Object lifecycles are the sequences of states (In Review, Approved, etc.) that an object record can go through during its life. A lifecycle must have at least two states, but it can have more if needed. Not all objects use lifecycles. Objects without lifecycles simply have a status of Active or Inactive. For objects that do use lifecycles, each state is tied to one of these statuses.

When you create a new object record, Vault automatically assigns a specific lifecycle (or no lifecycle) to the record, based on the object’s configuration. You cannot change the assigned lifecycle for individual records.

User Actions & Entry Actions

The ordered states within a lifecycle represent the stages an object record can transition through as users create, review, approve and eventually archive or replace the record. An Admin can configure each state with user actions and entry actions.

In the current release, the only user actions that an Admin can configure are state changes and custom actions. State change user actions are the only way that you can move a record from one state to another.

Entry actions are actions that Vault automatically executes when a record enters the state. For example, an Admin could configure a notification to go to all Vault users when a Product record enters Approved state.

Accessing User Actions

If your record is in a state with available user actions, you’ll see them in the Actions menu from the record detail page. If you have the appropriate access to edit the record, you also have access to user actions.

Understanding Status & State

All object records, including those that do not use lifecycles, have a status of Active or Inactive. This status determines whether they’re available for selection. For example, users editing a document cannot select an inactive record in the Product field.

When objects use lifecycles, each lifecycle state has a corresponding status. For example, the In Approval and Approved states correspond to Active status, while Expired corresponds to Inactive status. When an object uses lifecycles, the record’s Status field is never editable because the lifecycle state controls this field.

State Types

By default, for each object lifecycle, there are two state types associated with the object: Initial and Complete. Admins must link the Initial state type to a configured lifecycle state. The Complete state type is optional and does not have to be linked to a lifecycle state. Admins can also create custom object state types and associate object lifecycle states to those custom state types in object lifecycle configuration.

  • Initial State: All objects that use a lifecycle start in this state. This state type is required and is linked to the Active lifecycle state by default. You can link any custom state to this state type.
  • Complete State: This state type is optional and is typically for objects that have reached the end of their lifecycle. However, you can link any custom state to this state type.
  • Custom States: Admins can create new state types with several rule options, such as ensuring the state type appears by default in every object lifecycle in the Vault, or requiring that an object state be linked to it.

Lifecycle Stages & Stage Groups

Lifecycle Stages allow organizations to group document and object lifecycle states into ordered collections of stages. Vault then visually represents a document or object record’s current stage in the Doc Info page and object record detail page through the Lifecycle Stages Chevron panel. Clicking on the active stage displays workflow information for the current document, including any open tasks. Learn more about lifecycle stage administration.