Workflows / Approval circuits / Submittals
  • 30 Nov 2021
  • 5 Minutes to read
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Workflows / Approval circuits / Submittals

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This article applies to DELIVER EMPOWER GUEST (free) products

User Experience

To facilitate the user experience, approval circuits are built in a similar way to an email. A set of tags provide the main information about classification and status [1]. Then, the module presents the subject, the sender, the recipient, the attachments [2]. Finally, all detailed information, responses and comments are displayed [3]. The drawer on the right provides a summary version of the answers and activity.

Configurations and models

Cooperlink has a powerful workflow engine that is fully customizable per project.

Each partner is assigned a role in the approval circuit. At each step, a task is assigned to a role that has a maximum amount of time to complete. The steps of the approval circuit can be carried out in series ,in parallel ,or a combination at the choice of the project team.

The approval circuits are taken up in the form of pre-configured templates that can be reused within different projects.

Maps and metadata

Each trust circuit model has its own set of metadata. Thus, for example, a Stability circuit will not necessarily contain the same information as a Special Technicalcircuit.

Cooperlink assists project managers in defining their data structure needs for approval circuits. Metadata is available in several forms: free text, structured list, number, date, etc.

Depending on the configuration, Cooperlink automatically pre-populates the approval circuit metadata based on the document information or earlier versions of the approval circuit.

Start an approval circuit

The workspace manager identifies the document to be submitted for approval [1]. A wizard helps him select the desired template [2]. It records the information related to the application, it selects the partners on the basis of their role and it starts the approval circuit.

NOTE
To simplify usage, the information used in the approval circuit is largely pre-encoded or generated automatically. In particular, the approval circuit retrieves the metadata of the document. This avoids multiple re-encodings.

Respond to a request for approval

When the partner is prompted to participate in an approval circuit, they are assigned a task. To meet everyone's needs, Cooperlink offers 3 response methods.

1. Via the inbox

For companies that want to respond quickly, just-in-time.

The new task is communicated to the partner via their personal inbox. When he selects this task [1], the side drawer gives him access, in a condensed version, to the version of the document to be approved [2], to the response form [3], to the subject of the request and status of the other approversand finally to the earlier versions of the approval circuit.

If he does not raise his inbox, the partner is informed by e-mail the next day of tasks to be completed.

The partner can also view the document while responding to the request for approval using the side drawer [3].

2. Via task management

For companies that wish to respond to requests for approval according to deadlines.

The approval tasks assigned to each partner are available through the task module of the application. The user can use the filters at his disposal and process the tasks [1]. The user has at his disposal all the detailed information relating to the request for approval as well as the response form [2].

Various views are also available, including the calendar view.

3. Via the dashboard

For companies that are less regularly solicited, the dashboard presents them in a simple and concise way the open approval tasks.

Supervision of approval circuits

1. Via the inbox

When a partner closes its task, the approval circuit is updated and a notification informs the various contributors. Users and project managers are thus informed in real time of the evolution of the approval circuits [1 ]. The information is available in a condensed manner [2] or in detail by double-clicking on the item.

2. Via the Workflows / Delivered Versions module

The delivered versioning module allows users and project managers to effectively monitor their approval circuits.

A set of filters [1] allows each user to isolate the documents that concern them, including:

  • The approvals that have been started by this user,
  • Approvals recently amended by it or by other partners,
  • As-Built documents (approved and latest version),
  • Previous versions approved,
  • ...

The main area presents the user with detailed information as well as the responses of the contributors [2].

Version history / indices and traceability

Successive approval circuits using the same model are considered versions. Cooperlink allows the user to access earlier versions.

For each version of the approval circuit, it is possible to assign a self-incremented management of the indices. These indices are configured based on business needs.

EXAMPLES OF INDICES
  • 0, A, B, C, D, ...
  • 00, 01, 02, 03, ...

Search, filters, and views

See above

Custom cover sheet

Without any effort, one fully customizable cover sheetper project is automatically generated [1]. This cover sheet includes all the metadata as well as the answers relating to the approval circuit [2].

Generating an assembled document Source + Header + Appendices to responses

The user can export (download) in PDF or Excel format the cover sheet or, exclusively in PDF format, the original document and the cover combined.

The user can also export (download) in PDF format the header, the original document and the attachments of the responses to the approval circuit. In the latter case, a list of the merged documents is added specifying the documents concerned and their respective number of pages.

Custom export (excel listing)

The project manager can export in Excel format a personalized listing of approval circuits based on the filters applied.

This export also allows you to carry out your analyses and other tailor-made statistics in one click.

Your advantage: a listing and statistics on hand, effortlessly, always perfectly up to date!

Document version chip

When a document is submitted for approval, the version of the document shared at the time of starting the circuit, is the only one to be the subject of the request for approval. This preserves the stability and traceability of the process. However, Cooperlink offers the possibility to update the document in the document management module. In this case, the user is informed that the workflow version is earlier than the latest available version using a version chip [1].

Locate the linked file

Cooperlink has tools to allow the user to locate an attachment of an approval circuit at its location (folder) in the document management module [2].


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