How to Set Up Approval Workflows

In many marketing teams, there's an approval process that requires reviewing and editing social media posts and messages before they go out.

With Oktopost, you can readily set up one or multi-step approval processes, called workflows, based on your requirements, helping team members to collaborate, review, and approve social media content with ease.

How to set up workflows

To set up a workflow, go to App Settings > Compliance > Workflows, click on New Workflow, enter a name and click Save. Then, define the steps that each item must go through before it's approved.

Each workflow can have one or more steps, and each step must have one or more approvers. You can define as many steps as you need. In each step, you can define if you want all users to approve items or any user.

Definition Description
Any user can approve The item will advance to the next step once any user approves it.
All users have to approve The item will advance to the next step once all the users approve it.

How the approval process works

As soon as you finish setting up the steps, users will be able to send items to your workflow directly from the post and message consoles by clicking on Send to Approval. If you have more than one workflow, users will need to select which workflow they want to send the item to. You can limit the selection by adding workflows to your team's setup.

When you send a post or message to approval, all users in the first step of the workflow will receive a notification asking them to review and approve the item. Once they approve, depending on the step definitions, the item will either advance to the next step or another notification will be sent for the other users in the step to approve. If there are no more steps to advance to, the item will automatically be approved.

From the Approvals tab in Oktopost, you will be able to see posts and messages pending your approval. Each item in the tab will have an Approval Status that determines what you can do with it. Here are the relevant statutes and what they mean:

Definition Description
In Approval By default, all items sent to approval are In Approval. Once an item is in this status, only the approvers inside the current workflow step will be able to edit, approve, or request a revision for it. Other users (including admins) will be able to view the item but will not be able to take action.
Revision Requested At any time during the approval process, an approver can request a revision. When a revision is requested, the item bounces back to either the previous step in the workflow or if it's the first step, to the user who sent the item to approval. The user who requests the revision is required to leave a note, stating the changes that he wants. The user(s) who receive the rejection will see the note and be required to take action before sending the item back to approval.
Expired This status applies only to messages on the advocacy board and posts. If the items' publish date had passed while in approval, it will become expired in one hour from the publish date. If you approve an item within one hour of the publish date, it will go out immediately. Once items expire, you will need to update the publish date before approving. Expired items will stay expired for 24 hours before automatically reverting into drafts.
Draft Any user with permission to create posts and messages can save drafts for any purpose. Drafts should not appear in the approvals tab unless they were recalled back to draft by an approver or the user who sent the item to approve.
Approved Approved items were either created by users with approval permissions or items that had gone through all the steps in the workflow. Approved items should not appear in the approvals tab unless they were approved by someone with permission to do so.

Enforcing the use of workflows

Any user who has access to a workflow can send items to approval. To make sure that a user cannot create posts and messages without approval, you will need to assign that user a role that doesn't have the option to approve posts or messages, depending on your preference. Users without the approval permission will be able to save items only to draft or send them to approve.

Message approvals

Oktopost allows you to send both messages and posts to approval. This can be helpful if you want to approve just the content or a single message that you want to re-use. If you choose to send a message to approval, keep in mind that you will be able to use it in a post only when it's approved.

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