Posted by: Charles Maitland | Tuesday 8 December, 2009

Sharing a record through workflow

I picked up on a tweet from @expiscornovus which pointed to a codeplex project that shows how to build a custom workflow activity to share any record.

When I re-tweeted this I was asked by @expiscornovus when and how I planned to use it. Well the scenario has moved on a bit since then so I doubt it will be implemented but I can outline the scenario I was faced with.

The organisation in question had 4 distinct sales teams who were working in largely the same sector space. There was a historical “reluctance” to open up between these teams each of which had their own “system” and the new unified management structure wanted the implementation of a unified CRM solution to start to break down these barriers. However, for internal reasons a big bang opening up was, initially,  not acceptable.

It had been negotiated that it was acceptable for all the sales teams to be able to see all the accounts and it was accepted that this was the only practical way forward. Contacts, on the other hand were very personal to those involved and there was considerable reluctance to open them up to all. Restricting these would have had significant implications for data quality as well as effective sales practices.

The scenario I was thinking of using this workflow activity, or one based on it, for, was to allow the contacts to be restricted to the owning team’s business unit until such time as another sales person registered an opportunity against an account that met certain qualification criteria at which point the contacts for that account would be shared with the other sales person through workflow.

As it was the management team collectively realised that micro managing records in this way was counter to their strategic goals and they got out the big stick with the nail in it and, when I moved off the project, decided to open it all up!


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