A device type is nothing more than a way to group similar types of devices. For example, there are electrical devices, mechanical devices, instruments, etc. A valve is a mechanical device. A motor control center is an electrical device. A battery is an electrical device. A fan is a mechanical device that rotates, whereas a tank is a mechanical device that doesn’t have any rotating parts. Each of the devices (aka equipment) mentioned here has different checklists that are used to make sure it was installed property and operates according to specifications.
Device type hierarchy
A hierarchical representation of these groupings is a simple way of aggregating devices into common groups, from a high level down to a very descriptive level. Here’s a couple of device type hierarchy examples:
Nested Hierarchy Example
- Motor Control Centers
Here’s what a nested hierarchy looks like in XForms
Flat Hierarchy Example
- Motor Control Centers
Here’s what a flat hierarchy looks like in XForms
Why do this?
A couple of benefits for doing this:
- It’s easier to assign form templates to device types than directly to individual devices, especially when you have hundreds of devices
- You can view % complete from a bird’s eye view in a nested way, and drill down for details
1. Assign form templates to device types, and THEN assign device types to devices
Lets say you have 1,000 devices to commission on a project. If you need to assign form templates to each device individually, that’s 1,000 separate items that you need to assign form templates to. And if some devices require multiple form templates, that’s a lot of busy work just getting your devices set up for field work.
Compare that to 1,000 devices that can be grouped into 20 different device types. Assigning form templates to these devices means assigning form templates to 20 groups, and then assigning the devices to those groups.
Here’s what assigning device types to devices looks like in XForms: Use the type-ahead search box to find devices, select them, and then click on the Actions button, select “Type” and then click on the device type you want to assign them to.
2. You can view % complete from a bird’s eye view in a nested way, and drill down for details
The device type hierarchy you establish will also be present in the % complete column charts (From the menu pane, click on Charts > % Complete). If you use a nested device type hierarchy, the initial column chart display you will see will be your top-level hierarchy. Click on a column and the chart will drill down to the next level in your hierarchy. Keep clicking on a column to keep drilling down.
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