Make it easier for the user to manage Planner tasks by giving access to tasks directly from Outlook.
iPlanner Pro is making the Office 365 Planner a useful tool. Office 365 Planner offers people a simple and highly visual way to organize teamwork. Planner makes it easy for your team to create new plans, organize and assign tasks, share files, chat about what you’re working on, and get updates on progress.
Office 365 Planner is with no doubt a great tool, but we wanted to make it even better. We wanted to make it more accessible and easy to work with for the user and provide a much better overview for the project manager. However, whether you are a user or a project manager you must go online to the Planner for managing your own and other tasks. Besides that, we all know that many of the tasks we get are often initiated from an e-mail.
iPlanner Pro extend the Office experience by providing contextual functionality that users can access their tasks within Outlook.
What it does
Extending the value of Office 365 Planner and empowering people to achieve even more with Office 365 Planner. A very simple Outlook Add-in with an extreme high value to users.
iPlanner Pro enables users to be more efficient and get more done directly from Outlook. Getting many of our tasks from mails the sender expect the problem to be solved immediately. IPlanner Pro enables you to create the task when you get it where you get it at any time on any device with Outlook. Assign it and solve it all directly from Outlook.
Besides bringing task to the hand of the user we wanted to make the user and the project manager even more productive. Extending the functionality of the Planner by allowing users to create a task based on an e-mail and, in addition to save it on the Online Planner you can now save a task into your calendar and the group calendar.
iPlanner Pro provide you with:
Manage Planner Tasks
- Display tasks information from the Online Planner
- Edit a tasks
- Moved at task to another Plan
- Post a comment on a task
- Create a task from Outlook in the Online Planner
- Create reoccurring tasks
- Attach the selected mail to a task
- Attach a document/file from the selected mail
- Copy the subject and body text to the task
- Save into the users calendar and/or the group calendar
- Upload a file from local hard drive or from your phone
- Assign a task to a group member
- Assign to multiple people
- Create a checklist
- Add to a category
- Todays tasks
- Ascending & Descending
- See all your tasks
- Filter your tasks by Plan
- Filter by date
- Filter by Bucket
- Search for a task
- Planner Hub
iPlanner Pro is a true Microsoft Office 365 extension. No local installation. Deploy in Office 365 and iPlanner Pro will be available in Outlook on all devices.
How I built it
iPlanner Pro is an Outlook Add-in that extend Microsoft Planner into the users Outlook client. iPlanner Pro is a true Office add-in designed using the Microsoft Office 365 Security model. As all Office Add-ins it contains of a manifest file that defines various settings, including how the add-in integrates with Office clients and to enable IOS and Android availability. The web application and service are hosted on iGlobe’s Microsoft Azure. iPlanner Pro is using the Authentication model and make sure the user has a valid token. Using the Microsoft Graph API iPlanner Pro is interacting with several services on Office 365. iPlanner Pro is an extremely rich Add-in that requires permission using Microsoft Graph to, Planner, Groups, SharePoint, Exchange. Specially Office 365 Groups requires extensive permission.
Office Add-ins must conform to the design guidelines for Office Store Add-ins – iPlanner Pro is built using Office UI Fabric.
Data is not saved. We don’t save data on our server. (we don’t have access or permission). No data are saved locally on any PC. It is an Office add-in that is deployed online. iPlanner Pro will be available on all the user’s devices where the users have a valid Office 365 account with the proper permission given by the Global administrator.
Where’s the data held?
Office 365 splits plan data across a number of repositories. The plan metadata is held in an (your) Azure-based service while the comments for tasks within a plan are stored in the Exchange Online mailbox for the Office 365 Group associated with the plan. Documents and other attachments are held in the SharePoint Online document library belonging to the same Office 365 Group.
This means all data are in the organisations own Office 365 environment.
The GDPR and Security are key issues. We relay 100% on Microsoft and are following 100% the requirements they set. We believe iPlanner Pro to be GDPR ready.
Challenges I ran into
Chanlanges I would like to mention here
- Specially enterprise organization are not familiar with the difference between Office Add-ins and COM/VSTO add-ins. Office Add-ins have a huge advantage in compare to COM/VSTO Add-ins.
- Not many are familiar with the Add-in security model and the requirement of an Office 365 Global administrator having to give consent. They simply haven't been told that this is a key element in providing them the security they want.
- The Planner API is not updated fast enough in regards of what we want to develop :-)
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
- iPlanner Pro is used all over the World
- The architecture of the Add-in and the fact that we use Graph and Fabric UI makes it easier for us to act fast when Microsoft update the API allowing us to continuously add more features for our user.
What's next for iPlanner Pro Outlook Add-in
We are currently waiting for an API update that will allow us to improve performance of the Add-in