Just wanted to ask how everyone handles having request approvers who are out of the office.
We have a 'Approve - All Users' step where everyone must vote for the request to continue on. However, sometimes people who are listed as approvers are on vacation or otherwise out of the office. The requests are of a nature that they cannot wait for long periods of time. Does anyone have any good workarounds for this?
Because the number of approvers depends on the request itself, I have to use an 'All Users' decision step. And because it's an 'All Users' step, I cannot assign other users or groups to the step's security to allow them to over-ride it like I could to a single user step.
What I do here is place that kind of step as a sub-workflow. The SWF contains at least 3 available acions. 1 if everyone approved, 1 if someone disapprovers, and 1 to send it back to a step. Then give admins security rights to the SWF. If someone contact me to say that an approver is not able to act on the request I just go in and click on the button that will send it back to them.
When a manager leaves for vacation he has to set up delegation via a request. Then, any requests sent to that manager's queue while he is out are sent to his delegate. Managers will typically choose a manager at the peer level but really it could be any manager they want.
On a side note, we are developing a solution that would allow the users to respond/act on the requests through emails and smart phones. The notification would contain options for the user to click and act on the request even on the move.
Pdhawan, we've developed a solution that does that as well, but not all of the people involved have smart phones and we need the ability to have requests open & close within a short (one hour or less) time frame.
Alan, I'd still like to hear how you've done a "global" delegation - this would be the ideal solution, I think.
For the record, what I have done is this:
Thankfully, PPM exposes the delegation process through the workflow transaction interface. I created a simple "Delegation" request type & workflow that allows an administrator-level user to select a request id, select one of the people that the request is waiting for a vote from, and select a person to delegate that vote to. Then when they submit the Delegation request, an execution step handles delegating that person's required vote to the new person, and saves a note on the hung request with the person & reason that the vote was delegated.
So what we will do is have the administrative person use this to "delegate" a person's vote to another manager or appropriate peer if that person is found to be unable to respond to the request in the timeframe required.
We have done something similar as well where we are utilizing one of the Userdata in knta_users table to store the temporary Delegate which can either be set by the Admin through Workbench or using a Request Type by the Approver himself. The delegate token is present along with the approver token in step security so if there is any delegate already set, both delegate as well as Approver reamins eligible to approve. This was kind of driven by our requirement. This is however only useful if we have "Decisions Required = One" approval steps. I haven't been able to impliment this for multi-approval steps yet. Please let me know if anyone of you have done so something similar for multi-approval process as well. Thanks. -Raj