Streamlining document workflows across data silos with feedback and approvals

We have just added a great new feature – File Approvals – to our Enterprise File Fabric.  Here’s an example of how it works:

Bob has written a Resource Plan as part of the 2018 budgeting process.  He needs to have it approved by his manager, Sue.  Bob has saved the resource plan, which happens to be an Excel workbook, in an SME folder on S3 that Sue has shared with him.  He right-clicks on the file and selects the “Request approval” option.  In the dialog box that pops up he selects Sue as the approver, and writes her a quick note in the Comment area.  Then he clicks the “Request” button.

As soon as as Bob requests the approval two things happen: The file becomes read-only, and an “Approval requested” label appears next to the file name.

A moment later Sue sees a message in her browser and her email inbox telling her that Bob has requested that she  approve a file. 

Sue reviews the file, and then clicks either “Approve” or “Reject”.  If she rejects the file she can enter a comment explaining why. 

Either way, Bob gets a message telling him what Sue decided. 

If Sue rejected the file then it becomes editable again.  If she approved it then it remains read-only and it gets a green check mark to show that it has been approved.

This would be a useful process in any context, but consider some of the advantages that come from having it available on the Enterprise File Fabric:

  • Any kind of file – spreadsheets, Word documents, CAD drawings, etc. – can be approved this way.
  • The files can be stored on any of the more than 50 storage clouds that we support.
  • Depending on the the file sharing policies that the enterprise has established, the files can be shared internally and externally, protected by all of the appropriate controls.
  • The files can be tagged for easy categorisation and retrieval.
  • Versions of the file can be retained as it changes prior to approval.
  • Users can add comments to each version of any file.
  • Files can be searched and retrieved based on their contents.
  • Each step in the approval process is captured in a structured audit log that can be filtered and exported.
  • External actions such as notifications can easily be triggered by approvals.

We have Enterprise File Fabric customers in many industries such as construction, digital media, cosmetics, scientific research and legal services to name just a few. Our new File Approvals feature will enhance the value of the Enterprise File Fabric for all of them by helping them to work more efficiently. Please give it a try and let us know how it helps you.

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Dan has been working with Storage Made Easy's founders since the company was launched.

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