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How to Set Up Workflow

By Jama Software posted 01-29-2015 16:24


The Workflow functionality maps out the lifespan of an item by establishing transition rules for changes in the item's status. Workflow is set at the Organization level, but can be modified and customized on a Project-by-Project basis.

Setting Up/Enabling Workflow
To set up workflow, select the "Admin" tab, and navigate to the "Workflow" option under the Organization tab.

From this main page, you can access the settings for Workflow, which include enabling the functionality for the Organization, and permission for Project Managers to override a workflow within a project. A list of currently active workflows is displayed beneath these settings.

Any Workflow created at the Organization level will be available to every project within that Organization. If the "Allow Project Managers to override workflows on a project" box is checked, users with Manage Project permissions will be able to edit Workflows at the Project level to better suit their needs. To access Workflow from a project level, click on the Project panel in the "Admin" tab.

This will open a new list of settings. Select the "Workflow" tab to see a menu of active Workflows similar to the one located in the Admin Section. By clicking "Override", the Project Manager can make changes to but not delete the Workflow.

Please Note: Workflows are not retroactive. Items that were created prior to a Workflow will show transitions, but locks and user restrictions that were created with the Workflow will not show up on these items.

Creating a New Workflow

Creating a new Workflow can only be done under the Admin tab. Start by clicking "Add/Edit", and select an Item Type you would like to create a Workflow for. Items can include any that have been enabled for your project that have a picklist configured, as well as custom items created under "Item Types". Please note: only items that have a picklist configured, such as Status or Priority, will be eligible for Workflow.

Next, select a status picklist you want your item's workflow to apply to. Standard picklists as well as custom created ones that have been configured to an item type will show up in this dropdown. Some examples of commonly used picklists are:

  • Priority: Unassigned, Low, Medium, High
  • Status: Select One, Draft, Approved, Rejected, Completed
    • These statuses are standard in Jama, but can be edited to suit your company's business process if need be.

Mapping Transitions
Once you have chosen an item type and a picklist, you must map the Workflow's transition. This includes:
  • How the item's status can change
  • Who is notified when changes are made
  • Who can transition an item's status
  • When an item is locked after a transition
For our example, we will create a workflow for this business process:

A Workflow that represents the above image would looks like this:

Now, to explain this Workflow process: When a Requirement is created, it is mapped so the status will immediately be set as "Draft". If you were to create a new Requirement with this Workflow active, you would notice that the option to change the status is not available. 

After creating a new Requirement, a small box will appear at the top-right of the item window. Clicking on it will reveal the transition options available for the workflow. In the case of our example, a Requirement that is a Draft can go one of two ways: it can be Approved, or Rejected.

If the item was approved, a pop up box will open giving users the option to leave a note about this transition.

If you notice #3 on the example workflow, it has been set so if the item is Approved it is automatically locked. This can be adjusted in either the Admin or Project Configuration Workflow menus, as well as notification settings.

After the Requirement is approved, it can be transitioned to Completed.

As it is set up in the example workflow, Completed Requirements have no further transitions available in the workflow. If a Draft Requirement is "Rejected", the only transition it can make is back to a "Draft" state. This can be changed to best fit your business process if need be.

(Originally posted by Janessa Olson)