Speed Up Your Workflow by Escalating a Request to the Right Person

  • by Jocelyn Dart, Senior Solution Consultant, SAP Consulting
  • July 15, 2004
Workflow should speed up, not slow down, your business processes. Examine your escalation procedures to see if they keep the tasks moving along.
Key Concept
The best person to escalate a workflow is the person who has the most motivation to complete the process.

A few months ago, a fellow workflow developer asked for my opinion on a workflow enhancement request he had received. He was more of a technical than a functional person, but even so he understood the business well enough to have serious doubts whether the request really made good business sense. This is the scenario he presented.

The business had implemented a workflow scenario that called for an approval task to be automatically sent to first-level management, i.e., the direct line manager of the employee who had started the workflow. The escalation procedures for the workflow were: If the manager does not complete the approval in the required time, after three days the approval task is automatically redirected to senior management, i.e., the manager’s manager. The work would then sit in the senior manager’s inbox until action is taken. No escalation strategy is applied to how long the work sits in the senior manager’s inbox.

Jocelyn Dart

Jocelyn Dart is a senior solution consultant at SAP Consulting working in Australia/New Zealand. She currently specializes in workflow and Supplier Relationship Management (SRM). As well as speaking at various SAPPHIREs and at ASUG, Jocelyn is a co-author of the book, Practical Workflow for SAP.

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