The purpose of this document is to provide an introduction to the University of Washington Enterprise Workflow Web Service, with links to documentation that clients and developers of the web service can consult to inform their use of the service or to develop new workflow solutions.
The Enterprise Workflow Web Service is a web service developed by Application Integration Services. It can be used to automate existing paper-based processes by routing electronic documents or other content between human reviewers or to provide workflow functionality to an application by means of HTTPS-based service calls.
The web service has been designed to be a thin layer in front of one or more workflow engines to provide a single consistent interface for users, and to facilitate a users' interaction with multiple systems. For the first milestone release it will be configured to sit on top of a single workflow management system, the Kuali Rice Enterprise Workflow Engine. In this release, Kuali Enterprise Workflow (KEW) will provide workflow definition, execution, notification, auditing, and exception handling. The Workflow Web Service will provide a secure interface and authorization framework, as well as additional capabilities to rapidly build and deliver workflows from new or existing forms or web pages.
As part of the University's Kuali Rice implementation, KEW has been integrated into our existing identity and access management infrastructure so that reviewers can be authorized and assigned responsibility for specific steps in a workflow using ASTRA.
For more information on what a workflow is, what we mean by "Enterprise Workflow", and how this solution came to be implemented, please take a look at Initial Thinking on an Enterprise Workflow Web Service.
There are three different ways to make use of the Workflow Web Service to route content between people and/or applications.
- use the workflow service from an external application or another service
- add workflow to an html web form
- develop a kuali "edoclite" electronic document (this is an option for future integration - initially Kuali electronic documents will only be available through the Kuali Rice portal)
These last two are both document-based. They exist primarily to facilitate the automation of document-based processes and do not require an application. All three options require a workflow to be defined in Rice, and for ASTRA roles to be defined for each of the workflow steps that require a human participant, but in the case of the edoclite solution there is some additional configuration required. Potential opportunities for using enterprise workflow to automate business processes are documented as a List of Workflow Projects.
In more depth
- Getting Started with REST
- RESTful API - Resources and Representations
- Modeling Business Processes
- Workflow Web Service Client Developer Home
- Developing the Workflow Web Service
- Workflow Web Service Architecture
- Project Status and Design Documentation
For a more in-depth explanation of workflow, please take a look at Initial Thinking on an Enterprise Workflow Web Service.