Setting up an Advanced Approval workflow to Approve and Forward reports

Phil_LeePhil_Lee Posts: 6
edited February 5 in Advanced Admin Controls

Hi, generally, we set our Submits To and Approves To to the same people in Expensify, however we're finding that sometimes final approval goes to an approver's supervisor as well, then get stuck in their queue - expense reports are even ending up at the CEO/CFO level which we need to stop. This seems to happen on the mobile app. How can we set Expensify so that the the final approver is at the end of the approval chain, and no longer randomly goes to to other supervisors/Executives for final approval?

Comments

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Posts: 1,762 Expensify Success Coach

    Hi @Phill_Lee, welcome to the Community and so sorry for the delay. Using an Advanced Approval workflow can be tricky at times, so I'm glad you reached out for some help.

    We do have some guides on Advanced Workflows, with examples, in our Help Center, so I'll just link that quickly here.

    Now to get into how you'd set up an approval workflow, it will be important to note the misunderstanding that sometimes arises around the "Approves to" rule. If you set every single policy member up so that they Approve and Forward to someone, then each report submitted will flow through all of the Approves to rules.

    For example, let's pretend I have three employees, three managers, and an accounting team member in my approval workflow.

    Each employee submits to their manager:
    Employee 1 --> Manager 1
    Employee 2 --> Manager 2
    Employee 3 --> Manager 3

    This means each employee submits directly to their manager for the first level of approval.

    Now, let's add in the Approves to rules below:
    Manager 1 --> Approves and forwards to Manager 2
    Manager 2 --> Approves and Forwards to Manager 3
    Manager 3 --> Approves and Forwards to Accounting

    This means that any report Manager 1 receives from Employee 1, will be Approved and Forwarded to Manager 2. However, and this can be the tricky bit, because Manager 2 has a rule saying they Approve to Manager 3, the report from Employee 1 will follow the workflow below:

    Employee --> Submits to Manager 1 --> Approves to Manager 2 --> Approves to Manager 3 --> Approves to Accounting for Final Approval.

    Of course, you probably don't want such a long workflow with so many touches. So it's important that you only add a rule for a policy member to Approve to someone if they actually have someone submitting to them. Then, you have to think of the full flow the report must go through according to the Approves to rules you have set up.

    I took a peek at your workflow and it's pretty similar to the example I shared above in that you have a lot of Approves to rules for reports to route through.

    Can you share with me, in vague terms like employees, manager, accounting, your ideal approval workflow? Depending your ideal flow, I may reach out to you via email so I can share exact examples with your employees emails so you can achieve your perfect workflow.

  • Phil_LeePhil_Lee Posts: 6

    Thanks, generally for now, we want supervisors to be responsible for approving expense reports, with no other workflows to apply - so when one of my direct reports submits an expense report, it's submitted by me and approved by me, with no other touches. How can we make that simple workflow effective? Phil

  • Phil_LeePhil_Lee Posts: 6

    Small correction to the above comment: generally for now, we want supervisors to be responsible for approving expense reports, with no other workflows to apply - so when one of my direct reports submits an expense report, it's submitted ****to**** me and approved by me, with no other touches. How can we make that simple workflow effective? Phil

  • Sheena TrepanierSheena Trepanier Posts: 1,762 Expensify Success Coach
    edited January 8

    Hi @Phil_Lee, thanks for getting back to me! This should be very easy to achieve and involves removing the rules for approves to "Approve to:" someone else.

    To do this, you can follow the steps below:

    1. Log into your account,
    2. Navigate to your Settings > Policies > Group > [Policy Name] > People tab,
    3. Scroll down to the People tab,
    4. For every policy member who has an "Approves to" rule in the third column of the people table, you'll want to click the Cog to the far right of their email and then delete the rule.
    5. Repeat this for each policy member who has the rule and then your workflow should be; Employee submits to Supervisor for final approval, end of workflow.

    Let me know if you run into any trouble along the way!

  • Phil_LeePhil_Lee Posts: 6

    Thanks, I'll try it and let you know how it goes.

  • Phil_LeePhil_Lee Posts: 6

    Hello, now all of the sudden, reports are being automatically approved when we submit them. The supervisor needs to review and approve, Can you help me please, it's causing a lot of confusion.

  • Phil_LeePhil_Lee Posts: 6

    If you can, please look at this one I submitted today https://www.expensify.com/report?param={%22pageReportID%22:39834246,%22previousAction%22:%22submit%22,%22keepCollection%22:true}

  • RachCHopkinsRachCHopkins Posts: 842 Expensify Success Coach
    edited January 10

    Hi @Phil_Lee this is Concierge Report Approval and is controlled under Settings > Policies > Group > [Policy Name] > People

    Essentially, it's designed to use in conjunction with Rules and Violations, so that any expenses which are within the allowed parameters don't need human interaction.

    You can set 'yes' to review everything manually. Or you can review the linked help doc above to see what you can set to make it more effective.

    Let me know if I can help with anything further!

Sign In or Register to comment.