The UC development team has been busy over the winter and has put together a major new upgrade for our award winning platforms Hub and Dovetail. On January 23rd we’ll be rolling this out to customers – here’s what we’ve been up to.
If you’re an existing Dovetail customer, there’s some important additional information available for you here.
Hub – one single, central point of interaction
The long term view for Hub has always been that it provided us with a way of enabling interaction with our customers. Our vision was that Hub would be the single central place for all our customers to interact with us online – whatever that interaction meant. While this is a long journey, Hub has taken a major step forward in achieving that vision with this release as we’ve integrated Dovetail into Hub.
Hub as a framework gives us some big advantages:
- Common design – quite simply, it provides one single, familiar interface for anything we deploy. You should be equally comfortable navigating around any part of Hub. On top of that, by having a single interface we can enforce things like accessibility – in Hub we strive for the WCAG AAA rating, although we’re comfortable with hitting AA.
- Multi tier – our position in the channel as a distributor means that we are often several steps away in the channel from the end user of our products. Our customers range greatly in size and capability and we’re always looking for ways to help you get the most out of our relationship. So Hub has been built to allow us to allow you to give your customers access to the functionality in Hub just how you access it. You can represent any mix of direct or indirect including an unlimited number of levels of resellers between you and the end users.
- Brandable – our brand is important to us as it provides the industry with a way of immediately recognising us and the quality and services we bring with us. However, we know that your brand is just as important to you. That’s why we’ve build Hub so that when you provide your customers with access to Hub, you can set it up to match your brand.
With this release, we’re bringing our award-winning provisioning and device management system, Dovetail, into Hub. You guys love Dovetail and you’ve been providing plenty of feedback for us so along the way we decided to pick up some of those things you asked for an incorporate them into the release.
One of the common conversations we’ve had with you all has been about how in the first release of Dovetail we focused on providing accurate data and spent a lot of time ensuring that our data collection and calculations were spot on. In this release of Dovetail we’ve started introducing functionality now for visualisation of that information with a focus on actionable insights for our users. We’ve started with our dashboard which, depending on what functions you’ve got enabled in Hub, will display useful information relevant to you.
We develop Hub and Dovetail in-house out of our Technical Centre of Excellence near Newport in South Wales. As a result, one of the strongest differentiators between us and other distributors is that the level of integration we can achieve is second to none. In this release not only are we bringing webstore and Dovetail into the Hub family, providing truly integrated interfaces and management, but through this underlying framework we’re now able to start providing a much deeper level of integration. The first step in this can be seen when you checkout.
If you’re a Dovetail customer and want to buy Dovetail alongside the handsets you’re buying, when you get to the checkout page, you’ll see an option to select Dovetail provisioning. This will allow you to pre-set where these handsets will go in Dovetail and we’ll automatically add the Dovetail subscriptions to your order. After you’ve ordered, once we’ve picked the order, we’ll take the MAC addresses from our fulfilment team and automatically create the devices in the right Organisation and Group that you specified.
Templates for configuration management
Through a number of workshops we held with a number of you, we found that although we had the right idea when we gave Dovetail the ability to create hierarchical configuration templates, the model we created wasn’t quite right for you. As a result, we’ve taken your feedback and rolled out a number of changes and to reflect that, the templates are now called Service Templates.
The key changes are:
- Firmware is no longer configured as part of the Service Template
- Attributes are intelligent and know what make, model, personality and firmware version they’re valid for meaning you can create a single service template for multiple vendors.
- Service Templates are versioned so you can track the changes you make and apply different versions to different groups
One of the most common things you all asked for was the ability to search through Hub. So at the top of every page you’ll now find a search bar which gives you access to:
- Devices (Dovetail only)
- Service templates (Dovetail only)
- Orders (Webstore only)
- Products (Webstore only)
- Groups (Dovetail only)
Powered by Elasticsearch, we’ll be expanding this as we grow Hub to cover other items as well.
The whole Hub system has been built to be as easy to use as possible, but we also recognise that you want to get the job done as quickly as possible. So you’ll now find a button in the bottom right corner of every page in Hub which gives you quick access to an interactive Help system with articles and on some pages, interactive walkthroughs to help you get to grips with the system. If you think there’s something missing – let us know!
As part of making sure we’re providing the best possible service to our customers, we’ve updated our privacy statement with information about some additional third parties that we use:
- Google analytics – this helps provide us a range of information who uses Hub and how they use it
- InlineManual – we collect data on how you use the help system to understand where we could improve Hub
- HotJar – collects information about your usage of Hub
All of these systems collect anonymous data and, where possible, we aggregate it to further remove any potential for personal information. None of this information is sold on and it’s all purely used internally within the development team to understand how you use Hub and where we can improve.
There are many more changes to Hub – in total we’ve added 152 features and fixes to the system. The good news is we’re not stopping there!
Don’t forget, access to Hub and webstore is free and available to all Nuvias UC customers so if you’re not already using Hub then give us a call and we can set you up!