The many uses of Workflow Signoff Duration
By Anurag Batra on Aug 31, 2009
Honk if you've ever been annoyed by a single approver taking forever to sign off on a document.
With Agile 9.3, we've introduced a new feature called "Workflow Signoff Duration" that tracks, for any workflow step that requires one or more reviewers to sign off, the number of days that have elapsed since the reviewer got notification of needing to sign off on an object (if he hasn't signed off yet) or the number of days the reviewer took to actually sign off on the object (if he has signed off on it). Not only can this field be monitored in real time, it can be reported on extensively to track performance metrics for key reviewers of any process.
The signoff duration counter is smart enough to start counting from the point of time that the workflow actually entered the user's queue - so, if the user was added to the workflow after the workflow entered the review status, it is the time of addition of the user to the set of reviewers that is used as the baseline. It is also smart enough to discount weekends (though it doesn't discount vacations and holidays yet).
It is displayed on the signoff summary table on the Workflow tab, and is calculated in real time. The value freezes after the user has signed off on the object, or the object exits the review status. Change Analysts can therefore determine, at a single glance, not just who is pending signoff on a routable object, but also how long have they been sitting on it.
Because this may be sensitive information in some organizations, upgrading customers need to explicitly turn on this field's visibility, and grant view privileges to this field to appropriate users (if you control Read privileges at a field level on this tab).
Besides the ability to view this information for individual change orders, there's also the ability to run a report that can summarize this information in a spreadsheet for a set of routable objects (say, all Change Orders in my product line that are currently in review status). This can be especially helpful in a high ECO volume environment. This report, called the "User Signoff Duration Report" has a number of parameters that enable it to be used to run analysis on historic data, to answer questions such as:
a) How long, on an average, have users taken to sign off on critical ECOs in the past year
b) Which of my managers takes the longest to sign off on production ECOs
c) What percentage of users actually sign off on a document if they're added as Observers only as opposed to Approvers
As always, would love to hear your feedback or experiences with this feature.