Using GTR Processing to Improve Productivity
GTR processing allows you to load bulk records into Chris21 electronically, saving you the time and effort. It can save an employee many hours of repetitive data entry.
As a Chris21 user there will be many opportunities for you to take advantage of GTR processing.
What is GTR?
GTR is short for General Transaction Request. In layman’s terms it is the method used to receive and send data between Chris21 and another interface. An Excel spreadsheet is commonly used as an interface to send data to Chris21.
Think of a GTR updating a record the same way a user would manually update a record. Therefore it is reasonable to assume that a record that can be entered by a user can also be entered using GTR.
What are the benefits of using GTR?
The most obvious benefit is the productivity gains you will achieve. When you consider that many hundreds, even thousands of records can be automatically updated, the productivity gains are substantial.
Other benefits include:
- Data is validated by the GTR process, therefore invalid data will not be accepted. Instead an error will be generated and the particular record will not be loaded.
- Eliminates user input errors that can commonly occur if a user is updating many records.
- Greater productivity gains will be achieved if you need to perform regular data updates.
How do I run a GTR?
Follow these steps to prepare your data for GTR processing:
- Populate an Excel spreadsheet with the data you want to input to Chris21. You will need to ensure that the column headings on your spreadsheet match the data dictionary field names for the data you want to load.
- Convert your spreadsheet into a text file prior to loading the data into Chris 21. Use an Excel macro to convert the spreadsheet into the required format.
- Load the text file that was produced in step 2 into Chris21. Chris21 has a GTR processing form called General Transactions (GTR) for this purpose.
For a more detailed explanation of the process see the GTR Processing Guide.
When you run the GTR process an output file will be produced which will report any errors. Review this file and address these errors. If there are many errors you can fix them in your spreadsheet and set up another GTR to run. When you have minimal errors, fix these and enter them manually.
If you have many records to GTR, I would recommend loading a small batch first. Say, 20 records. This way, if there is a recurring error you won’t have to wait for all records to be loaded before you can go back and fix the errors.
When is it not useful to use GTR?
While you can see that GTR processing is a powerful tool that lets you enter bulk records in a very short time, it is not always the best option.
It all depends on the number of records you want to enter into Chris21. Let’s say you have only 40 records to enter. If you are efficient at data entry it would be quicker to manually enter these records rather than go through the process of setting up a file for GTR processing. I personally am not so good and would find it quicker to set up a GTR for as few as 20 records!
At first glance this may seem like a complicated process, however, once you are familiar with it you will find GTR a valuable resource. If you have read the GTR Processing Guide and would like some help to get started, please feel free to contact me. Leave a comment or email firstname.lastname@example.org.