How to add checks and balances to your workflow

Do you need to control authorization of your tasks? Do you need testing to be approved by the test manager? Do you need contracts to be approved by the legal department?

TaskTrakz allows you to restrict transitions of task status to particular people. By setting up a workflow customized to your business and restricting certain transitions to authorized people you can ensure that all tasks marked as completed have been approved by people with the appropriate authority.

By creating a custom workflow you can ensure that your business process is followed. You can divide your process into a series of states and define the allowed transitions between the states. Doing this ensures every task progresses through all states on one of the permitted paths.

TaskTrakz automatic task status history can show you who made each state transition. This is useful information to chase down any problems with the task, and can also be used as a signoff register. The person who made the transition is signing off that that stage of the process is complete.

With authorized transitions you can ensure that only people with the appropriate level of responsibility are able to perform certain transitions. This is especially important for transitions that carry authority, such as the approval stage for a document or for code.

Authorized transitions are another tool TaskTrakz puts in your belt to empower your team to efficiently and quickly complete tasks, even in the face of necessary approval processes.

A software workflow example

In software development, a more or less standard procedure is used to address bugs in software. Bugs typically go through the following process:

A typical software bug workflow including states for reported, reproduce, implement, test, review, resolved and complete

A typical custom workflow for addressing software bugs

Bugs may also travel backwards through this process to repeat stages as necessary, as shown by the arrows.

This is a process with complicated authorized transition requirements. Most of the transitions are approvals and should only be made by appropriate people.

The reported to reproduction transition should only be performed by a support team member. Reproduction is where the support person tries to reproduce the problem reported by the user.

Once the problem can be reliably reproduced, detailed instructions are written. Once the support person is happy that the problem is fully described they transition the task to the implementation state. Only a support team member can make this transition. This records the support person as signing off that the problem is reproducible and ready for a fix.

A developer is assigned the bug and changes the software to fix the problem. Once the developer is confident the change is complete they transition the task to the test state. Only the developer assigned to the task may make this transition. TaskTrakz records that the developer has signed off on the implementation stage.

A tester is assigned to test the changed software. Once the required tests have been run on the modified software the tester transitions the task to the review state. Only a member of the test team may make this transition. The tester is recorded as signing off that the test stage is complete (ie. that the required tests have run and passed)

A senior developer or software architect reviews the changes to the code. Once satisfied with the quality of the changes the reviewer transitions the task to the resolved state. Only a senior developer or architect may make this transition. TaskTrakz records the reviewer who signed off on the code.

The original reporter of the bug can now use the changed software to ensure that the bug is fixed to their satisfaction. If this is the case the reporter transitions the bug to the completed state.

At each point in this process only the appropriately skilled people can make the required transitions, and their approval is recorded automatically into the task status history.

Setting up authorized transitions

TaskTrakz makes it simple to set up authorized transitions in your custom workflow. Simply click the Users authorized to make transition field in the transition you want to control and use the dialog to select the people who are authorized to make this transition.

A screenshot of the TaskTrakz add authorized people dialog

TaskTrakz makes it easy to select the people who are able to authorize a task transition

TaskTrakz gives you the tools to ensure that your business processes are followed. Get your 14 day free trial of TaskTrakz here.