Vista Translation Lets You Personalize Your Environment
Recently, I was visiting with a PDS customer who had gone live with Vista earlier this year. While visiting their neighborhood, we sat down to discuss a number of questions that they had about their Vista usage. One request that they had was to modify some of the Vista screen labels, to help their users understand system usage better.
I was delighted to remind them of Vista Translation functionality that provides tools for modifying your Vista display, whether it be to another language, or whether you simply want to personalize our default verbiage. This capability provides you the ability to personalize Vista labels and messages without making any coding changes!
I explained that the product included two translation tools, one for the Vista website, and one for the Recruiting External Applicant website. The first one, located within the Vista Administration component, is rather large as it controls all of the Vista screen labels, system messages, and parameters. The other is much smaller, since the Vista Recruiting external website is much smaller in scope. And while these tools were covered as part of their initial user training back in 2015, they had forgotten that this functionality existed.
Vista Translation is managed within your database tables so it is simple for you to implement a change in your test environment, and then once you’re satisfied you can duplicate it in your production environment.
And while Translation functionality was introduced by PDS back in 2009, it dawned on me that other PDS customers may also have forgotten about this important Vista feature! This newsletter article will review the basic activation steps for using Vista Translation and illustrate its usage.
Personalizing the Vista website
If you are non-technical then you’ll need to have involve your IT department in this first step, but don’t stop here! Keep reading to see just how easy it is to apply your changes!
Please note that this step likely involves someone from your IT department as access the web.config file is usually limited. To activate translation you’ll need to have the following items setup in your web.config. (They may already be setup, so you should search the web.config file for any occurrence.)
Many years ago we added the “TranslationCache” setting to address performance concerns, particularly due to pages with lots of labels and the corresponding time it took to translate the page before rendering. If you notice a lag in performance, due to a volume of translations, then you’ll want to set this option to “True”.
|TranslationMethod||How Vista translates text||0: No Translation
1: Translate languages other than English
2: Translate all languages including English
|TranslationCache||With this entry set to True the system will load only the translated entries into a table for use during the session.||True: Translation dictionary will be cached
False: Translation dictionary will NOT be cached
|*Note: When this entry is set to True, the Web Application must be restarted for any changes to the Translation dictionary to be seen on the Vista pages.|
In the following scenario I am going to modify the delivered display on the Vista Recruiting “People Selector” because the terms “Internal Applicant” has confused my Recruiting users. Instead they’d like the Selector to read “Applicant”. Below is how it looks before the translation change.
I used the following steps to implement my change.
Within the Vista Administration application in Vista, select the Translation function. Keep in mind that you may need to activate Security Option #66340 in order to access this option.
The Dictionary section shows words and phrases used throughout vista and provides for translations into various languages. Within the Dictionary list page, search for “internal” to find the entry.
Click into the Internal Applicants” row, and within the Dictionary dialog, in the “English (Alternative) field, insert the new value “Applicants”. Select the “OK” button.
Be sure to clear your browser caching and you should see the following updated selector, when you navigate back to Vista Recruiting. (Illustrated in Chrome below, or use the short-cut Ctrl+Shift+Del)
Yes, believe it or not, it is that simple! Keep in mind that you are only changing the display, and any reporting you do still uses the original database view name.
Personalizing Vista Messages
Vista Translation “Messages” feature provides you the means to modify specific system messages.
The Vista Translation “Messages” feature provides you the means to modify specific system messages. Here the drop‐down provides access to “Error Text”, “Information Text”, “Label Text”, “Security Text”, “Warning Text” and “Web Page General” labels used throughout Vista.
Vista Translation “Web Page Specific” feature is where longer Vista page messages unique to a page are managed. We’ve added code to look for these one-time entries to more efficiently store and translate the text.
Personalizing the Vista Recruiting
The Vista Recruiting application offers similar functionality. The Vista Recruiting Setup application includes a “Translation” setup table where you can modify and/or translate text on the external applicant recruiting website.
Can’t find an entry you want to change?
Please note that while PDS attempts to keep the Vista Translation dictionary complete with all user interface labels, we sometimes miss entries in the dictionary. If you can’t find an entry for a label, try simply adding a new entry for the label in the dictionary. Do be aware that “Web Specific Pages” includes options that are typically programmed by PDS for translating longer messages that are unique to a specific Vista page. (Code has been added to those pages to retrieve translated messages.)
I hope that you find this article helpful. We’d love to hear back from you on how you’ve applied this newfound knowledge!
If you have any questions please contact me or PDS Customer Support.
Sr. VP and Product Manager