Workflows allow designing processes within iPassport and then provide an intuitive plan of action which can be followed throughout the operation. A workflow will normally contain a series of sequential steps in which users, tasks and targets can be set. The completion of one step will naturally lead to the next one and the system will automatically generate tasks and notifications for the users involved. Events are task driven so they can be monitored and don’t get left unattended.
At the time of this publication (version 3.6.0), workflows have been implemented in the document review and publishing processes. The focus of this series of articles will be on Document Review Workflows and document Publishing Workflows. Workflows will be gradually extended to other areas and have already been partially introduced in the Change Control and Non-Compliances modules.
The document review process can be tailored to individual requirements with the use of Document Review Workflows. A workflow can be configured with different rounds of reviewers and it is also possible to add an approval step, making it easy for someone to sign off the review when it has been completed appropriately. This approval step would be perfect for organisations where the lab director is required to add their signature to all document reviews or simply where an administrator would like to check over a review before it is closed out.
Document Publishing Workflows come into play when a new document or a new version of a document is created. These remain in draft state until they are formally authorised. The ‘publishing workflows’ allow defining a series of steps when more than one person is required to authorise a controlled document. As with review workflows, a hierarchy can be established so that authorisations are done in a given order. There is an optional final approval step which can be treated as the last authorisation or as a sign-off by other stakeholders. The approver’s name will show as the one who authorised the document when no other names are listed.
A workflow can be set to be applied to all new documents in an OU or, only to all new documents in an OU of a certain type (e.g., just SOPs or just Policies). There are also methods to assign workflows to individual documents or to enforce them on all existing documents of a certain type in a given OU. Custom workflows can also be created and edited within a document but cannot be shared with other documents.
The Workflows module can be found by navigating to Administration > Workflows if the user has the relevant permissions.
Next Step: Workflows Permissions and Settings