5643]
  • Better accurate handling of GL Record information when updating existing Bills and viewing Bill details. [ECAP-5689, 5723, 5728]
  • Added selectable calendars to date fields and improved performance of some existing calendars. [ECAP-5699]
  • Generated installation package and documentation for on-premises installations. [ECAP-5703]
  • Simplified the logic that determines if a Bill Line Item should be counted toward Total Use on a Bill (removed rare special condition that would allow specific countable line item types to act like informational line items). [ECAP-5704]
  • Database performance and structure improvements. [ECAP-5411, 5706]

Bug Fixes

  • Bill Import Files in the EnergyCAP Advanced Format that are marked to “replace” existing matching Bills will no longer delete an old Bill until the new Bill has been successfully created. [ECAP-5513]
  • Excel Formatted Reports now open properly from Firefox. [ECAP-5600]
  • Reports that provide no filter options can be properly run in Version 7. [ECAP-5573]
  • Apostrophes are handled properly in Widget and SSRS Report filters. [ECAP-5660]
  • Buildings & Meters Tree and the Accounts Tree now automatically scroll to the item you have selected. [ECAP-5498]
  • Bill History is now displayed correctly during Bill Entry. [ECAP-5503]
  • Improved resizing for certain dashboard widgets. [ECAP-5552]
  • Better labels on Calendarized: Use vs. Weather screen. [ECAP-5576]
  • Shared Reports run by other users should not appear in Recent Reports. [ECAP-5589]
  • Improved Bill List performance and interaction. [ECAP-5601,]
  • All Vendors appear properly in the “Move Accounts” dropdowns. [ECAP-5763]