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Siebel Assignment Manager consists of several essential building blocks. A brief description of each is provided in the following subtopics; each subtopic is described in greater detail in other chapters throughout this guide.
An assignment rule is a logical collection of business conditions, and Assignment Manager evaluates potential candidates based on these rules. For example, assume the US Western Sales Representative position is responsible for sales of Products A, B, and C in zip codes 944401, 94402, 94403. In Siebel Assignment Manager, this example translates as follows:
Siebel Assignment Manager uses assignment rules to match assignment objects to candidates. Multiple assignment rules can be active for each assignment object. An assignment rule can also apply to multiple objects.
Assignment rules use criteria and scores to rate candidates and select potential assignees. Candidates that qualify for an assignment rule have the assignment rule score added to their total score. For example, if you have an assignment rule with the Score field set to 20 points, each candidate that meets the rule's criteria has 20 points applied to his or her total score.
Each assignment rule also has a candidate passing score value. After the total score for a candidate is calculated, Assignment Manager compares this score with the candidate passing score for the assignment rule. If a candidate's score is less than the candidate passing score, the candidate does not meet the criteria and is not assigned.
In Siebel Assignment Manager, assignment objects represent assignment entities to which candidates are matched based on assignment rules. The concept is analogous to business objects in Siebel Business Applications. You must associate every assignment rule with at least one assignment object.
Assignment criteria are the fundamental building blocks for assignment rules. You translate the assignment business logic you determine into assignment criteria. Assignment rules use criteria to determine which candidates qualify as potential assignees. Criteria also determine which assignment rule should be evaluated in assigning an object. An assignment rule can include none (zero), one, or many criteria.
An assignment criterion is usually defined along with criteria values. For example, assume you want an assignment requirement that employees speak German. When you create your assignment rule, you select the predefined Language rule criterion and German (or DEU, which is the language code for German) as the criterion value.
You can have several criteria values for the same criterion. For example, Figure 1 shows a Language rule criterion that uses four languages as criteria values: German, Spanish, Italian, and French. Assuming this assignment rule's candidate passing score is 10 points, and each language is worth 5 points, candidates for this assignment rule that possess expertise in at least two of these languages qualify for the assignment rule.
Assignment Manager provides predefined criteria values that are available dynamically based upon the criterion you select, or you can create your own criteria values using Siebel Tools. For example, if you want activities of type Repair or Break-fix handled by a certain employee, create a rule criterion called Activity Type with two criteria values, Repair and Break-fix. For more information about creating new criteria with values, see Process of Creating Assignment Criteria for Use in Assignment Rules.
Assignment Manager allows you to group assignment rules, splitting them up by business function or other categories. An assignment rule group can include multiple assignment rules, however, an assignment rule can belong to only one rule group. You must associate each assignment rule with a rule group.
TIP: If you do not want to create your own rule groups, you can associate all assignment rules to the Default Rule Group. The Default Rule Group is provided in the Assignment Manager seed data. Rules upgraded from versions prior to version 7.7 and 7.8 Assignment Manager are automatically associated with the Default Rule Group, if you have not already assigned a specific rule group.
Before the introduction of rule groups, Assignment Manager processed all active rules, which required several administration tasks to execute Assignment Manager only on a subset of rules. For example, one of the tasks required was to expire all unwanted rules. With the introduction of rule groups in version 7.7, you can now split rules and execute a subset of rules at any time.
For example, you may have one set of business rules for assigning repair activities and another set of rules for assigning similar, but different, activities, such as appointment activities. In this situation, you could create two rule groups with five rules each. Then, when assigning a particular activity, you specify the rule group you want Assignment Manager to process. Only the five rules from the rule group you specified are processed during assignment of the activity, for example, the five repair activity rules.
In Siebel Assignment Manager, candidates represent the people or organizations who are evaluated as potential assignees for objects. Depending on the assignment rule you use, and the object to which a candidate is assigned, candidates can be positions, employees, or organizations, and can be assigned as individuals or as members of a team. Alternatively, you can associate all people or all organizations defined in the database as candidates for a rule. You can also specify a particular candidate or one member of a team as the primary assignee on a specific assignment rule.
Dynamic candidates can come from different, but related business entities. For example, Assignment Manager can assign an activity related to an asset and then dynamically generate a candidate list from the asset team.
Assignment Manager determines dynamic candidates as potential assignees for objects from an attribute on the object row. For example, assume you have an activity that is associated to an asset. The asset, in turn, is associated with a list of employees. You may want Assignment Manager to treat the list of employees associated with the asset as potential candidates for assignment of that activity. In this situation, the potential candidates are dynamic candidates because they are not statically associated with an assignment rule; instead, they are identified during assignment. In addition, if the activity gets associated with a different asset that is associated with a different set of employees, the list of potential candidates for the same activity can change during the next assignment.
Employees represent candidates distinguished by their skills and product expertise and are typically used as candidates in service organizations. For example, a service organization would want to assign employees with the proper skills and expertise to objects, because these employees possess specific skills that are related to the service request or activity. Assignment Manager can also take into account a specific employee's work schedule, calendar, and regional schedule when determining assignments by creating rules based on an employee's availability. For more information about availability-based assignment, see Availability-Based Assignment.
Positions represent candidates distinguished by their job functions and are typically used as candidates in sales organizations. For example, a sales organization would want to assign positions to objects, because these positions are responsible for a region or territory.
By assigning objects to positions, you can have one sales representative inherit the opportunities, accounts, and contacts from another representative by reassigning the employee responsible for a specific position.
An organization represents a group of positions that has limited visibility to particular application data. For example, your company can create separate and distinct organizations to distribute specific information to organizational groups both inside and outside of your enterprise. Both internal and external users are granted access only to the information that they should see (such as accounts, opportunities, and contacts) and data they need to see (such as price lists, products, and literature).
By assigning objects to organizations, you can maintain better security and promote proper business practices by controlling data access and visibility between different organizations. For example, you can limit your distributors' data access by giving them visibility to product information, but restricting their visibility to price lists for the products. To restrict price list visibility, you can create a separate organization for your distributors that does not have access to the price list data. In this case, the price lists are not available to your distributors even if they are assigned to the products.
Some objects allow the assignment of a single organization, whereas other objects allow the assignment of multiple organizations to the same object. For more information about which candidates can be assigned to each of the predefined assignment objects, see Table 5.
In sales organizations, teams are typically assigned to objects. For example, you can assign a sales representative and a sales consultant to an opportunity. Alternately, you can assign a team of sales professionals—such as two district representatives, a regional manager, and a sales engineer—to work a single, large sales opportunity.
An individual represents a single employee or a position. Assigning individuals allows you to assign exclusive ownership to an individual who possesses a specific skill or expertise for a particular object.
In service organizations, individuals are typically assigned to objects. For example, you can assign a customer service representative with expertise in disk drives to all service requests that are marked for this area.
Table 5 shows which candidates can be assigned to some of the predefined assignment objects. This table also shows which assignment objects are restricted to a single assignee, and assignment objects that are capable of incorporating a team of assignees. S indicates the ability to allow only single owner assignments; M indicates the ability to allow multiple owners or team assignments.
NOTE: If you want to assign different candidates, such as assign accounts to employees or assign projects to positions, you must configure the assignment object using Siebel Tools. For more information about this, see Creating Assignment Objects.
A primary on an assignment rule represents the candidate (employee, position, or organization) that is assigned as the primary owner of an assignment object if the candidate passes the criteria for that object. The primary is the main owner, that is primary assignee, of an assignment object. This assigned primary is usually the highest-scoring assignee from the highest-scoring assignment rule.
Alternatively, you can configure Assignment Manager to assign one member of a team as the primary assignee. In addition, you can manually assign a particular candidate as the primary assignee on a specific assignment rule.
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