If you already have Portal Docs, if you are already familiar with using Portal Docs, and/or you are really wondering what the differences are between what you already know and the new Policies and Procedures tool, then this article was (quite literally!) made for you!
If forced to nail down the PRIMARY difference between a NORMAL plain-Jane Portal Doc and a P&P Doc into one concise description, it's this:
Policies & Procedures provides an auditable workflow of the approval process of a document. P&P also enhances the experience by adding in critical information management options like document review dates and document expirations, reader 'publication alerts', and reader acknowledgements.
But of course, that means there's a whole lot of new terminology and moving parts to learn to support this awesome new feature! Let's dive in with a quick Comparison Table.
|Portal Documents||Policies & Procedures|
|Users Involved?||Readers & Writers||Four "Personas" : Readers, Authors, Publishers, and Managers.|
|Document Approvers?||No||Yes, optional. Up to five.|
|Granular Document Permissions?||No||Yes, several.|
|Document Status?||Published||Pre-approval (hidden from Readers, visible to other Personas) and Published.|
|Document Review Date?||No||Yes, optional.|
|Document Expiration?||No||Yes, optional.|
|Document Subscriptions?||Yes||Not yet (coming soon!)|
|Alerts for Required Actions?||N/A||Yes, optional. Via email, pop-up and the My Alerts Island.|
|Duplicate Document Warning?||Yes||Yes|
|Move Documents Between Folders?||Yes||Not yet (coming soon!)|
|Available Sub Folders?||Yes||Not yet (coming soon!)|
|Reader Acknowledgements?||No||Yes, optional.|
|Reader Acknowledgement Required?||N/A||Yes, optional.|
Because this article assumes you already know Portal Docs, we will primarily be focusing on the differences. See the Support Center for more in-depth articles, videos, and additional training resources!
There are four Personas (Readers, Authors, Publishers & Managers) that must be assigned to each folder, as they serve very specific purposes. We will go into each Persona in detail below. In general, here are some things you should know.
- Just like Portal Docs' Readers & Writers, all P&P Personas can be assigned by User Name or by Role. The Reader Persona can also be assigned by Workgroup and is considered a Best Practice.
- The same User can (and often does!) serve in more than one Persona.
- Personas can (and often should!) contain more than one User, Role, or both.
- All Personas (except Reader) have default Permissions regarding the documents themselves. These are identical to Permissions found for Writers in Portal Docs, only broken out more granularly. You may change the defaults to suit your business needs.
- All Personas (except Reader) have default Permissions available regarding the three specific Policies and Procedures permissions. You may change the defaults to suit your business needs.
- Each Persona (except Reader) has ONE or TWO specific tasks or features unique to that Persona. This cannot be changed.
The Granular Document Permissions:
The Specific P&P Permissions
Readers: Can read and comment on any Published document they are listed on as a Reader. Don't forget - if you want to display a Document on a Workgroup Page (like in a List Island) the Workgroup MUST be a Reader, too! (Which then, all members of the Workgroup will be Readers, as well... hence the Best Practice!)
Key Difference: Those involved in the P&P Process of Approval must be listed as Readers on the Folder, but do NOT need to be listed on the individual documents themselves. This ensures your stakeholders can "see" the necessary documents before publication.
Authors: Typically are responsible for uploading documents to the Policies and Procedures folder. By default can create/manage the document content, manage the document 'tags', and edit comments.
Unique to the Author Persona - 1: Responsible for submitting a document to Approvers, or if there are no Approvers, to the Publisher. 2: If the document is declined at any point in the process, it is returned to the Author. Those in the Author Persona will receive an Alert to let them know the document was declined. Then, they can begin the submission process anew.
Publishers: Like Authors, have Publishers have comment editing and tag management by default. Unlike Authors or Managers, Publishers are the only Persona to have all three special Policies and Procedures permissions set up by default. (Manage Subscriptions, Manage Acknowledgements, and Manage Review Settings)
Unique to the Publisher Persona - 1: Responsible for Publishing a document to the Portal, thus making it available to all Readers.
Managers: Oz the Great and Powerful. All available granular Permissions are checked by default. Typically, the Manager Persona is primarily responsible for setting up the folder itself, thereby establishing all other Permissions, and granting the Readers permissions. We also suggest that the Manager serve as a "fail - safe" backup for the other Personas, in the event a document gets 'stuck' in the process.
Note: Managers cannot Publish. Only a Publisher can Publish. However, a Manager can add themselves to the Publisher Persona.
Unique to the Manager Persona - 1: Has the Manage Folder Permission. Other than Portal Administrators (or Host Admins, or anyone with the 'Manage Folders' Portal Tool Access Permission) no other User has this powerful permission baked in. Managers can add, remove, change, and edit all of the Users, Roles, Workgroups permissions you've just read about. However - unlike Portal Admins and others, Managers can only "manage" the folder(s) they are listed on as Manager.
Each P&P folder can have up to five optional Tiers of Approval. (Why five? Well, it seemed like a good place to start! Do you think you'll need more than five? Tell your CSM, or go talk about it in Spark!) The Approvers can be added to each Tier by User Name or by Role, but each level only requires ONE to "approve" on behalf of the whole Tier.
- The Manager Persona controls how many you have, what the "friendly" name of the Tier is, and who is in the Approval Tier.
- If any Approver rejects the document, the document is returned to the Author Persona.