This checklist is intended for those already familiar with Ketura. If you are new to Ketura, see Start Here for introductory information.
This page lists all the steps involved in completely configuring a typical Ketura system for use. It often isn’t necessary to perform all of these steps as, in many cases, the default Ketura configuration will suffice. However, having a checklist such as this can help ensure that nothing major has been overlooked. It can be helpful to print this page and mark-off each step as it is performed.
It is recommended that you work through the basic material listed in the Start Here topic.
Even if you are comfortable with diving in at the deep end of a new software application, the tour will give you a good overview of how Ketura works and greatly reduce the time it takes you to become familiar with the system.
Consider working (or at least reading) through the Ketura Tutorials.
Make sure you are familiar with the considerations discussed in Successfully Introducing Ketura into an Organization.
- Choose an appropriate computer to install the Ketura server upon. For more information, see How to Install a Ketura Server.
- Download the Ketura Server Setup program and install Ketura on the chosen machine.
- Log on to Ketura and switch from the example to the normal database. See Introduction to the Ketura Tutorials to find out how to do this.
- If you have purchased Ketura, install the licence file provided to you by Araxis or the reseller from whom you purchased. See Installing a Licence File After you Have Purchased Ketura for details.
- Ensure that you understand how to backup your Ketura system. See Backing Up a Ketura System and Restoring a Ketura System from a Backup.
- It is suggested that you perform a backup and restore, to familiarize yourself with the process before any important data has been stored in the system.
General system settings
Configure the name of the system and various system-wide preferences.
To configure system settings: global System tab > Manage System Settings link.
Users and groups
Ensure that groups exist for the different type of user accounts that you wish to create.
To reach the groups configuration page: global System tab > Administration areas tab > Configure Groups link.
A group defines the permitted actions of the users whose accounts are members of the group. The default Administrators group is a good starting point for administrators and project managers who will be using the system. The default Users group grants permissions that are probably more appropriate for normal users of the system.
Create user accounts for each of the people that will be using the Ketura system.
To create user accounts: global Users tab > Users list tab > New… button.
If you are going to be using Ketura to track or predict the cost of users’ working time, change the hourly cost for each user in their personal profiles.
To set the hourly cost of a user: global Users tab > Users list tab > Profile link > Cost tab.
If you are going to have Ketura provide cost information, you might wish to consider whether it is appropriate to make this available to all users as cost information might be related to salaries. Group permissions can be used to restrict access to cost information.
Set the available working time for the users whose accounts you have created: global Users tab > Availability calendars tab.
Projects and milestones
Create a project for each distinct activity that you wish to manage with Ketura.
To create a new project: global Projects tab > Projects list tab > New… button.
What makes a good candidate for a project? Organizations creating or maintaining products will typically create a project for each product; those providing services might create a project for each of their clients. Projects can also be created for any other ongoing activities, such as company administration, marketing, or maintaining the company website. For example, an accountancy firm might create a project to cover general company administration, another for intranet maintenance, and one for each of its audit or tax clients. Ketura offers a lot of flexibility, so it can be helpful to experiment.
For each project, create milestones as appropriate.
To create a new milestone: global Projects tab > Projects list tab > Project Name link > Milestones tab > New… button.
The milestones you create will depend greatly upon the nature of each project. For example, a project to manage an organization’s intranet site might have a milestone for each significant update to the site. A project relating to a product might have different milestones relating to initial research, specification/planning, prototypes and, finally, the final product release. Subsequent revisions of the product could each be managed with their own milestones.
It is helpful to name each milestone with a prefix such as ‘M1’, ‘M2’, etc, to make it easy to refer to a particular milestone by name in conversation.
Most projects should have an additional first milestone (which is created by default on new projects), called something like ‘O1 – Review New Issues’ (the ‘O’ prefix is used to indicates that the milestone represents an ongoing activity). New issues with topics relating to the project can be configured to be added automatically to such a milestone, ready for review and potential scheduling by the project’s manager.
If the project is to be live (that is, it is to be used straight away), ensure that at least one milestone is marked as current. If you have kept the default ‘O1 – Review New Issues’ milestone, that milestone at least should be current, otherwise the tasks of any new issues added to it will not automatically be scheduled for completion by the appropriate task assignees.
For some projects, it might be helpful to have an additional, last, milestone, named ‘X1 – Deferred Issues’. For convenience, a milestone with this name is automatically added to new projects. Any issues representing good suggestions or ideas for the future can be moved here, out of the way of the main project plan, but safely kept so that they are not forgotten. It is recommended that deferred issues be placed into the ‘Deferred’ state. This state is inactive in the default Ketura database, so deferred issues are considered by Ketura to be complete, and will not therefore add to the length of the project.
Allocate users’s time to projects, as appropriate: global Users tab > Allocation calendars tab.
Various system lists
If the default issue severities (‘Critical’, ‘Important’, ‘Minor’) are insufficient for your organization, modify them or create new severities as appropriate.
To view issue severities: global System tab > Administration areas tab > Manage Global Issue Settings link > Severities tab.
Each issue that is created will be given a severity, which describes how important the issue is to the person experience the problem (or making the request) that resulted in the issue being created. Note that the severity is for information only, and does not necessarily affect when a manager might schedule an issue to be resolved.
Likewise, ensure that the available issue types are appropriate for your organization.
To view types: global System tab > Administration areas tab > Manage Global Issue Settings link > Types tab.
The type identifies what sort of issue is being recorded. Ketura comes with a set of default types that cover common scenarios.
One important use of the type is to specify initial (template) text for issues of that type. This template text can be used, for example, to prompt the person creating an issue for relevant information.
Create appropriate contact types.
To view contact types: global System tab > Administration areas tab > Manage System Settings link > Contact types tab.
Contacts can be created and associated with issues. This makes it easy, for example, to contact the people interested in a particular issue when it is resolved. Contact types provide a way to categorize contacts (‘Employees’, ‘Customers’, etc).
Issue topics and workflow (optional)
Create topics to cover all of the things which your organization will want to file issues about.
To view topics: global System tab > Administration areas tab > Manage Global Issue Settings link > Topics tab.
A topic identifies what an issue is about, and serves as a way to categorize issues. What happens to an issue from the time it is created is also determined by the workflow (see Ketura Tour Step 8: Workflow) configured for its topic. A good way to decide what topics should be created is to consider what your organization will want to file issues about. Those things will be candidates for being topics.
Ketura makes available management information for each topic, making it easy to see how much work has been undertaken on a topic, by whom, and at what cost over any particular period of time. Consequently, topics provide a means for your organization to see how much time it is spending on particular types of activity, as well as on particular projects and milestones. When deciding which topics should be created, it is therefore useful to think about the types of activity that your organization might wish to analyze distinctly from projects and milestones.
For each topic, ensure that an appropriate task set exists containing appropriate tasks to be automatically added to new issues of that topic.
To manage task sets: global System tab > Administration areas tab > Manage Workflow and Task Sets link.
Typically, a task set intended to be added automatically to new issues simply needs a single task to ‘Review new issue’. That task should be assigned to the particular person who is responsible for reviewing new issues and deciding what to do with them. This person will usually be the relevant project manager (of the project to whose ‘O1 – Review New Issues’ milestone new issues of the topic will be added).
The default Ketura database has a default task set ‘Tasks added automatically to new issues’, with a single task ‘Review new issue’. That’s a good starting point, but the task in that task set is assigned to the ‘admin’ user by default, and is therefore unlikely to be suitable as-is for some or all of your topics.
Configure each topic so that new issues of that topic have the appropriate ‘Review new issue’ task set added to them.
To configure the task set added to new issues of a particular topic: global System tab > Administration areas tab > Manage Workflow and Task Sets link > Workflow tab > Configure Workflow link for the topic > State behaviour tab > Add Tasks From Task Set dropdown for the ‘New’ state.
Configure each topic so that new issues belonging to that topic are placed automatically in the ‘O1 – Review New Issues’ milestone of an appropriate project.
To configure the milestone to which issues of a particular topic are added: global System tab > Administration areas tab > Manage Workflow and Task Sets link > Workflow tab > Configure Workflow link for the topic > New issues tab > Automatically add new issues to milestone dropdown.
Configure the various states allowable issue states that are appropriate for your organization.
To configure states: global System tab > Administration areas tab > Manage Global Issue Settings link > States tab.
States are an important component of workflow. The issues states configured in the default Ketura database might well be sufficient for your organization’s needs. For more information, see Ketura Tour Step 8: Workflow
If you wish to enforce a more sophisticated workflow for any topics, do so now on the Issue state transitions and State behaviour tabs at: global System tab > Administration areas tab > Manage Workflow and Task Sets link > Workflow tab > Configure Workflow link for the issue topic.
Additional task sets, which might be necessary for your desired workflow, can be created at: global System tab > Administration areas tab > Manage Workflow and Task Sets link.
More information about workflow is available in Ketura Tour Step 8: Workflow.
Create new issues for any small-scale goals that are currently known.
To create a new issue: global Home tab > New Issue link (top right corner).
Add tasks to each issue, assign them to appropriate users, and place issues in relevant project milestones.
The fastest way to reschedule an issue is to use the Reschedule issue section on the Schedule tab of the issue’s page.
To take maximum advantage of the reschedule issue capability, it helps to have a number of pre-canned task sets representing typical sequences of tasks that need to be completed to resolve common types of issue.