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Procore

Best Practices: Submittal Workflow Management

 Note
This page describes recommended best practices for editing submittal workflows. Click here to view tutorials, videos and more about the project's Submittals tool.

Introduction

The workflow section enables the Submittals tool's notification and ball-in-court tracking components. Workflows provide the benefit of automated workflow progression and action/overdue notifications. This article will discuss best practices for editing Submittal workflows. Are you ready?

Bulk Actions > Apply Workflow

This feature allows Admin users to select multiple submittal items in bulk and apply a new workflow or pre-created workflow template. To apply a workflow in bulk, all submittal items must be in draft status AND have no previously applied workflow. The two options for bulk-adding workflows to submittals are described below.

Why should I use bulk actions?

Bulk-applying workflows saves time by adding the same workflow to multiple submittals simultaneously. This feature can be used with Workflow templates to save even more time.

Option 1: Bulk Actions from Submittal Packages

We recommend using Submittal Packages (see Best Practices: Submittal Packages - Introduction) since you can also bulk apply workflows via Submittal Package Bulk Edit. The main benefit of this option is that you can also initiate workflow emails in bulk as part of the process instead of requiring separate actions to send each submittal item separately. See Bulk Edit Submittals in a Package.

Option 2: Bulk Actions from List View

This will likely be the more time-consuming option, but you can also bulk-apply workflows from the list view if you opt not to use Submittal Packages. See Use Bulk Actions > Apply Workflow in the Submittals Tool. However, unlike bulk-apply workflows via Submittal Package, this option will require you to send emails for each item individually.

Considerations

No notifications are sent when the workflow is applied since the items are still in Draft status. To complete this process, you must edit each submittal item, update the status, and click Update & Send Emails. If you click Update instead, no emails (besides overdue notifications when any due dates pass) are sent.

Bulk Replace a User

People regularly move in and out of projects, so there needs to be a way to replace a workflow user with another user easily. If you need to replace an approver, submitter or reviewer on many submittals, a user with 'Admin' level permissions on the project's Submittals tool can submit a replacement request to support@procore.com. To maintain data integrity, users will only be replaced in workflows they have yet to respond to. Please include the following information in your request:

  • Company Name: The name of your company's Procore account. 
  • Project ID: The ID number for one or more projects where the user needs to be replaced. See How do I find the project ID?
  • Current Approver: The name of the user who needs to be replaced. 
  • New Approver: The name of the replacement user. This user must also have Standard Level Permissions or higher to the Submittals tool.

Reverting Ball-in-Court to a Previous Step

In many scenarios, an Admin might need to revert ball-in-court on a submittal back to a previous workflow step. Some example scenarios include:

  • A workflow user forgets to upload an attachment or uploads the incorrect attachment to their response
  • A workflow user provided the incorrect response
  • The submittal was routed to incorrect approvers

Considerations

Using this functionality to manage submittal revisions is not recommended. When you revert to a previous workflow step and new data is entered, previously recorded data - dates (Sent, Returned and Due dates), comments, responses and attachments - are overwritten. The changes are still documented in the item’s change history but are not immediately obvious. Additionally, reporting in Procore only displays the most current data, so you cannot get a true sense of actual ball-in-court durations if you shift the workflow back instead of creating submittal revisions.

See Change the Ball in Court on a Submittal for additional information and instructions.

Submittal Revisioning

The 'Create Revision' functionality creates a copy of the original item's details (under a revision number), excluding any previously entered data within the workflow. The workflow steps will be copied but the order will restart from step one so you can request a new submission from the Submitter role. This functionality ensures all historical data is maintained within the original submittal item while allowing new data to be added to the revision. 

Best Practice

The recommended process is to immediately create a revision when necessary after you close and distribute the original submittal item. This communicates the rejected information to the Submitter on the original submittal and provides a new item for them to submit under. See Create a Submittal Revision.