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Setting up processes

Processes allow you to automate many complex tasks in plentymarkets.

Learn the basics in our playful tutorial:

Creating and starting a process
Install plentyBase

You need plentyBase to create and run processes in the plentymarkets back end. You can download the installation files for plentyBase in the plentyMarketplace.

1. Parts of a process

The following process elements are available:

  • Work steps

  • Control elements

  • Procedures

  • Sub-procedures

process
Figure 1. Diagram of a simple process

1.1. What are work steps?

Every process is composed of one or more work steps. Work steps are the core of your processes. You’ll use work steps to define the tasks and sequences that you’d like to automate. Depending on which type of work step you use, you’ll either focus on an individual order, multiple orders or incoming items. You can add an unlimited number of work steps to your process. The following work steps are available:

1.2. What are procedures?

Procedures are added to a work step. Use procedures to specify which actions should be performed when the process runs.

1.3. What are control elements?

Control elements are a special type of procedure. They control how work steps, procedures and sub-procedures behave within a process. By adding control elements to a work step, you can control how individual procedures interact with each other. For example, you can repeat procedures, jump to a specific point within a work step or even create conditions that have to be met before a procedure is carried out.

1.4. What are sub-procedures?

Sub-procedures are added to a procedure. Use sub-procedures to specify which actions should be performed within the scope of a procedure. For example, use the sub-procedure Print to print the documents that were created by the procedure.

2. Controlling the visibility of processes

The folders in the menu Setup » Processes are only visible to users who are allowed to edit the processes within those folders. Table 1 explains which orders are available to users.

Visibility of the menu Setup » Processes

Admin users are automatically allowed to access the menu Setup » Processes. Backend users need to be granted this right. Go to Setup » Settings » User » Rights » User. Open the user account. In the Rights area, place a check mark next to the menu visibility Setup » Processes.

Table 1. Folder structure for processes
Folder Explanation

Mine

Processes that belong to whichever user is currently logged in.

Others

Other people’s processes. The folder is only visible to Admin users.

Per role

Processes that are visible to all users who belong to a specific role. If the user is not assigned to any roles, this folder is shown. Admin users can see the processes for all roles.

Global

Processes that are available for all user accounts.

3. Creating a process

Go to Setup » Processes to create and manage processes. Proceed as described below to create a process.

Creating a process:

  1. Go to Setup » Processes » New process.
    Note: If the menu Setup » Processes is not visible, then install the plentyBase plugin.

  2. Carry out the settings. Note Table 2.

  3. Save the settings.
    → The process will appear in the menu tree.

Table 2. Creating a process
Setting Explanation

Name

Enter a name for the process.
Tip: Use a unique and descriptive name so that users can easily understand what the process does.

Visibility

Decide which group the process should be visible for. Visible means that the process will appear in the Processes menu and that it can be started from there.
Global = The process is visible for everyone.
User = The process is only visible for a specific user. This user is selected from the User drop-down list.
Role = The process is only visible for a specific role. This role is selected from the Role drop-down list.

User

This option is only visible if you selected User from the Visibility drop-down list. Decide which person the process should be visible for.
Note: Admin users are able to see all processes.

Role

This option is only visible if you selected Role from the Visibility drop-down list. Decide which role the process should be visible for.
Note: Admin users are able to see all processes.

Can be changed

Decide who should be allowed to change the process.
Activated = Anyone who is allowed to see the process is also allowed to edit it.
Not activated = Only Admins are allowed to edit the process.

Warehouse

Select a warehouse. The warehouse with the ID 1 is selected by default.

Colour

Decide which colour the process should have in the Processes menu.

3.1. Adding elements

Once you’ve created a process, you can start adding as many work steps, procedures, sub-procedures and control elements as you want.

Use the context menu

If your process already includes an element, then you can use the context menu to add further elements. Simply right-click on an element and then select the desired option.

3.2. Dealing with errors

Sometimes processes contain faulty orders, which throw everything off track. If you don’t want such processes to be aborted completely, then you can add specific combinations of procedures and sub-procedures, which guide your process in a different direction. These procedures only run if an error occurs. For example, if you add the procedure Order with the two sub-procedures Change status and Add order notes, then faulty orders will be assigned a new status. In addition, a note will be added to the order.

3.2.1. Available procedures in case of error

Table 3 shows the procedures that can run if an error occurs.

Table 3. Available procedures in case of error
Procedure Sub-procedure Explanation

Email

Send

Use the Email procedure together with the Send sub-procedure to send an email template if an error occurs.

Order

Change status

Changes the status of the faulty order. The status changes to whichever status is selected from the drop-down list.
Tip: The easiest way to find faulty orders is to create a specific status that you’ll use for errors. In the Orders menu, you can then filter all the orders that currently have this status.

Order

Add order notes

Adds a note to the faulty order.
Individual note = Allows the user to enter a message while running the process. This message is saved as an order note.
Predefined note = Opens a window. Enter a message into the Message area. This message will automatically be saved for faulty orders while running the process.
None = Neither an individual note nor a predefined note is saved for faulty orders. Use this option if you only want to save the error message as the order note.
Save error message as additional note = Place a check mark to save the error message displayed in the process as an order note.

3.2.2. Adding a procedure to deal with errors

Proceed as described below to add a procedure that deals with errors.

Adding a procedure to deal with errors:

  1. Go to Setup » Processes » Select folder » Select process.

  2. Right-click on the procedure.
    Tip: A grey beetle identifies the procedures that can be used to deal with errors.
    → The context menu opens.

  3. Click on Add procedure for occurring errors in the context menu.

  4. Select the procedure from the drop-down list.

  5. Save the settings.

  6. Carry out additional settings as desired.
    → The procedure is created. Procedures for dealing with errors are outlined in red.

  7. Save the settings.
    → The procedure is created. Procedures for dealing with errors are outlined in red.

Visualising errors
  • Procedures that could potentially be set up to deal with errors have a grey bug icon in the top right corner.

  • Procedures that have already been set up to deal with errors have a red bug icon in the top right corner.

  • Click on the bug icon to show or hide procedures that deal with errors.

  • Procedures that deal with errors are outlined in red.

4. Reusing a process

Copy processes that you’d like to reuse in the same system. Or export processes and then import them into a different system.

4.1. Copying a process

Proceed as described below to copy a process.

Copying a process:

  1. Go to Setup » Processes.

  2. Open the process that you want to copy.

  3. Click on Copy process.
    → The Copy process window opens.

  4. Enter a name for the process.

  5. Click on Copy process.
    → The process will be created. It will open and you can continue editing it further.

4.2. Exporting a process

We recommend using the export and import functions to exchange processes between different plentymarkets systems. To do so, proceed as described below.

Exporting a process:

  1. Go to Setup » Processes.

  2. Open the process that you want to export.

  3. Click on Export process.
    → The process will be exported as a ZIP file and saved in the Downloads (MAC) or Documents (Windows) folder on your computer.

4.3. Importing a process

You can download processes, e.g. from the process bazaar or from certain pages of the manual. Then you can import these processes into your own system.

But keep in mind that you’ll need to modify a few system-specific settings. See how it’s done in our playful tutorial:

Importing processes and modifying system-specific settings

Importing a process:

  1. Go to Setup » Processes.

  2. Click on Import.

  3. Enter a name for the process and click on Select file.

  4. Select the ZIP file from your computer and click on Open.
    → The process will be imported. It will open and you can continue editing it further.

System-specific settings will not be imported

System-specific settings, e.g. printer settings for the Print sub-procedure, will not be exported. As such, they will not be imported either.
Tip: It’s easy to check which procedures or sub-procedures were not imported. Simply open the Processes menu and click on the newly imported process. The error messages give you the IDs of any procedures and sub-procedures, where you’ll still need to modify the settings.

4.4. Swapping processes in the process bazaar

You can find the plentymarkets process bazaar by opening up the processes category in the plentymarkets forum. This is where sellers can share their processes with others.

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