Manager SE 8.5.1 WIP Screen Enhancements – Now Have it Even More Your Way

The Work-In-Progress screen has always been very important to Manager SE users. When not working on a specific customer’s repair order, service advisors typically have this WIP screen at the ready, serving as the control tower for a tracking overview of the status of repair work within the shop’s current business.

Users have enjoyed customizing their screens by re-sorting and re-sizing columns to personal taste through simple drag-and-drop steps. The Display option filters the types of records displayed to allow different views per job description. These changes are stored to User profiles for recall from any Manager SE workstation PC.

We made it possible to edit Repair Order data directly from the WIP screen; these fields include Written By (service advisor), Labor Technician, Status & Location. That saved users having to take it to the Order screen to make changes. As new Mitchell 1 products such as ProSpect MPI (inspections) and MessageCenter texting became available, new columns were added for real-time display of inspections progress and customer text messages respectively.

More recently, we offered the ability to color code the order Status entries to make it easier to understand at a glance. Users can choose from a wide array of colors for background and text color itself to stand out as appropriate. We also introduced Status Mapping to keep the order Status in sync with the customer’s appointment state. It serves as an automation to keep everything in line and provide opportunities such as prompting customers if an appointment is missed.

With Manager SE 8.5.1 we have taken the Work-In-Progress screen a few more steps ahead of all previous versions. The grid that all these order lines display on has been replaced with an all new version with some amazing capabilities. To be sure, it looks very similar to the old one as it makes sense to keep familiar strengths while enhancing the possibilities.

Let’s start with the new appearance options first. Traditionally we have offered white or yellow background options. By request we have added a Dark Theme option to the menu.

The range of available colors for order lines has also been greatly expanded:

The WIP Grid Appearance window also includes a new ADJUST FONT option to access settings to control text size. Users may select from 8.5 to 14 font size. We have also included a Bold Text option as well. NOTE: It may be necessary to experiment with your font size settings to confirm your text still fits within fields on Manager SE screens.

Next, we have the new Columns button along the bottom of the WIP screen. This will open a box where users can drag columns they don’t use and wish to remove from their WIP screen display. If you wish to restore any of those removed columns, click on the Columns button again and drag the desired column(s) out of the Customization box.

NOTE: The Display Margin checkbox in Configurations > Shop Data > Screen View has been eliminated. Margin will now just be another column decision here.

That brings us to the additional properties gained by the switch to the new WIP screen grid. Technically, this is similar to the grid that we used to build our Scheduler. There are a number of features users gain over the previous WIP grid.

Users have been able to select a Search mode by right-clicking on a column header (name of column) and then entering what they’re searching for based on column selected. Manager SE 8.5.1 supports Ctrl + F search that will search the entire WIP screen for your search term. It can be a complete or partial phrase where matches may occur in multiple columns. Click the X on the right to run a new search or click the X on the left side to close the Search window.

Next to each column header, there is a tiny glyph (golf tee icon) that opens a dialog box with display filter options. You might already be familiar with from using the Scheduler. You have checkbox options to display certain records (Customer names in this example) or switch to Text Filters where records are displayed.


When you right-click on a column header in Manager SE 8.5.1, users will see an expanded menu of options. Take some time to look these over and see how you might apply them. I next want to share an exciting option that this new grid makes possible.  I’m selecting the Group by The Column option on ‘Written By’ column to demonstrate.


By clicking the triangle next to WrittenBy: <name> the repair orders are now grouped by the service writer and will not be changed by any WIP column sorts as it would’ve in the past. One service advisor’s list can even stay closed entirely.

NOTE: Any existing column sorting within this display can still be used to temporarily resort the WIP screen by any column. This will affect display of order lines under all service advisors.

Taking the Group by Column option a step further, let’s right-click on the column header for Status.


So now the Service Advisor has his reports grouped by status. This is just one of many groupings made possible by the new Group By This Column option. We encourage you to experiment to see what works best in your shop operation.

If you create a grouping that’s not going to work for you and you need to revert back to the standard WIP view, you can do that with these steps:

  1. Right click on any column header and select the Show Group by Box option from the menu. The Group By Box displays the grouping options that were selected to create this WIP display.

  1. Right-click inside Group by Box area.  select Clear Grouping option

Your Work-In-Progress screen is returned to the standard format view.

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About the Author

Tim McDonnell

Tim McDonnell first joined Mitchell 1 in 1985 and is a senior product marketing manager for Manager SE. He has experience with various Mitchell 1 products and is the company’s primary media developer for product training assets and a subject matter expert in shop management software and other Mitchell 1 products. He also served as the Vice-Chair of the AMI Board of Trustees from 2009-2015. He is also the “voice of Mitchell 1” – you’ll hear him on the recorded message when you call the Mitchell 1 office.