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How Dataset Routing & Approval Works

The Dataset Routing and Approval module is part of the publishing process and allows site Administrators to create a multi-stage process for dataset routing and approval.

The Routing and Approval Process is applied to all PUBLIC datasets that are uploaded and published by those who are not Administrators. Administrators will still be able to approve their datasets even if they are not part of the Routing and Approval process. A dataset that starts off as private will not appear in the queue, but it will appear when the permissions are changed to public.

How to access Routing and Approval:

  1. Log into your account and click on ‘Administration’ in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. On the next screen, you will see various administration tools in a few different menus. Click on ‘Routing & Approval’ in the Content section. This will bring you to the Routing & Approval Dashboard.

Routing_Approval.png

Setting up the Routing and Approval Process:

  1. Once you are on the Dataset Routing and Approval Dashboard, click the button on the right-hand side of the screen marked ‘Approval Management,' which will bring you to the following page:

  1. Create a Name for the process.
  2. Define the number of days after inactivity that you want to have a dataset marked as ‘stuck.’ A dataset becomes ‘stuck’ when the administrator whose approval is needed at that stage does not act on the dataset (i.e. approve or disapprove) after the specified number of days. The dashboard will indicate which datasets are stuck, what stage they are stuck in, and how many days a dataset has been inactive.
  3. Choose whether you want your data sets to go through Routing & Approval for every update or only during new dataset creation.

 

How to define the stages:

After you name the process, you are able to create and define the stages in the approval process, as well as the administrators involved at each stage. The approval process begins when a dataset is added to the website and ends when the dataset is approved at the final stage, which will publish the dataset to the website. The following are the components of a stage:

  1. Name: This is the name of the stage. The stages occur sequentially from top to bottom.
  2. Notification Method and Interval: You can choose either ‘One at a time’ or ‘Everyone at once.’ If you choose ‘One at a time’ an email notification will be sent to one approver at a time, with notifications being sent sequentially according to the time interval specified. If you choose ‘Everyone at once’ an email will be sent to all the approvers at once. Approval is needed from all approvers specified before the dataset will be classified in that Stage.
  3. Approvers: This is a list of the emails of the administrators you want to have notifications requesting approval sent to.

After you define the stages, determine if you want the approval process to be applied to currently existing datasets. If you want the current datasets to go through the approval process, uncheck the box 'Keep current datasets visible in the catalog,' otherwise leave it checked and only datasets added after this time will go through the approval process. Click 'Create' and you're done!

Dataset Routing & Approval Example:

The following is an example of the routing and approval process with the following stages and administrative notifications:

Screenshot_-_example_approvals.png

  1. A dataset is added and published to the website. Note that the dataset was 'published,' but it will not be visible until the dataset goes through the approval process.
  2. The dataset enters the approval process, and an email notification is sent to the approver in Stage 1 in order to enter that stage. When that approver logs into their account and goes to the Dataset and Routing Dashboard, the following screen will appear. There will be a notification that the dataset needs approval, and it will be classified as ‘Not Ready Yet.’Screenshot_-_Not_Ready.png
  3. Click on ‘Take Action’ or go to ‘Approval Queue.’ The approver will see the following page, where they can either ‘Approve’ or ‘Reject.’Screenshot_-_Approve_or_Reject.png
  4. If the dataset is approved, it will be classified in ‘Stage 1’ on the dashboard.
  5. An email notification is then sent to the approvers for Stage 2. Just as in Stage 1, the approvers go to the Dataset and Routing Dashboard and choose to ‘Approve’ or ‘Reject’ the dataset. If it is approved by all Approvers, the dataset will be classified as ‘Stage 2.’ In this example Stage 2 is the final stage, meaning the dataset will then be published to the website.
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Comments

  • Avatar
    Debra Gagne

    Thank you . This is a nice feature. Does the administrator decide which approval path each user set up is to follow?   We might want different approcval paths for different departments in the State.

  • Avatar
    Clare Zimmerman

    Hi Debra, currently the Routing and Approval Process allows for one approval process to be set up site-wide for any dataset uploaded and published. We are looking into creating the ability to assign different routing and approval processes for different users uploading data in the future. Let us know if you have any further questions!

  • Avatar
    Jonathan Levy

    I would potentially be interested in that, too.

    Also, can an administrator override a required approval -- basically meaning entering an approval or rejection on a reviewer's behalf, such as if the person gives a verbal approval/rejection but is not able to log into the system to do it?  I know an administrator can publish the dataset but suppose the issue were not final approval but giving the last Stage 1 approval necessary to go to Stage 2.

    Thanks.

  • Avatar
    Clare Zimmerman

    Hi Jonathan,

    If having multiple approval queues is something you would be interested in, could you file a feature request so that we can track it and follow up with that?

    Yes, admin are able to override approvals and approve a dataset on other's behalf. If you go to the Routing & Approval module you can review all pending datasets and approve a dataset in any stage from there.

    I am working on expanding this documentation to provide more clarity to a number of questions and scenarios about Routing & Approval, so look for an update here soon!

  • Avatar
    Jim Silveria

    We have created a dataset through the API, and I approved it initially and published it to our live site. We have a service set to run each night, which pushes new data to that dataset. How do I get the updated data to be published each night without going through the Routing and Approval process?

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