Workflow Reporting and Auditing
By Kristian Kalsing on February 28, 2012
Visibility into business process history and performance is critical for every business implementing Winshuttle Workflow. For every action taken in every workflow process, audit information is available allowing you to provide comprehensive logs and reports in order to comply with auditing requirements.
The same database of workflow activity can be used to create reports and dashboards providing insights into the overall performance of the business unit or single individuals. For example, it is common that shared service departments have service level agreements (SLAs) that they are committed to. You can build dashboards which measure actual performance against these SLAs.
Winshuttle Workflow offers a range of options you can utilize for mining workflow data for both reporting and auditing purpose.The following provides an overview of these options.
The Central Administration site for Winshuttle Workflow contains a Charts feature that allows you retrieve simple reports for a given amount of time on a site/process:
- Site Performance Analysis
- Process Performance Analysis
- Task Performance By Process Analysis
- Performers Performance By Process Analysis.
The Central Administration site also contains an Export to Excel feature, which dumps workflow and task assignment data into an Excel spreadsheet. This enables a business analyst to utilize the default features in Excel to review and analyze the workflow data.
Winshuttle Workflow can be configured to automatically surface workflow activity data in SharePoint lists. There are two types of SharePoint lists collecting this data:
- Winshuttle Process Status List
- Winshuttle Assignment Status List
These lists, combined with the actual form libraries, allow you to use the default SharePoint functionality, such as views and filters, to review and analyze the data. You can also utilize other SharePoint add-ons (e.g. pivot chart widget) to examine the data in these lists.
Furthermore, standard SharePoint functionality also allows you to export data in these lists to Excel or Access where you can utilize data analysis capabilities in those respective products, e.g. pivot tables and charting.
All Winshuttle Workflow data is stored in a SQL Server database. By connecting directly to this data, you can leverage more powerful reporting tools that are compatible with SQL Server (e.g. SQL Server Reporting Services and SAP Business Objects).
Winshuttle Workflow also provides a mechanism for configuring scheduled exports of workflow data into other database destinations, such as existing data warehouses.
When addressing anything beyond the simplest of reporting requirements, this is the route most customers take.
There is a feature in Winshuttle Workflow which enables email summary reports on a per-form basis (e.g. the 7-day average of the fields in a form that is submitted every day). You can create reports from XSL and query templates, which can include calculations of data for a given type of form for a specified number of days. The report is sent out as an email, based on an XSL file. The data is retrieved using a separate text file to query the form type (i.e. corresponding SharePoint list and its entries).
About the author
Based in Seattle, Kristian is part of the product management team at Winshuttle where he is responsible for solutions that help companies to perform better by improving their management and governance of master data. Kristian has 15 years of experience with enterprise solutions in a broad range of industries across Europe, Australia and North America. When not at work, Kristian spends most of his time climbing in the mountains of the Pacific Northwest and elsewhere.
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