What are Stages? What are Workflows and what do these have to do with each other?
A contract's workflow is comprised of all the steps or... Stages that it will pass through during it's lifecycle. Maybe the life-cycle of a Service contract is different than an NDA for your company. That's where UCM's workflow customization is really helpful, allowing for many different routes and steps along the way.
When you are considering making a new workflow, or editing an existing workflow, consider:
What is the process your company goes by to handle contracts and agreements?
What people/departments does the contract pass through on it's way to Execution?
What people/departments should be notified when the contract moves to another phase in the lifecycle? Do you have any stage in the workflow that you need to set up an approval?
Once you have a good understanding of the process your company will take to handle contracts, you can start by making Workflow Stages in Company Admin from the "Contract Stage Administration."
Creating a Stage:
- Click on the green + to "Add a Stage"
- Give the stage a name that will easily identify it!
- "Stage can initiate Archive" - This means this stage can be used to "archive" an agreement. Archiving an agreement is a 'stage' built into UCM, used for dead, expired, terminated or otherwise irrelevant contracts you don't want appearing in your daily view.
Note: We don't recommend having an "Archive" stage of your own. Maybe use a different term: Dead, Expired, Terminated etc.
UCM will always come with a few built-in stages and a workflow to start you off. Once you've been using the system some more and you have a good understanding of how workflows operate, you can further customize your own workflows in "Workflow Template Administration."
Creating a Workflow:
Click the green + to "Create a Workflow"
Give the Workflow a recognizable name and add stages using the drop-down. You can re-order stages by clicking and dragging the stage where you want it.
- Workflow Template Name - What is this guy called?
- "Assignees Locked" - This will prevent any users from changing the users assigned to stages in this workflow
- "Only Current Assignee Can Update Stage" - This means that only the user assigned to each stage in the workflow can update the stage and move the contract to it's next phase. Warning: This can cause pretty substantial bottle-necking!
- Add New Stage - Add another stage drop-down to your list of available stages.
- Available stages and their order in the workflow. Stage 1 is, obviously first. Drag and drop these stages if you need to re-order them.
- Skip stages? - Mark this checkbox to skip a stage. This is good if you have stages that apply to some contracts from a workflow but others will skip this stage.
- Delete a stage - Remove this stage from your workflow. Any contract in that stage will be bumped back one prior.
- Stage Configuration - This is where you assign users to a stage, set a stage up as a review, add escalations, reminders etc.
- Workflow Notes - Will the stage you're editing get a note added, to instruct users? Add one here!
Once your Workflow is set up with some stages in the order you would like, when you click on it again, a few new options will appear on the right. "Stage Configuration" and "Workflow Notes."
Click on "Stage Configuration" from the Workflow Edit screen. To add customization click on the stage you'd like to add tweaks to. This will pop up a big window with a bunch of options:
- "Individual User(s)" - This is where you set assignees for the stage. These user(s) will get an E-mail notifying them that the contract has reached a stage they're assigned to. To assign multiple users, hold down CTRL and click the user(s). To assign generic assignees, use Owner (and/or Primary/Secondary/Tertiary Parties)
- "Role Model(s)" - You can also assign role model(s) as assignees if you have those in action.
- "Field Groups" - If you want specific field groups to appear only at a certain stage in the contract's life-cycle, you would assign the field groups here. They will only appear when the contract reaches this stage.
- "Remind after Days," "Escalate after days," "Repeat escalation in days" and "Escalate to User(s)" - This is good if you have users that aren't addressing their contracts reliably. Set a reminder to go to them every X days and set an escalation notification after Y days. You can escalate this to another user, or to their superior using the "Escalate to User" function.
- "Include in Enterprise Ribbon" - The number of contracts a user is assigned to will show up on their enterprise ribbon.
- "Set Approvals" - This will add a review for all assignees to participate in. Once all the reviewers approve of the review, it moves to the next stage automatically. More info on Reviews and Approvals are Here.
- "Skip Stage" does exactly what it says - lets you skip the stages in this workflow where this box is marked.
Now you've added some assignees and set them up to get a message about their assigned stage. Now what? Well, if you want, you can include instructions using Workflow Notes.
1. Click "Workflow Notes" from the workflow's edit screen.
2. Choose a stage and enter your description/notes/instructions in "Note" and hit save!