A workflow is a series of steps configured in Vault to align with specific business processes. The different types of steps offer a flexible way to organize a wide variety of processes for a document, including assigning tasks to users, sending notifications and changing document status. Workflow task steps in workflows also serve various purposes. Workflow tasks can allow users to enter comments, choose verdicts (approve, deny, etc.), update required fields, or provide electronic signatures. This article refers to workflow tasks. Vault also includes a User Task object class to track unplanned work. For information on user tasks, see Working with User Tasks.

Workflows are specific to a lifecycle, meaning that a single workflow cannot apply to multiple lifecycles. A single document can only be in one workflow at a time.

Example Workflow

The Approval workflow notifies designated approvers that a document is ready for approval and creates a corresponding task for each of them. When each approver has completed the task, including adding any comments and providing a verdict (approved or not approved), Vault creates a task for the Workflow Owner to assess the results and make the final approval decision. Based on the final approval decision, the document status reverts to Draft or advances to Approved.

Workflow Users

There are various types of users associated with a workflow:

  • Workflow Owner (or Workflow Initiator) is the user who started the workflow. This user can reassign all workflow tasks, add new participants, email participants, and cancel the workflow.
  • Task Owner is the user assigned to a specific task in the workflow. These users can reassign or complete their own tasks. Note that license type and security profile restrictions may prevent some users from completing certain tasks.
  • Workflow Participants are all users with an assigned task in the workflow. The Workflow Owner assigns users to specific roles when starting the workflow. The roles and associated users then appear under Sharing Settings in the Doc Info page. Workflow configuration controls what roles are available in the workflow start dialog.