Workflows for documents

Organizations typically have a number of internal processes for tasks such as order processing, purchase requests, travel expenses, and so on. The FileHold Document Workflow module brings order to these independent processes in a transparent, dynamic, and robust fashion making it a key part of the electronic document cycle.

The document workflow engine is designed to streamline the review and approval process of electronic documents as they proceed through their life-cycle. In collaborative work environments, this labor intensive growth stage of the document is where the most time savings can be realized through the use of workflow.

Document workflow is an optional module of FileHold that can be purchased at any time. Contact [email protected] to purchase the document workflow module.

A document workflow contains from one up to 20 activities. A document workflow can be triggered:

  • A user manually initiating a workflow for a version of a document stored in the library. This person is called the workflow initiator and is typically the owner of the document.
  • Automatically triggered by a setting on the document schema.

What is a document workflow?

A workflow contains one or more activities (reviews and approvals) to be completed during the lifecycle of a document. Workflows can be used with all of the document types: document, record and offline. Workflows are created by the Library Administrator.

The persons charged with reviewing or approving the documents are called participants. The participants can be defined in the workflow or can be left up to the initiator to select. There is no limit to the number of participants in a workflow

Once a workflow has been initiated, the first activity begins and moves along in the process using the settings in the workflow template.

In a simple document workflow process example, the first activity is to review a document. The participants in this activity are called reviewers. The reviewers are notified by email, and in their task list. The task can also be seen in the calendar. The review activity is designed to facilitate the collection of comments on a document from other users. The review activity is considered complete once one or more of the participants (dependent upon what has been configured in the template) have completed the task of reviewing the document.

Once all tasks in the activity are completed, the activity is considered complete and the next activity begins — the approval activity. The participants in this activity are called approvers. The approvers are notified by an email and in their task list and responsible for approving, postponing approval, or not approving the document. The task can also be seen in the calendar. The approval activity is designed to facilitate the formal collection of electronic signatures on behalf of its participants for an individual document version in the workflow. The approval activity is considered complete once one or all participants (dependent upon what has been configured in the template) have approved, postponed approval, or not approved the document. The system requires the user to enter their FileHold system password as a secure means of verifying their identity (electronic signature).

During the course of the document workflow, observers can be designated to watch over the workflow instance. Observers are assigned to watch the workflow but do not participate. They usually do not submit reviews or approvals.

On completion of the last activity in the document workflow, it is considered complete. If at any time a workflow approval is not approved, then the workflow is considered terminated and subsequent activities are cancelled.