Workflows-SAP ABAP-Introduction In Simple Words.

Workflow is defined as the automation of a business process, in whole or part, during which documents, information or tasks are passed from one participant to another for action, based on set of procedural rules. Workflow, as the name suggests, means flow of work, may be from one person to another person. It is in fact a sequence of connected activities resulting in exchange of information.

Take the scenario of ‘Leave Application’.

Activities involved are:
  • Employee Submits leave application.
  • Manager checks the application.
  • Manager rejects the application. In case the manger finds that the reason for taking leave is not specified / detailed properly or the number of leave days is more).
  • Employee corrects the application.
  • Manager approves the application.

This scenario helps to understand the need of workflow. Workflow in such scenarios will make the process handy and automated. Workflow will let the manger know that the employee has raised a leave application, will let the employee know if his application is accepted or not. Workflow automates the complete process between employee and the manger by letting them know what to do when.

Basically, workflow helps to get rid of traditional paper-based flow of work in a typical office environment.

SAP Workflow is particularly beneficial when:
  • Different people are involved in different parts of the process.
  • There are processes that are repeated often, which must follow specific business rules.
  • Users need to be reminded of what they need to do.
  • The duration of the process is critical and deadlines have to be met.
  • There is a need to automate business process, for example: Approval process to be set for Purchase Requisition, Purchase Order, Sales Order, Discounts in Sales Order, etc…

By automating the process, workflow frees the users from having to know what to do when. Work items are sent to the participants notifying them of what they have to do, and a single click on the notification calls the correct transaction and navigates to the relevant screen.

Workflow systems can help to achieve following goals:
  • Increase transparency of process flows.
  • Customer orientation.
  • Increase employee responsibility.
  • Better quality management.
  • Better Control on information, deadlines and process costs.
  • Focus on value added by processes.

  • Increases production
    • Backlog reduction
    • Distribution of information and work: Every user gets their work list automatically from the system.
  • Speeds up processes
    • Reduction in waiting times and transport times.
    • Better/faster reaction to errors.
  • Increases customer satisfaction
    • Processes completed more quickly
    • Better information flow


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