Response from Customer

Add Automated/Manual field to Customer Stages

  • 6 March 2019
  • 9 replies
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We have some of our customer stage changes automated via rule in GonG. We'd like to be able to prevent users from being able to manually update to the stages that we have automated.

Ideally you would be able to mark if they're automated vs manual in the Stage Config section and automated stages would not show up as an option when manually changing the stage.


9 replies

Userlevel 7
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What happens though if you've automatically set a customer to Stage = X, but someone comes along and manually changes it to Y because that's available as a manually editable, selectable option?

I would think you'd want the ability to prevent editing of the Stage (and Status!) fields on the C360 altogether because if you're automating those fields at all, you still run the risk of a manual override.

We got around this, though, by creating our own "Phase" field and restricting it's editabilty on C360.

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Good call out Jeff. I think ideally we would probably have to do some sort of mapping showng what stages can be set manually. Example: From stage 1 you can only select stage 2 and from stage 2 you can only select stages 1 or 3(if not automated stages).

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Good luck with that my friend! LOL



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I'm with Jeff on this one. Even half automated can easily become fully manual. Gotta go full automated FTW!

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Don't get me wrong - manual or semi-manual is sometimes unavoidable due to conditions outside the admin's hands. But my point is if we're asking for an enhancement, let's ask for it with a view towards full automation.

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@dan_ahrens - I partially agree. Wouldn't you want to be able to handle all scenarios with a new feature? Manual, semi-automated and automated? From my experience it's fairly rare that a customer is able to automate ALL of their statuses. Yeah, we could just do CTAs to automate our manual statuses but why force the COMs to do more work just do drive 'full automation'?

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Semi-automation involving the manipulation of a specific field is problematic. Judging by your initial ask, I would say you're already seeing that today.

I speak from experience when I say if you have automated processes setting a field that is also editable by end users, you will have problems I don't care how many training sessions, documents you share etc. Then you have to go back and try to track down who changed what and why - or you have to code your rules in order to account for manual manipulation of the field. It's incredibly painful. Especially when it's something as fundamentally crucial as the customer stage/phase.

I for one vote for a switch that allows you "all-or-nothing" functionality regarding editabiilty of the Summary fields.

My recommendation is to evaluate your processes to see where you can eliminate the manual v. automated steps as it relates to setting that specific field. It might be a little pain upfront, but save you more pain later when you have to troubleshoot.

I for one vote for a switch that allows you "all-or-nothing" functionality regarding editabiilty of the Summary fields.

Best to evaluate your processes

Userlevel 7
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My preferred way to handle these kind of instances where automation and manual efforts play in the same sandbox is to put in a process control validation.

For example, if I wanted to allow the customer stage to be set either via automated or manual input (but the manual input should follow defined rules), then I'd first set the actual customer stage to only automated so that the system is the only entity that can make changes.

But - then you have a separate input field that is manually set by the human when they want to change the customer stage field. When this input field is set to a value, use automated rules to verify that the defined process rules are adhered to, and only then set the customer stage field to the new value. For example, stage 4 can only be selected if the current stage is 3, or similar.

This is a fairly common workflow in excel templated worksheets where there are locked calculations that determine final values of certain cells, and human input cells are constrained by input validation.

Best of both worlds! And doesn't require complicated field level "if then else" or case logic when determining what is an acceptable value in that field.

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We have a need where certain stages are automated by Rules Engine that look at completed CTAs -1d and others can be set by CSMs. Like we use certain stages which are subjective and identified by CSMs vs certain stages based on the rules workflow. 

@zach_davis @dan_ahrens @darkknight  do any of you know if  there is a way to limit what stages can be shown in the picklist to CSMs so they can only move the stage to those subjective ones vs automated ones?

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