Today, we are happy to announce some recent improvements we have made to the workflows function within OroPlatform. These upgrades make workflows even easier to build, customize, and adapt to your business’s individual needs, and will apply immediately to the entire Oro suite of products, including both OroCRM and OroCommerce.
What is a Workflow?
Workflows are a sequence of predefined actions that will automatically complete a process or task. They can help businesses become more efficient by quickly performing repetitive actions or by helping to reduce common employee errors. Each workflow applies only to a single entity (e.g. lead, account, order, etc.) within an application, such as orders or customer accounts.
In OroCRM, workflows can either be created directly in the back-end or from within the UI. In order to do so, the following conditions have to be specified:
- When the workflow starts
- What action it performs
- Under what condition these actions will be completed
For example, a business can create a workflow for processing opportunities that allows a manager to turn the opportunity into a won deal, but prohibits them from setting an opportunity to the “lost” status before the customer has been contacted. This way, they will ensure that their managers talk to each opportunity before they give up on them and mark as “lost”.
Here’s a simple step-by-step example of creating a workflow for managing opportunities in OroCRM:
A Snapshot of What’s New
In order to make the workflow function even more helpful, we’ve introduced several significant enhancements. It is now possible to:
- Configure multiple workflows for a single entity, add new workflows to that entity, and keep them all simultaneously active without having to deactivate already existing ones. The workflows can then be executed in parallel unless mutually exclusive workflows are set up.
- Set up mutually exclusive workflows in order to configure how they each correlate in the system. They can also be arranged into groups of mutually exclusive workflows. This will make it possible for only one workflow to be active, or for an entity record to use only one workflow from the group at a time.
- Translate workflows and their components, including the workflow names, step names, and transition names, as well as warning messages, into any of the existing languages available in the system. This can also be applied to any new workflows that users create themselves.
- Specify how workflows apply to certain sets of records in order to limit their applicability. This lets users create specific workflows for specific segments (subsets) of records.
- Restrict which users can edit workflows in order to give you greater control over who can manage workflow transitions and view the current state of workflows.
Business Value of the New Upgrades
Workflows can be created within OroCRM in order to manage how employees work with certain entities and complete specific tasks. The recent improvements to the workflow function further extend this capability by giving administrators even more control over how users access and handle data.
Here are a few examples of how your organization can benefit from these upgrades:
Use Case #1
By configuring multiple workflows for a single entity, a company can adjust how leads coming from various marketing campaigns need to be approached. For example, leads that have downloaded your price-list vs. the ones that your sales team acquired at one of the trade shows would definitely have different follow-up strategies and thus, should require different processes of “warming them up” to become successful deals.
Use Case #2
Some organizations may want to set up different workflows for the lead entity. For instance, both their sales and marketing teams may require their own workflow. This will allow the marketing team to follow company procedure for nurturing and warming up leads, and for the sales team to step up and offer a more personalized approach. It is also possible to restrict or share user access to the workflows that are active for one and the same lead.
Use Case #3
Often, global businesses have different sub-departments within their sales department. For instance, they may have a sales team in charge of capturing leads and another in charge of speaking directly with customers outside the office. Although these teams may be in the same business unit, they will require their own customized workflows. These can easily be configured by setting up multiple workflows.
Use Case #4
Multi-channel organizations that sell both B2B and B2C may want to set different workflows for their customer complaints. B2B complaints may be forwarded to a direct sales rep prior to support personnel while B2C may go straight to support team first.
By upgrading the workflow management function in the Oro suite of products, businesses are now better positioned to accommodate the complex processes of their organization. They can create different scenarios for a single entity, control how these workflows relate to one another, specify exceptions for certain records and segments, and more. All this will empower businesses and their departments by helping them operate more efficiently in nuanced conditions.
We always look forward to receiving feedback. Please feel free to either comment on this blog or contact us via the forum. Stay tuned for future updates!