FAQ.

Q: Can the Bowline modules be implemented separately?
A: Bowline Module A can be run separately to provide enhanced course and resource planning functionality that includes graphical support. Bowline Module B can be used to enhance Module A if you require a detailed course schedule and resource planning tool that also enables you to map individual subjects. Module C enables you to assign grades for the subjects or instructional units that participants have taken. You require Modules A and B to run Module C. For Module D you need Bowline Module A. You can also implement various combinations of Modules A, B, C and D depending on which planning functions you require.

Q: How long does it take to implement Bowline? ?
A:That depends on which modules you want to run. Implementation of module A usually takes one to two man days. When you implement module A, you configure the location hierarchy and composite resources.
Implementation of module B can take three to four weeks. When you implement module B, you convert delivery methods, create knowledge areas and subjects (instructional unit types) and assign them to course types, and create schedule patterns (instructional schedule models).
Implementation of module C takes one week on average and depends on the number of rules, that is, evaluation scales, examination and grading rules you want to create.
Implementation of module D typically takes one week. When you implement module D, you set up rooms and accommodation structures. If you use Marline to create accommodation structures, you can cut the implementation time in half or more.

Q: How can I map pooled resources?
A: Pooled resources are resources that are shared by multiple course locations. Such resources can be mapped with Bowline Module A which also provides graphical tools to support planning. You can map pooled resource in two different ways:

  1. You create a course location at a hierarchical level that is higher than that of the training facilities, and then assign the pooled resources to this location. These resources can then be reserved for all the lower-level training facilities during course planning.
  2. You assign the pooled resources to multiple course locations (= training facilities)  (Note: You may need to adjust the time constraint). The assigned resources can now be reserved for each of these training facilities.

Q: Can I display instructors in the Dynamic Resource Menu so that they are grouped by the courses and subjects that have been assigned to them?
A: With Bowline Module A, you can group instructors by course and subject and display them in the resource menu. The Bowline resource menu has been designed with this requirement in mind. You must first create the resource type “instructor XY” for every course type you have, and then assign the instructors directly to this resource type (via relationship A020). When doing this, you must delete the setting for alternative resource search in the resource type’s availability indicator record, and link the resource type to the course types and instructional unit types. The instructors are now be grouped by the assigned resource types in the Bowline resource menu. They are also displayed in all of the subjects and course types to which they are assigned.

Q: We have large rooms that can be divided into a number of smaller rooms with partition walls. Will Bowline allow me to schedule the small rooms and (large) room individually?
A: Yes. Bowline Module A enables you to create what we call a composite or combined resource. When you assign rooms to courses and subjects in Bowline, you can either reserve the entire large room or the single smaller rooms.

Q: How can I define days without instruction if I am not authorized to maintain the factory calendars of the course locations?
A: Bowline Module A provides a special infotype that you can use to define days without instruction for specific course locations (object type F). These days without instruction are displayed in the Bowline Planning Table together with the public holidays and days off defined in the factory calendar.

Q: Can I define specific resource non-availability times to be taken into account in resource planning, for example for vacation or room closure due to maintenance?
A: In the standard SAP® Learning Solution system, you can define the non-availability of all resources except instructors on a day-by-day basis; you do this by locking the resource. Bowline Module A offers enhanced functions for non-availability times: With Bowline, you can lock resources of every type, including rooms, instructors and any type of equipment, exactly to the minute. You can inform other users why a lock has been set by entering a lock reason.

Q: Can I schedule courses with different subjects by the hour and display them in timetable format?
A: Yes, with Bowline Module B you can divide courses into different subjects. You can create subjects in the Bowline Graphical Planning Table specifying their times to the minute, and display them in timetable format.

Q: I would like to assign different instructors and rooms to different subjects. How can I do this?
A: You first define a specific resource requirement for every subject. Then you can reserve or schedule these resources for each subject exactly to the minute based on the given course schedule. If there is a shortage of a specific resource, you can display a resource overview for this resource and reschedule times or subjects as required. This may be necessary if an essential resource, like a math instructor, only has a limited teaching capacity.

Q: I would like to display different subjects in different colors. How can I do this?
A: For each course type you must first create an “instructional schedule model” that serves as a training schedule template. You can then assign a color of your choice to each subject in the instructional schedule model.

Q: The resource requirements are displayed in the course or in the classes shown in the training schedule. Can I book more resources than were originally defined in the resource requirements?
A: Yes, you can assign additional resources to a course using the new “assign temporary resources” function.

Q: Can I conclude a subject with an exam, and save and print participant grades?
A: With Bowline Module C, you can define grading rules for a course. Then in the Planning Table, you can then flag specific instructional units as an exam and grade them according to the grading rules you have defined for the course. You can transfer the grades of course participants to master data.

Q: How can Bowline assist me in managing my accommodations and in booking rooms for course participants?
A: Bowline Module D enables you to map user owned and operated accommodations and the facilities in each room. You can allocate the rooms in such accommodations to the participants that have been booked for a course. You can automatically assign rooms to persons who are defined as participants and instructors, and allow for specific facility preferences. You can also enter individual arrival and departure dates and have the system take these dates into account when you allocate rooms. Should individual rooms or all the rooms on a corridor or floor be closed for renovation or maintenance, you can lock them for processing exactly to the minute, and enter a reason for this.