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Six Hot Workflow Tips – From a Laserfiche Administrator to You!

By Danika Olson

February 2023 Consultants Corner

1.) Checking the status of a running workflow, determining the cause of workflow failure, etc.

If your organization has several workflows and you are notified of a failure – you will want to dig into what happened.

Enable search:

You can be as specific as you want here, maybe you only know the workflow name and that your workflow has been working fine up until the last few days. Select the workflow you know the issue is stemming from and check the start date to whatever time range is needed.

Once you hit search you will see all instances of the workflow, you can check the status column to see which instances have been completed successfully, which are waiting, or which may have failed.

I can see that the bottom two are stuck in waiting, to find out more information – double-click on the instance. Here you can explore where and why the instance status isn’t completed. In my example, my instance is stuck in waiting due to a conditional decision at the end of my workflow. On the condition’s status tab, I can see exactly which condition and determine the root of the problem.

I can also see this information on the Workflow tab, highlighted in blue is the portion of my workflow that has a conditional branch that has not been fulfilled or is still running.

Each workflow is different, but you can utilize the tools here to figure out what is causing errors or terminating your workflow.

2.) Organizing workflows by department, project, etc.

Another simple feature of workflow designer that helps me when getting started, is organizing my workflows. Typically, I organize by project name or department. It’s a simple and small feature, but as you continue your work in Workflow Designer, you may start to struggle – what did I name that workflow? Where is it? Starting off on the right foot with organized folders that fit your organization's needs is a great way to avoid confusion.

3.) Custom emails in workflow and other Laserfiche products

Depending on your workflow, you may need to send out emails for one reason or another. In all the Laserfiche suite products, you have a lot of customization options.

In workflow, add the email activity.

You will be presented with a few simple options, but you can select “Email editor” and/or “advanced settings” to customize your email settings and format.

Depending on your workflow, you may be able to use a token for the “To:” “CC:” “Subject” and more if the information is previously determined or exists, but if you want the information to be static, you can simply enter the email address(s) or subject.

In this screenshot, I typed out an email but show the token options in the CC field.

You can attach entries from the workflow, use custom HTML, utilize previous tokens for email content, and more.

You can click Advanced Email Settings to customize these options:

**Attaching a shortcut option should only be used if the recipient has access to your repository or weblink if applicable.

4.) Multiple connection profiles

Another feature I find extremely useful is setting up multiple connection profiles. I always start my workflows out in a test environment – but when I am ready, I want to be able to easily switch the workflow over to live. I may also have certain activities that need to be ran using a separate connection due to access rights and privileges etc.

** Try to avoid using connection profiles with accounts that will have password change requirements, if the password is changed the workflow may run incorrectly or fail. **

One of the easiest steps is to switch the connection profile.

When you have your workflow open, before clicking on any activities on the properties pane on the right side, you will see the name, description and next you will see connection profiles. Select Manage Workflow connection profiles.

Here you will be able to add an additional profile to connect with or switch over to. You will select your server, and then the additional repository if wanted. You can set the username here as well if you need to utilize a different account for parts or all your workflow activities. Just select Add and you will now have your connection profiles saved and can easily switch between them as needed for creation, testing, and production.

5.) Business process library / Workflow Templates– don’t reinvent the wheel

You may be able to find an existing process that already contains most of what you are needing to do, with minor customizations or updates. You can start in either the Workflow Templates (available on the Laserfiche support site or if your process is utilizing both Forms and Workflow, you can search the forms Business Process Library. This option will be available upon signing into forms and selecting Design (NOTE: You will need the Process Creator or Systems Administrator security role!)

To open a template, or another form of an exported workflow (.wfi)

Open Laserfiche Workflow Designer > File > Open and navigate to where the template(s) is stored. You may need to change the file format from .wfx to .wfi depending on which type of template or workflow you are trying to open.

The Workflow Import Wizard will pop up, here you will set your connection profile, set how you want to open (Publish, rename and publish, don’t publish, open without publishing).

You will also choose the public action for any starting rules applied to the template. Select Finish and open your imported template.

Laserfiche provided templates will have clear descriptions to help you set the workflow up to work for your organization's needs.

6.) Need to update an existing workflow with static set information (i.e. email address for a user who left the organization)

If you are needing to make a small adjustment, let’s say you need to update a static set email address due to a user leaving your organization, and you want to make sure you have updated all activities containing or using that information. An easy way to find this information is to either use CTRL+F or Edit > Find from within the workflow(s) you want to search.

For this example, I want to make a change to all activities that contain a specific email address.

I can either type “email” in the Activity Type search

Or I can type the email address in the properties search and select Find All.

The results pane will show, and I can see that one activity was found containing the information I specified. I can now double-click on the activity shown, and it will take me directly to the email activity that contains this information.

I can make my changes and publish the workflow.

If your search exists in multiple workflows, the results will be separated by workflow name. You can use the same double-click method to automatically navigate to that workflow and activity to make your changes.


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