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Which Workflow choose


You are new in the SRM or is upgrading your system and is in doubt about using Application Controlled Workflow or Process Controlled Workflow?

I will give you some information which shall help you with this question

1. What is Application Controlled Workflow?

The existing workflow environment from SRM 5.0 and lower – the Application Controlled Workflow – is still supported with SRM 7.0 on .

These are approval workflow’s based on SAP Business Workflow, in which the application is in control over the SAP Business Workflow templates. Multiple workflow templates can be used, using defined start conditions.

2. What Is Process Controlled Workflow?

The Process Controlled Workflow was introduced with SAP SRM 6.0 (which was delivered to only a few customers). As of SRM 7.0, the Process-Controlled Workflow is the recommend workflow, as this workflow concept offers enhanced features and will be developed further, while the Application-Controlled Workflow only remains in support.

These are approval workflow’s based on SAP Business Workflow, in which the modeled or configured process, and not the application itself, controls the process flow. A unified workflow template is used, and a process is evaluated by way of a process schema containing a set of distinct process levels.  The process schema itself utilizes the SAP Business Rules Framework (BRF) to evaluate rules and expressions that operate the single workflow.

3. Which one should you choose?

Customers which are upgrading from SRM5.0 (or below) can save their workflow investments to a large extent without disruption within SRM7.0 using the Application Controlled WFL. After the upgrade, customers may consider to go for the process-controlled workflow in order to make use of the new features.

For new customers installations is advisable to use PC WFL.

Be careful:  Once you choose the Process controlled WFL  and create documents you cannot revert it back to Application Controlled WFL


Understand and Configure SRM Process Controlled Workflow

Application-Controlled Workflows

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  • Hi Melina,

    Thanks for writing about this.  I have heard that if you are moving to SRM 7, and you make the decision to use Application Controlled workflow, you can’t reverse that – is this true?



    • Hi Sue,

      Actually is the opposite.  If you switch from the application-controlled workflow framework to the process-controlled workflow framework; once a process-controlled workflow has been run, it is not supported that you switch back to application-controlled workflows. So , yes you have to be sure which WFL will be used 🙂



      • Hi Melina,

        So for any one process (say, Shopping Cart Approvals) if you use process-controlled workflow, then you are bound to use process-controlled workflow for other processes?  Even if you would prefer to leverage your application-controlled workflow investment from a prior release of SRM?



        • Hi Sue,

          I am not sure If I got your question.

          You cannot use mixed WFL within the BOs (PO, SC, CTR..etc) at production system. This is not supported by SAP.

          You cannot have AC for SC and PC for PO for example. Once you choose one of them , then you need to use the same WFL type at all BOs.

          However  once you choose for PC WFL we have a migration tool which convert the AC WFL into PC WFL. You can either convert the old running workflows using the report /SAPSRM/PR_WF_MIGRATION_CFG or you can complete the running AC workflows (the old workflow instances can run parallel, the onliest problem can be if you was using own approval tasks. In this case you have  to ensure that these tasks are configured for the UWL) and using PC for new created documents.

          I will create a post about some points when migrating the WFL.



          • Hi Melina,

            Thanks – you confirmed what I had thought.  We will be upgrading to SRM 7 soon, and there are features which are only available if you use PC WFL.  Ah well, it’s always good to learn something new!


  • Hi Melina,

    Thanks for the information.

    We had upgraded to SRM 7 last year and decided to continue with our Application Controlled workflows.

    However, we would be migrating to Process Controlled workflows in the near future. Would be interesting to hear from you on tips/challenges when migrating the workflows.