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Product and Topic Expert
Product and Topic Expert
Starting with the release of BPC 10.1 SP06, a new enhancement in BPC Business Process Flow (BPF) allows defining deadlines for BPF activities.  In the following sections, I will describe BPF deadline in more details.  It is assumed that you are already completely familiar with BPF.

  1. Overview
  2. How to Calculate Deadlines
  3. How to Modify Deadline When Creating Process Instance
  4. Action after Expiration

1- Overview
Background information - Business Process Flow (BPF):

Business Process Flow (BPF) is a feature of BPC that can be used for organizing complex business processes into a sequence of related activities.  An activity is any BPC function that users can perform within BPC web client or Office.

You can define one or more BPF templates for your organization and within each BPF template define multiple related activities see the details. Furthermore, you can generate multiple instances of a BPF template, and for each activity assign a performer and optionally a reviewer see the details

What is BPF Deadline:

BPF deadline allows defining a time period for each activity to be completed.  It is optional and flexible and can be modified following certain rules.

The following are the general characteristics of BPF deadline

  • The deadline calculation for each activity starts from the date and time a process instance is created see the details
  • Each day is calculated as 24 hours from the start date and time
  • Deadlines can be defined for both performer and reviewer
  • Depending on how "Action after Expiration" option is defined an activity can stay open after it has passed the deadline or closed by the system.

How to Define BPF Deadline

The option for deadline is enabled when defining activities in a BPF template or during instantiation of a process. When enabled through BPF template it requires a non-zero value representing the number of days from the start of activity.

Defining BPF deadline through process template
Defining BPF deadline through Process Instantiation

Step 1 - Enable:

Step 2- Define:  Step 2 can also  be used to modify an already defined deadlines

2- How To Calculate deadlines:

In the following discussions I will refer to the information entered in the fields numbered 1 - 10

General Rules for Calculation:

A deadline is calculated by adding the number of days for all previous deadlines from 1 - N.

  • Deadline for ActivityN Performer =  Deadline for Activity1 Performer + Deadline for Activity1 Reviewer +

Deadline for Activity2 Performer + Deadline for Activity2 Reviewer +

Deadline for ActivityN-1 Performer +Deadline for ActivityN-1 Reviewer

  • Deadline for ActivityN Reviewer =  Deadline for ActivityN Performer + Deadline for ActivityN Reviewer
  • A day is calculated as 24 hours from the time an activity is created when a process instance is created.

Deadline Calculation - Use Cases

Use Case 1

Use Case 2

3- How to Modify Deadlines When Creating Process Instances:

Deadlines can be modified during Process Instantiation

  • On the last step "Set Timeline", select "Manual Start"
  • Click on the Calendar Icon next to each date

The Rules for Modifying Deadline When Creating Process Instance:

  • Deadline for Activity 1 performer <= Deadline for Activity 1 Reviewer <= Deadline for Activity 2 Performer

Deadline for Activity N-1 performer <= Deadline for Activity N-1 Reviewer <= Deadline for Activity N Performer

  • Deadline for ActivityN Performer can be increased and it will change all subsequent deadlines accordingly
  • Deadline for ActivityN Reviewer can be increased and it will change all subsequent deadlines accordingly

Modify Deadline - Use Case:

Use Case: Modifying Deadlines

4- Action after Expiration

BPF activities can be defined with "Action after Expiration" either as "Close Activity" or "Wait" for both performer and reviewer.

What is "Action after Expiration" and how does it work

Use "Action after Expiration" to define what should be done with an activity that has passed its deadline.  The following are the possible outcomes.

  1. "Action after Expiration" is "Close Activity" - When an activity is passed the deadline the system automatically sets the status to "Completed" and the timing for the next deadlines begins.
  2. When "Action after Expiration" is "Wait" - When an activity is passed the deadline for performer - the activity will remain open with the last status while the deadline showing as expired.  The status of subsequent activities will show Pending.

The last status of an activity can be the initial status "Open - To Perform" or different depending on if any action was taken by the activity performer or reviewer

Action after Expiration - Use Case:

Use Case: Action after Expiration

Rules governing Performer and Reviewer activity status when activities are completed, rejected, reopned, suspended and resumed.

Activities can have different status depending on the actions performed by performer and reviewer. The last status of an activity for performer and reviewer will remain the same or changed automatically depending on the value of "Action after Expiration"

  • The possible status for activities are:
    • Open  (a task is to be performed),
    • Submitted (a task has been performed submitted to be reviewed),
    • Completed (a task has been completed)
    • Rejected - (a task was rejected by reviewer, to be performed again)
    • Reopened
  • When performer completes an activity, the calculation of deadline for reviewer starts
  • When reviewer rejects an activity, the calculation of deadline for performer starts
  • When activity is suspended the calculation of deadline is stopped and resumes after activity is resumed.

Use Case: rules governing performer and reviewer activity status:

Use Case for Rules for performer and reviewer activity status