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Collaboration Tasks enable you to create simple adhoc workflows to do activities such as assigning work and requesting feedback from team members. They can include a single-step, or they can have multiple steps that involve various people. Collaboration Tasks are driven completely by the end-user. No configuration or coding is required.

One business example of using Collaboration Tasks would be requesting a colleague to provide feedback on a new HR policy. I create a draft of a new HR policy. Before moving on to the next stage, I could create a Collaboration Task, attach my draft, and request a colleague to review the new policy and provide feedback. I can give my colleague the opportunity to decline the work, I can set a deadline, and I can request to be notified when the work is completed.

If I wanted to get feedback from many people, I could include a quick response option which allows them to vote in order to provide their feedback.

Another example would be a series of tasks that I need accomplished. For example, I have just received a complaint from a customer. In the first step I send this complaint to a colleague, asking them to provide me with some customer information. In the second step, I will propose my recommendation to address the complaint. In the third step, I will ask my manager to approve my plan of action. Then, if I am lucky, I can have a fourth step where I assign someone else to execute my plan of action.

Collaboration Tasks enable you to easily collaborate with others, and they provide reporting and tracking capabilities to see the status of the tasks.

The major benefits of Collaboration Tasks include:

    • Gives users the power to deal with quickly changing business conditions. Users use Collaboration Tasks to spontaneously collaborate without needing to wait for company-wide business process change
    • Makes it easy to define one-time processes. The minimal effort required means that users will use Collaboration Tasks to deal with many one-time situations
    • End-users can check the status of processes they have created and ensure that work is completed on time
    • Users can link new processes to work items they receive. This provides them with an easy way to perform and track additional work that may be required in response to a work request

You can access Collaboration Tasks via the Collaboration Launch Pad as seen in the following graphic:

!https://weblogs.sdn.sap.com/weblogs/images/5351/clp2.jpg|height=93|alt=image|width=411|src=https://weblogs.sdn.sap.com/weblogs/images/5351/clp2.jpg|border=0!

Once you open up the Collaboration Launch Pad you can select which type of task you want to create.

!https://weblogs.sdn.sap.com/weblogs/images/5351/clp1.jpg|height=324|alt=image|width=309|src=https://weblogs.sdn.sap.com/weblogs/images/5351/clp1.jpg|border=0!

You can also access the Collaboration Tasks by going to the Universal Worklist via Home – Work. From the Universal Worklist you can select to create a new task.

!https://weblogs.sdn.sap.com/weblogs/images/5351/uwl1.jpg|height=149|alt=image|width=384|src=https://weblogs.sdn.sap.com/weblogs/images/5351/uwl1.jpg|border=0!

Once you create a new task, you can select from various task types.

Task types include:

    1. Single Step Task..for example, asking someone to perform a specific task
    2. Multiple Step Task…two or three steps that could vary between the different step types
    3. Request for Feedback…request specific feedback, you can include voting options
    4. Request for Nomination…request nomination for someone to perform a specific task

You can also assign the task to someone, and set a due date.

!https://weblogs.sdn.sap.com/weblogs/images/5351/uwl4.jpg|height=290|alt=image|width=509|src=https://weblogs.sdn.sap.com/weblogs/images/5351/uwl4.jpg|border=0!

If you select “Show Options” you can access other features of task creation.

At the bottom of the task screen is a Show Options

area.  If you select this, you will see additional features.
image

These features include setting someone to track the task, allowing the recipient to decline the task, adding attachments, and being notified if the task changes.

Collaboration Tasks are a great feature available in NetWeaver. They do not require any additional configuration…so, collaborate and enjoy!

Look for a continuation of this series where we will discuss reporting and administration for Collaboration Tasks.


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15 Comments

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  1. Paul Hurton
    Does the EP support colloboration with external partners?  For example can a collaboration scenario be created for a ‘supplier corrrective action’ request process or say for an ‘rfq’ process?
    (0) 
    1. Ginger Gatling Post author
      Hi Paul,
      If your portal grants access to external partners, then Collaboration Tasks would be available.  The portal can allow external access.

      Yes – you are definately thinking in the right area – for something like this we could use Collaboration Tasks and combine it with Guided Procedures.  Collaboration Tasks are very ad hoc – they can’t be saved and re-executed.  But, if you wanted to build a repeatable business process, you could use a Guided Procedure.  We have an area called xApps – in the xRPM xAPP they may include an RFQ process – I’m not sure, though.   I’m just now learning Guided Procedures myself, but I know there are some documents available in SDN on guided procedures.
      I hope this helps, some.

      (0) 
  2. Manal Gh
    Very useful… Thanks

    Could you please suggest me with some documentation on workflow configuration? Configuration ->workflow
    You said that Collaboration Tasks do not require any additional configuration, but I noticed that in workflow->database access and in UWL Configuration-> Universal Worklist Configuration they use the database schemes: ( jdbc/sapmp and jdbc/SAPE02DB ) which are not existed in portal db server , should we create them?

    Thanks and Regards,

    (0) 
    1. Ginger Gatling Post author

      Hello,<br/>Collaboration Tasks do not require any configuration, but you are correct in that the Universal Worklist does require a small amount of configuration.    For the UWL configuration you do not have to create any new database schemes.  <br/><br/>Configuration is located in online help:<br/>http://help.sap.com/saphelp_nw04/helpdata/en/e5/fc550f79ed4131a63c540cddbfe7be/frameset.htm<br/><br/>Additionally, there is a How-To Guide located at:<br/>How to guide for UWL <http://service.sap.com/~sapdownload/011000358700002683342004E/UWL.pdf> located under <http://service.sap.com/nw-howtoguides> -> Enterprise Portal -> Configuring the Universal Worklist

      (0) 
  3. Christopher Höfele
    Hi,

    thanks for that interesting article. I think that the the Collaboration Tasks are a very useful tool. To leverage it within our company we´re searching for ways to connect custom developed Business Applications (running within the portal) to the Collaboration Tasks. For example ann certain event within this Busimess Application should automatically create a Collaboration Task for the user which is affected. Are there any means (e.g. API´s, connectors) to realize this?

    Kind Regards,
    Christopher Höfele

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      1. Xavier Tor
        Hi Ginger,

        Very good blog!!

        I’m also interested in an API to create Collaboration tasks from other applications, for example Webdynpro…

        Is this API public ?

        Thanks & regards.
        Xavier Tor.

        (0) 
  4. Azwan Shamsul
    Hi,

    The information is helpful.

    We are using the Universal Worklist for the Work items and for Collaboration tasks also.

    At the same time we need to show the Read / Unread Documetns available in the SAP Business Workplace.

    Is there any way to bring them in UWL as the standard minimal configuration is providing only the Workflow tasks?

    Thanks & Regards
    Sumanth

    (0) 
    1. Ginger Gatling Post author
      Hello Sumanth,
      The requirement has been passed over to product definition.  I am not certain if/when it will be delivered.  The debate is whether we want pure text (not tasks) in the UWL.  Please email me privately (ginger.gatling@sap.com), provide me with your company name, and I’ll add you to the list of customers requesting this feature.
      Best regards,
      Ginger
      (0) 
  5. Anonymous
    Hi,
    I have a requirement of getting these collaboration tasks and displaying in my own you. Is API available to read these Tasks ??
    I could not find the answer to this question in the Forum..

    Thanks, Ashish

    (0) 
  6. Johannes Bacher
    Hello Ginger,
    In the comments to this weblog there is a collaboration tasks API mentioned. Could you tell me if this is already available ?
    Most preferrably this would be an ABAP API oder webservice. Is there a webservice for creating collaboration tasks in NW2004s ?

    thank you in advance!
    Johannes

    (0) 

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