Not every project is the same, and not every organisation runs their projects the same way. To cater for variations in project types and processes we are expanding the add-on workflow functionality to allow you to build your own project structures, from the ground up. So whether you run one improvement methodology (e.g. model for improvement, lean or six sigma) or a combination you will be able to create workflows specifically designed to facilitate the method, steps and tools you require for each type of project.
Some organisations already use the workflows add-on to customise elements of the project process (e.g. ensuring groups are added to new projects, project approvals and notifications, capturing extra charter information). With v3 comes a massively expanded workflow feature-set providing a whole new level of customisation, allowing you to configure the flexibility to make it work for your way of doing improvement.
Some of the main workflow additions include:
Structure your projects how you want
Gone are the days of having to use the default project pages in Life QI. You can now design your projects to have as many pages as you want, call them what you want, and control what goes on each page. So, if you have a specific workflow or terminology you can reflect that in your project structure. If you want to control what content and tools are used on each page of the project, you can. For example, if you want a Driver Diagram page and want users to be able to create more than one diagram on the page – no problem.
As well as having the flexibility to design your own projects, you can decide how much of this flexibility is passed on to your users. For example, if you want to allow users to add extra pages to their project – you can.
Add custom fields
Adding custom fields to a project is a much-requested feature. These may be for capturing additional charter information or for extra ways of categorising a project for reporting purposes. Until now this has partially been possible through custom forms and tags, but with v3 we are moving to a more robust and flexible way of adding your own fields to projects.
As part of creating your own pages you get to design the fields that go on those pages – all of them. So, create and add whatever fields you want using the new Forms content. Custom fields aren’t just limited to free text boxes, you can also add drop-down fields so users can pick from options pre-determined by you. These will help with categorising projects against whatever dimensions you want, typically the dimensions that will driver your reporting.
Create different project templates for different types of project
You will create your own project workflows by setting up a project template, or multiple templates, and building the structure, elements and controls you want into your template. Then each time staff run a project it will be based on your template (or one of your templates if you have multiple) giving them access to the structure, content and controls you have laid out. So, if you run different types of project you can create a template that is perfectly suited to each type, providing your users with a tailored and focused experience that is relevant to the work they are doing.
Create automations to trigger notifications and next steps
As part of your workflow you can create buttons that appear on your projects, that when clicked by a user carry out a single or series of automated actions. Common button automations could include - seeking approval once a project has been chartered or running a report.
Automations can also be triggered by fields being changed. Examples of this might be triggering a new status update every time the progress score is changed, or sending a notification when a status update is left.
Automations aren't just limited to manual triggers (like clicking a button or changing a field) they can be time-based too. These kind of automations can be used to send regular reminders or run reports for example.
Build custom workflows for all your improvement work
The level of customisation described here is not limited to just projects. It is being rolled out to programmes, and the new areas being introduced with v3. So you will be able to create your own templates for project, programmes, ideas, stories, and even audits when they are released.