I broke one of my rules this week while preparing for a demo with a new Synergy client.  I was trying to build a workflow process that included some workflows and Exact Event Manager triggers.

Rather than following the process of building the workflow process flow first and then deciding what the workflow requests should look like, I reversed the process.  I did this because I have  re-engineered many internal processes and felt that I had the skills to bypass my normal process.

I was wrong.  It took a lot more time as I built the workflows first, then tried to fit them into my “stored in my head” flow.  It doubled the time necessary to complete my process, since I had to restart it a few times, since I was missing information in the requests that were necessary for triggers to occur.

As a tip today, I am stressing the need to “Think First and Create Later” as you build new workflow processes.  Always flowchart out your process flow.  I often use Post It notes on a wall, which I can easily maneuver around as I think the process should look like.  It is then that I use Visio (my personal Choice) and build the workflow onto paper.

After reviewing this paper, I then mock up the workflow requests on paper, and try to determine the fields and statuses needed.  I follow this with the building of the workflow requests (keeping Edit, Mandatory and Visible fields in the request unchanged).

Then, I test the workflow process that I have developed.  If I am satisfied, then I build the Event Manager events and work on the Mandatory, Visible and Editable options in the requests.

Lastly, I Test, Test and Retest the processes.

I have published a manual available from our website for a small fee that provides more tips on building workflows.