Best Practices: Admin Change Management

Intro

As your business grows and changes, the day will come when your Backbone account configuration must change, too!  For example, you may expand into a different Product Category, start purchasing from a new Supplier, or change your seasonal delivery cadence.  It takes a little care to adjust the Taxonomy and Custom Fields which house your essential Product Development data as your business evolves, but Admin-level users have all the tools they need to execute these changes themselves.

Taxonomy Field Changes

Product Taxonomy

Product Taxonomy fields like Division, Category, Season and Year are the core of the Backbone filtering and reporting model - hardwired dropdown menus which appear on every account.  Due to their universal structure, you cannot change the name of these dropdowns, but you can manage the different options they contain.  

Some Product Taxonomy changes are very simple to make - like adding a brand new option, or changing the spelling on an existing option.  Other changes are more nuanced and require a bit more work to maintain data integrity.  Bear in mind that, beyond just Products, you may have Components, Blocks, Construction Details, Palettes or BOM Templates linked to your Product Taxonomy options.  Changes made to Product Taxonomy configuration can affect all these different items, but the biggest impact will be on your Products.  See below best practices for a number of different configuration changes.

Adding a new Division, Category, Season or Year
  • Click to open the correct Taxonomy Section (Division, Season, Year, etc.) from within your Admin module
  • Click the Add Icon in the bottom right corner and key in your new option
  • If you’re adding a new Product Category, remember you can add it as a Parent or as a Child
    • Click the Add Icon at the bottom right corner in the Category section to create a new Parent Category
    • Hover over an existing Category and click the Add Icon which appears to create a new Child Category nested within that Parent
    • Note you may need to mark the new Product Category for inclusion on certain pre-existing Custom Fields (see here for further details)
Editing Existing Divisions, Categories, Seasons or Years
  • Edits to existing Product Taxonomy options flow dynamically from your Admin panel to update every Product linked to that Taxonomy
  • Hover over an existing option in any Product Taxonomy section and click the Edit Icon which appears to update it
Removing a Division, Category, Season or Year
  • Generate an Item Master that’s Live Linked to the Taxonomy option you’d like to remove
  • Download and save a copy of your Item Master before you begin executing changes, so you have it to refer back to in case of mistakes
  • Best practice is to reassign every Product linked to this Taxonomy option to another option before you remove it
    • Taking this step ensures that you’ll continue being able to filter to the relevant Products based on your Taxonomy
    • If you simply remove the option, associated Products revert to the unselected state on this Field
  • Navigate back to the Taxonomy section of the Admin panel, and hover over the Taxonomy option you’d like to eliminate
  • Click the Trash Can Icon that appears and then select Unlink Items in the pop-up modal
Splitting or Consolidating Divisions, Categories, Seasons or Years
  • If it doesn’t already exist, add the new Taxonomy option(s) you’d like to link your Products to, following the steps above
  • Generate an Item Master which includes the whole scope of Products you’re splitting or consolidating
    • Live Linking the report off the relevant field(s) is often the quickest way to achieve this:
      • If you’re splitting one Taxonomy option into multiple options, you can Live Link your IM off the original option
      • If you’re consolidating multiple Taxonomy option into one option, you can Live Link your IM off the original option(s)
      • If you’re executing a reallocation of multiple Product Taxonomies, you may wish to generate a broader report by linking off of any required field (try Brand, if applicable!)
    • Download and save a copy of your Item Master before you begin executing changes, so you have it to refer back to in case of mistakes
  • Work your way down the Item Master, reassigning each Product to its new Taxonomy option
    • It may make sense to generate multiple IMs to break up the reallocation work into more manageable chunks
  • Upon completing your edits, refresh or run a new report to ensure no Products remain allocated to a Taxonomy option you’re planning to eliminate
  • Navigate back to the Taxonomy section of the Admin panel, and hover over the Taxonomy option you’d like to eliminate
  • Click the Trash Can Icon that appears and then select Unlink Items in the pop-up modal
Changes to Development Stages
  • Development Stages are different from other Product Taxonomy fields as they connect to Products’ Samples Tabs, Size Spec Measure Modes and Feedback & Revisions - and do not connect to the Product Summary
  • If you remove a Development Stage, Measure Mode data associated to that Stage remains in place, linked Samples retain the Name of the old Stage, and any Feedback & Revisions that were organized by the Stage are moved to the “Uncategorized” section
  • Edits to an existing Development Stage flow dynamically from your Admin panel to update everywhere the Stage is in use; newly added Development Stages can be used for go forward

Component Taxonomy

Backbone’s hardwired Component Taxonomy fields are more limited than the Product Taxonomy fields.  Changing the Component Type configuration is similar to changing the Product Category configuration, whereas changing the UOM configuration is a bit simpler.

Adding a new Component Type
  • Click to open the correct section from within your Admin window
  • You can add your new Component Type as a Parent or as a Child:
    • Click the Add Icon at the bottom right corner in the Component Type section to create a new Parent Type
    • Hover over an existing Type and click the Add Icon which appears to create a new Child Type nested within that Parent
  • Note you may need to mark the new Component Type for inclusion on certain pre-existing Custom Fields (see more here)
Editing Existing Component Types
  • Edits to existing Component Type options flow dynamically from your Admin panel to update every Component linked to that Type
  • Hover over an existing option in any and click the Edit Icon which appears to update it
Removing a Component Type
  • Generate an Item Master that’s Live Linked to the Type option you’d like to remove
  • Download and save a copy of your Item Master before you begin executing changes, so you have it to refer back to in case of mistakes
  • Reassign every Component linked to this Type option to another option before you remove it - deleting the Type deletes any Component which is still associated with it!
  • After you’ve reassigned your Components, navigate back to the Taxonomy section of the Admin panel, and hover over the Type you’d like to eliminate
  • Click the Trash Can Icon that appears and confirm deletion in the pop-up modal
Splitting or Consolidating Component Types
  • If it doesn’t already exist, add the new Type option(s) you’d like to link your Components to, following the steps above
  • Generate an Item Master which includes the whole scope of Components you’re splitting or consolidating
    • Live Linking the report off the relevant field(s) is often the quickest way to achieve this:
      • If you’re splitting one Type into multiple Types, you can Live Link your IM off the original Type
      • If you’re consolidating multiple Types into one Type, you can Live Link your IM off the original Types
      • If you’re executing a reallocation of multiple Types, you may wish to generate a broader report by linking off of any required field
    • Download and save a copy of your Item Master before you begin executing changes, so you have it to refer back to in case of mistakes
  • Work your way down the Item Master, reassigning each Component to its new Type
    • It may make sense to generate multiple IMs to break up the reallocation work into more manageable chunks
  • Upon completing your edits, refresh or run a new report to ensure no Components remain allocated to a Type you’re planning to eliminate
  • Navigate back to the Taxonomy section of the Admin panel, and hover over the Type option you’d like to eliminate
  • Click the Trash Can Icon that appears and confirm deletion in the pop-up modal
Changes to Units of Measure
  • The Unit of Measure for each Component is set at the Summary level, by the Price field; it flows from there to associated Component Variants, BOMs, Cost Sheets and Utilization Reports
  • If you remove a Unit of Measure option, Components assigned to that UOM are reverted to the unselected state, as are their associated Variants, BOMs, etc.
  • Edits to an existing Unit of Measure flow dynamically from your Admin panel to update everywhere the UOM is in use; newly added UOMs can be used for go forward

Custom Field Changes

Unlike Taxonomy fields, which are hardwired and appear on every Backbone account, Custom Fields are completely defined by the user.  You can manage the name of the field, its format, and any options it contains, if applicable.

Adding or Removing a Custom Field
  • Adding a new Custom Field is okay at any time, it won’t affect your existing data
  • If you need to remove an existing Custom Field, first generate an Item Master which includes the whole scope of affected Products or Components
    • If the Custom Field you want to remove happens to be a filterable field, you can Live Link your IM off of it to capture this scope
    • If the Custom Field you’re changing isn’t filterable, you won’t be able to Live Link to it, so best practice is to  generate the IM by linking off of any other required field
    • Download and save a copy of your Item Master before you begin executing changes, so you have it to refer back to in case of mistakes
  • Work your way down the Item Master, reviewing the data for the Custom Field you wish to remove on each Product/Component 
    • If there’s data in the Field which you wish to preserve, move it to a different Field or elsewhere in the Product/Component Record
  • Upon completing your edits, navigate back to the Control Panel section of the Admin module, and click the checkbox next to the Custom Field
  • Click the Delete Icon in the Bulk Actions Toolbar at the top of the page, and click Unlink Items in the pop-up modal
Changing a Custom Field Name
  • Navigate to the Control Panel section within the Admin module
  • Click the Edit Icon to the right of any Custom Field
  • Update the Name field at the top of the Custom Field modal and click Save
  • The new name flows dynamically from the Admin panel to every item that uses the Custom Field
Changing a Custom Field Type
  • Best practice is to avoid changing a Custom Field’s Type after the field is in use
  • Changing a Field Type to one that has different validation rules may result in data loss or data integrity issues, per examples below:
    • Changing a Field from an Dropdown Menu to a Date will remove any data selected on the Dropdown prior to the change
    • Changing an Input Field to a Checkbox will remove the input data and may cause the Checkbox to be checked erroneously
  • If you need to change a Custom Field Type, first generate an Item Master which includes the whole scope of affected Products or Components
    • If the Custom Field you want to change happens to be a filterable field, you can Live Link your IM off of it to capture this scope
    • If the Custom Field you’re changing isn’t filterable, you won’t be able to Live Link to it, so best practice is to  generate the IM by linking off of any other required field
    • It may make sense to generate multiple IMs to break up the reallocation work into more manageable chunks
    • Download and save a copy of your Item Master before you begin executing changes, so you have it to refer back to in case of mistakes
  • Work your way down the Item Master, reviewing the data for the changing Custom Field on each Product/Component 
    • If there’s data in the Field which you wish to preserve, move it to a different Field or elsewhere in the Product/Component Record
  • Upon completing your edits, navigate back to the Control Panel section of the Admin module, and click the Edit icon next to the Custom Field
  • Change the Field Type and click Save
Changing other Custom Field Attributes
  • Do not change the Section (Product, Component or BOM) of a Custom Field that’s already in use, or you may lose crucial data
  • Changing a Custom Field from Required to Not Required (or vice versa) is okay at any time, it won’t affect your existing data
  • Changing a Custom Field from Available on Summary Page to Not Available on Summary Page (or vice versa) is okay at any time.  It won’t affect your existing data, you simply have to (or are able to) access the data in a new location after the change.
  • Adding a Custom Field to a new Product Category or Component Type can be done at any time, it won’t affect your existing data
  • Removing a Custom Field from a given Product Category or Component Type should be done carefully, as data entered in this Field prior to the change could be lost
    • Best practice is to first create an Item Master report by live linking to the Category/Type in question
    • Add the relevant Custom Field to the IM, and download/save a copy before you begin executing changes, so you have it to refer back to in case of mistakes
    • Work your way down the Item Master, looking for data that’s captured in the Custom Field you’re deactivating for this Category/Type
    • If there’s data which you wish to preserve, move it to a different Field or elsewhere in the Product/Component Record
  • Upon completing your edits, navigate back to the Control Panel section of the Admin module, and click the Edit Icon next to the Custom Field
  • Uncheck the Category/Type you wish to deactivate and click Save
  • Note that when you add a new Category or Type in the Taxonomy section of the Admin panel, you may need to adjust your pre-existing Custom Fields so they appear on Products/Components linked to the new Category/Type (see more here)
Changing Values for Dropdown Menu Custom Fields
  • Adding a new Dropdown Menu Value to a Custom Field is okay at any time, it won’t affect your existing data
    • Type the new Option in the Add Option field of the Custom Field Edit modal and hit enter
    • Use the 6-dot handles next to your Dropdown Values to rearrange them in a custom order, or click the Sort Asc Order button to put them in alphanumeric order
  • Click the text of any existing Dropdown Menu Value to edit it
    • Changes to Menu Values flow dynamically from the Admin panel to every item that uses the Value
  • If you remove a Dropdown Menu Value, Products or Components using the Value will be changed to the unselected state for this Field
    • Best practice when removing Values is to first generate an Item Master by Live Linking to the changing Field, to capture the scope of affected items
    • Download and save a copy of your Item Master before you begin executing changes, so you have it to refer back to in case of mistakes
  • Work your way down the Item Master, reviewing where the Value you wish to remove is in use
    • If there’s data which you wish to preserve, move it to a different Field or elsewhere in the Product/Component Record
  • Upon completing your edits, navigate back to the Control Panel section of the Admin module, and click the Edit Icon next to the Custom Field
  • Click the Delete Icon next to the Value you wish to remove, confirm in the alert prompt, and then click Save on the Edit Custom Field modal

Still need help? Contact Us Contact Us