iHRIS Manage and Qualify 3.0: The Long Road to Releasing Software

As I have promised, we are releasing versions 3.0 of iHRIS Manage and iHRIS Qualify this month. We will start by posting new live demos on this website and stable release versions of the code on our Launchpad hosting site. We'll follow that up with complete packages that you can download from this website, which will make it easier to install and try out the software.

Writing information systems is hard and sometimes frustrating work. As soon as a new version comes out, our users are clamoring for new features. We feel like we'll never catch up with the demand. This can be discouraging, until we realize that the systems must be serving a purpose if the users keep wanting more. One thing we have to balance is the need to create software that is general and useful enough for any potential user but can be readily customized for specific settings.

As all software users know, software rarely fits your specific needs out of the box. We knew that there would be different requirements particularly for HR information systems from country to country and even among different facilities. We have striven to make our software easily customizable by the end users, and Version 3.0 builds on this by introducing configurable modules. System administrators can turn off modules they don't need or set custom settings for modules without requiring programming experience. Programmers can write their own modules and easily integrate them into the system. We plan to follow up these improvements with a customized report-building tool and customizable roles; both should be available by summer.

Another big improvement in Version 3.0 is the ability to export data from reports in a variety of formats, including an attractive printable PDF. This will make data much more useful as it can easily be brought into Excel for more intensive analysis or imported into other systems.

We are looking forward to making versions 3.0 of iHRIS Manage and iHRIS Qualify available for you. But even more, we are looking forward to seeing what users will do with the software. We already have local developers in Uganda and Kenya customizing both systems for their own needs. As more developers contribute customizations and modules, our information systems can only improve for everyone. We welcome all contributions. There's a lot that still needs to be done.

If you are interested in contributing to this Open Source development project, please contact us.