Assigning Work To People From Earlier Steps

In some workflows, you know exactly who to assign to each step. In a blog post publishing workflow, for example, you might know that the same two managers should always be assigned to review the post.

In other workflows, you need to be able to dynamically assign people to a step, depending on what's happened before. For example, you might want to assign a follow-up task to the person who gave approval in a previous step. Or, you might want someone to say who their manager is so you can assign an approval to that manager.

We call this dynamic assignment.

Two Types Of Dynamic Assignment

In Wrangle workflows, you have two ways to dynamically assign people to a step:

  • Assigning to people who completed a previous step

  • Assigning to people selected in a form question

By default, Wrangle's steps assume you want to assign the step to specific people rather than using dynamic assignment. On both approval and task list steps, there's an option to change this to one of the dynamic options:

Assigning To Previous Step Completers

The most common type of dynamic assignment is to assign the current step to someone who completed a previous step.

In the input pictured above, if you choose the options to "Assign to completers of a previous step," you'll see a second input that will list all of the preceding steps. That is how you assign the current step to the completer(s) of a previous step.

There are a few ways you can use this kind of assignment:

Assigning back to the person who started the workflow

By choosing to assign the step to the person who completed the intake form, you'll be able to assign things to the person who started the workflow.

For example, let's assume we're a salesperson starting a quote approval workflow. We want the salesperson to fill out the intake form, which then routes to an approval for the sales manager. If approved, we want to assign a follow-up task to the salesperson to make sure they send out the quote. If we assign that final task (to send out the quote) to the completer of the intake form, we achieve our goal since the salesperson is the one filling out the intake form.

Assigning to previous approvers

A very common use case is to assign follow-up tasks to someone who approved something. By choosing to assign a task step to the completers of that previous approval, we can achieve this — anyone who chose to approve in the early step will be dynamically assigned to the follow-up task.

Assigning to previous task completers

Similarly, we can also do the inverse. We can dynamically assign follow-up tasks or follow-up approvals to anyone who completed tasks in a previous step.

Assigning To Someone Chosen In A Form Question

Another way that workflows can be dynamic is to have a form question that allows the user to pick one or more colleagues. Then, future steps can be assigned to whomever was chosen.

There are two common ways this is used:

  • Picking a manager. In workflows that are used widely in an organization, especially HR workflows, you might want the person filling out the form to choose their manager. That way, you can dynamically assign a subsequent approval or task to the manager. Since the manager varies for every person that might use your workflow, this dynamic assignment is the only way to have a workflow that can adapt to the user.

  • Picking a subordinate. Picking a user, or users, in a form is also a great way for a manager to delegate work to a subordinate each time they start the workflow. The manager completes the form, choosing the people they want to assign later in the workflow.

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