Travel Registry: Workflow Configuration
Once you have content on your site, workflows allow you to determine which trips should prompt the user to complete which particular pieces of content, who should be notified about trip registrations, and establish your approval process. Your workflow management page is accessed in Travel Admin > Workflows.
This article discusses all available workflow triggers:
- Building a Workflow
- Approver View
- Organizing & Managing Workflows
Each tab available on the Workflows page represents an opportunity for your institution to customize and automate your process. (See also Travel Registry: Workflow Triggers & Examples for information on the individual workflow triggers, including examples and best practices.)
Clicking this icon opens the workflow configuration modal:
Workflows are built using “if” and “then” statement logic; i.e. if ‘x’ action occurs, then ‘y’ action should occur next.
Step 1 - If
The first step of the workflow is an “if” statement. An "if" statement is a condition the trip or its associated traveler must meet in order to trigger the workflow. Once the workflow is triggered, its deployed content items, notification structure, and approval process will apply to the trip. Clicking "Add Condition" on the modal opens up a scrolling menu of the conditions you can set as a trigger for the workflow. This list will include:
- Custom Location Lists (See Travel Registry: Content Management for more on using this feature.)
- Risk Rating (choose Security Exchange/RiskLine (based on your site), Department of State [Country & Regional]*, Center for Disease Control, or a combination)
- Solo Travel
- Group Travel
- Group Leader (must be a member of the group designated in the "Group Leader Access" setting)
- Campus (if enabled)
- Unit Param (if utilizing the "Unit Admin" setting of AlertTraveler®)
- Reason for Travel
- Question Response
- Trips Start is in <=# Days
- Trips End is in <=# Days
- Trip created # days before trip start
- Created By (trip import, delegate, email forwarding, traveler manually)
- All available profile parameters built-in Travel Admin > Settings > Profile Mappings, such as College, Department, and Major
* Note About DOS Regional Risk: Terra Dotta Travel Registry now supports DOS Regional Risk Ratings. The data quality from the DOS restricts Terra Dotta's ability to identify trip destinations that fall inside high-risk regions. Therefore, the workflow trigger logic for DOS Risk Ratings is if a country has any region within it that has a higher risk rating than the country itself, the workflow will be triggered.
Here is an example workflow:
In this example, I need all travelers who register a trip to a country with a DOS Risk Level of 3 or 4 to answer certain questions, read documents, and complete certain forms.
Workflow conditions can be in the same condition group, or split into separate condition groups.
Multiple “if” statements (workflow conditions) can be added. To add a condition within an existing condition group click the plus icon within the condition group. To create a new condition group, select "+ Add Condition Group." To delete a condition, you can click the X icon.
The manner in which your conditions are grouped does impact the functionality of the workflow. As it is now, the workflow above applies to all travel to a destination with a DOS level of 3 or 4 registered by a solo traveler. It will also apply to trips taken by a solo traveler to a destination with a Riskline Rating of Extreme or High, even if the DOS level is not a 3 or 4.
Incorporating AND/OR logic
You can use AND/OR logic within the condition groups and between condition groups. Multi-select conditions use OR logic between the selected options.
When it comes to AND logic, the more conditions you add, the more specific your set of targeted travelers and trips is going to be. This is because with AND logic travelers must meet all of the compounded conditions.
In this workflow example, AND logic is used within a condition group:
This means that the trip and its associated traveler must meet all of the conditions in order to receive the workflow's content items and approval requirements.
However, this workflow example uses OR logic between condition groups:
In this case, the use of OR logic widens the set of targeted travelers and trips. If the traveler and their trip meet all of the conditions in the first condition group or all of the conditions in the second condition group, their trip will receive the configured content and approval requirement.
Workflow conditions honor Boolean Expression logic. With this in mind, let's take a look at what occurs if we add a third condition group, but opt to use AND logic between the second and last condition group:
In this case, the workflow will be triggered if the trip meets the conditions of the first condition group. However, if the trip does not meet these conditions, it must meet the conditions in the second condition group as well as the condition in the last condition group for the workflow to trigger.
Conditions that allow for multiple selections, such as Reason for Travel, locations, risk ratings, or multi-select parameters will employ OR logic when several of the options are chosen within a condition:
If you wish to prevent a workflow from being triggered for a particular subset of trips or travelers, "Equals" in the workflow condition can be changed to "Not". For example, if you wish to have a workflow for all international travel, the workflow condition would be all trips where the location does "not" only include the United States. With the following configuration, every time a traveler registers a trip for a location outside the U.S. this workflow would be triggered.
Don’t forget to add a description of your workflow at the top of the page so you’ll remember what this workflow is used for.
If you do not add any conditions on the first step here, the workflow will trigger for every traveler once they reach the designated phase of the process.
Click the plus icon on this tab to choose which profile and trip items you wish to require the traveler to complete.
- Passport (this populates the "Passport" field in the profile)
- Transportation and lodging
- all available profile parameters configured in Travel Admin > Settings > Profile Mappings, such as College, Department, and Major
Step 3 - Then deploy
Step 3 is where you choose the content items, (forms, essential content, file uploads, etc.), you want to prompt the eligible travelers to complete.
Clicking the plus icon on this page allows you to choose which type of content you want to deploy.
- Useful Content
- Signature Form
- File Upload
- Country Intelligence
- DOS Regional Risk Intel
There are no limits to the number or type of items you can deploy in a given workflow. Everything you choose to deploy will be can be viewed by the traveler, the delegate submitting the trip, and the approvers.
After choosing the type of content, you’ll be given a field in which you can search for the specific content item. As you type, your existing content items of the corresponding type will be filtered and displayed in a list below the field for you to choose the one you need.
You can choose to make individual pieces of content required in this workflow by clicking the corresponding “Required” toggle.
Note: The traveler is always required to complete Signature Forms.
Forms show on their own tab to the travelers, while Signature Forms, Useful Content, and File Uploads show on another tab, in that order. The order in which items show is the order they have been added to the workflow.
Note: Items deployed in Step 3 are determined by the "IF" statement conditions (Step 1). If the details of a trip change, causing the original workflow to no longer be relevant and the changes trigger a new workflow to be triggered, the items originally deployed will remain on the trip and the new requirements will show in addition to the original content items.
Step 4 - Approve by
Step 4 is where your approval process can be set. Bear in mind that the workflow must require the traveler to complete at least one content item for an approval process to be created. If no content is required when the workflow is triggered, the traveler will automatically be approved.
You can choose between a simple or sequential approval process. New approval steps are added by clicking the plus icon and choosing one of these types.
A simple approval requires approval from only one individual, a single member from a designated group of individuals, or a committee. For example, I can say that any member of my "Departmental Approvers" staff group can approve this trip. To do this, I would choose a simple approval, choose “Group” and select my “Departmental Approvers” group.
If your approval process requires an approval chain, the "sequential" approval type comes in handy.
Sequential approvals can be used to designate specific people who are permitted to approve trips for specific travelers, based on the traveler’s profile information. Sequential approvals also allow you to set up a multi-step approval process.
For our example, let’s say that a trip meeting certain conditions needs to be approved by the traveler's departmental approver. It would look something like this:
This configuration says students in the Art department will need approval from an approver in the Art department, a Computer Science student will need approval from an approver in Computer Science, etc.
This can be set up with any of your custom parameters in Travel Admin > Settings > Profile Mappings. You can also select any approver group for this. If a matching approver cannot be found, the approval will instead go to the alternate approver(s) set in Travel Admin > Settings > Other.
Now, let’s say that after being approved by their department leader, they need approval from a leader in their college. We can add a second step for that. So now, what happens is that once the department leader signs off, the college approver will be notified via email and will need to approve.
Now, let’s also say that a travel admin in your office needs to approve or multiple travel administrators need to.
You can set up a second approval process (simple or sequential) that will run in parallel in with the first. The two approval groups will operate with AND logic. In my example below, when the trip is first saved, the Department Approver who matches the traveler’s department will be sent a notification AND the Travel Admin group will be notified.
As the approvals are configured on separate approval chains, the travel admin's approval will have no bearing on the approval process for the department and college approvers. However, all three people must give approval before this trip is approved.
A third option for approvals is "Committee". After choosing the approval group, an "Approve Type" must be selected. Two approval types are available: "Apply Vote Outcome" and "Tally & Send to next step".
"Apply Vote Outcome" requires either a unanimous or a majority decision in order to approve the trip at this step and move it to the next of the approval chain (if there is one). If "Majority" is selected and it's a majority denial instead of approval, the trip will be denied and the traveler will be notified.
"Tally & Send to next step" will tally the votes from all users in that step and provide those results to the approver(s) in the next step.
Note: "Tally & Send to next step" requires a next step; you will receive an error message at the top of your screen letting you know that you cannot proceed without adding an additional approval step.
An approval process for a workflow can be as simple or as complex as needed. If at any point, someone in the approval process denies a trip, the traveler will be notified and upon a second submission, the approval process will begin again at the step in which it was denied initially. Approvers who have already approved the trip will not need to approve it again.
If you wish, you can set reminder emails for your approvers in this workflow by clicking the “Reminders” bell.
These can be set to be delivered ‘x’ number of days or weeks before the trip is set to start or ‘x’ number of days or weeks after the approver was initially notified about this trip.
Step 5 - Then notify
The final option of the workflow configuration is to choose who should be notified about a trip. Once the criteria in the 'If' statement are met, the people/group(s) listed in 'Then notify' will be notified via email. Required items do not need to be completed nor does the trip need to be approved in order for those selected in 'Then notify' to receive an email. In this step, you can choose an individual or a group and add as many as you need. You can also use the "Then Notify" section to send an email notification to Travelers. For my example, let’s say that Christina should be notified.
If desired, you can click "Add Custom Email Text" to create a custom message that will be sent to everyone selected to receive a notification email. The rich text editor allows for a variety of formatting options, including hyperlinks, bold, and italics.
Once the message and other configuration are done, ensure the workflow is set to “Active” (so it can be triggered by new/saved trips) and save it.
Note that if you need to notify different populations (for example both an admin and the travelers), you need to create multiple workflows.
Approvers listed in an approval process are notified that a trip requires their attention via email.
The email will contain the traveler’s name and basic trip details. Clicking the “HERE” link will take the approver to a trip review page where they can complete the approval process. They do not need to log in to the site to access the approver screen using the email link.
The approver will be able to access and view the traveler’s full itinerary, their profile, the responses they submitted to any forms the traveler completed, any essential content submitted (including signature forms and uploads), and the status of any other approvals that were required. If this is an approval request for a group trip, the approver will also be able to see the roster of travelers.
To help the approver make a more informed decision, a link to country intelligence details has been added to the itinerary screen of the trip approval interface. Approvers can click on the flag for each destination to link to this critical information. From the country intelligence screen, approvers can also opt to view more information about the DOS and CDC risk ratings. In addition, the itinerary screen displays the AlertTraveler, DOS, and CDC risk ratings for all trip destinations.
Approvers will also see the number of outstanding approval requests in the upper right hand corner of the approval screen, as well as an option to download a PDF version of the approval request.
On the 'Approval' tab, the approver can
- approve or deny the trip
- leave a public note that the traveler, other approvers, and admins can see
- leave an internal note that the other approvers and admins can see
Notes can be submitted without also submitting a decision about the trip.
The traveler will be notified of the decision and see the message left for them. If another approver is next in line in a sequential approval and the trip is approved, that approver will receive the email requesting approval.
If an approver is unable to submit a decision using the email sent (they lost the email or are out of office, for example), the administrator can submit a decision on behalf of the approver. Navigate to the "Approval History" tab of the trip and there will be an edit pencil to the right of the "Pending" status.
Clicking the edit pencil will open a modal where the admin will see the approver's name, have the ability to enter a note (public and private), as well as submit a decision. In the chance multiple people are able to approve as the approval request was sent to a group, the admin would be prompted to select the approver from a dropdown.
The approval log will also show who submitted the decision, as well as any notes (same as if the approver submitted a decision directly).
The "Search" option will search the workflow name (description), IF” statement criteria, deployed items, and approval chains.
Collapse all workflows by clicking the carrot icon (^) to the right of the "Status" dropdown, or collapse an individual workflow by clicking the carrot to the right of the trash can icon within the workflow description.
Organize workflows to suit your office's needs by using the "Position: X" and arrows at the bottom of each workflow, or drag and drop as needed.
|Then approve by
|On Trip Save
|Before First Trip
|On Profile Save
|On Impacted Travelers
|On Trip Approval
|On Trip Create
|Prior to Return
|On Trip Cancel
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