⚡️ Gatekeeper Expert - Workflow Resubmissions & Appeals ⚡️

Leveraging SLA Timers to offer optional appeals to form rejections


Sections in this article

Problem Introduction



Additional Reading




Deciding what to when a workflow request form is rejected can lead to a few "what if's"...

Take this simple request & approve scenario:

Step 1: A team member requests a contract for a new service

Step 2: Their Line Manager is dynamically assigned to either Approve or Reject this request

Step 3: If Approved, the form can be assigned to the company Legal or Procurement teams to begin getting the agreed contract in place

But what should be done if the Manager hits "Reject"?


The 2 simplest & most-common options for this are:

a) If the requestor should be given a second chance:

-> Send the form back to the requestor

Here a rejection could mean "try again" - maybe if the requestor forgot include some context/documentation necessary for the decision/internal SOPs

Example Diagram: XML / PDF


b) If the Manager's decision should be final:

-> Send the card to a "Rejected [Done]" phase and inform the requestor that they will not get this new service.

Here it's the case that this is the end of the line. Whether or not the requestor still wants the service, this particular workflow card will go no further.

Maybe it isn't possible with the line manager's budget....Or maybe the company already pays for a service of this nature which can be expanded to more employees/teams...

Example Diagram: XML / PDF


Both of these options have merits. But instinctively capturing which options a Manager wants to provide to their requestor (or which option the requestor would want to have) is not always so straightforward.




The Solution

A suitable  middle ground here is to allow for both options with the click of the same "Reject" action!

To allow this, when a form is rejected, it can be sent to a new phase (named something like "Review Rejection")

Here the phase owner can be set to "Card Creator" and all the same form sections from the initial request can be made "editable" (essentially allowing the requestor to update/amend any of their previous inputs)

The 2 -3 key differences between this new phase and the start phase request form are:

1) There is a notification here stating that their card was rejected (and potentially why if using the notification content tag)

2) An SLA timer is used to transition this card to an actual done phase is the form is not resubmitted within x days (for example, giving the requestor 7 days to resubmit)

3) If necessary, you could even reveal a new form field at this phase named something like "Why should this request be reconsidered?" mandating the requestor provide a reason the manager should review their approval/rejection decision

This means that the requestor will have the option to resubmit their form (without having to fill out a brand new request from scratch) OR ignore the card and let the system automatically archive it off after the "x days" SLA timer

Example Diagram UPDATED: XML / PDF





The Configuration

1) Add in a new phase named "Review Rejection"

You can decide where to place this in your workflow but the 2 logical options are:

a) Between the Request & Approval phases (below)

b) At the end of the workflow, next to the Rejected [Done] phase

2) Configure the Form settings to match the initial request form (hidden/editable/mandatory/etc)

3) Configure the Form Access settings to be owned by the Card Creator

4) Switch on the notification so they know the form has been sent back!

If you wish to use the notification text from this example, copy the content at the bottom of this article

5) Configure the SLA timer

6) Configure the transitions for your new phase - replicate the same submission transitions as the initial request PLUS a new SLA transition to the Rejected [Done] phase of the workflow

7) Point the Rejection action transition to your new phase!


Optional Extras

8) Add a reminder email 1 day before the SLA timer informing the requestor they have 1 day left to act on their resubmission (i.e. [the number of SLA days ]- 1)

9) Add a new mandatory field to the resubmission phase asking why it should be reconsidered

10) Update the rejection phase instructions to inform the reviewing manager/group what happens if they reject the request form




Additional Reading 📚


Workflow SLA Timers

Adding Workflow Phases

Configuring Workflow Transitions

Configuring Workflow Notifications

Configuring a Workflow Form




Example text for Rejection email:

Subject: ⚠️ Request Rejected - ⚠️


"{{ recipient.full_name }}

Your <strong>{{ workflow.label }}</strong>  request form has been rejected.

<strong>Rejected By</strong> {{ actor.full_name }}
<strong>Comments:</strong> {{ approval.reason }}

You may update & resubmit this request at the below link

<hr><i>If no action is taken, your request will be archived after <strong>7 days</strong></i>"


Example text for rejection REMINDER email:

Subject: ⏰ 1 day left to act - {{ card.name }} ⏰


"{{ recipient.full_name }}

Your <strong>{{ workflow.label }}</strong>  request will remain active for 1 more day before it is automatically archived

You may update & resubmit this request at the below link

<i>If you no longer need this new contract, you can disregard this email!</i>"