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Thursday, February 21, 2019

Introducing Our Custom Approval Solution for D365

Posted by Derek Mescheder

Hand Holding Phone with an Approved Green Screen - Graphic

We’re excited to tell you that Armanino has developed a new, custom Approval Solution, which is included as part of our Dynamics 365 offering.  It can be applied to any entity and is easily customized to meet your business processes and workflow needs. Here’s a rundown of the main features (and we’ll look at setup and configuration in an upcoming post).

The Approval Solution allows you to govern your approval process through workflows, specify a hierarchy of approvers, assign tasks to a pool of approvers or a single approver, and create approval tasks based on varying requirements, from simple to complex.

Let’s say you have an internal business process that requires manager approval for any quote over a certain discount amount.  Using the Approval Solution, you can set up a process where once a user activates a quote, a workflow would be triggered that would send out an approval task for the manager to approve the quote.  Once it’s approved, the Approval Solution then populates back to the original record (the quote in this case), updating it and allowing the user to know it has been approved.

Or let’s say you have a more complex scenario where you wanted to trigger an approval if a certain product existed on a quote.  You then wanted the quote to be approved by a group of approvers, say the sales manager and the product manager.  Our Approval Solution makes this simple, by allowing you to trigger approval tasks based on complex criteria using FetchXML queries.  You can use this to trigger the approval process in a scenario where a workflow may not be able to ― for example, data lower in the hierarchy of a record (quote product on the quote line). 

The solution allows you to set up a pool of approvers that can be used for a single approval request and can be set up to have multiple tiers and approvers at each tier with multiple tasks.  You can specify whether all approvers are required or only one is required to complete the approval request.  In the example above, both the sales manager and product manager would receive tasks for approval, and the Approval Solution would wait for both tasks to complete before populating back up to the record that it was approved. 

Once approval tasks have been generated for the approvers, you can use workflows to send them notifications of their tasks or display these tasks on a dashboard so approvers can see when they have items to work on. Using workflows again, you can notify requestors when their approval request has been completed.  It’s all customizable to meet your business process needs.

Another useful feature is that requests can be generated not only for users in the system, but for contacts as well.  The option to create an approval task for a contact allows you to extend this functionality to individuals outside your organization via the Dynamics portal integration.  For example, your client may want to approve a support request or a quote.  Using the Approval Solution, you can create these notifications (tasks) and display them via the portal, allowing the client to then approve or reject them.

Below is a sample approval scenario setup and the corresponding workflow that kicks off the approval process, illustrating the functionality discussed above.

Test Approval Configuration D365 Screenshot
Approvals for D365 Microsoft Screenshot

You can learn more about the Approval Solution at

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