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Automated customization of a Workflow management system in Lotus Notes - modifying the selection formulas of the views

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000029299D
Original Publication Date: 2004-Jun-22
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2004-Jun-22
Document File: 2 page(s) / 33K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

A method of programatically re-ordering and renaming views in a Lotus Notes database is proposed. The re-ordering and renaming is based upon the input of an end user.

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Automated customization of a Workflow management system in Lotus Notes - modifying the selection formulas of the views

The structure and functionality of Lotus Notes* databases makes them ideal control mechanisms for workflow processes. A typical workflow control database will consist of a series of views where 'work requests' flow through a series of views sequentially as specific actions in the process occur to them. Often times the sequential views are named in a way that both their place in the process flow as well as the action to be performed at that point are part of the view name. For instance, suppose that we have a process where actions A, B, C, D and E are to be performed, and generally in that order. A common workflow database to support this process likely would contain the following views Step 1 - Need Action A Performed Step 2 - Need Action B Performed Step 3 - Need Action C Performed Step 4 - Need Action D Performed Step 5 - Need Action F Performed

But now suppose that for a certain customer, we must modify the process to contain only actions A, B, D and E, AND they are to be performed in the order D, E, A, B. The workflow database to support this process likely would contain the following views

Step 1 - Need Action D Performed Step 2 - Need Action E Performed Step 3 - Need Action A Performed Step 4 - Need Action B Performed

Normally a Lotus Notes database developer will modify the names of the views to correspond to this new order AND they will modify the view selection criteria so that work requests now flow through this new workflow. And since now the database is changed, a complete set of regression tests must typically be performed to insure that the actual functioning of the database is equivalent to the desired functioning.

We have devised a system to reliably perform these types of rearrangement/renaming in an automated manner. In our system, an end user modifies a 'WorkFlow Profile' document in the Lotus Notes database and selects which actions are to be performs in their customized process and in what order they will be performed. When the user saves the WorkFlow Profile, the customization automation takes control. This automation renames the views...