Features

All TeamCompanion features documented with detailed description, images and videos.

Working with Work Items

TeamCompanion offers full support for Work Item Management inside Outlook. The embedded enhanced TFS work item form supports a large range of work items related actions. You can add, view, edit and copy work items, manage work item links and add work item attachments.

One of the prerequisites for good project traceability is the creation and maintenance of work item links. You can accomplish all tasks related to linking work items from Outlook, thanks to the built in TeamCompanion’s support for adding a child work item, adding new linked work item(s) and adding links to existing work item(s).

You can easily transform your work items into different Outlook items whereby TeamCompanion automatically keeps track of relationships between them. This allows you to easily track down work items related to such Outlook items.

Add New Work Item

To create a new work item in a particular team project, right-click on it in Navigation Pane and select New Work Item from the context menu. Then choose from the available work item types in the drop down list.

Alternatively, you can right-click on the Work Items node in this project and select New Work Item from the context menu. In this case, the New Work Item dialog box appears, where the referenced team project is already selected in the Server and Project drop downs.

To create a new work item in the default team project, on the TeamCompanion tab, in the General group, click on the New Work Item button. The New Work Item dialog box appears. The default team project is already selected in the Server and Project drop downs

In the New Work Item dialog box, accept the already selected team project or switch to another project. Then choose from the available work item types in the New Work Item Type drop down list.
Tipp: TeamCompanion remembers the work item type you used when you previously created a work item and chooses it for you in this drop down.

Next, the enhanced TFS New Work Item form opens where you can add all needed information and links to your work item. For more information see under Embedded Work Item Form.
Finally, save the new work item to TFS by clicking on the Save or Save and Close button on the embedded toolbar.

Open Work Item(s)

To open a work item or a selection of work items for viewing or editing purposes, select them in the work item query result list and on the Work Item(s)/Query tab, in the Work Items(s) group, click on the Open (Selection) button.
Alternatively, you can right-click on the selection in the list and select the Open action from the context menu. Additionally, each work item opens if you double click on it in the list.

Next, the enhanced TFS Work Item Form opens in a separate window, where you can view and edit all work item details. For more information see under Embedded Work Item Form.
Finally, save your changes to TFS by clicking on the Save or Save and Close button on the embedded toolbar.

Additionally, you can open your work item(s) while working in the Query Editor. Select the work item(s) in the list and click on the Open Work Item button on the embedded toolbar, right-click on the selection and select the Open action from the context menu or double click on a work item in the list.

The fully editable work item form is embedded in the Work Item Preview pane as well. For more information see under Embedded Work Item Form.

Add Child Work Item

Adding a child work item is a very common action while performing various work item management tasks. Therefore TeamCompanion offers a quick way to accomplish it.

Select a work item in the work item query result list and on the Work Item(s)/Query tab, in the Work Items(s) group, click on the Add Child button. Alternatively, you can right-click on the work item in the list and select the Add Child Work Item action from the context menu.

Then choose from the available work item types in the drop down list.

Next, the enhanced TFS New Work Item form opens. The work item fields Title, Area, Iteration and Descriptionare automatically filled with values from the original work item. The created parent-child relationship between the new and the original work item is visible on the All Links tab.
Finally, save the new work item to TFS by clicking on the Save or Save and Close button on the embedded toolbar.

Tipp: For more information see under Embedded Work Item Form.

This feature is also available while previewing your work item form in separate window. Click on the Add Child Work Item button on the embedded toolbar and choose the work item type for the new work item.

Additionally, you can add child work items to the selected work item while working in the Query Editor. Select the desired work item in the list and click on the Add Child Work Item button on the embedded toolbar.

Add New Linked Work Item(s)

Adding a new linked work item in TeamCompanion is quick and simple.

Right-click on a work item in the work item query result list and select the New Linked Work Item action from the context menu.

The Add new Linked Work Item dialog box appears. Here you define the Link Type between the new and the original work item and the Work Item Type of the new work item. Optionally, you can set the Title of the new work item and the link Comment.

Next, the enhanced TFS New Work Item form opens. The Title field is automatically filled if you have defined it in the previous dialog. The created link between the new and the original work item is visible on the All Links tab. No other work item fields are automatically filled.
Define your new linked work item and save it to TFS by clicking on the Save or Save and Close button on the embedded toolbar.

Tipp: For more information see under Embedded Work Item Form.

Additionally, you can add linked work items to your work item(s) while working in the Query Editor. Select the work item(s) in the list and click on the Add Linked Work Item button on the embedded toolbar or right-click on the selection and select the Add Linked Work Item action from the context menu.

To add a new linked work item to more work items at once, select them in a work item query result list and choose the Add Linked Work Item action as described above. In this case, only one new work item will be created and a link of the selected type will be created between the new and all the originally selected work items.

Tipp: When adding a linked work item to more work items at once, you cannot add the newly created work item as a child to selected work items.

This feature is also available while previewing your work item form in separate window. Click on the Add Linked Work Item button on the embedded toolbar and follow the steps as described above.

Link to Existing Work Item(s)

Adding a link to an existing work item in TeamCompanion is quick and simple.

Right-click on a work item in the work item query result list and select the Linked to an Existing Work Item action from the context menu.

The Link to an existing Work Item dialog box appears. Here you first define the future Link Type between work items. Then you either enter a comma separated list of existing Work Item IDs you wish to link to the original work item or browse for them. If you click on the Browse… button, the Select Work Item dialog opens where you can select the desired work items.

Optionally, you can set the link Comment.
Tipp: Depending on the link type selected you will be able to add links to one or more existing work items.

TeamCompanion will then notify you about the result of the performed action.

To add links to more work items at once, select them in a work item query result list and execute the Link to an existing Work Item action as described above. In this case, a link of the selected type will be created between all selected work items and all work item you choose to link.
Tipp: When adding a link to an existing work item to more work items at once, you cannot use the child link type.

Additionally, you can add links to existing work item(s) to your work item(s) while working in the Query Editor. Select the work item(s) in the list and click on the Link to Existing Work Item button on the embedded toolbar or right-click on the selection and select the Link to Existing Work Item action from the context menu.

Create a Copy of a Work Item

Creating a new work item as a copy of an existing work item is a common work item management action, which you can also accomplish using TeamCompanion.

Right-click on a work item in the work item query result list and select the Create Copy of Work Item action from the context menu.

The Copy Work Item dialog box appears. Here you can define in which Team Project the new work item will be created and what will be its Work Item Type.

Next, the enhanced TFS New Work Item form opens. Values for all work item fields are automatically copied from the original work item. Additionally, the History field is marked with a note showing that this work item is a copy of the original work item. On the All Links tab you can find the link of type “Related" created between the original and the new work item.

Finally, save the new work item to TFS by clicking on the Save or Save and Close button on the embedded toolbar.
Tipp: For more information see under Embedded Work Item Form.

This feature is also available while previewing your work item form in separate window. Click on the Create Copy of Work Item button on the embedded toolbar.

Additionally, you can copy an existing work item while working in the Query Editor. Select the work item in the list and click on the Create Copy of Work Item button on the embedded toolbar or right-click on the work item and select the Create Copy of Work Item action from the context menu.

Copy Work Item URL

When you need a reference to a particular work item (for example to add it to a document or an email), TeamCompanion can easily get it for you in form of a hyperlink to its preview in Web Access.

Right-click on a work item in the work item query result list and select the Copy Work Item URL action from the context menu.

A hyperlink to the work item preview in Web Access is copied to clipboard and for your further usage.

Bulk Reassign and Change State Actions

TeamCompanion offers two bulk actions for two common work item management actions. The first is the bulk reassign action, which reassigns the selected work item(s) to the selected team member. The second is the bulk change state action, which changes the state of selected work item(s).

Select the desired work items in the work item query result list and on the Work Item(s)/Query tab, in the Bulk Actions group, click on either the Reassign To or Change State To drop down button.

For each action, a drop down with available values will appear. Select the desired value and click on it.

These changes are automatically saved to TFS and TeamCompanion will notify you about the result of the performed action.

Send Done Mail

The Done action enables you to prepare work item related feedback. It generates a Done email for a selected work item that is implemented i.e. Done.

Select a work item in the work item query result list and on the Work Item(s)/Query tab, in the Work Items(s) group, click on the Done button. Alternatively, you can right-click on the work item in the list and select the Done action from the context menu.

Next, the Is work item N done? dialog appears, where you can see the Remaining Work status and the status of Linked bugs. These are the TeamCompanion’s built –in criteria for Done. You can additionally choose whether you want to set the referenced work item in the Done state.

The generated Done email’s Subject is populated with the work item’s title, while the Body contains basic information about the referenced work item. A hyperlink to its preview in Web Access is included as well.

This is especially useful for work items that were originally created based on an email. For such work items the generated Done email is a proper reply to the original email used to create the work item in the first place. The Recipient’s address is the sender’s address from the original email and the Body additionally contains the formatted reply message.

The sent Done email is always attached to the referenced work item.

If you choose to set the referenced work item in the Done state, this change is automatically saved.

This feature is also available while previewing your work item form in separate window. Click on the Done button on the embedded toolbar and easily generate your Done email.

Create Outlook Items from Work Items

TeamCompanion integrates Outlook and TFS wherever it makes sense. Emails, tasks, meeting requests and flags with remainders, related to Work Items of your choice, are at your disposal, where TeamCompanion takes care of the easy transition of data between them.

Start by selecting a work item in the work item query result list and easily create a related email, Outlook task or meeting request. Depending on the target Outlook item, you can copy work item attachments to it as well.

You can flag your work items for follow up or add reminders.

All these transitions are, of course, highly configurable.

Open Related Work Item

TeamCompanion automatically keeps track of relationships created between your Outlook and TFS items.

If you received an email created from a work item, you can open the related work item while previewing the received email. The same feature is available to the sender of this email, while previewing the sent email.

For Outlook tasks related to TFS work items, the action Open associated Work Item opens the work item that was either created from the task or that was used to create the task.
For each Outlook meeting request created from a work item, you can also open its associated work item.

Refreshing your Work Item(s)

To refresh the contents of a work item in the query result list, select it and on the Work Item(s)/Query tab, in the Work Items(s) group, click on the Refresh button. Alternatively, you can right-click on the work item in the list and select the Refresh action from the context menu.

Tipp: Refresh is often needed when you get a conflict error while saving changes to a work item. For more information see under Resolving Work Items Save Conflicts.

It you have changed a work item and have not saved these changes before calling refresh, you will be warned about them. At this point you can choose either to continue with refresh and lose your changes or to cancel the refresh action.

To refresh more work items at once, select them in a work item query result list and choose the Refresh action as described above. In this case, all selected work items will be refreshed. You will be warned in case there are unsaved changes to any selected work item.

Resolving Work Items Save Conflicts

Resolving Work Items Save Conflicts