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A general approval workflow example

Learn how to configure a basic approval workflow for assets so that users of the DAM can only find and use assets that have been approved for use.

Overview

This topic deals with the configuration of a workflow for approving assets for use. Regular users will only be able to see and use content that's been approved by the system manager. Uploaded content will have to be reviewed and released before users can access it. This is merely a demonstration workflow that can be expanded upon - the purpose of the example is to provide FotoWare users with some ideas for setting up their own system.

What we need

  1. An action by which administrators can tag a collection of assets as approved or rejected
  2. A search filter by which users will only be given access to view and work with assets that have been approved
  3. Visual markers for convenience, by which managers can easily see the approval state that's been set on an asset.

 

1. Approval action

In the site settings, create an Extended Action with access only for the DAM managers group.

Configure it to modify the Source asset by showing a metadata editor when run. Choose the field that should be updated (#203 approval state in the example below, but you can use any single entry field for this purpose).

Make sure the field is set to QL only, meaning that when using the action, the contents of the field can only be chosen from a preset list of entries in the taxonomy. When setting the system up, it makes sense to configure it using a logged in user who has all administrative rights so that you can also create the taxonomy entries when testing the action.

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1.2. Test run the action and create approval state taxonomy entries

Now, log on to FotoWare, select a few files in the archive and test run the action:

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Use the + button to create the three values we need for the approval state: Approved, Pending and Rejected.

Then choose one of values and run the action.

2. Filtering the archive by approval state

Open the archive access list and find the entry for your users group. As you can see in the entry below, we've added the part highlighted in blue to existing auto search string for the DAM Users group:

(IPTC203 contains (Approved))

This will ensure that members of the DAM Users group will only see assets that have an explicit Approved tag set in field 203.

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3. Visual markers for the approval state

The screenshot below shows the configuration of the marker that shows when an asset is approved. Having made this, you can clone it and create a marker for the rejected assets by changing the icon and setting the condition to Rejected.

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The marker for assets that are pending approval is a little special, because it needs to show both on assets that have been tagged with Pending in the field in question (#203), but it also needs to show on assets for which no approval state has been set. This is accomplished by creating a condition based on a regular expression. (Learn more about regular expressions on Wikipedia - external link.)

Suffice to say that this is how you set it up - note the regular expression:

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3.1 Visual result in the FotoWare grid

In the screenshot below, the highlighted markers show the appearance of an approved asset (first thumbnail), a rejected asset (2nd) and an asset for which approval is pending (3rd). Note that this is what the system manager sees - regular users will only see approved assets based on the automatic search filtering we configured on the archive.

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