All option windows work in a similar way.  You can close the window using the usual Windows close button.  Some option windows are resizable.

The common buttons you'll find in option windows are:

Open the relevant search window

Go to the current item

Copy this value into another field

Pin this window on top of other windows

Lock this window so other windows cannot change it

To keep the option windows as uncluttered as possible, Herschel uses hidden tooltips wherever possible. To find out more about a field simply move your cursor over it for a few seconds and a pop-up will appear.

Also, if you enter invalid data into a field a red cross will appear. Move your cursor over the problem field to see exactly what information is required.

You can open as many windows as you want – especially if you have more than one monitor.  Herschel displays an arrow in the corner of the window you're working on.

If you click the Herschel icon in the toolbar at the bottom of your desktop then you can quickly pick from a list of open windows.

How options work together

The clever yet subtle thing about the Herschel windows is how they interact. In many option windows you can double click on an item and the relevant enquiry will open automatically. This allows you to move from one window to another without having to re-enter any information, or jot details onto a scrap of paper.

For example, imagine a customer asks for a progress report on one of their sales order items.

· First you'd use the sales order enquiry option to find the relevant sales order line.

· A double-click on that opens a stock enquiry for the partnumber. You look at the future transactions and see there's a works order outstanding for the item.

· Another double-click on that opens the works order enquiry where you can trial kit the order. You see you're short of a component.

· Another double-click on that opens a stock enquiry for the component. You look at the future transactions and see they're due on a purchase order but it is late.

· A final double-click on that opens a purchase order enquiry for the problem order.

· Then click the email button and you can email the supplier to chase the item.

Recycling windows and auto-closing

A final word on option windows.  To avoid opening too many windows Herschel recycles them. This means if you double-click on an item to open, say, a stock enquiry, the system will look through your open windows and if one is a stock enquiry, it will recycle this with the new item's details.

If you don't want a window be recycled you can lock it with the lock button.

Some windows, like successfully completed report options, will automatically close after a few seconds to keep things tidy.