Let’s talk about workflow for a moment. There are several concepts of automated workflow in TimeControl and several places where you would focus, feature-wise, as you were talking about it. Let’s look at each of those and then talk about the TimeControl Workflow functionality.
Specifically, TimeControl’s Matrix Approval Process for Labor Actuals™. This is a flow of data for the approval process itself. TimeControl includes approval functionality both for Finance oriented people to approve the total hours and Project oriented people to approve the timesheet data line-by-line. This is all part of a process that locks down the totals and then allows changes by different people of each line. It’s a powerful concept that we thought up in the early 1980s and its strength continues to prove strong today. You can find out more about that at timecontrol.com/use-cases/matrix-approvals. For line item approvals, we have not only the Project Manager Approval but also Line Item Approvals that are associated to export definitions. This provides a multi-dimension matrix of approving and, if needed, adjusting data. So, a project manager can approve a line and, completely separately, a billing manager can reject a line and, completely separately, a client can approve a line on-site and so on. Because these lines all serve different processes, the adjustment or acceptance of data is all kept distinct.
TimeControl also performs automated actions depending on what Accrual Rules you might have set up. When a timesheet is release, or posted or on a scheduled basis, Accrual Rules can activate to make calculations and insert values into banks of hours for vacation, sick leave, personal time off or other distinct types of tracking such as overtime, banked overtime and more. This allows a flow of data, calculations and changes that will impact mostly employee banks. Accruals are highly dynamic and are a powerful aspect of TimeControl automating calculations that you would otherwise have to do manually with great effort.
Pre and Post-Posting Procedures
As timesheets are posted, TimeControl allows additional calculations of the timesheet data and other elements of data and this allows a flow of automated calculations to impact the overall TimeControl data in a myriad number of ways.
Ok, let’s turn to the subject we started on and that’s the TimeControl Workflow function. TimeControl Workflow is activated at the moment a timesheet is released and changes ownership. At that moment, the workflow looks to see if it should be triggered based on values or conditions in the timesheet data. If so, it then makes a series of logical decisions about what to do. “If that, then this”. In this case, it might change the ownership from the current target to move on one target. This might be used to say send the supervisor only the exceptions. If this timesheet is exactly 40 hours and has no overtime, no vacation or time off, then bypass this supervisor and send the timesheet to Posting or to the next level. The Workflow could also automatically approve all lines in the timesheet in Project Management Approvals. You could also send an automatic email to… well, anyone. A project manager, for example, might get an email if this timesheet would put a project within 10% of its overall budget.
The level of automation here is extensive and is a common go-to configuration element of TimeControl deployments.
For more information about TimeControl Workflow and to see a webcast of it being defined, go to timecontrol.com/features/workflow.