What's New in Siebel Business Process Framework: Workflow Guide, Version 8.0 Rev A

Table 1 lists changes described in this version of the documentation to support release 8.0 of the software.

Table 1. Documentation Changes in Siebel Business Process Framework: Workflow Guide, Version 8.0 Rev A

Running Workflow in the Workflow Process Manager Server Component

When a policy invokes a workflow process, Workflow Monitor Agent typically uses Encoded Input Arguments to pass input arguments to the Workflow Process Manager.

Making a Workflow Process Editable

New topic. Several conditions must exist to edit a workflow process.

About the In/Out Process Property

New topic. If a process property's type is Out or In/Out, then outputs are returned to the caller. For example, to SRProc.

Passing a Process Property to an Error Workflow Process

Describes a procedure for passing a user-defined process property to an error workflow process.

Referencing a Process Property

A process property can be used as a substitution variable within an expression.

Business Service Calls to a Unix Shell Script

New topic. If a workflow process invokes a business service that calls a UNIX shell script, the shell script runs as the Siebel Service Owner account.

Copying Values from a Parent Process to a Subprocess

New topic. You can copy a value to a record being updated or inserted in a subprocess by creating a process property in the subprocess and assigning the value to it.

Example of Defining a Siebel Operation Search Specification

A Search Specification expression can be defined with compound expressions and substitutions from Process Properties or Fields.

Updating a Field That Resides in a non-Primary Business Component

New topic. You can update a field in a non-primary business component.

Using the Siebel Operation to Update a Process Property

New topic. You can use a Siebel operation to update a process property.

About the Upsert Operation on the Siebel Operation Step

New topic. The Upsert Operation provides a way to perform either an insert or update operation based on whether a record or records exist in the database.

Defining a Run-Time Event With a User Interact Step

New topic. Branches emanating from a user interact step in an interactive flow must be associated with a run-time event.

Invoking the Stop Step

New topic. It is recommended that the Stop step be used only in a workflow process invoked from a script.

Defining a Custom Error Message with the Stop Step

New topic. If none of the predefined error messages provided in the Error Code property on the Stop Step meet your requirements, you can define a custom error message on the Stop step.

Comparing Branching Declaratively to Programming With Script

New topic. You can implement branching declaratively, as in multiple branches emanating from a single step in a workflow process. In some cases, you can achieve the same result through script, as in scripting on a business service.

Example Requirements for Using a Run-Time Event Compared to a Workflow Policy

New topic. Describes example scenarios for using a workflow policy compared with a run-time event.

Identifying A Predefined Workflow Process Invoked by a Run-Time Event

New topic. You can use the Siebel client to identify predefined workflow processes that appear in the Action Set Field of the Administration-Runtime Events screen.

About Key-Based Routing with Workflow Process Manager

New topic. Key Based Enabled can be defined for the Workflow Process Manager to assist with routing and recovery.

About Workflow Process Manager and Automatic Record Insertion

New topic. When the Workflow Process Manager inserts a record, by default, the system generated CREATED_BY field is set to the ROW_ID for employee SADMIN. It can be desirable to have the CREATED_BY field set to other than SADMIN's Id.

Using a Run-Time Event With the User Interact Step

The SetFieldValue event for a field that has the Immediate Post Changes property set to TRUE is supported.

Using a Run-Time Event Within a Business Object Context

New topic. A workflow process that references a run-time event is only invoked when the run-time event is detected from within the same Business Object context in which the workflow process is based.

Using a Run-Time Event Within a M:1 Relationship

New topic. When using a runtime-event to trigger a workflow based on a modification made to a record that contains a M:1 relationship with a parent, you must trigger the workflow based on the child's ROW_ID.

Run-Time Events That Cannot Be Used to Invoke a Workflow Process

New topic. Some run-time events cannot be used to invoke a workflow process.

Defining an Error Exception to Handle an Update Conflict

New topic. You can define an error exception to handle an update conflict that occurs when multiple attempts are made to write to the same record at the same time.

About the Repeating Component Request

New topic. You can use the Repeating Component Request feature in conjunction with the workflow process to schedule the workflow task to be executed at a predetermined time.

Using Workflow Process Batch Manager When Primary and Non-Primary Business Components are Present

New topic. Use the Workflow Process Batch Manager server component when you need to run the workflow process for all records of a particular business component.

About Workflow Policies and Monitoring Tables

Workflow Policies can monitor only Siebel tables. Do not use a Workflow policy to monitor database tables that are external to Siebel, or to monitor certain EIM tables.

Using an Insert Operation With a Workflow Policy Action

New topic. An insert operation with Workflow Policy Action does not populate the Primary Owner.

Using the Run External Programs Type

A substitution parameter that contains spaces must be encased in quotes. Note that the quotes are also passed as part of the parameter.

Specialized Comparisons That Must Be Used With Batch Workflows

If a workflow policy condition is IS ADDED or IS UPDATED, then the triggers generated do not represent all the conditions specified in the policy.

Using the Simulator With a Workflow Subprocess

New topic. To avoid a validation error, you must publish and activate subprocesses called by the workflow process you are simulating prior to invoking the simulator.

About the Process Simulator Watch Window

New topic. Describes the Watch window, including how to use it within the context of an example.

Using the Process Simulator

Describes Process Simulator usage with latest release.

Run-Time Event Behavior for Mobile Clients

There is some variation in the way run-time events behave in mobile clients compared with other Siebel client types.

Behavior with Full Copy Nodes

New topic. If you extract a regional node with the routing group set to FULL COPY then workflow process definitions with Replication set to None are routed to the MWC.

Periodically Notifying Mobile Users Who Have Not Synchronized

New topic. You can configure a workflow process to send a notification email to mobile users who have not synchronized over a given period of time.

Deploying a Workflow Process as a Web Service

New topic. Describes how a workflow process can be deployed as a Web service.

Importing and Exporting a Workflow Subprocess

When importing a workflow process that contains subprocesses, you must first import the subprocesses and then the parent workflow process. Also, there are name length and carriage return restrictions.

Disabling Persistence to Avoid Excessive Records in S_WF_PROP_VAL

New topic. Having Persistence defined on a large number of workflows can cause an increase in the size of S_WF_PROP_VAL.

About the Workflow Recovery Manager

New topic. You can use the Workflow Recovery Manager to recover an interrupted workflow process.

Running Generate Triggers

When running Generate Triggers, table names have an 18-character limit.


Because the S_ESCL_REQ_S sequence does not have an upper boundary, the sequence for S_ESCL_REQ.REQ_ID can potentially generate a number greater than the maximum of 9 digits allowed, causing an overflow.

Starting Workflow Monitor Agent

Procedure removed. As of Siebel version 7.0, you must start Workflow Monitor Agent from the Server Manager command-line interface. Workflow Monitor Agent can no longer be run from the Siebel client.

Checking Modifications Into the Local Database

New topic. If you use Siebel Tools to modify a workflow policy object, column, or program in the local database, then you must check these objects into the server database.

Setting the Use Action Agent Parameter

New topic. In general, it is recommended that you start Workflow Monitor Agent with Use Action Agent set to False, the default setting.

Moving a Workflow Policy to a Different Group

New topic. In response to changes in the business environment or you configuration, you might find it necessary to change the workflow group for a given workflow policy.

Expiring a Workflow Policy

New topic. If you encounter a failed to load parent rows error message, it can be due to the presence of rows in the S_ESCL_REQ, S_ESCL_STATE, and S_ESCL_ACTN_REQ tables that reference expired policies.

Converting a Workflow Policy to a Workflow Process

New topic. In general, it is recommended you keep workflow policies simple, placing most business logic into a workflow process.

Example Workflow Process That Traverses a Record Set to Close Obsolete Service Requests

New topic. Provides a detailed example that describes how to traverse a record set.

Example of Externalizing Properties Used by Siebel Workflow

Content removed. Removed references to Universal Application Network (UAN), which is not supported in the current release.

Example of Using the Server Request Business Service to Invoke a Workflow From Script and Pass Values

New topic. You can use the Server Requests business service to invoke a workflow process from script and to pass field values to process properties.

Example of Using the Server Requests Business Service to Invoke an EIM Task

New topic. You can use the Server Requests business service to start a server task from within a workflow process.

Using an Output Parameter With the Echo Method

New topic. When using the Echo method, if you do not specify an input parameter but do specify an output parameter, the output parameters are populated with values from the active record of the business component.

Specifying a Substitution With the Outbound Communications Manager Business Service

New topic. You can specify a substitution variable when calling the Outbound Communications Manager business service from a workflow process.

Sending an Email to the Owner of a Product Defect

New topic. You can use the Outbound Communications Manager to send an email to the owner of a product defect.

Sending Email to an Email Address Held in Any Column

New topic. Workflow Manager can be configured to send an email message to an email address that is stored in a column other than S_EMPLOYEE.EMAIL_ADDR.

Consolidating Messages Sent Through Send Broadcast Message

New topic. It is not possible to consolidate multiple broadcast messages into a single message that is then displayed to a user.

Predefined Messaging Workflow Policies

New topic. You can use a predefined messaging policy to display a message in pop-up dialog box in the Siebel client.

Passing a Constant from a Workflow Policy Action into a Workflow Process

New topic. You can use the Run Workflow Process program to pass a constant from a Workflow Policy Action into a Workflow Process.

Reference of Workflow Step and Connector Properties

New topic. Provides reference information for properties of the various step types used in Siebel Workflow.

Table 2 lists changes described in this version of the documentation to support release 8.0 of the software.

Table 2. New Product Features in Siebel Business Process Framework: Workflow Guide, Version 8.0

Multiple-Document Interface (MDI). See Using Siebel Tools.

Oracle's Siebel Tools is now a multiple-document interface application. This means that when you use Siebel Workflow, you can have multiple object editors open at any given time displaying not only workflow processes, but other objects as well.

Debug toolbar. See Using Siebel Tools.

This toolbar contains buttons that let you access Siebel VB and Siebel eScript debugging tools. The relevant button for Siebel Workflow is the Watch button that lets your monitor the contents of program variables in the Variable window when simulating a workflow from Siebel Tools.

WF/New Task Editor toolbar. See Using Siebel Tools.

In this release, you can use the debug toolbar to publish, activate, revise, and expire workflows/tasks.

Automatic Revisions. See Using Siebel Tools.

Workflow and task configuration options that ensure you are working on the most current workflow/task version.

Upgrading Siebel Workflow

Siebel Tools now supports three-way merge during upgrades for Workflow objects. This merge makes sure that the customer's extensions to these objects carry forward to the new version.

About the Multi Value Property Window

In this release, the Multi-value Properties Window (MVPW) replaces the list applet in most cases within the Siebel Tools side of the Business Process Designer. You use the MVPW to view, create, and delete process properties to store data for a workflow process. You can also create, delete, and assign input/output arguments for a process step.

The MVPW is context-sensitive; it displays the appropriate set of properties based on the object selected.

State Management Type and Workflow Processes

In this release, a new feature for Siebel Order Management—Web Channel session state management—requires that all business services are marked with a setting describing the Object Manager client-session mode when making a request to the Siebel server.

Because the Workflow engine is a business service, this new feature means the addition of a new property field, called State Management Type, for all workflow processes. By default, this property is set to Stateless. You can set this field to indicate whether a workflow process is stateless or stateful.

Argument Fields for a Process Property

This is a new data type for defining process properties specifically used by web services. Strongly typed objects allow you more functional scripts and better performance.

About Sequence Numbers in Workflow Steps

Siebel Workflow automatically assigns a name and sequence number to each step and connector that you create within a workflow process. The name given is based on the type of step or connector. The sequence number differentiates instances of the same type of step or connector.

When a new step of the same type is added to the workflow, if there is a gap between the sequence numbers for the type (gaps can be created when steps are deleted), the first sequence number in the first gap interval for the step type will be the sequence assigned to the new step.

Passing a Property Set by Reference

Subprocess methods tasked with modifying large amounts of data must copy large quantities of data. This can negatively impact performance and scalability of these method invocations. Pass By Reference is a feature that allows you to avoid passing large property sets, by passing just a pointer to the property sets. This feature employs a new user property, Business Service User Prop, which is represented by a new child object of the Business Service object.

About the Siebel Operation Step

In this release, the following operations were added: Delete, NextRecord, PrevRecord, and QueryBiDirectional.

About the Task Step.

The Task step has been introduced to accommodate the new Siebel Task UI feature in this release, which is integrated with Siebel Workflow. You use the Task step to launch tasks from within a workflow process.

About the Process Simulator Watch Window

The Watch window allows you to see object and variable values during simulation. In this release, if the variable is editable, you can update it in the Watch window to feed a value to the simulation.

Developing a Migration Strategy

ADM is an automated deployment framework that provides a mechanism to migrate enterprise customization data (views, responsibilities, assignment rules, and so on) from one Siebel application environment to another.

In this release, workflow processes and workflow policies are data types newly available for migration through ADM. Using ADM, you can perform bulk migration and activation of workflows, and you can migrate policies in batch as well.

About the Workflow Admin Service Business Service

A new business service that allows you to perform batch import/export, deployment, and activation of multiple workflow processes by way of a search specification. Alternatively, you can perform client-side batch activation and expiration by way of the File menu in the application.

Workflow Deployment View

In the enhanced Workflow Deployment view (Administration - Business Process), administrators can now view the parent-child relationship between a workflow process definition and its run-time records.

Administrators can use the multi-select function in the list views to perform activation, deletion, and expiration of workflow processes in batch.

Additional Changes

This version of Siebel Business Process Framework: Workflow Guide also includes structural changes to the content, such as topic organization and heading arrangement, and revisions to procedures.

NOTE:  The Siebel Bookshelf is available on Oracle Technology Network (OTN) and Oracle E-Delivery. It can also be installed locally on your intranet or on a network location.

Siebel Business Process Framework: Workflow Guide Copyright © 2008, Oracle. All rights reserved.