The most visible of the workflow enhancements in Version 2.0 is the work list and e-mail notifications, which are bound to fundamentally change the way that many users interact with the MIS, especially those responsible for recommending forms.
The new Work List is automatically displayed as the first page after you have logged in. It lists all the forms (MIG 1 to 10) that require your attention.
If you click on the hyperlink in the Project column of the list it will open the form just like any other list in the MIS would have done.
Once the form is open you will notice two new buttons on the Action Bar. Clicking the Next > or < Previous buttons will open the next or previous form in your Work List. The buttons become inactive when you reach the first or last form in the list. These two buttons (the list navigator) allow you to attend to all the forms requiring your attention without returning to the Work List. If you do return to the Work List after attending to all the forms it will be empty, indicating that there is nothing that requires your attention.
Should you want to return to the Work List from anywhere in the MIS, you can do so by clicking Work List on the Application Menu.
In the above we have described how the Work List will enable you to attend to all forms that require your attention without ever using the Application menu, Content tree or Filter! We will now describe how some users, particularly those that use the MIS infrequently, will be able to do all of the above without even using the Work List!!
This is made possible by a hyperlink contained in the enhanced e-mail notification sent by the MIS to alert you that a workflow item is awaiting your attention. If you click this hyperlink it will take you to the login page of the MIS. Once you have logged in the next page you will see is the form that you need to attend to, opened and awaiting your input!!
The workflow process or path followed by a form from start to finish has changed significantly. Note in particular that when a form is referred back for revision, it is no longer returned to the previous participant in the process but to the Project Manager or PMU Manager.
Irrespective of whether you use the Work List, an e-mail notification or Application menu, Content tree and Filter to open a form, you will notice the following changes to the form itself.
The section headings like Section 3: Project Details could in the past be opened by clicking anywhere on the background of the heading. This had to be changed because of the introduction of evaluation notes (comments), the presence of which is indicated by red, amber or green “Traffic light” icons. Clicking any of these icons displays the comments and clicking on the hyperlink Section 3: Project Details now opens the section.
Comments can be added by clicking one of the two Add Comment buttons at the top or bottom of an opened section. These buttons will always be present if you have opened the form from the Work List, but could be absent if you have opened the form via another route if the form is in a workflow state that does not allow you to edit it at that moment, even if you were able to edit it before or may be able to edit it in future.
A comment, symbolized by a green traffic light, usually contains additional information or clarification intended to expedite or document workflow actions, without requiring a subsequent user to act on it.
Comments could also be expressed as a concern (amber traffic light) or severe concern (red traffic light), when you believe that the matter is serious enough for subsequent users to note and potentially refer the form back for revision.
The purpose of the Form tab has not changed. Clicking the Printer Friendly button still displays a printable version of the entire form but now opens an additional print preview window that allows you to see the page breaks and only print specific pages.
If the form was opened from your Work List, the List navigator allows you to attend to all forms without returning to the Work List.
The new Comments tab provides a separate view of the comments added to each section of the form. Sections with comment can be opened by clicking the traffic light icon or you can click the Printer Friendly button to open a print preview of all the comments.
Workflow history Tab
The Workflow history tab has changed in the sense that it no longer contains comments that were previously added when a form is recommended or referred back. Comments must now be added before a form is submitted, recommended or referred back and these can be viewed from the Form or Comments tabs.
The tree view used to select an agency (previously referred to as province/district/municipality has been replaced by a faster agency selector that is more consistent with other selectors used to select contact persons, companies, etc. To use this selector, enter any part of the province/district/municipality’s name and click the Find button. If more than one match is found, select the correct agency by clicking the hyperlink or refine the search so that fewer matches are returned.
National Reference Number
For a limited period of time, the National Reference Number contained in the Registration section of the MIG 1 form can be assigned manually. To use this feature click the Manual button in between the National and Provincial Reference Numbers and enter the number. This should only be used in cases where forms are captured for projects that have already been registered through a parallel manual process.
The title of Section 2 has been changed from “Applicant” to “Implementing agent”. In time a further distinction will be made between Funding agent and Implementing agent. In Version 1, both of these were simply referred to as the Municipality.
The filters have been changed as follows:
In Version 1, the Captured filter only selected forms that were captured and saved by yourself. In Version 2, the Captured filter selects all the forms captured and saved by anyone in the agencies that you have permission to view. For example, if you are registered as a provincial user, you will see all the forms captured by the districts and municipalities in your province.
The My projects filter has been added to assist project managers to select the projects that they are responsible for. This filter selects all projects for which the Contact Person in Section 2 matches the user logged in.
This filter only applies to users with primary responsibility for workflow actions (such as Municipal Manager and Provincial Manager MIG). It selects all the forms that are awaiting the attention of users appointed by them to evaluate forms on their behalf.
All the Advanced filters have been enhanced by the addition of criteria to assist you with refining a search.
Some criteria, such as the Reference Number contain a drop down menu to further specify the parameter. You could for example choose to filter on a National, Provincial or Municipal Reference Number.
Click Find to select all the forms or projects that match the criteria that you have specified. The results are displayed underneath the search criteria without altering the criteria to allow you to refine the search by changing the criteria and clicking Find again.
The new Responsibilities tab that can be accessed from the Maintain My Profile link on the login page, allows most users to delegate their responsibility to another user for a fixed period or until the delegation is retracted. The user to which you delegate your responsibility will receive an e-mail notification to this effect when you delegate and also when you retract the delegation.
Before you can delegate responsibility you first need to nominate one or more alternate users by clicking the Maintain My Profile link on the login page and then selecting the Responsibilities tab. To nominate the first alternate click the icon in the first row. In the resulting user dialogue click Find to display a list of persons that you may nominate as alternates. Depending on where you are located in the MIS permission hierarchy, you may want to refine the search by specifying a Role and/or Agency. If you do not, it will display all users above you in the MIS permission hierarchy. For example, if you are a municipal user, it will display all the users in your municipality, all district users in your district, all provincial users in your province and all national users.
It is highly recommended (even required) that you nominate at least one alternate user to act on your behalf when you are unable to do so yourself.
To delegate responsibility, you have to click one of the Delegate to checkboxes, optionally fill in an Until date and click Submit on the Action Bar. If you do supply a date (for example the last day of your leave) the delegation will automatically expire at midnight on that date and you will start receiving workflow notifications from your first day back in the office. If you do not supply a date, the delegation will remain active until you retract it by again clicking the Delegate to checkbox and clicking Submit.
Escalation is the process through which the MIS provides alternate users with the necessary permission to attend to a workflow item that has not been attended to within 5 working days. For example, if you are responsible for recommending a form and neglect to do so in 5 working days, the MIS will request your first alternate by e-mail to recommend the form. If this person also neglects to attend to the matter, the MIS will request the second alternate to stand in, etc.
Users with primary responsibility for workflow actions (such as the Municipal Manager and Provincial Manager MIG) are allowed to appoint evaluators to assist them with the task of reviewing the contents of a form, for example checking that unit costs do not exceed guideline costs. If an evaluator is appointed, an e-mail notification is sent to the evaluator and the form appears in the evaluator’s work list. The user with primary responsibility for the form is not notified at this stage and the form does not appear in his/her Work List.
When the evaluator has reviewed and submitted the form the person with primary responsibility receives an e-mail that the form has been reviewed and the form will appear in his/her Work List. The workflow status icon will contain an E in the upper left hand corner to indicate that the form was submitted by an evaluator, for example . The person with primary responsibility (or the person acting on his/her behalf) may then examine the comments/concerns added by the evaluator and decide to recommend the form or refer it back for revision.
Appointing an evaluator is done in exactly the same way as nominating alternates on the Responsibilities tab. Once you have selected an evaluator, a number of Responsible for checkboxes will appear to allow you to make the evaluator responsible for one or more areas one level below your own in the MIS permission hierarchy. In the example below a Provincial Manager sees all the districts in the province. Likewise the Senior Manager MIG will see all provinces. Up to ten evaluators can be appointed. If more than one evaluator is made responsible for the same area, they will all receive e-mail notifications and be allowed to attend to the same form. This is nevertheless allowed because it provides a mechanism through which the workload can further be divided by informal arrangement. In the example below, the two evaluators responsible for the same district may split the workload informally by municipality.