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Real application of automated business processes: Bitrix24 CRM

What is business processes in Bitrix24

Let's quote the definition from business processes learning course.

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The basis of idea of a Business-Process is a Route. A Route, that should be followed by a Document to be processed correctly. Documents can be represented by ordinary files or list records or CRM elements such as Lead, Contact, Company or Deal. More human idea is an Algorithm: a sequence of operations that should be done to reach an eventual result.

For getting acquainted with business processes we would recommend to complete a special course, and set up a few business processes by yourself using special designer tool.

The latest articles and web seminars about Bitrix24 cover business processes as a general idea and almost completely do not touch upon the issue of their implementation in CRM. We are confident, that every specialist working with Bitrix24 can name several tasks which need to be automated. Let's examine one of them and suggest the algorithm for solving this problem with the help of business processes.

Business processes in CRM

Initially let's say a few words about where in Bitrix24 one can find Business Processes.
  1. General list of processes: Workflow-Workflows in Activity Stream (/company/processes/). It contains the list of type processes available for running by the user. It is the place where are Invoice, Business trip application and other predefined processes are situated.This page contains "Create new" button which is accessible for the Administrator of the portal. How to create processes we will explain in our next articles.
  2. My Requests: Workflow — My Requests. This is a list of running or completed processes with your participation. In this section you can also find Workflows in Activity Stream and All active in which you can find all your "runnable" processes and all processes which are in the progress.
    Take into consideration the fact that in the free tariff there is a limitation for number of simultaneously running business processes(workflows).
  3. In some versions of Bitrix24 one can find a mythical inlay "Workflows" in one of menus (/company/personal/bizproc/). It seems to be an interim page between "My Requests" and "Workflows" that shows nothing. It will necessarily work on your portal but you have to try.
  4. Workflows in CRM. They stand by themselves and are located so deep that it is not easy to find them: CRM - Settings -  Automation - Business processes (/crm/configs/bp/). We will talk about them mostly.

The difference between Processes and Business Processes in CRM

There is a suspicion that with appearance of Workflows in Workflow section their analogs in CRM(business processes) will become more useless and move to respective sections. But for now these are two different entities by it's structure and interface location.

Workflows

  Business-processes in CRM

  Data storage

Every process has a table of different data types in its basis. Sequence of actions related to the data is build on the table.

All data is stored in CRM entities - Lead, Deals, Contacts, Companies. It is impossible to pass data between the entities in the framework of the process.

  But new entities can be "created" instead.

Visual part

Stages and responsibles can be seen in Activity Stream and in the list of Workflows. Every workflow has its own card with main data.

Is absent. If one is not aware of existing process one can only see it's actions - tasks, events, and entity states changing.

Variables 

Main types of variables

Here variables additionally have two types: Binding to CRM Elements and Binding to CRM Dictionaries.

Types of business-processes

  2 types: State-driven business processes and Sequential business processes.

There are also two types! In order to create a state-driven business process you firstly have to create a sequential one, and after that you will be able to choose state-driven business process in the settings("Create template" - "State-driven business process").

Which problems could be solved?

With the help of CRM business-processes one can and should solve organizing problems - state lead or deal reminders, users informing, tasks for sales specialists. To cut a long story short business processes in CRM should help to form sales funnel!

How many leads are in the same stage for several weeks simply because everyone forgot about them? Tune a business process which will issue tasks and reminders! Efforts are minimum, but the order in sales is ensured.

In which cases it can and should be used?

Absence of any visual representation in Activity Stream affects the convenience of CRM business processes use. If you need to bind several users in a chain and conduct a process by certain stages you have to use workflows from Activity Stream. These workflows can reply definitely such question as "Who is waiting for whom" and "What is the next stage". We cannot say that for CRM processes though.

An example of CRM business process development

Let's examine a simple but eloquent example. Quite often a sales specialist is bit inspired when closing a deal that he or she forgets about organizing tasks such as tracing the signing, delivering and storage of original copy of agreement or availability of the agreement for other users in the storage.

Let's help the sales specialist and set up a business process which will create a task for a responsible person to collect and prepare all necessary documents once the deal closed. Let's call a business process "Collection of documents for closing deal". Below is given a number of steps which we recommend to use for setting and tuning of every business-process, even the easiest ones.

Purpose of Business Process

To provide the availability of original copies of documents for accounting department and e-copies for file storage.

Main tasks of Business processes


  • To remind employee, which closed the deal, that he/she should provide the availability of documents.
  • To notify accounting department about new singed agreement.
  • To place original copies and e-copies into respective storage places.

Access permissions and launch conditions.

As business process works in CRM it should cooperate with employees who have access to CRM.

The process should be started only in the moment when a successful deal is closed. It means that unsuccessful and delayed deals should not initiate it's launching.

Roles

Supposed roles of employees working with the process.

Role

Description

Data types and used entities

Responsible person

Employee,who closed a deal is responsible for documents preparation.

Author of the document(as responsible,who closes a deal, is author)

 Head of sales department

Controls the process of documents preparation.

Constant.It is used as task originator for documents preparation.

Accountant

Should be notified that a deal is closed and documents are ready.

Constant. Is used as "Observer"

Versatility

For now there are two stages for close deal - Close deal and Not closed. We need to trace the stage Close deal.

Deal_stages.png

We can appoint one person for both Head of sales department and Accountant, it won't change the login of the process.

The Algorithm.

Before to start to draw the business process in the designing tool, we have to draw it on paper first. For this purpose Google Docs schemes is a good choice. Do you remember classical algorithm schemes from school? Our example is below.

algorithm.png

Business process designing tool

Here starts the most interesting — process creation in the designing tool. For this, open CRM - Settings-Automation-Business processes and create a new template in Deal section.

Initial setting requires title, method of launching and variables to be determined.

Title

Collection of documents for closing deal

  Autorun

When changed

If you choose when added, the process will be launched for every new deal.

When changed — only when changed. Changing of deal status is changing we need.

Parameters, Variables

Don't determine.

Constants

Let's define to constants with type “Bind to user”:

  1. Head of sales department - uCRMAdmin.
  2. Accountant - uBuh.

  For every constant let's determine a value by choosing a person.

We can appoint the same person for both Head of sales department and Accountant, it won't change the logic of the process. 

Tip: if you have a lot of users in your portal and searching is not an easy task, you can use user ID in square brackets.

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Further let's move our algorithm to the business process designing tool. Here we need to add only one Condition(Construction block) and only one Task(Interactive Settings block).

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Settings of every element should be done by the following methods. Let's start from the Task.

Field

Value

Comment

Title

Task for collection documents for closing deal

It is used only in designing tool for block naming. It is not available for a user.

Task name

Prepare documents for deal {=Document:TITLE}

This is what a user can see in task list and CRM Activities list.

The real name of the document (i.e. of current deal) will be substituted to the macros.

Task originator

{=Constant:uCRMAdmin}

"Head of sales office" value of the constant will be substituted to the macros.

Responsible

{=Document:ASSIGNED_BY_ID}

We use "Responsible for document" to assign a responsible person for this task. It seems logical that the responsible for the deal should prepare the documents. Though this parameter also could be moved to a constant with office-manager in it's value as responsible person.

Start

{=System:Now}

Without hesitation let's specify the start point of the task when it is created.

Deadline

=dateadd({=System:Now}, "+2d")

This construction allows us to set +2 days to the date of creation of the task. I.e. We set the task two days forward.

Task description

<ul>

<li>Sign original of the agreement</li>

<li>Put the scan copy of signed agreement into the agreements folder</li>

<li>Send the original copy of the agreement to the accounting office</li>

</ul>

Yes, you are right! You can use HTML in your task descriptions.

Participants

{=Constant:uBuh}

"Accountant" value of the constant will be substituted into the macros.

Bind to current CRM entity

Yes

You have to choose it without fail, or it will be very hard to find our task in CRM system.

The rest fields are at your option since they are not very important.

Condition settings for the task creation are in the table below. By adding condition construction there will be three blocks created actually: one for a construction heading and two for assigning conditions.

Construction heading

Is deal closed?

It is used only in the designer.

Heading of negative condition

Deal is closed(nothing to do)


Fields of confirmative condition

Document field: Deal closed

Condition: Equals

Value: No.

Thus we say business process to move to the end on condition that deal is not closed.   

Heading of confirmative condition

Is deal closed?


Fields of confirmative condition

Document fields: Deal closed

Condition: Equals

Value: Yes.


Additional conditions with "AND" rule

Document field: Deal stage

Condition: Not equal

Value: Deal is not closed.

It is required for processing closed but unsuccessful deal.

Additional conditions with "AND" rule

Document field: Deal stage

Condition: Not equal

Value: Processing stopped.

it is required for processing but unsuccessful deal.

If you have other non-successful conditions in your CRM, you have to include them too.

Testing

Having completed your business process design we have to save and test it. Let's take any deal, close it and refresh the page. In the right part of the page you can notice the result - created task for preparing documents for this deal.

Test1.png

Export to bpt

We prepared bpt file for the created business process. Condition for this file downloading is a Facebook "like" for our page.

Problem solving examples with help of CRM business processes.

We examined just one simple problem for automation application in CRM work. Below you can find a list of other, more complicated problems we successfully solved not only for our Bitrix24 portal but also in portals of our customers. We will be very glad to help you with your Bitrix24 CRM business process customization.Your questions and comments you can send by the form below.

  1. Creation of a task for responsible person for a lead to remind that the lead has to be processed. Statuses of leads are controlled and are not processed for "useless" statuses.
  2. Creation of a task for further processing when a lead is changed.It is so called "Sales funnel management".
  3. Creation of reminders and notifications for responsible persons when certain stage of a deal is occurred.
  4. Creation of events in employee calendars when deal is closed.
  5. Launching of "another" business process when deal is closed. For example,launching business process "Invoice" when a deal is being closed.
  6. Automatic creation of new contacts, companies and deals for successful leads.
  7. Organizing loop actions - "customer call", "letter", "meeting" in convenient order and required periodicity.