Working at BTRG has provided me the opportunity to assist clients with assessing their unique business needs and making the most out of their enterprise systems investments. One obstacle I find universal across clients is the need to setup effective workflow solutions and then be able to easily maintain them. Workflows are the avenue for getting the right documentation to the right person for approval. Oracle’s PeopleSoft product suite provides a method for companies to accomplish this through the Automated Workflow Engine (AWE) that was introduced in version 8.48 of PeopleTools and continues to propagate through the suite of modules.

During one of my recent PeopleSoft 9.2 Time and Labor upgrade projects, the client came to me with a request that a few years ago would have required an extremely time-consuming customization. The customer had interns who performed work for multiple departments. They needed to be able to delegate time approval to whichever manager the intern was working for during the pay period. Many of our customers require a custom process like this when employing interns. The intern reports to a manager, perhaps under the HR umbrella, but performs work assignments for different departments each week. With this type of workflow update, the intern can enter his or her time each week and the approval can be delegated by the intern’s manager to a different manager/supervisor for approval as needed.

To address the client’s requirement, my team needed to configure the system to permit ad hoc delegation of employee time from one approver to a different approver residing outside of the employee’s approval hierarchy. The client needed this feature to be applied to the employee only for a specified period of time within the approval process and without updating the employee’s job information. With the client’s needs in mind, we decided to automate the new process within the available approval framework.

My team’s flexible solution required minimal customization which is always the goal, as it meets the business needs of today and simplifies future application upgrades. In this case, we developed a custom page for assignment of the alternate approver. Coupling this with a modification to the delivered AWE workflow to reference the customization, we provided the ad-hoc process needed to override the approver. We were able to leverage the flexibility of the PeopleTools 8.54 code set to implement without significant changes to the delivered code. We called the time approval process and reassigned the approvers ID within the AWE process while leaving the employee’s job data untouched. This is just one of many projects where we have implemented the Oracle AWE and enhanced its functionality.

AWE blog

There are a myriad of approvals to account for across the spectrum of your enterprise system. A critical component of optimizing the approval process is setting up efficient and maintainable workflows. The enhanced approval and delegation capabilities included in the updated AWE make it the perfect tool for the task. Since AWE is now integrated within many of the PeopleSoft modules, it makes great business sense to move forward and start using this tool. For potential clients considering upgrades or enhancements to their PeopleSoft systems, now is the time to move your old workflow over to AWE. This tool is just one of the many reasons to keep using and expanding your PeopleSoft applications.

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