All right stop! Collaborate and listen (Sharing Points)

July 12, 2006

Small adhoc workflow

Filed under: Captaris — stephenmuller @ 11:08 pm

A good friend of mine has told me that this post is not English so I will re-write it.

Something that has been appearing more and more, unfortunately, is the rise of almost random and adhoc work processes. This is not the structured or traditional step A must be done then step B etc but more of an on demand or “if and when I feel like it” process.

There is no clear structure of either task or role based steps, they want to be able to allow anybody in the team at any stage the ability to review the data.

The tendency in these cases has been for the developers to say there is no workflow, it is one page that just allows the data to be viewed or modified then passed on to another person of the users choice, “we can easily do that in .NET without a workflow engine”.

I have decided in my infinite wisdom that this is not true, in this case it is impossible to predefine any flow of data. The flow of data is defined by the preceding user, and a workflow engine can allow for this.

The engine allows all the logging, auditing and task reallocation as per normal so the developers need not worry about designing these issues all they do is design the form with the facility to choose the next person and allow them to change any data.

The engines role is simple. There are two tasks, one review task and one end task. The review task can call itself or the  complete task. The circular action of the review task to allow the current task to be complete and and then re-start itself. This will enable the tracking of multiple random reviewers, who did the task and when.


The crappy picture above shows what it may look like.

This way you get all the auditing from the engine and still meeting the requirements of the users.

Im not saying I like this randomness, it is wrong but there is way to deploy a workable solution.



  1. NOW I know what you’re on about! Cool stuff.

    Comment by Bill Williamson — July 13, 2006 @ 1:41 am

  2. I’m starting some new stuff with Captaris. Thank you for the post.

    Comment by Nevil — April 16, 2007 @ 4:47 pm

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