Demonstration Scenario of workflows Share Point 2010

There’s a lot to demonstrate when it comes to workflows. Consider this demonstration scenario: You’ve been asked to design and build an online ordering system for an electronic component maufacturer. To comply with international regulations relating to environmental protection, each product available for order must have achieved compliance with the appropriate standards for the country into which it will be sold. Determining compliance involves performing a series of calculations to determine the level of specific substances within the finished product. Since the calculation is relatively complex, it will be performed by a separate system. Once the calculation has been performed, the results should be sent to an environmental control officer for verification. In addition to the environmental control procedure, products being offered for sale must also follow a specific publishing process before being included in the site. New products will be added by the sales department. So that relevant technical information is available, details of the product will be passed to the engineering department, which will update the product record with appropriate details. With these details in place, the marketing department will then be responsible for collating and attaching the appropriate artwork before the product is sent for final approval by the online sales manager.

From this scenario, an appropriate design might involve three sequential workflows:

  • The first workflow will implement the environmental control procedure.
  • The second will implement the publishing procedure.
  • The third will do the work of physically making the product available for sale once the environmental procedure and the publishing procedure have completed successfully.

TIP All three processes could be implemented using a single workflow. However, in my experience, there’s only one constant when it comes to business processes and that’s change. In the interests of reuse and maintainability, three separate workflows are being created, since each addresses a discrete business process. This means that if the environmental control process changes, for example, only that workflow needs to be changed regardless of where it’s used across the organization. Had the process been incorporated into many separate workflows, making changes would be time-consuming and could lead to inconsistent results. It’s always a good idea to limit the scope of a workflow to a particular business process when possible.

Prerequisites
Before we can demonstrate workflows in SharePoint 2010, let’s create a sample site collection to hold the appropriate data.

  1. In SharePoint Designer, choose File | Sites | New Blank Web Site.
  2. Type this location for the new web site
  3. With our new blank web site in place, we can start defining the data structures that are required by our application. From the Site Objects pane, select Site Columns:
  4. From the Columns ribbon, choose New Column | Currency. In the Create a Site Column dialog that appears, type the name Unit Price. Choose the New Group radio button and type the name Online Sales
    Columns in the text box. The completed dialog should look like this:
  5. Prerequisites
    Prerequisites
  6. Now we’ll create a few new columns. Choose New Column | Hyperlink Or Picture from the Columns ribbon. In the Create a Site Column dialog that appears, type the name Product Image. Then choose New Column | Yes/No (checkbox) and type the name Environmental Compliance. Then choose New Column | Multiple Lines Of Text and type the name Technical Details. Then choose New Column | Single Line Of Text and type the name Product Name.
  7. Now we’ll make use of these site columns to define a new Product content type to hold details of our product catalog. From the Site Objects pane, select Content Types. From the Content Types ribbon, in the New section, click the Content Type button to define a new content type. In the Create a Content Type dialog that appears, type Product in the Name field. In the Select A Parent Content Type section, from the Select Parent Content Type drop-down, choose List Content Types. In the Select Parent Content Type drop-down, choose Item. Select the New Group radio button, and in the text box, enter the name Online Shopping ContentTypes. The completed dialog should look as illustrated:
  8. Demonstration Scenario of workflows
  9. The next step in creating our custom content type is to add the site columns that we defined earlier. From the Site Objects pane, select Content Types and then select the Product content type from the content types list. Then, on the Content Types ribbon, in the Edit section, click Edit Columns.
  10. To attach the site columns that we created earlier, click the Add Existing Site Column button on the Columns ribbon. Repeat this process to include all the columns in the Online Sales Columns group that you added in steps 4 and 5. Once all columns have been added, the completed list should look as follows:
  11. Demonstration Scenario of workflows
  12. Click the Save icon in the upper-left corner of the SharePoint Designer window to commit the changes to the Product content type.
  13. Our next step is to create a list using our custom content type. The list will be used to store our product data. From the Site Objects pane, select Lists and Libraries. From the Lists and Libraries ribbon, select SharePoint List | Custom List, as shown:
  14. In the Create List Or Document Library dialog, enter Products as the name and then click OK to create the list.
  15. The final step in preparing our demonstration site is to attach our Product content type to our Products list. Double-click the Products list to
  16. manage the list settings. In the Settings section, check the Allow Management Of Content Types checkbox.
  17. In the Content Types section, click the Add button, and then select the Product content type from the list. Highlight the Item content type and then click Show on New Menu from the ribbon. Removing the content type from the new menu will prevent content of type Item from being created using the user interface.
  18. Click the Save icon to commit our changes to the Products list.

Demonstration Scenario of workflows


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