How to Use Scheduled Actions in Process Builder

Introduction

Our client Baby Give Back is a Charity in Queensland that provides free material aid to families in need in the South East of the state. 

With warehouses in Brisbane and the Gold Coast, hundreds of orders, and dozens of social workers accessing their service each week, they needed a way to manage these orders more efficiently and prioritise them automatically.

Most orders are for babies that are not yet born, some are due very soon, and some months away. A smaller number of orders are for babies that are already born, and have nowhere safe to sleep, or no way to travel safely.

Orders are received from social workers via the Baby Give Back website, using Form Assembly and hosted on the Case Object.

The Case Object has a Standard picklist field called Priority and we created a custom Date Field called Birth/Due Date.

When the case is created on the Baby Give Back website, the priority needs to be automatically populated based on the Birth/Due Date, but when the due date comes close to the current date, the priority should be updated automatically. 

For example, if the Birth/Due Date during case creation is in the past or within 14 days, then the priority should be ’Urgent’. If it is more than 60 days from the current date, then the priority should be ‘Waitlist’. But when the Birth/Due Date comes into the range between 14 & 60 days, the priority should be changed to ‘Secondary’. 

This automation saves the staff from having to review each order manually to determine the urgency. 

The use of list views and other fields on the case object like a Status field means the team can group and revise orders quickly. 

If the baby is not due for several months, the team does not need to closely scrutinise the order with the same level of detail as they do an urgent order for a baby born or due next week.

Automating this process makes the workload much more manageable and less prone to human error.

Challenge

We wanted to make sure that as the due date nears, the priority field on the Case records would automatically update. 

We implemented a solution using Process Builder, however the Process Builder in only invoked if there is a field update.

We needed the Priority to be changed automatically as the current date comes closer to the Birth/Due Date.

Solution

Use Scheduled Action in Process Builder.

Here is how the process builder works:

Figure One: Process Builder

Criteria 1: If the Birth/Due Date is blank - Assign priority to Urgent.


Criteria 2: If the Birth/Due Date is within 14 days from the current date (TODAY()).


Immediate Actions: Set priority to Urgent.


Criteria 3: If the Birth/Due Date is between 14 and 60 days.

  • For the scheduled Actions to appear, we need to enable the check box under Advanced in the Criteria node.
  • This means, the actions will execute only if the criteria didn’t match before but matches now.

Immediate Actions: Set priority to Secondary.

 

Scheduled Actions: It will schedule an action for future updates.

 


  • In Scheduled Actions, we are scheduling an action to execute 14 days before the Birth/Due Date (fig: 3.1 below) .
  • The action is to update the Priority to Urgent (fig:3.2 below).
  • The scheduled actions can be found in “Paused and Failed Flow Interviews” in Setup.

Example

Let's say during case creation the Birth/Due Date was 40 days from the current date. So the priority will be updated to Secondary by the Immediate Actions and Scheduled Actions will schedule an Action to trigger 14 days from the Birth/Due Date. When the Birth/Due Date reaches 14 days from the current date, the scheduled action will update the priority to Urgent.

Set Schedule: (fig:3.1)



Add Action: (fig:3.2)



Criteria 4: If the Birth/Due Date is more than 60 days.

  • Similar to Criteria 3, we need to set Criteria 4 but with one Immediate Action and Two Scheduled Actions.

Immediate Actions: Set priority to Waitlist

Scheduled Actions: 

 


Here we need to schedule two actions, One to execute 60 days before the Birth/Due Date and other to execute 14 days before the Birth/Due Date. 

Action 1 (60 days): Set priority to Secondary

Action 2 (14 days): Set priority to Urgent

Conclusion and Explanation

One might wonder why we need two scheduled actions in criteria 4.

Why can’t the criteria 3 be executed automatically after the first action (60 days) in Criteria 4?

This is because of the Check box we enabled under Advanced in criteria node. As per this check box, the criteria node/path will be checked only if the criteria didn’t match before but matches now.

But in this case, the Birth/Due Date value won’t be changed in any actions, only the priority will be changed. So it won’t trigger any other criteria. 

This document was prepared by the Blaze Your Trail volunteers, and is an example of the type of projects we undertake for our clients.