Sending Back Flow that is Instructive

Mistakes that occurred in the upstream of Business flow are the major cause of the business cost increase.

Hi, there!


“Is it capable of sending back?”

This is a question frequently asked by those who are considering to introduce a Workflow System.


Our product, the Cloud-based Workflow “Questetra BPM Suite“, is capable of sending back, of course, and it is easy just to say “It is!”. However, why is it important to be able to send back in a Business Process, in the first place?



Two Scenes of “Sending Back”


Let’s consider scenarios in which “Sending back” is needed.


There would be a scenario that a Starter of a flow made erroneous inputs at the first Step of application or request. And then a person in charge of approving the application or of confirming the request, would say “Please make correction on the mistakes”.


For managers who makes approvals on something, this scenario might be very familiar.


I consider that this is the only scenario in which sending back is required. As a matter of course. However, the thoughts of the person who sends back is not that simple.

  • Sending back because he or she wants to do so.
  • Sending back, despite he or she doesn’t want to do so.


It differs in these two. The feelings of the approvers or confirmer are complicated like adolescent kids.


Scene that the Manager Wants to Send Back


In a Business flow that the its contents upon making the application are important, i.e. a Leave request or an Expense claim, the Starter of the flow must make correction by him/herself if there was a mistake.


In such cases, the person who makes approval or confirmation will send back because he or she wants to. He or she will send back right away, as he or she doesn’t have authority to rewrite the content.


In this kind of flow, only the applicant will be troubled when the information of request (or claim) contained errors. So the person who makes approval or confirmation won’t care even if “labor” of sending back occurs.


Scene that the Manager Doesn’t Want to Send Back


Managers naturally desire to proceed forward the occurred issues in Business flows such as an Order and shipping flow, Production flow, or Quality management flow, in which more than one section participates, or downstream Step will be processed according to the result of upstream Step.


Suppose an Order and shipping flow, for example, which a sales person handles an Order reporting Step upon receiving order sheet, and then the sales manager makes an approval on it. The sales manager would think that he or she want to give approval on it soon so that the request can be delivered to the next Production Step for Production department.


For such a Business flow, the sales manager would not want to send it back even if he or she recognized that there was an error in the report made by a the sales person. He or she would think it is a waste of time. Especially when it is possible makimg correction of the errors in the contents of a report by the sales manager own, it is natural that the manager would want to make correction by him/herself with or without confirming to the sales person on the phone.


However, what should I do if there were too many errors in the report by salesperson, or it happened too often?


It should be “Sent back” even if it was capable of correction by the manager. “Sending back even though not wanting to do so.”


When mistakes happen in the same way so often, it is important that letting the sales person correcting the errors, pointing out each one of them though how troublesome you think it is. As long as the manager makes corrections, errors in reports by sales person will not be reduced.


It is essential to “Send back” patiently, in the meaning of being instructional.


Mistake by Starter of a flow Costs the Most


As I mentioned above, Business flows, in which “Sending back even though not wanting to do so” could happen, would be concerned with many groups and organizations. So, people who handle respective Step would want to push the Process toward the next Step as soon as possible.


Therefore, not only the Starter of the flow, but also many people who are concerned would be troubled, if errors have been contained in the data like cases of “Sending back because want to do so”.


When erroneous data has been entered at upstream and it flowed down without being recognized, all the Steps which are in between error was entered and found must be reworked. This will take a very large cost.




For the sake of training Starters to enter correct information at the Starting of a flow, it is important for managers to send back to make the careless people enter proper data, in suppressing the thought that it would be quicker making corrections by themselves.




Most Workflow system in general, they are not capable of revision on data that has been entered at the Starting of a flow, at downstream Step.


Whereas, “Questetra BPM Suite”, a Cloud-based Workflow service that we are providing, allows configuration that a downstream Step to be both of revisable or not.


That’s it for today!




About YAHAGI Hajime

幸せを生み出すITを追求するクエステトラの一味です。 国産の BPM ソフト Questetra BPM Suite で日本・世界を幸せにしたい。
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