Set up workflow phases and transitions

Workspace admin permissions are required.

ALM Octane uses phases to represent the status of an item. For every item, workspace admins can create a workflow indicating the various phases through which the item advances as the item is being developed.

Workflows are supported for any item which proceeds through development, including:

  • Epics

  • Features

  • User Stories and quality stories

  • Defects

  • Tasks

  • Tests

  • Test suites

The workflow diagram

When you create a workflow, the first phase in the workflow is the Start phase. Every workflow has only one Start phase.

Inside each workflow are Metaphases. A metaphase lets you categorize the phases logically. Metaphases are provided by default and cannot be modified.

Within the metaphases, you can change the order and flow of the phases or add additional phases.

For example, the metaphases for backlog items and their default phases are: 

Metaphase Phases
New New, Deferred
In progress Opened
In testing Fixed, Proposed closed

Duplicate, Closed, Rejected

Workflow phases are connected by transition arrows.

  • Solid transition arrows indicate a primary transition. A primary transition is the main workflow for the item. Most items will pass through the phases of the primary path as the items are being developed.

  • Dotted transition arrows indicate transitions that are alternate workflow paths. These transitions are not essential to the logic of the workflow. Under certain circumstances, an item will follow the alternate path. For example, most New defects follow the primary path to the Opened phase. However, a New defect may be Deferred if there are not enough resources to handle it.

Here are how some items and their out-of-the-box workflows are displayed.

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Set up workflows

Watch a slideshow that shows you how to work with workflow!

  1. In Settings , click Workspaces and select the workspace where you want to set up the workflow.

  2. Click the Entities tab.

  3. In the Entities list on the left side of the pane, select the item for which you want to set up the workflow.

  4. Click the Workflow tab. The existing workflow phases display graphically.

  5. Modify the workflow as needed. You can: 

    Rename a phase

    Select the phase and enter a name in the Properties panel on the right.

    Assign a phase to a different metaphase

    Select the phase and enter a different metaphase in the Properties panel on the right. In the display, the phase moves to the newly-assigned metaphase.

    Describe a phase

    View the read-only description in the Properties panel on the right.

    Add a phase

    Right-click the phase before which you want to add a new phase. Select Add Phase.

    Tip: If you add phases with similar meanings to defect and user story workflows, use the same name for the phase in both workflows.

    In the Backlog module, the Stories tab displays defects and user stories together. The phase filter for this tab includes all workflow phases for defects and user stories. Phases with the same name are listed only once in the filter.

    Indicate the phase is a start phase

    See if the currently-selected phase is the Start phase. Each workflow can have only one Start phase.

    Indicate the transition is a primary transition

    Click the Start Phase check box in the Properties panel on the right.

    Add a transition

    Right-click the phase before which you want to add a new phase. Select Add Transition. Enter the name of the target phase to which the transition should point.

    Delete a phase or a transition

    Right-click the phase or transition, and select the delete option.

    • You cannot delete a phase if it has outgoing transitions, so delete those transitions first.

    • You cannot delete a transition if it is the only incoming transition to a phase.

    • If you delete a transition that is the primary transition, it is best to clear the Primary Transition check box before deleting it and to select a different transition as the primary one.

    As you modify the workflow, it is refreshed automatically.

  6. Define rules for the currently-selected phase.

    1. In the Rules panel on the right, click + to add a rule.

    2. Define the rule. For details, see Set up rules for workflow.

    3. Click Save in the Rules panel.

      The Rules tab in the panel on the right displays rules for the currently-selected phase only.

      If you click the Rules tab at the top to see the rules defined for the currently-selected entity, you see the rules you just created. The Phase column in the grid shows the phases for which you created the rule. These rules will not run for any other phase.

  7. Click Save.

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