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Bugs, enhancements, and updates – steady progress in ZIMS

Hello! I’m Rachel Thompson, product owner of the Production Support and Minor Enhancement team. 
As is true with many powerful software applications, ZIMS continues to grow and improve. Within Species360 (formerly ISIS), our development teams actively create new functionalities to serve our global membership. While some team members are building new content, other team members are simultaneously working to fix bugs and add minor enhancements on existing functionality, based on member input.

Our support staff also play an active role, reporting bugs identified by members and following up after they have been fixed. If you see something in ZIMS that does not work as expected, make sure you report it to your Species360 member support representative! We also have a list of enhancement ideas that have been identified by members for future development, via the “Suggest Feature” tool within ZIMS. We welcome that feedback! 
Our Production Support team may be small, but they are mighty! The team completed six valuable enhancements since our last major release in January: 

  • When an animal transfers to a new institution, there are often identifiers such as transponders, tattoos, house names, etc. that may continue to be used upon arrival. The receiving institution can “Accept as local identifier” to quickly add this information to their local active identifier list.
  • The “Animals Available” grid in My Institution will now display the local ID.
  • When adding a new staff member to your institution, you can now capture an email address on the “add new staff’ screen.
  • Aquatic enclosure treatment screens received changes to make them more consistent with other treatment types.
  • ZIMS now creates a pending transaction for owner institutions when a death is recorded by an institution holding an animal on loan or lease. Previously, ZIMS created a post office message and this enhancement makes the transactions more visible.
  • Currently, when adding Maintenance to an Enclosure, Life Support, or Component there is an “Apply to all Occupants” check box related to the details text box. If you check this box and the details field is blank, no data is recorded. However this can be confusing, so this check box will be disabled until data is entered in the details box.This enhancement is complete, but being held until our next major release since it touches several screens and needs to be tested multiple ways prior to release.

The team has fixed and released 27 bugs in July 2016 and 190 total since January 1, 2016. 
Bugs are prioritized when they come in and we address them in order of urgency. We make an effort to track which part of the application each bug relates to. The breakdown for July was:

  • 5 issues with medical components (18 for all of 2016)
  • 7 issues with husbandry components (70 for all of 2016)
  • 3 issues with reports (22 for all of 2016)
  • 2 issues with aquatic components (7 for all of 2016)

The remainder were general application bugs. 
Species 360 keeps working to maintain and improve ZIMS. Stay tuned for future updates! 

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