Once automatic approval workflow has been configured, these are the steps you will need to follow in order to use it:
1. Create a proposal and a program line. Once a proposal has been created, the workflow status will be set to 'Draft'. This means that the trading program is yet to be sent through the approval process and will remain as a draft until it has been started.
2. Go to the Approvals tab in your trading program. This is where you will be able to start and see the workflow.
3. Start the workflow by clicking on the Start workflow button at the bottom of the page. A button will appear to confirm that you are starting the workflow. Click Confirm.
You will not be able to edit the proposal once the workflow has started. To edit the proposal, you will need to click the 'Unlock trading program' button. This will halt the workflow and allow the settings and program lines of the proposal to be edited again. This is because when a trading program enters the workflow it cannot be edited to ensure all roles of the workflow are agreeing to the same trading program. Once these changes have been made, you will need to send it through the workflow again.
Please note — only users that have been configured to be able to start workflow will be able to see the Start workflow button, i.e. not all users will be able to start the workflow.
4. Once the workflow has been started and confirmed by the first person in the workflow, the workflow status will change to 'Proposal' or 'For signing' and an email will be generated and sent to the next person asking them to accept or reject the proposal. There will be a link in the email which takes the user directly to the Approvals tab.
This next user in the workflow can either be a member of your team or you can configure the workflow so that the trading partner can sign off the trading program using our handy Collaborator app. If you would like to externally sign-off on behalf of this trading partner then this must be done by the person who started the workflow. They would have to choose a Collaborator to sign-off on behalf of and upload a piece of supporting documentation to do this.
When a trading program reaches the 'Proposal' status, this means that it is in the workflow process and is currently waiting to be signed off by somebody on your side of the negotiations.
Alternatively, the workflow status could change to 'For signing' where an email would still be generated and sent to the next person asking them to accept or reject the proposal. However, the difference between 'For signing' and 'Proposal' is that 'For signing' means the trading program is currently waiting to be signed off by the trading partner as opposed to somebody on your side.
5. The user can view the proposal, program lines and terms in Trading Programs or they can download the program PDF to see a summary of the program lines and the terms and conditions. After reviewing, they can accept or reject the proposal by clicking on the relevant button. A pop-up box will appear to confirm the decision, click Confirm.
On the panel on the right-hand side, you will be able to see a summary of the proposal, the workflow status and who the workflow is waiting on.
If the proposal has been accepted, the workflow will do the same as before and move on to the next person, therefore, triggering an email to that user to review a proposal.
If a proposal has been rejected, automatic emails will be sent to update the required users and the proposal will go back to a workflow status of 'Draft'. This means the proposal can be edited and the workflow has been restarted. When rejecting a trading program, you will need to provide a reason for rejection, this reason will appear in the internal trading program notes.
6. Once all users in the workflow have approved the proposal, the workflow status will change to 'Fully Signed' and the proposal will automatically activate into a trading program. This means that your trading program has been approved by everybody and is ready to start earning rebate. It will now be found in the Trading Programs tab under the relevant trading partner.
You can use the workflow report to search for and view all of the trading programs or proposals and their current workflow status in Trading Programs with a breakdown of who the trading programs' lead is, who the trading program is currently with, who the trading program is waiting on and the last updated date.
If you have the Executive Summary enabled, this process will look a bit different.
The first thing you will see in the Approvals tab is the executive summary. The boxes on the left panel allow you to navigate to different aspects of the approval process. Clicking ‘Start configuration’ opens a new section marked ‘To-do’ with the steps necessary to initiate automatic workflow:
- Trading program comparison: Choose one or more trading programs to include on the executive summary for comparison to the current trading program. Once you have chosen, click ‘Save’ to save your choice or ‘Confirm’ to complete this step. You will be able to ‘Unconfirm’ if you need to change your selection after confirming.
- Supporting documentation: There is a free text box to enter a trading summary that will appear on the executive summary. There is also a section to upload attachments. This step can be confirmed with no summary and no attachments.
- Activation settings: In this section, you can configure any activation settings that were created prior to starting the workflow configuration.
- Approval hierarchy: This step allows you to confirm that the approval hierarchy is correct.
- Executive Summary: This provides a finalized view of the executive summary before it is sent.
- Once all steps are confirmed, you will be able to see a final overview of the agreement and ‘Confirm workflow’ or ‘Cancel configuration’.
Trading program comments
If your trading partner is in your workflow, you will be able to interact with them through Trading Program comments through Collaborator. Trading Program comments provide a location for communication between you and your collaborators and also facilitates direct sharing of supporting documentation.
You can see more on trading program comments here.