Utilize Low-Code/No-Code Applications and Automations for Citizen Developers

Digitalizing and Simplifying User Interactions

Objectives
After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

After completing this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Add interactive forms in the process
  • Design the form with layout and input fields using drag-and-drop
  • Configure the forms as the process steps
  • Run the process and access tasks in My Inbox

Adding Interactive Forms in the Process

In the previous lesson you kick started your journey with SAP Process Automation where you have set up your account, created a business process project and a process from one-unified Application Development studio.

Now you will design the process with the use of Forms, which is becoming an extremely popular way to streamline approvals in any business process. The forms will be created using Form Builder, which is embedded in the process builder, using drag-and-drop feature without any coding.

Let us get started and explore how these different forms are created in Form Builder of SAP Process Automation.

No papers, just forms

You have probably experienced that many tasks in your working world, such as reviews, approvals, and validations are still assigned to employees via papers or emails. These tasks are a vital part of any business process, but in a pre-hyperautomated working world, they are inefficient and slow.

SAP Process Automation helps you take action and accelerate projects by letting you easily and quickly create forms that are available to you via your My Inbox application. This eliminates the need for paper-based processes and/or the need for sending multiple emails.

Forms have one layout, once access point, traceable actions and are designed to involve the right kinds of stakeholders.

These interactive forms can be created by simply dragging and dropping the text elements and input fields onto the canvas. Once you have created a form, you can use it as a process trigger to start a process or use it to add an approval step in a business process.

Let us now explore how these different forms are created. In the steps below you will create 3 forms which will be used to

  1. start the approval process,
  2. send a task to the My Inbox application of the business process approver, and
  3. notify the requestor for approval or rejection.

To Create a Form to Trigger the Business Process

First you will create a trigger form that will start the business process. For that you have to open your process in process builder and add a new form.

Steps

  1. Click New Form in Trigger Settings.

  2. Give the form a Name and Description and click Create.

  3. Now it is time to design the Form using the available layout and input fields options, the drag-and-drop feature, and simple configurations. All you need to do is drag-and-drop the form fields in a logical order and enter the given names and field settings.

    Names and Field Settings (1)

    Form FieldsField Settings with Label
    Headline 1Order Approval Request Form
    ParagraphProvide the necessary order information and submit it for approval.
    for all below Input Fields enter the labels and select theRead Onlycheckbox
    TextCustomer Name
    TextOrder Number
    NumberOrder Amount
    DateOrder Date
    DateExpected Delivery Date
    TextShipping Country

Result

Now that you have added the trigger to start the process, you will now expand the process with more activities related to the approval of the sales order.

To Create and Configure Approval Forms

Start designing your approval form for the sales order following these simple steps:

Steps

  1. Add a New Approval Form to the process with any given name and description.

    Into the new form, enter the following data:

  2. Design the Form in the Form Builder by simply dragging-and-dropping fields onto the form editor and configuring respective field settings.

    Names and Field Settings (2)

    Form FieldsField Settings with Label
    Headline 1Approve Sales Order
    ParagraphA new order has been received. Please review and confirm that the requirements can be met.
    ParagraphSales Order Details:
    for all below Input Fields enter the labels and select theRead Onlycheckbox
    TextCustomer Name
    TextOrder Number
    NumberOrder Amount
    DateOrder Delivery Date
    for all below Input Fields only enter the labels
    ParagraphSupplier Acknowledgment
    CheckboxI acknowledge that we have received your order and will process it based on availability.
    Text AreaMessage to buyer:
  3. Save your work using Save button on top-right corner of the screen.

  4. Go back to the process builder to map the actual process content with the form input fields. This is needed to fill the actual data in the form fields.

    Select the approval form created above and configure the General information section using the process content.

  5. In the Subject box, enter Review and Approve Order<Order-Number from the process content>from<Customer-Name from the process content>company.

  6. For Users in Recipients, select Process Metadata > Process Started By from process content.

    Similarly, go to the Inputs tab and map the different input fields (which were marked as read-only) with the respective process content data.

  7. Save your work using the Save button in the top-right corner of the screen.

To Create and Configure Form for Notifications

After the user approves or rejects the request, the next step is to create notifications. These notifications will inform the requestor whether their sales order is approved or rejected, and it will be sent either via an email or through the form.

Steps

  1. Add a new form for approval notification with any given name and description.

  2. Double-click the form in the process builder to open the Form Builder. In the Form Builder, design the form by dragging and dropping the required elements to notify the requester of the order confirmation.

    Names and Field Settings (3)

    Form FieldsField Settings with Label
    Headline 1Order Confirmation
    ParagraphYour order has been received and accepted for delivery. We will send you the details as soon as the order is shipped. You can find the details of your order below; please review and verify your request.
    Text AreaMessage from the supplier:
    ParagraphSales Order Details:
    for all below Input Fields enter the labels and select the Read Only checkbox
    TextOrder Number
    NumberOrder Amount
    DateExpected Delivery Date
  3. Save your work using the Save button in the top-right corner of the screen.

  4. Go back to the process builder and map the process content with the form input fields in the General and Inputssection.

  5. Select the order confirmation form and configure the General information section.

  6. In the Subject box, enter Your order<Order-Number from the process content>has been successfully received.

  7. For Users in Recipients, select Process Metadata > Process Started By from process content.

    As you did for the approval form, go to the Inputssection, and map the different input fields (which were marked as read-only) with the respective process content data.

    With this you completed designing and configuring the notification form.

    You can copy the same form to create another form to send a rejection notification to the requester.

    Hint
    If copying is not available, then create the form in the same way and modify the texts wherever relevant.
    1. Add the new form to the rejection route.

    2. Design the order rejection form in the Form Builder. Don’t forget to save the form once completed.

      Names and Field Settings (4)

      Form FieldsField Settings with Label
      Headline 1Order Rejection
      ParagraphWe are sorry to inform you that your order cannot not be accepted and regret any inconvenience this may cause. You can find the reason for the rejection and the details of your order below.
      Text AreaMessage from the supplier:
      ParagraphSales Order Details:
      for all below Input Fields enter the labels and select the Read Only checkbox
      TextOrder Number
      NumberOrder Amount
      DateExpected Delivery Date
      ParagraphPlease click the SUBMIT button to acknowledge your order status.
    3. Configure the General and Inputs sections of the form in the process builder. Save the process when you are done.

    4. Finally connect the outgoing flow of the order rejection form to the End activity.

Result

With this, you have completed the design of your business process. You have experienced building a process in quick time in a completely no-code environment and with no technical know-how. You used our new enhanced process builder to create a one-step approval process with trigger, approval, and notification forms.

To Release, Deploy and Run the Process

As the last step, let us run the process as well as learn how to monitor the process and work on the tasks. Before you run the process, ensure that the process is saved and that there are no errors showing in the Design Console.

To run the process, you must first release and then deploy the business process project.

Steps

  1. Release – Releasing a project creates a version or snapshot of the changes.

  2. Deploy – Deploying the project makes it available for others to use it.

    You can only deploy a released version of the project.

    1. To release a project, click on the Release button on the top-right corner of the screen and provide a description.

      Every time you release, a new version will be created. Versions are incremented automatically based on how you want to store the changes in the repository (that is as major or minor updates or as a patch). Versions use an x.y.z format where x is a major version number, y is minor, and z is the patch number.

      If you are releasing your process project for the first time, then the version will start with 1.0.0. The next time you release there will be options to choose from – that is, if the new version is a major, minor, or patch update; version numbers will be automatically updated.

    2. Once the project is released successfully, you will find a Deploy option in the top-right corner of the screen.

      The Deployment will take a couple of seconds/minutes depending upon how big your project.

      Once the deployment is successful, you will see a changed status. You can also see all your deployed and/or released project versions from the project status list next to the project name.

      Note
      You cannot edit released or deployed projects. To continue working on your project, you need to select the Editable option from the list of released versions.
    3. When you open the form in the browser, you will see all the input fields you defined in the process trigger form. Fill in the form and click Submit.

      1. Open the process builder of the deployed version and click Order Processing Form to see the form URL that you can directly open in the web browser.
      2. When you open the form in the browser, you will see all the input fields you defined in the process trigger form. Fill in the form and click Submit.
      3. After you click the Submit button, you will receive a notification that the form has been successfully submitted. This means that the workflow has been triggered and the approval process has started.
    4. Monitoring the process flow.

      Monitoring business processes is one of the key aspects of successful automation. Using monitoring capabilities, you can proactively and consistently monitor process performance, identify any issues in the process and take necessary actions to ensure business process continuity.

      SAP Process Automation provides different applications for monitoring and managing different process skills. The applications include Process and Workflow Instances, Automation Jobs, Acquired Events etc. These applications are available under the Monitor tab in Application Development studio.

      All deployed processes are accessed by following Manage > Processes and Workflows application. To monitor all the running instances of the process, go into Monitor > Processes and Workflow Instances application.

      In there, you will see all the running, erroneous and suspended process instances. Use the filter bar to get a more customized view of the process instances based on different statuses such as running, completed, suspended, terminated, etc.

      To explore different process monitoring options, go to the Instances list and click on your new process instance that was just triggered via the start form.

      Observe the process instance information, which provides the context for the process. You can see actual process data flowing across different activities in the process, and the execution logs where you can trace how the entire process has been progressing. You can also see some basic runtime information for each activity such activity name, who started it, when was it completed etc.

      As you can see, your process is now waiting for the task to be completed. These tasks are generated from the Forms that are added in the process and can be accessed via the My Inbox application (top-right corner of the screen).

      Notice the Recipients list. This is the same as configured in the General section of the Approval Form. The task will go into the My Inboxes of all the recipients.

    5. Accessing the tasks.

      Tasks are requests for users to participate in an approval or review process. These tasks appear in the My Inbox application shipped with SAP Process Automation. Users can claim, approve, and/or reject the task from their inbox.

      Once you approve or reject the approval task, refresh the inbox again to get the final notification based on the action you took. Once you acknowledge the notification sent via the approval process, the process will be completed.

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