Document lifecycles are the sequences of states (Draft, In Review, etc.) a document goes through during its life. A lifecycle can be simple (two states requiring users to manually move between states) or very complex (multiple states with different security and workflows that automatically move the document to another state). In Vault, lifecycles simplify the implementation of business logic that traditionally required custom coding or time-consuming manual setup.
Note: Audit logs support a precision to one second. Events occurring within a single second may appear in an unexpected order.
Every document has a lifecycle. Since lifecycles control a document’s behavior, it is important to associate the right lifecycle to a document. In Vault, lifecycles are linked to one or more document types. When users create a new document, Vault can automatically assign the lifecycle or, if multiple lifecycles are valid for the document type, users can choose. Documents inherit all business rules associated with the lifecycle, ensuring a repeatable process that requires minimal effort.
The ordered states within a lifecycle represent the stages a document transitions through as users create, review, approve and eventually archive or replace it. A set of business rules applies to each state and defines what happens to the document in that state. Admins define these rules for each lifecycle state and Vault automatically applies them to every document that enters the state.
Each state has the following configuration options:
- User Actions: Actions that end users can perform on a document; Configure your workflow user actions.
- Security Settings: Permissions that users in each role have for a document; Set permissions for different roles in a document.
- Atomic Security: Permissions for active workflow actions and document lifecycle actions. See Configuring Atomic Security.
- Entry Criteria: Conditions that a document must meet before transitioning into this state; Create new entry criteria for a lifecycle state.
- Entry Actions: Actions that Vault performs automatically when a document enters this state; Add a new entry action rule for a lifecycle state.
Moving Between States
Documents move between states in various ways:
- A user explicitly changes the document’s state using a configured user action. This can occur on an individual document or as part of a bulk action.
- A document enters a workflow where the workflow configuration includes one or more state changes.
- A document moves automatically as the result of a state change or other event on a related object record or document. These related document actions are configured by Admins.
In all cases, Vault automatically executes the business logic associated with the new state. Note that the names of state change and start workflow options in the Actions menu vary by Vault and are set up by your organization’s Admins. After changing a document’s state, you may need to refresh the page to view the new status.
State Type/Special State Definitions
For each lifecycle, there are state type definitions which an Admin must link to a configured lifecycle state. Learn more about state types.
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.
Lifecycles & Documents
Every document has a lifecycle. Since lifecycles control a document’s behavior, it is important to associate the right lifecycle to a document. In Vault, lifecycles are linked to one or more document types. When users create a new document, Vault can automatically assign the lifecycle or users can choose if multiple lifecycles are valid for the document type. Documents automatically inherit all business rules associated with the lifecycle, ensuring a repeatable process that requires minimal effort.
Organizations often use workflows to automate various business processes, including moving documents from one state to another. All workflows exist within the context of a lifecycle.