[Tutorial] Building Approval Process in Wrike

[Tutorial] Building Approval Process in Wrike

Approvals form a huge part of work
at almost every company. Everything from creative projects
and marketing initiatives to budget frameworks and purchase orders need to be approved as they reach completion
or their launch date — and this process sometimes causes
a lot of frustration. In traditional work environments, people often
approve items only for their approvals to be overlooked. Why? Outdated work tools such as email. Emails can easily go missing. And even when they don’t,
email threads can be so long and contain so many supposed “final” versions —
that everyone gets confused. Situations like this inevitably affect
team productivity and business performance. Sign-off processes often take more time
than the work itself. This usually results in serious project launch delays. Wrike helps you add structure to approval
processes and lets you automate them. Here’s how it works: Start by naming work stages that are dependent
on other people’s input and make a list of all possible approvers
for each of those stages. In our example, these are
“Waiting for Team Lead Approval”, “Approved by Team Lead”,
“Waiting for Managing Director Approval”, “Approved by Managing Director”,
“Changes Required” and “Rejected”. Once you have it all outlined, you can proceed
with building this custom workflow in Wrike and reflect all your approval process statuses there. Approval statuses can be auto-assigned
to particular people to make sure those
whose assistance is required are notified. When you have several approvers
that need to take action, just add a designated status for each of them
to avoid confusion. This makes it easy for the Managing Director
to create a Dashboard to see what stage any task is at and to monitor those approvals
that need attention in real time. Being an approver, I want to have more control
over the work pending my approval, so I add a widget to my personal Dashboard
to stay on track. This list helps me keep track of my approvals
in one place and provides up-to-date information
every time I open it. Here in the widget,
there is a task pending approval. Let’s open it. There’s one more assignee next to my name. Matt is the person I share responsibilities with. We have the same level of authority
to approve work. That’s why we were both added as assignees
when the status changed. Apparently, he hasn’t had time yet to finish
this approval, so I’ll do it. I will delete Matt from the assignee section
and @mention him in the comments to let him know I’m on it. I’m ready to change the status to approved. But this long list of statuses looks confusing
and I can’t see the right one. That’s why there is a way to add another level
of clarity to the approval process by setting a fixed workflow. This enables me to specify which statuses
are available for a task to transition to its next phase. Now, approval process statuses are separated and approvers will not get confused with other statuses in a given workflow. Aside from monitoring your approval process
with the help of the Dashboard, you can also choose a color-coding scheme to help your
approval process in the Gantt chart view. Just filter the tasks with a certain status or statuses and get bird’s eye view on
how you are progressing with the sign-off. Need to drill down and get more details before
a status update meeting? Just create a report to provide yourself with
all the necessary information on each stage of the approval process. Having a clearly established approval process
can bring lots of value to your business. When it is streamlined and automated you bring your business to a new level
of transparency and accountability. People spend less time waiting to have
their work approved and can check any time where the work is at
in terms of approval and who has already signed off. All the items are automatically assigned
to the necessary people, which leaves no room for mistakes
and miscommunication.

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About the Author: Oren Garnes

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