Vacancy and Placement (Offer) authorisation takes place at either end of your Recruitment process - Vacancy Authorisation at the beginning, and Placement Authorisation at the end.

In this article we'll look at some examples of both Vacancy and Placement Authorisation workflows, explain what happens at each of the stages, discuss the terminology used within these workflows, and ultimately show you how to complete the Authorisation Workflow specification documents.

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What are Authorisation Workflows and what do they do?

Vacancy and Placement Authorisation Workflows essentially do three things:

  1. They give your Hiring Managers the ability to change the Status of a Vacancy or a Placement
  2. They allow you to define how many approval stages a Vacancy or Placement needs to go through before it can be published and define who can approve each stage
  3. They allow you to control which emails are sent out, to whom and when

Within Eploy there are two types of Authorisation Workflow: Vacancy and Placement.

Vacancy Authorisation Workflows apply to your Vacancies, and Placement Authorisation Workflows apply to your Placements (offers). 

Useful Terminology

When talking about Authorisation Workflows, there's a lot of terminology that you'll need to understand.  Some of these terms you'll probably already know, as they're quite common, but some are Eploy specific.

Vacancy - This is the Vacancy Record within the system.  Some people refer to it as the Job, but in Eploy we call it a Vacancy.  This is the record which gets advertised on your website and job boards and shouldn't be confused with Positions, which is a special field on the Vacancy which allows you to specify how many heads you need to recruit to fulfil the requirements of the Vacancy.

Placement - this is your Job Offer.  Within the Placement you'll be defining things such as the Start Date and Salary, along with any additional benefits and work schedule.  

Authoriser - in the case of an Authorisation Stage within the workflow, the Authoriser is the Hiring Manager who can authorise that stage.  You'll also see Authorisers when looking at the stages in your workflow - if you see this, you'll know that the stage is an Authorisation stage.

Vacancy Contact - the Vacancy Contact is the main Hiring Manager responsible for that Vacancy.  Typically this will be the Hiring Manager who raised the original Vacancy within the Hiring Manager Portal, but the Contact can also be assigned by a Recruiter within the Core System.

Backend User - these are users of the Eploy Core System.  These will typically be members of your Recruitment or wider HR/Payroll team.

Position Type - this one is a bit tricky.  At each authorisation stage, you'll need to specify who within the organisation can provide that approval.  Rather than providing specific job titles or named individuals, we ask you to provide the Position Type of the person who can approve this stage.  The best way to think of this is that it's a generic description of their level or seniority within the company.  For example, you could have 10 directors within your company, each with their own job title.  But ultimately they're all Directors, so the Position Type for each in Eploy would be Director.  When we add this to the authorisation workflow, and a Hiring Manager needs to select the relevant person to approve the stage, only those individuals with the Director position type can be selected.

Fast Tracking - this is a setting within your authorisation workflow.  With this setting activated, an approver further up the chain can approve the Vacancy or Placement before it formally reaches their stage.  For example, let's say the Vacancy needs to go through 4 levels of approval before getting published.  With this setting activated, the 4th approver in the chain could provide the approval, even though it's still "officially" with the first approver, bypassing all other approval stages.  If the person raising the vacancy or placement would normally be an approver for that Vacancy, this setting would allow them to select themselves as the approver for that stage, and approve it straight away, skipping any earlier stages.

Self Authorisation - this setting allows the person raising the Vacancy or Placement to select themselves as an approver, if they have the Position Type for one of the stages.  This setting does not allow them to skip any previous approval'd need to switch on Fast Tracking for that.

Hiring Manager - anyone who can access the Hiring Manager Portal is classed as a Hiring Manager within Eploy.  But, in the case of Authorisation Workflows, there's a big difference between any Hiring Manager on a Vacancy and the Vacancy Contact.  For example, when allowing a Hiring Manager to mark a Vacancy as No Long Required, if you set it so that any Hiring Manager on the Vacancy can do it, then literally any Hiring Manager associated with that Vacancy could make that change.  However, if you select Vacancy Contact, then only the main Hiring Manager on the Vacancy can make the change.

My Vacancies and/or Placements will be pre-approved or approved outside Eploy.  Do I still need a workflow?

Simply put, yes, you do.

As discussed above, the Authorisation Workflow gives a Hiring Manager user the ability to change the Status of a Vacancy or Placement, without it the manager won't be able to do things like save their new vacancy or placement as a draft, send it to the recruitment team to publish or publish it themselves.

If your Vacancies and Placements are getting approval via a different route outside of the system, rather than thinking about the authorisation workflow as a way of getting something approved, you need to think about it more in terms of what abilities do you want to give to your Hiring Managers where Vacancies and Placements are concerned.

For example, if your Hiring Manager needs the ability to save a Vacancy as draft, or mark it as no longer required, this can only be achieved through the use of an Authorisation Workflow.

Similarly, if your Hiring Managers will be responsible for creating offers and publishing them to the candidate, activating the Onboarding module for them, this can also only be achieved through the use of an Authorisation Workflow.

How do I assign the correct Authorisation Workflow to my Vacancies and Placements?

When you're setting up your authorisation workflow, you'll need to add a Filter to each one.  This is what Eploy will use to determine which authorisation workflow to assign to each Vacancy and Placement raised.

Whether you're a Hiring Manager or a Core System user, you do not have the facility to manually assign a specific authorisation workflow, Eploy will always automatically assign the correct long as your filter is set up correctly.

The filter effectively allows you to define which conditions need to be met for that authorisation workflow to be assigned.

Within the Vacancy Authorisation workflow, you can filter based on any field contained within the Vacancy, Contact or Company record.

Within the Placement Authorisation workflow, you'll be able to filter on any field within the Vacancy, Contact or Company...and you'll also be able to filter based on fields within the Placement and Candidate record as well.

For example, if one part of the business has a very specific authorisation process which is different to the rest of the business, then you'd need to set up two authorisation workflows.  The filter on one would say IF the Business Area on the Vacancy IS X, THEN use this one.  The filter on the other one would say IF the Business Area on the Vacancy IS NOT X, THEN use this one.  

One really important thing to note is that your Authorisation Workflows, if you have more than one for a Vacancy or Offer, must be mutually exclusive.  This means that there can be no ambiguity as to whether working A or B is assigned - if a vacancy is raised which could be assigned to both, Eploy will return an error message.  This kind of situation only ever really comes up if you are using multiple fields within an Authorisation Workflow filter.  If you are worried that your processes might end up in this situation, please discuss it with your Implementation Manager so they can help you come up with the right filter which will work inside Eploy and match your internal processes.

Completing the Specification Documents

Once you're happy with what you'd like your Authorisation processes to look like, the next step is to capture all of the information within the relevant specification document.

We have two spec docs for you to complete, one for the Vacancy Authorisation processes, and the other for your Placement Authorisation processes.

Luckily, they're identical.

To begin, we'd like you to tell us what the Authorisation Workflow should be called, and then provide an explanation of the purpose of this workflow.  These two will be added to the workflow as the Title and Description, respectively.

Tip whatever you write in these two sections will be displayed within the Hiring Manager Portal when this authorisation workflow has been selected, so try to be as descriptive as possible.  This will help the Hiring Manager ensure that the correct workflow has been assigned.

The next question asks you to provide the reason for this authorisation route.  This is where you can tell us in which circumstances this authorisation workflow should be used e.g. when replacing an existing employee or offering a higher salary than was originally approved within the Vacancy.

Finally for this section, let us know if the approver should be able to skip (Fast Track, described above) the approval to their own stage and whether the person raising the vacancy or offer should be able to select themselves as an approver (self-authorisation, also described above).

Having done that, you can lay provide the specification for the process stages.

Each row will be a single stage in the workflow, and you'll need to provide the following information for each:

  • Stage User - Tell us who should be in control of the Vacancy or Offer at this stage.  This could be the manager raising the Vacancy or Offer, the approver or a Core System User.
  • Authoriser Position Type - You only need to fill this in if it is an authorisation stage (i.e. an Approver needs to approve it).  Enter the Position Type of the Hiring Manager(s) who'll be able to approve this stage.  If it's not an approval stage, you can either leave this blank of put N/A.  Position Types are explained in detail above.
  • Reminder Email Frequency - Eploy will automatically send an email to the approver, and it can send reminders automatically.  Here you can specify how often you want the reminders to go, in calendar days.
  • Can the authoriser edit the Vacancy/Offer at this stage? - This is a simple Yes/No question.  If you set this to No, the authoriser will be viewing the Vacancy or Offer in a read-only format.  If you set this to Yes, they will be able to edit any of the information contained within the Vacancy or Offer
  • Additional Comments - This is just a space for you to add any additional comments you might have.

The specification document will list the default number of authorisation stages included with an Authorisation Workflow.  If you need to add extra authorisation stages, there is room at the bottom of the document for you to provide the relevant details.

Having filled all of the fields in, your Implementation Manager will review it and come back to you with any questions or suggested changes.

If at any point you're not sure what to put in to these specification documents, please have a chat with your Implementation Manager - we're always here to help.

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