Welcome to the next stage in your Process Street onboarding!
In this lesson we’re going to cover:
- Why scheduling workflow runs is worthwhile and what it means
- How you can schedule a workflow run step-by-step
- What to do if you get stuck
- What is possible when you start scheduling workflow runs
Estimated time for this lesson ~ 15 minutes
This lesson is part of our onboarding program. Find out more about what you’ll learn from the program when you’re getting started.
Why scheduling workflow runs is worthwhile
If you have a process that needs to be run on a regularly recurring basis, say once a week, twice a month or once a year, you can schedule your workflow in Process Street to run automatically. You can also pre-schedule a one-off workflow run at a set date and time, for a particular event.
Scheduling workflow runs not only saves you heaps of time, but it also means that you and your team won’t ever forget to work on that process at the time it needs doing.
Take a look at some examples of when you might want to use scheduled or recurring workflow runs:
- To create and send regular monthly invoices to your clients
- To create an annual report at the end of each financial year
- To schedule an onboarding workflow run for your new employee’s first day
- To run a monthly maintenance check on your properties
- To schedule bi-annual performance reviews for your team
What does scheduling a workflow run actually mean?
Scheduling a workflow run means that you can have a new workflow run automatically created on a recurring basis, or to run once on a specified date or time.
It’s also possible to set multiple different workflow runs to be created from the same workflow on different schedules. So if you need the same process to recur at different dates and times you can do that. If you’re doing this and you’ve set up at least one scheduled workflow run already, you can copy it and change some of the details, to save time setting up the next one.
You can also assign people to the workflow run from within the scheduler, set the time zone, and also set a ‘due after’ date. So if you work with colleagues in different time zones, you can set the workflow run to be run for them in their specific time zone. Setting a due after date allows you to give the whole workflow run a date that it needs to be completed by.
How you schedule a workflow run step-by-step
- Navigate to your Library in Process Street and click Scheduled from the left-hand menu
- Click on the blue link that says Schedule One or the grey square that says Schedule another workflow in the center of the screen
- Fill out the details for how you would like your workflow run to be scheduled
- Select the workflow from which you’d like to schedule
- Add a name for your workflow run
- Assign it to a member in your organization (perhaps yourself) so that they/you will receive a notification the workflow run has been activated and is ready to work on
- Choose your repeat settings if applicable. If you’d like a recurring workflow run, select the appropriate daily weekly, monthly or yearly choice and customize the following options. If you only want your workflow to run once, select ‘Nope.’
- Choose your relevant time zone
- Set a start date in the future (including the time you want your workflow to run) and click save
- Set the Due after ‘offset’ date if needed
- Click the green button Schedule and you’re all set!
If you need to edit or delete a schedule you’ve set for your workflow run, you can click on the blue card in the “Scheduled” area and change what you need. Click the green button ‘update‘ to save the changes. If you want to delete the schedule click on the red ‘delete‘ button to permanently delete it.
Note that this only deletes the schedule settings, not the workflow itself, or any workflow runs.
If you find yourself stuck
Since you’re still getting used to the basics of using the platform, we’ve got some best-practice solutions to make sure that when you start setting your scheduled processes up, you don’t have to go back and correct something you may have missed the first time. We’ve also got some pro-tips to help you get out of a pickle!
Remember, you’ll find the scheduling manager by clicking on the Library button at the top of your screen, and then the Scheduled button on the left side of your screen – this is the best place to head to. You could also schedule a new workflow run by clicking on the three dots next to a workflow’s name, but we recommend you always go via your Library, as you can manage your work from there.
Assign a team member or yourself
Always assign someone when you set up your scheduling. If you don’t assign someone to a workflow run, it will run automatically but no one will be notified that it’s ready to work on.
Setting the start date
Remember that you can only set future start dates and times for scheduled workflow runs. If you’re trying to start the process on Monday just gone and it’s already Wednesday, you won’t be able to. The earliest you can set the scheduler is 1 hour ahead of when you create it.
Know when that workflow run is due
If you want to keep track of when a workflow run is due, always set a Due after date. This way, whoever is assigned to the workflow run will receive an email reminder that they need to work on it. You can also follow which workflow runs have been completed in your Reports tab.
Change the date of a scheduled workflow run
You might want to change the date and time that the workflow runs, but you’re not sure where to edit it. Head to your Library, click “scheduled” from the left-hand menu, then choose which one you’d like to change by clicking the relevant blue card. From here you can make changes and click “update” to save them.
Delete a scheduled workflow run
If you no longer need to have a scheduled workflow run created automatically for you, you can delete it from the same place you edit your schedule (see this last point above). When you click the red “delete” button you’re only deleting the scheduler, not the workflow runs that have been run from it (or the workflow).
What is possible when you start using scheduled workflow runs
You can set up processes to run automatically, allowing you to literally set them and forget them!
You don’t have to worry that anything is getting missed out since you’ll be automatically reminded whenever your process needs attention.
Since using Process Street, one of our customers, Pocketsuite have not only saved time, reduced costs, increased productivity, improved customer support service but also increased growth.
“I remember listening to a podcast with [Vinay Patankar, CEO of Process Street] that explained how to use Process Street to manage recurring tasks really well. And I implemented that and it actually started working really well!.. We’re more productive..!”
Let’s put scheduling into practice…
- Follow the ‘how to’ steps above and schedule your workflow now to run daily
- Assign yourself (you can change this later, but this will ensure you get notifications)
- Set it to repeat daily (even if your process doesn’t actually need to run daily, do this for now because you’ll be coming back each day to continue building out your workflow. This will give you the opportunity to see it in action every day and you can always update your schedule later)
- Set the start date to tomorrow at 9 AM (or whatever time you prefer)
- Set a ‘Due after date’ of 8 hours, so you’ll get a reminder at the end of each day
Each day for the next two weeks, log into your Process Street account and complete the workflow run (if you aren’t actually completing the steps, you should mentally complete them so you can refine your process as we continue guiding you through getting fully up and running). Make edits to your workflow whenever you find something you can improve!
Get into the habit of checking your email (or Slack) to see reminders that workflow runs and tasks have been assigned to you.
- Read our help article on Scheduling Workflow Runs
- Watch our Demo Video (Skip to 3:20 for Scheduled Processes)
- Contact our Process pros team for support or if you have any questions