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Metadata. Metadata is one of my all-time favorite tech terms. Why? Because it is the foundation for much of what we use technology to accomplish - everything from data classification and analysis to collaboration to and find-ability. Plus, most importantly - at least from my humble perspective here at Nintex, intelligent process automation!

 

metadata

noun, plural in form but singular or plural in construction

meta·da·ta  \ -ˈdā-tə , -ˈda- also -ˈdä- \

Definition - data that provides information about other data

(Source – Merriam Webster - https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/metadata)

 

Nintex Workflow Cloud can now start a workflow conditionally based on a change in the metadata associated with a file stored in Box!

 

NOTE- Metadata templates and custom metadata requires a Box Enterprise subscription.

 

While you may be familiar with Box as a powerful cloud EFSS platform, what you may not know is that our friends at Box take metadata very seriously and are considered a leading CM platform as well - Did you know you can create metadata templates and apply them to your data inside of your Box repository? This allows users to classify and describe the files they’re storing in Box in great detail and more importantly – apply process automation that is conditional, based on metadata, to these artifacts. Powerful functionality to be sure!

Some use cases where instantiating a workflow based on updates to a files metadata can be critical to a successful automation scenario include:

 

Document reviews and approvals - publishing press releases, crystallizing budgets, issuing project estimates, contracts, terms and conditions, etc.


Management of change - an update to metadata may trigger a workflow that publishes a new document – such as in the case of where a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) accompanies product which ingredients may have changed

 

Document routing / archiving / distribution - final disposition, retention, sharing with a wider audience such as with a policy change, etc.


Audit / compliance - who touched a document; when, why, was it properly handled / chain of custody, was a regulated process followed, etc.

 

NOTE – This functionality relies on Enterprise Metadata Templates in your Box tenant. If you are not familiar with these powerful constructs then read all about them via the links below:

 

NOTE- You must setup default file storage in your NWC tenant if you plan on using File variables - https://help.nintex.com/en-US/nwc/Content/Settings/DefaultFileStorage.htm

 

Now let’s walk through the steps to using this all new event for the Box connector (Box - Update file metadata)!

 

First thing you’ll want to do is make sure you have at least one Enterprise Metadata Template available in your Box tenant. In my scenario, I have created one called “Brad Test Template” and it has 4 attributes:

 

  • Business Unit - Drop-down
  • Year - Number
  • Approval Date - Date
  • Approver - Text

 

Now let's navigate over to your Nintex Workflow Cloud tenant and open the workflow designer and double click on the Start event action icon:

 

 

 

In the Start event configuration dialog – simply change the Connector to Box. Then, select Box – Update file metadata from the Event drop down list.

 

Once you select this event, you will choose a Box connection and then NWC will call the box tenant and query the Metadata Template store. At this point you can select the desired path, in my case – Shared, and a metadata template in the drop-down list:

 

 

Now, I select the metadata from Box that I would like to capture into variables when the workflow starts:

 

 

Now I selected all the Box Enterprise Metadata attributes I have in my template plus the last person that modified the file, the file itself, and filename - Armed with this information, I can execute whatever logic, tasking, or integrations I would like. For the sake of simplicity in this blog post - I’m just going to Send an email with the aforementioned metadata:

 

 

So here you can see in Box, if I simply change the date in the Year metadata field from '2017' to '2018' and click on Save my workflow simply picks up the file and the associated metadata sends it in an email it to a desired address:

 

 

Finally, here is my email with all of the Box Enterprise Metadata and the file that was updated:

 

 

At the end of the day, this powerful new start event will allow you to scale out the governance processes associated with the valuable unstructured content you're storing in Box by seamlessly adding structure with Nintex Workflow Cloud.

 

Happy Nintexing!

 

NOTE - Helpful related links

 

Nintex Workflow Cloud – Help – Connectors – Box
https://help.nintex.com/en-US/nwc/Content/Designer/Connectors.htm#Box

 

Nintex Workflow Cloud – Help – Meet NWC
https://help.nintex.com/en-US/nwc/Content/Overview/MeetNWC.htm

 

Box Community

https://community.box.com/t5/Box-Community/ct-p/English

Hello Nintex Community.

 

After a lot of tinkering and playing with forms, I wrote this to provide a simple way for those in the community that may not necessarily know how to use runtime functions or calculated controls within forms to retrieve user profile properties.

 

User profile properties allow you to reference and use different properties with forms to help a user submit information pertinent to the form. To help make this easy, I included these profile properties within a single Nintex form (attached at the bottom) for you to import. This will allow you to see how the formulas are written and get exactly what you need back from the user profile within a form control.

 

 

To use the form attachment follow these steps:

  1. Download the attachment and rename it to just the .nfp extension
  2. Navigate to your O365 Site and create a new List (App)
  3. In the list, open up the Nintex Forms Designer and choose "Responsive"
  4. Click import and select the form file you downloaded here.
  5. Once the form is uploaded, select preview to see the form in action

 

This form displays two different views:

Current User Profile Properties

People Picker Profile Properties

 

When in preview mode you can toggle between the two views to see how the data is pulled in and displayed. To dissect a particular property and view the formula needed to retrieve that information, select the control and view its properties.

 

 

Using the function

The userProfileLookup function is available with the Calculated Control and is under the Runtime Functions

 

Example formula to display the current user work email

userProfileLookup(replace({Common:CurrentUserEmail},".*\\|", ""), "WorkEmail")

 

If you have any questions or comments, please write them below and good luck with using User Profiles and Nintex Forms for Office 365.

Eric

One of the most sought-after features for Nintex Workflow for Office 365 has been the classic feature in our on-premises offering (Nintex Workflow for SharePoint) that lets workflow designers securely store credentials for connector actions (such as DocuSign send document, Office 365 Create Item, Salesforce update record, to name just a few). While this hasn’t been available due to architectural differences in the underlying SharePoint platform, I am pleased to announce that we have extended our capabilities in the cloud and would like to introduce you to the all-new Connection Manager for Nintex Workflow for Office 365!

 

The Connection Manager is critical to implementing sophisticated workflow solutions in your organization by removing the need to store usernames / passwords in each action. This new capability:

 

  • Lets you easily meet and exceed your organization's information security policies and standards
  • Removes the need to update numerous actions in a workflow when a password changes
  • Eases the burden on workflow designers having to know (and manage) credentials for other systems

 

What exactly is the Connection Manager?

The Connection Manager is an all-new component of Nintex Workflow for Office 365 that leverages the power of Nintex’s investments in world-class cloud infrastructure to improve security and governance by securely managing authentication for numerous SaaS platforms* and services so that workflow designers won’t have to worry about configuring actions with individual usernames and passwords.

 

Connection Manager allows connections to be created using either OAuth 2 authentication or username and password depending on the method supported by the actions that use the connection. When username and password authentication is required, end-to-end encryption and encryption at rest are used.

 

Connection Manager provides robust governance of data integrations in your Nintex workflows as well as the ability to control which users can use those connections.

 

How do I use the Connection Manager?

First, it matters where you create connections in the Connection Manager (action vs. workflow gallery), due to your ability to create both personal connections and shared connections.

 

Personal Connections – Connections created inside an action configuration dialog (inside of the workflow designer) will be considered “personal” and the credentials used will only affect workflows designed by that user across the tenant.

 

Shared Connections – Connections that can be created by site collection administrators as well as site owners that are shared and used by any workflow designer, these connections can also be scoped to individuals. Shared connections can also be configured to be visible to specific users.

 

NOTE - the steps below are to be used for creating a shared connection. Please see the post by Rick De Marco entitled What's New: Govern connection creation and usage with Connection Manager for more details on both personal and shared connections.

 

Step by Step - Creating a Shared Connection as a site collection admin

 

First, navigate to the SharePoint Online site where you would like to use the Connection Manager and open the Nintex Workflow for Office 365 app via Site Contents (for site workflows) or via the desired list or library for a list workflow. 

 

Then, upon opening the app, you will notice that the workflow gallery will display any available workflows. Also, there is now a Connections option on the left navigation:

 

 

 

When you click on Connections, you will see a list of available connections. To create a new connection constant, simply click on Create New Shared Connection:

Choose the connection type you would like to use. (Please reference the link titled “Which connection type should I choose?” for additional information.) Then configure the connection by entering the required information. (The example below covers connecting to SharePoint Online lists and libraries.) Feel free to be descriptive in the Connection Name field, as unique names and clear labels can help workflow designers choose the right connection the first time. Then click on Connect:


 

Upon clicking Connect, the system will open a login dialog for desired system. Enter the username and password for the desired account and complete the login. You will be prompted to trust the app privileges. Click Accept to continue:

 

NOTE - if you receive a dialog indicating you need admin approval it means your tenant has been configured to not allow non-admins to provide consent to apps, if this occurs you will need to speak to your admin to either create the connection or allow the consent (setting in Azure portal). 


 

After the connection has been created, you can begin to use that connection constant in a workflow. Click on Workflows on the left navigation and click on Create Site Workflow:


 

In the designer, simply drag and drop a SharePoint list-level action (such as Office 365 Create List Item or Document Set) to the canvas and then open its configuration dialog by double-clicking on it or opening the item menu:

 

Click on the drop-down on the Connector selection box to utilize the new connection constant:


NOTE - After selecting a connection, you may select the checkbox titled "Apply connection to all 'SharePoint Online: List & library' actions within this workflow" to use this connection for all of the subsequent list actions added to this workflow which will automatically inherit this connection for all other actions of the same type (e.g. SharePoint List & Library actions).

 

Conclusions

The Connection Manager provides an even more robust set of cloud integration capabilities in Nintex Workflow for Office 365. Rest assured, this feature is laying the groundwork for even more exciting capabilities in the near future!

 

In the meantime, check out these other helpful links about the Connection Manager:

 

What's New: Govern connection creation and usage with Connection Manager 

 

Did You Know: Upgrading Office 365 Store-based actions to use Connections 

 

Connector Manager documentation - https://help.nintex.com/en-US/O365/Default.htm#cshid=1341 

 

 

Connection Manager FAQ

 

Q: What happens when a password changes for a credential stored in a Connection Manager constant?

 

A: Suspended workflows terminate after approximately 10 days. If your workflow is suspended due to a failed authentication through a connection, you can resolve the situation by updating the credentials or other settings in the connection and then resuming the workflow.

 

Q: How do I disable connections from being created in the workflow designer?

 

A: Open the Nintex Workflow for Office 365 app, click on the cog / gear in the upper right corner.  
Click on Connections on the left side of the Administration Settings dialog. Then uncheck the box next to "Allow connections to be created in the workflow designer." This option is only available for site collection administrators.

 

Q: Which account should I use when I create a new Connection Manager connection?

 

A: When it comes to choosing which credentials should be used in an action, consider using an account with the least amount of privileges. For example, if you're using the Office 365 Create Item action to create an item in another site, consider using a user-account credential that has Contribute rights on the target list, instead of Full Control. On the other hand, if you are creating sub sites using the Office 365 create site action, you will need to use credentials with Full Control permission in the root site because Contribute is not enough. 

 

Q: When I create a connection in the Connection Manager via the app in the Connection Gallery tab, what is the scope of that connection?

 

A: The connection can be used:

  • Across a Site, if you have full control privileges or higher
  • Across a Site Collection, if you have Site Collection Administrator privileges.

 

*Q: Can I create a connection for a non-SharePoint SaaS connector (such as DocuSign)?

 

A: No, not yet. This is planned for a future release. Please monitor the Nintex Product Blog for updates.

 

 

Additional Notes

The connections to SharePoint Online resources may require specific privileges. Please refer to the matrix below for additional details:

 

 Connector Privileges Matrix

 

Connector

Minimum SharePoint Online privileges

SharePoint Online: List & library

Designer

SharePoint Online: Site & user administration

Full

SharePoint Online: Site collection administration

Global admin

SharePoint Online: User management

Global admin

 

 

Happy Nintexing!

The long awaited Connection Manager is now available! Ready to help streamline credential management in workflow design, Connection Manager ensures that credentials are secure, easy and efficient.

 

To take advantage of the new Connection Manager straightaway, we’ve simplified the process by upgrading our Office 365 Store based actions (see this help file for the list of upgraded actions) to automatically remove the need to enter a username/password by replacing it with a single Connection option. No longer will you need to share credentials out to workflow designers or store them in the action configuration; just create a Connection, and begin using it across your workflows!

 

To use a connection in the action, just drag on and open the configuration, then select a Connection via the drop-down.

 

You can also create new connections within the action. These will be known as Personal connections and will only be visible to the creator throughout the tenant. If you want a Shared connection -- available to any workflow designer --  it will need to be created by someone with appropriate administrator privileges. For more details on how to create Personal and Shared connections check out this post on Connection Manager governance by Rick De Marco.

 

What will happen to my existing actions that contains username/password?

 

There will be no changes to current actions; they will still work as intended. If you can’t wait and want to start using Connections right away, just open the action and click the "Click here" link in the message bar at the top to "upgrade this action to use a Connection." When you do that, the action will be upgraded such that the Username and Password fields are replaced with a Connection option, and from here on you can start using connections. 

 

 

 

Does that mean we have to update each action to use a connection one by one?

 

We have made it super easy to update all the actions in the workflow to use the same connection. Once you have selected a connection, you can apply this setting to the rest of the actions within the workflow by checking the option "Apply connection to all [connections of a certain type]." When you save the action, you will be told which actions will use the same connection.

 

 

We hope you will enjoy the new Connection Manager. For more information, check out this post by Brad Orluk and this page in the help section of Nintex for Office 365.

 

With the introduction of Connection Manager, you now have complete flexibility about how you create, use, and manage connections across all your workflows.

 

As you may have already read, the new Connection Manager gives workflow designers, site owners and administrators a way to create a centralized and updatable set of managed credentials. We’ve heard you loud and clear that you don’t want to store usernames/passwords inside the action -- i.e. it’s become a governance and security concern -- and we address this head-on in this latest feature.

 

As you start to use Connection Manager, there are some important concepts you'll find helpful. The first is about how we enable governance around who can create connections, where they can be created from, and the impact on usability across the tenant.

 

Before creating a connection it’s important to give some thought about how the connection will be used. Are you creating it for your own use, do you want to share it with a specific set of designers, or make it available only to a specific site? You can do any or all of these via personal and shared connections.

 

Personal vs Shared Connections

Let me explain a bit about the differences between personal and shared connections.

 

Create a Personal connection if you are the only consumer and don't need to share it with anyone else. Typically this would be in a development scenario or when you are creating a connection with high level of privileges (for example an Office 365 Create site).

 

The only way you can create a Personal connection is via the action configuration. Any connection created using the action is automatically personal, and once it is created, it cannot be changed to a shared connection.

 

 

 

By contrast, create a Shared connection when you want to create a connection that can be shared with other workflow designers. You can then scope it for use across a site collection, individual site, or even down to a set of individual users.

 

Shared connections can only be created by a site collection administrator or a site owner via the new Connection tab in the workflow gallery. Users without this level of access will not even see the Shared connection. But any Shared connection is always shared and cannot be changed to a personal connection.

 

As mentioned, you can scope a Shared connection down to only those designers who you want to use it. By default, when creating a Shared connection, it is automatically available to all designers in the current site collection. However, you can easily change this later via the edit screen on the gallery page.

 

 

Apart from being able to update credentials (for example if a password changes) or enable/disable the connection, there are several additional options for scoping a connection on the Edit connection screen:

 

  • Current owners – the set of users who can update and edit the connection details (the screen above).
  • User with access – allows scoping of the connection down to an individual user(s), be aware the default is set to All users.
  • Available in – specifies where in the tenant this connection is available. If you are a site collection admin, you can make it available across the current site collection. However, if you are a site owner you can only scope to the current site (and "This site collection" will not be available).

 

Finally, on the screen above, we display a list of workflows that are currently using the connection.

 

It's important to think through how you want the connection to be used, and then use the rules above to determine where and how you create it.

 

What if I don’t want everyone creating new Connections?

 

To provide a tighter level of governance, we’ve created a setting that lets site collection administrators allow or prevent workflow designers to create new connections within the action. Disabling this option means that only site collection admins or site owners can create connection and only via the connection gallery page. You can access this setting via the cog in the workflow gallery.

 

 

Admin Consent

You may find workflow designers are reporting back they can't create connections during authentication due to an message saying they need Admin Approval, if so then refer to Connection consent page in help to help resolve the issue. 

 

To learn more about Connection Manager, check out this post by Lisa Tam around upgrading existing actions to use connection manager as well as this post by Brad Orluk for a general overview

 

Enjoy the new connection manager and let us know what you think.

Component Groups: What are they, where are they, and how can they make life easier?

 

Component Groups are part of the Nintex DocGen for Salesforce solution. The best description is that they are similar to a "clause library." Within the Component Group object, which is part of the DocGen package you can purchase on the Salesforce AppExchange, you build pre-defined and approved text paragraphs (Components) and group them together under a single heading.

 

 

A group can be used across multiple document packages and templates to populate them with your approved text. Your company may use standard language in multiple documents, and it needs to be kept current. By using Component Groups across templates, you only need to update the single source, rather than each document.

 

However, Component Groups do much more than just store predefined static text. Take the Component itself. By combining it with the DocGen’s Field Tagger element, you can make that text dynamic.

 

When you use these tags and include the text in the documents generated, the system will automatically merge the data from Salesforce with the text, so it can work across multiple documents.

 

You also can make the paragraphs or even the group itself dynamic in its inclusion. Take the paragraph, for instance. When you click the "Cogwheel" on the side of the Component, you see the same screen as where you saw the Field Tagger. But this time, click Add Filter.

 

 

 

For example, think about using Component Groups for “Terms & Conditions.” Most countries have unique laws and conditions. I could build these in separate groups, each with a set of Components. But I would much rather have one Component Group so I only have to go one place to update elements. As above, I can create a filter based on the criteria I choose, and it will only include a particular Component if the criteria is met.

 

The same logic can apply to the entire Component Group. Once a group has been associated to a package ready for use, you have the option to apply a filter in the exact same style as you saw previously.

 

 

In the same way we applied logic to the Component, we can apply it to the Component Group.

 

 

Once your Component Groups are ready to go, you can associate them to a relevant Document Package, where the groups then present themselves as available as part of the Field Tagger.

 

 

The result is that all those paragraphs of pre-defined text are easily included as part of the template design, under the single tag of the group’s name.

 

 

Now you have an easy way to manage your text from a single source of truth, but also make that text dynamic. I'm sure you'll agree this feature makes your processes much easier to manage.

 

For more information on Component Groups or Nintex Document Generation for Salesforce, please check out

this page in Nintex Connect.

 

The ability to create attachments in a repeating section of a form has so many use cases, across so many verticals! Here are just a few:

  • Adding catalog images to quotes and invoices
  • Adding documentation and images to items in an inspection report
  • Attaching applicant information to HR forms
  • Attaching receipts to an expense form 

Until now, you'd get an error message if you tried to drag an attachment control into a repeating section. No more! Now, in Forms Designer for Nintex Workflow for SharePoint 2013 and 2016, it's as easy as locating the Attachments control under List Columns and dragging it over.

 

 

End users can upload attachments from their desktop:

 

See my two-minute video on how this works. Enjoy!

p.s. support for attachments in repeating sections is on our Public Roadmap for Nintex Mobile. Stay tuned!

With the release of iOS 11 Apple has introduced support for the High Efficiency Image Format (HEIF) or HEIC as Apple call it.  HEIF is a media container standard developed by the Motion Picture Expert Group (MPEG) touted as being the JPEG killer.  HEIF is purported as being twice as efficient as JPEG and renders higher quality images when decoded. This means that the iPhone can now store twice as many photos that are of a better standard.

 

 

 

Unfortunately, Windows 10 has not yet adopted the HEIF format, which presents an incompatibility problem with images captured on Nintex Mobile running on iOS.  Anybody viewing HEIF files submitted via Nintex Mobile to a SharePoint list on Windows 10 may have already experienced this incompatibility.

 

Fortunately, there is a workaround. Nintex Mobile users on iOS can disable HEIC on iOS by going to Settings > Camera > Formats and selecting “Most Compatible” instead of “High Efficiency”.  This will mean that photos captured on iOS will not be stored as HEIC files and Nintex Mobile will now submit images to SharePoint that are always compatible with Windows 10.

 

 

We will keep an eye on this incompatibility and let you know when Windows 10 provides support for HEIF.

Here’s a way to get even more value from the new “conditional start” capability in Nintex Workflow for Office 365.

 

Normally, a workflow kicks off when an item is created or modified. With Conditional Start, we provided the ability to set a condition or expression that must also be true for the workflow to start. (If you’re not yet familiar with it, I recommend this recent post: What's New? Conditional Start in Nintex for Office 365.)

 

In using conditional start, you might find yourself asking how to handle the situation when the value of a field item changes from A to B.

 

In Nintex Workflow for SharePoint, you’ve had the option to check previous values for the existing columns in a list, and use that to create the logic of your start condition. (See the screenshot below from an Nintex Workflow for SharePoint.)

 

 

This option hasn’t been available in Nintex Workflow for Office 365 because of a constraint in the relevant Microsoft APIs. But don´t worry, I´m here to bring you solutions not problems. 

 

Here´s  workaround to solve this problem: we just need to get the previous workflow instance to write the prior values of the list item in column(s). Here’s what I mean.

 

Let’s say I have a list with Column1 and Column2. And let’s say I want the workflow I created in this particular list to be triggered only when I modify an item -- specifically, when the value in Column1 changes from A to B.

 

We need a way to check the value of Column1 before the item was modified to compare it with the current value. To do that we’ll create another column and call it Column1Prior. Having both previous and current values, now it’s easy for me to create that condition in the Start Option. Don’t worry, we can hide Column1Prior so the end user won’t see it.

 

 

 

We also need to keep Column1Prior updated, so we’ll add an “Update list item” action to our workflow. This will set the value of Column1Prior to equal the value of Column1 at the end of the workflow instance. This way, every time a workflow finishes running, Column1 and Column1Prior will have exactly the same values.

 

In this example I’m using only one extra column because I only need to check the previous value of Column1. If I want to create more complex start logic, I’ll need to check the prior values of more columns. I can escalate this approach and create as many extra columns as needed.

 

And there you have it! Some of you have asked me directly about this scenario, so now everyone has the answer! Happy Nintexing!

Template building: time consuming, troublesome, easy to get wrong; all problems that sound familiar with your current document management in Salesforce?

 

The Field Tagger in Nintex DocGen for Salesforce makes it much easier to build templates. If the "field tag" term is new, it's the Nintex way of describing a merge field, which is used to bridge the data field that exists within Salesforce inline with the template built using a Microsoft Office app (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.) or PDF.

 

The tagger is conveniently located in the DocGen Packages object in Salesforce:

 

 

 

It produces an easy-to-use screen that helps you easily locate the correct "field tag" to capture the right piece of data you want to use.

 

 

 

You can narrow your search to the Main Object, including custom objects, in no time via a drop-down-menu. If you already know the field you want, there is a drop-down for that as well.

 

Another powerful feature is the ability to look up an existing object record. This solves a very common problem in template building when trying to pull data from Salesforce. How many times have you thought you were using the right field, but the data says otherwise?

 

Well with DocGen for Salesforce and the Field Tagger tool, that problem is a thing of the past. You can use the "Lookup Data" functionality to explore an existing record of an object in order to identify exactly the data that will be pulled using that tag.

 

 

Next is deciding the type of document that tag will be used for, such as Word or Excel. Through a simple drop-down selection, you are prepared for all eventualities.

 

 

 

Once you make your selection, you can move on the the fun part, moving the tag from the tagger to the template, and Nintex has made this easier than ever. Simply copy and paste the tag into the template where you want it.

 

 

 

This method is a super-fast way to place your merge field where you want and combine this tool with Microsoft's robust formatting ability. However, for you PC users out there, Nintex has an alternative method for adding these tags.

 

PC users can access to an add-in within the Office tool itself, which easily connects you to Salesforce using your existing credentials.

 

 

Additionally, those not using DocGen for Salesforce who still want to use Nintex DocGen for their other platform needs: Not to worry, Nintex has you covered! Nintex also offers the same type of add-in as before, which you can connect your Workflow platform to.

 

As the focus on this blog is on DocGen for Salesforce, you can find more information on the Nintex DocGen topic in our Help Files.

 

There you have it -- answers to your template-building challenges. For more information on the Nintex Document Generation tool for Salesforce, please check out the Nintex DocGen for Salesforce Forum in the Nintex Community.

We’ve just launched a new capability in Nintex for Office 365 that we think you’re going to love.

 

 

It has a long name -- User Profile Lookup Runtime Function – but what it does is quick to describe: When you create a form, or pick someone’s name from a dropdown, it auto-populates the relevant fields from the user directory and saves you all that manual input.

More specifically, the UserProfileLookup Function allows a form to query user information from the SharePoint user profile database to return additional properties about an account. This information can be used in a Calculated Value control.

 

Here's how to use this feature.

Scenario

In this example, we will create short form and showcase the UserProfileLookup Runtime Function using calculated values to populate the Email and Manager values. 

Form:

1. Click Administration Settings () and select "Add an app".

2. Add the following Columns as a single line of text: Email, Manager.

3. Go back to your SharePoint list, select "Nintex Forms".

4. Find the Form Control “Calculated Value” and drag it to the form canvas next to Email.

5. Double-click the control to configure it.

6. Formula: Go to Runtime Functions, select userProfileLookup, and double-click to add the formula.

7. Insert the cursor between the parentheses, and remove the first quote marks.

8. Click on the Common tab and double-click on Current User (Email).

9. Set the cursor after Current User (Email) and type “WorkEmail”.

10. The full Formula is now: userProfileLookup(Current User (Email), “WorkEmail”).

11. For “Connected to”, select Email.

12. Click Save.

 

Now we will perform the similar steps for manager, using a different formula:

1. Find the Form Control “ Calculated Value” and drag it to the form canvas next to Manager.

2. Double-click the control to configure it.

3. Formula: Go to Runtime Functions, select userProfileLookup, and double-click to add the formula.

4. Insert the cursor between the parentheses.

5. Click on the Common tab and double-click on Current User (Email).

6. Set the cursor after Current User (Email) and type , “Manager”.

7. The full Formula is now: userProfileLookup(Curent User (Email), “Manager”).

8. For “Connected to” select Email.

9. Click Save.

Now, to preview the form, click on Designer, then Preview, Generate Preview:

Email: Richard Roe our users email is populating correctly

Manager: Jane D is Richard’s manager, so this field is also populating correctly.

 

User Profile Lookup for Workflow:

To grant permissions to the User Profile service (requires tenant administrator privileges):

1. Click "Administration Settings"  () on the upper right of the Workflows page or the Nintex Workflow designer.

2. In the User Profiles section, click "Grant Access to Workflow".

Note: When you click this button, a new tab appears asking for confirmation of trust settings for the Workflow app.

If the new tab does not appear, then the browser may be blocking pop-ups from the site. Update your browser configuration to allow pop-ups from the site.

3. In the new tab, click "Trust It".

The tab re-displays the SharePoint site. The User Profiles service is now accessible by the Workflow app and you can now use manager references in your workflows.

 

Scenario

In the Office 365 Nintex Workflow Designer, drag the “Assign a task” action to the design canvas. Then double-click on the action to configure. Choose the Participant that you want the task to route to (in this example, Richard Roe).

 

Next, for Task Title, under "insert reference" select "Workflow Context" and choose "Manager display name". Notice the message “Requires the User Profiles services”.  When finished, hit "Save" and publish your workflow.


The workflow is configured to send a confirmation email to the initiator (Richard Roe), then route to the manager.


Email 1: Richard Roe receives confirmation email.

Email 2: Task Approval for Richard Roe. Notice the Task Title has Richard’s manager display name (highlighted in red). This shows that User Profile Service is working correctly.

 

 

We hope you're as excited about this release as we are. Thank you for voicing your feedback and as always, we encourage you to submit other product feature ideas via Nintex User Voice. We invite you to visit our new Nintex Product Roadmap often to see what’s coming!

The Responsive Forms Designer, now available with Nintex Forms, allows you to create beautiful and powerful forms that are automatically optimized for any device or screen size. With the rapid pace of tech advances, responsive design is becoming an increasingly necessary component to any online interactions, including at the data-capture phase of your most important business processes. While the Responsive Forms Designer has many great features, there are five in particular that I am loving the most!

 

1 – Responsive From Beginning to End

Not only does the new Responsive Designer allow you to create responsive forms for your end users, but the design experience itself is responsive. For example, one of the most common updates we make to our Nintex Forms is to implement a multi-column layout instead of the default single-column layout. With the Responsive Designer, you can simply drag and drop your controls on the canvas to easily reposition them into a two-column layout.

 

Nintex Responsive Forms - 2 column layout

 

The Responsive Designer also makes it easier to add new controls onto the form. New rows are automatically created and controls are shifted accordingly when you drag and drop a new control onto the canvas. Resizing controls is a breeze with the “Increase width” and “Decrease width” buttons on each control.

 

Nintex Responsive Forms - Add Row Change Column Width

 

2 – Streamlined Controls

One of the more subtle, but very impactful changes with the Responsive Designer is the combination of each input control with its corresponding label control. As you may have noticed in the previous examples, the label control is tied to each input control, so when you rearrange controls on the canvas, you only need to do move each control once. This. Is. Huge!

 

Of course, you still can change the label at any time by simply selecting the control and updating the “Title” in the Properties pane on the right side of the canvas.

 

Nintex Responsive Forms - Change Column Title

 

3 – Themes

Once you’ve rearranged all of the controls for easier data capture, you will likely want to update the styling of your form to match your company’s look and feel – otherwise known as branding. The Responsive Forms Designer provides a Theme feature where you can easily adjust form colors and fonts, without the need for Cascading Style Sheets. For example, I can change the color of my Save button, select a different font, and update the size and color of the text on my form, through the Global styles section of the Theme pane.

 

Nintex Responsive Forms - Theme

 

4 – Updated Rules Pane

I really like the new presentation of the Rules pane in the Responsive Forms Designer. The formatting and validation rules have been combined into a single definition structure, which resembles an “if-then” statement. For example, when Start Date is in the past, then Invalidate (i.e. the form cannot be submitted), and display this Validation Message. Easy-peasy!

 

Nintex Responsive Forms - Rules Pane

 

5 – Power of Choice

While the Responsive Designer provides some great advantages, there are times when you may still prefer the Classic Forms Designer. For example, the Responsive Designer does not currently support custom CSS or JS/jQuery, so for these you'll use Classic. Luckily, Nintex makes this easy. When you create a new Nintex Form, you will be presented with the option to specify which design experience you would like to use.

 

 

This choice is available whether you are using Nintex for SharePoint 2013, Nintex for SharePoint 2016, or Nintex for Office 365. So, no matter where you are automating your business processes, you have the power to choose the forms designer that makes sense for each scenario.

 

So, what next?

Have you tried the Responsive Designer yet? Whether you are tired of nudging your controls and labels to get them lined up just so, or you are intrigued by the option to use the Theme settings instead of CSS for form styling, the next step is to try it out!

 

If you are using Nintex for Office 365, it should be automatically available in your tenant. If you are using Nintex for SharePoint 2013 or 2016, you may need to update your Nintex product to the latest version. Details on that process can be found on the Nintex Community site, Nintex Connect, here for 2013 and here for 2016.

Among the many benefits in your Nintex DocGen for Salesforce Enterprise license, one of the most powerful — yet least understood — is the Workflow Document Package. This powerful feature gives you the power to automate tasks and workflows in Salesforce, based on conditions you create. Empower your employees by freeing them from mindless tedium! 

 

This post kicks off a series in which I’ll walk you through the process of creating a Workflow Document Package from start to finish. Here I’ll give you the view from 10,000 feet; we won’t delve into specifics just yet. But after this post, you should feel comfortable and primed to begin. To start, these packages combine three features: 

 

  1. The “Drawloop_Next” field: Called "DL_Next" for short, this field is the backbone of the Workflow Document Package. Here, you literally tell Drawloop what to do next. Creating the Drawloop_Next string can be quick, painless – even fun! Again, more details later, but for a quick preview, here’s an example from one of our own environments. 
  2.  An Outbound Message: In the next post, I'll walk you through how to add the above IDs to the Drawloop_Next field. But this raises the question: how does Nintex Document Generation know what to do with them? It simply sends a message containing the IDs from your DL_Next field to Nintex’s endpoint URL (which, for future reference, is  (https://apps.drawloop.com/package/111 ).                                                                                                     
  3. A Workflow Rule: This is a rule that tells Nintex Document Generation whether to initiate the document package. In the example below, the Workflow rule will fire when a field meets your criteria -- in this case, when Opportunity: Stage equals “Proposal/Price Quote.” Moreover, the rule will be evaluated any time a record is created, and will re-evaluate fields on that record anytime they are changed. 

Now you know the three parts of a Workflow Document Package. Next, it’s time to create them! Stay tuned for the next post, where we'll break down how to create your own Drawloop_Next. 

Have you ever had to manually update a bunch of records? I mean, literally open dozens of tabs, and slowly, painstakingly update a bunch of values? That's what my first job after college was like. It was an internship where half my day was dedicated to manually updating records in a system. Other than being a total waste of my time, it was also a process that resulted in a considerable number of errors. Having five or even 10 tabs might be easy to keep tabs on (pun intended), but anything more than that, and you're playing a guessing game of "did I or didn't I update these values?" After that torture, and the torture of rectifying my mistakes, I vowed to find a way to update records without the tabs and manual clicks. Enter Nintex Workflow Cloud.

 

In my example, I'll highlight a common type of record that one would normally update quarterly or even weekly: product pricing. I'll use Salesforce's new CPQ application (formerly Steelbrick) as an example because a lot of people are using it. I'll show you how easy it can be to take an Excel file of updated prices, route it through approvals, and use Nintex Workflow Cloud and Nintex Document Generation for Salesforce to update the Salesforce CPQ pricing records in seconds.

 

 

So first things first. Here is my Excel file. It's not fancy, but it's an important collaborative document that is about to get run through an approval process. To keep track of the products, and to track when and how the product values were updated, I've created a custom object to hold Pricing Update information. To make things even easier, by using Nintex for Salesforce, I can actually associate a Nintex Form with a specific object in Salesforce. You can get object-specific information from the record where the user submitted the form. In this case, since this record is specific to Americas, we can tell exactly which products to update. Once I've uploaded my document to the form and entered when I want the update to happen, the first workflow begins.

 

 

Here's a quick look at the first of my two workflows. It starts off by receiving the file the user uploaded in a collection. This is then routed into the first of two departments that feed into an Express Approval. Express Approval is an incredibly simple action that can automatically send out anything from a document or data for approval via email. The approver simply responds to the email with either "approve" or "decline," and NWC routes the outcome accordingly. Once that's completed, we store the file back into Salesforce as an attachment on the record where the file first originated. That part is pretty straightforward. What happens next in the workflow is a bit more complicated.

 

 

This next piece uses some advanced techniques that might be a little bit confusing to new users. You'll notice the last part of the first workflow is the checking a checkbox on that record. This kicks off an automated Document Package in the Salesforce environment which uses the powerful features of Nintex Document Generation for Salesforce. We've set up an Excel template file which will take all the values from another Excel file, and format it into a JSON string. The feature we're using is called Import File, and it essentially allows you to select an Excel file attachment and use that as a data source for your Drawloop Document Package. You can learn more about JSON here if you like. Once the JSON string has been formatted, we can take that value and store it back into a field in Salesforce. This feature is called an Insert Update, and it allows you to do anything from modify field values to create new records in your Salesforce Org.

 

 

Now that we have all this data, and it's been formatted nicely into a JSON string, we can start our second workflow. Here's a look at the second workflow. What we've done here is set up a scheduled start event. This allows a user to have the updated pricing ready, but postpone the update until they want it to occur. The first query action looks for all the Pricing Update records with today's date. Those that have it are added to the collection of record IDs and begin retrieving the JSON value stored on the record.

 

 

After we have all the Pricing Update records, we can break apart the JSON using the Apply Regular Expression action, grab the ID of the product, grab the new prices, and update the records in Salesforce. The Loop for Each action ensures that every single product, in every single Pricing Update record, gets its update.

 

With that, you're finished! Give yourself a pat on the back for updating the pricing for all of these products so quickly! 

Recently we released the new "conditional start" capability in Nintex Workflows for Office 365, which gives you a new level of control over when a workflow kicks off. If you missed that, have a look at this blog post: Whats New - Conditional Start in Nintex for Office 365.

 

If you have played with it, you may be wondering how Manual Start would work on a workflow where you have created start conditions for item creation and/or item modification. 

 

In other words, what if you create conditions on a workflow when an item is created and/or modified, and then kick off the workflow manually? What if you have a workflow with the settings below as start options? 

 

Will that workflow start without checking the condition, or will it start only if the condition set is true? Let's stop for a minute and explain briefly how manual start works in this type of scenario.

 

The simple answer is that the workflow will start regardless of any condition you might have created, either on item creation or item modification. It will start as if there is no condition set.

 

There are two main reasons why we've designed the functionality this way.  

 

First, because if you have created conditions for both item creation and item modification, manual start doesn't really know which one we should use.

 

Second, it helps you debug and test your workflows. Think about it: imagine you have designed a workflow, added start conditions, and everything is working. If you change your design and want to test it, unless you change the conditions, the quick way to test is to manually run the workflow with no conditions. 

 

Hope it helps!