OnePager 6.0: Alternate Unique IDs

Our final installment in the review of what’s new in OnePager 6.0 covers new flexibility in the unique ID field for Microsoft Project and Project Server. OnePager Pro has traditionally used the Microsoft Project Unique ID or the Project Server/Project Online GUID to uniquely identify tasks in your report. Unique IDs help streamline updates, preserve custom formatting, and a lot more.

While most OnePager Pro users have done just fine with the default Unique ID or GUID options, some more advanced users have needed more flexibility to define a custom field for their unique IDs. OnePager Pro now lets users select any text field as a unique ID.

If you’re a OnePager Express user for Excel, there’s nothing new to see here, because OnePager Express has supported the concept of custom unique IDs for many, many years. OnePager Pro for Project now supports this same flexibility.

IMPORTANT: Before going any further, we should reiterate that the vast majority of users are perfectly fine using GUID or Unique ID and should continue to use the defaults. Please check with OnePager Support if you are unsure as to whether you’d benefit from a custom unique ID, and we’ll help you decide whether changing your IDs makes sense.

To set up a custom unique ID, you will want to configure it in one of two places:

Templates > Field Mappings:

Or, by checking the Show Field Mappings box on the import wizard as you’re creating a new report:

You can set your custom unique ID in either place. No need to do it twice.

When selecting a custom unique ID, please keep the following guidelines in mind:

  • The values in the ID field must be completely unique across your entire project plan. You may not have the same ID value in the same project plan more than once. If the same value appears twice, it’s not unique and you shouldn’t use it. If you are reporting on multiple projects, your IDs need to be unique across those multiple project plans as well.
  • Each ID must be mapped consistently to the same task. For example, if your “Launch” milestone is ID #2, it needs to remain ID #2. If the ID for “Launch” changes from #2 to #47, you will have issues updating the “Launch” task in the future due to the inconsistency.
  • While you can choose any text field as your alternate unique ID field initially, you may not change the ID in your report to something different later on. So, if you decide to use “WBS” as your ID field when you first create a report, you cannot switch your report’s ID to “Text22” in the future. You would have to create a new report with the ID based on “Text 22”.

If you are an expert Microsoft Project or Project Server user and have been aching for a way to customize your unique IDs, your ship has just come in! If you’re more of a novice, or didn’t even know that OnePager uses a unique ID field, then feel free to file this away for future reference, in case it comes up, but don’t worry about it for now.

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About Safford Black

Safford is a versatile technology professional with a solid history of empowering emerging growth companies in a broad array of industries. His employment history includes energy industry consulting at Quorum Business Solutions, Senior Manager of Business Development and Technical Sales at telecom service aggregator GetConnected, and Vice President of Strategic Partner Management at electronic payment processor IP Commerce. Prior to his tenure as OnePager’s COO, Safford was the company’s Vice President of Marketing and Alliances. Safford holds a BA in Psychology and management from Rice University.

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