2017 R1

Compliance ManagementPermanent link for this heading

This chapter describes how to work with business objects including records, cases, incomings and outgoings. It also gives an overview of Fabasoft Folio’s powerful possibilities for fulfilling compliance requirements concerning auditing, archiving and legal holds.

OverviewPermanent link for this heading

The term “business object” refers to special types of objects that offer additional features required for managing various business scenarios in Fabasoft Folio.

Business objects allow you to attach and manage content, which are electronic documents that have been imported into Fabasoft Folio. Among others, they include Microsoft Word Documents, Microsoft Excel Worksheets, e-mail objects, and scanned images. Most contents can be edited using external applications. For further information on contents refer to chapter “Working With ”.

The different types of business objects provided by Fabasoft Folio are all directly or indirectly derived from object class Business Object.

Fabasoft Folio differentiates between the following types of business objects:

  • Documents can be considered as envelopes for content. In addition to references to one or more contents, documents store metadata that must be maintained for compliance and life cycle management reasons. Fabasoft Folio distinguishes between two main types of documents:
    • Incomings are documents containing content that has been received from external sources (e.g. business partners).
    • Outgoings are documents containing content that will potentially be sent to external entities (e.g. business partners).
  • Cases combine documents that logically belong together (for example, because they belong to the same project or campaign). Therefore, cases can be considered folders of documents sharing the same context. Cases typically also have a restricted time frame during which they complete some sort of life cycle process.
  • According to the ISO 15489 standard, records are “information created, received, and maintained as evidence and information by an organization or person, in pursuance of legal obligations or in the transaction of business” (ISO 15489-1: Information and Documentation - Records Management - Part 1: General). In Fabasoft Folio, records combine and structure cases and documents belonging to the same procedure or sharing the same context, and typically have a long life cycle that usually spans several months or years.

Figure 60: Logical hierarchy of business objects in Fabasoft Folio

Business objects form a logical hierarchy as depicted in the previous figure, which is supplemented by the object models for contact and relationship management, business process management, and so forth.

General Features of Business ObjectsPermanent link for this heading

This chapter provides a brief overview of general features of business objects in Fabasoft Folio.

NumberingPermanent link for this heading

In Fabasoft Folio, each object is uniquely identified by an Address in a proprietary format. However, the object address is not visible to users and should not be used for external communications sent to customers and other partners.

Therefore, a human-engineered unique reference number is generated for each business object (i.e. documents, cases, and records). By default, the unique reference number is also incorporated into the Name of the business object. Using the unique reference number, both Fabasoft Folio users and external partners can explicitly and unambiguously refer to a specific business object.

Recorded Business ObjectsPermanent link for this heading

For compliance reasons, Fabasoft Folio distinguishes recorded business objects and business objects without commitment.

Recorded business objects have an external effect or may cause some sort of external commitment. This external effect also needs to be confirmed by an employee (for example, through approval). Business objects without commitment, however, are unconfirmed and only have an internal effect.

When a business object is recorded, a version of the business object is generated and automatically saved.

Usually, the transition from without commitment to recorded is implicitly defined as part of the life cycle process of a business object (e.g. when a business object is approved or sent to a customer).

The following list provides a brief overview of the recorded state of business objects and how it is initialized:

  • Content, in general, is without commitment until it is electronically signed or associated with partners, and thereby acquires an external effect.
  • The recorded state of documents depends on whether it is an incoming or outgoing document. When a document is recorded the contents attached to the document also become recorded. However, contents can also become recorded before the document they are attached to get recorded.
    • Incomings and their attached contents are, in general, always recorded.
    • Outgoings and their attached contents are without commitment until they are dispatched or approved. Then they become recorded.
  • Cases are initially without commitment, but can become recorded when they are approved. When a case is approved, its attached documents also become recorded.
  • Records are always recorded even though the cases and documents contained therein do not necessarily need to be recorded. However, when a record is approved, the cases and documents contained therein also become recorded.

Processing StatePermanent link for this heading

In Fabasoft Folio, each business object has a processing state. The next table shows a list of the permissible values for the processing state.

Processing state

Description

In Process

The business object is in process. This is the default state for business objects.

Canceled

The business object has been discarded and can no longer be edited. Any active processes have been suspended.

Note: Only recorded business objects may be canceled. For compliance reasons, recorded business objects may not be deleted but must be canceled instead.

Suspended

Work on the business object has been (temporarily) suspended. Any active processes have been suspended as well. A suspended business object may not be changed or deleted.

Closed

Work on the business object has been completed, and any active processes have been suspended. A closed business object can no longer be edited or deleted.

Table 1: Processing states of business objects

To narrow a business objects processing state, it is possible to define own sub-states for „In Process”. These sub-states can also be used within life cycle rules, as well as for defining access rights depending on a business object’s state.

Validation of Processing State ChangesPermanent link for this heading

Certain transitions from one processing state to another processing state require your confirmation in form of an electronic signature and a remark describing the reason for the processing state change.

By default, a transition from any processing state to “Canceled” or “Closed” requires validation in form of an electronic signature.

Automatic Propagation of the Processing StatePermanent link for this heading

If the processing state of a business object is changed, this change is propagated to its subordinated business objects.

For example, if the processing state of a case is changed, the change is propagated to the documents attached to the case as well as to the contents attached to these documents.

There are, however, certain rules that determine whether the processing state of a business object is changed during propagation:

  • Top-Down Propagation
    Changes are propagated in a top-down manner, from the parent object to its children. If the processing state of a child object is changed, the change is not propagated to its parent object.
  • Conditional Propagation
    The processing state of a parent object is only inherited during propagation if it has not been explicitly defined before.

Life Cycle RulesPermanent link for this heading

A list of life cycle rules can be defined for a business object.

Life cycle rules let you define actions that are invoked when specified events are triggered. Additionally, life cycle rules also support conditions that must be fulfilled for an action to be invoked when the event the action is mapped to is triggered.

Each life cycle rule consists of the following components:

  • a Period that allows you to define a time span used for calculating the point in time an event is triggered
  • an Event as described in the next table
  • an optional Condition defined using Fabasoft app.ducx expression language
  • an Action to be invoked

Event

Description

After Creation

This event is triggered after the business object has been created.

After Processing Start

This event is triggered after the processing state of the business object has been set to “In Process”.

After Suspending

This event is triggered after the processing state of the business object has been set to “Suspended”.

After Closing

This event is triggered after the processing state of the business object has been set to “Closed”.

After Cancelling

This event is triggered after the processing state of the business object has been set to “Canceled”.

After Set Recorded

This event is triggered after the business object has been recorded.

Table 2: Life cycle events

Using Fabasoft app.ducx, developers can create their own actions for life cycle rules.

Document CategoryPermanent link for this heading

Document categories allow you to categorize your business objects, and to customize life cycle-specific settings for business objects of the same document category.

A business object may be assigned a document category when it is created.

New document categories can be created by administrators or developers.

For every document category a short form must be specified. The short form is used for building a unique name for business objects. This way, the short form string easily allows you to identify business objects of the same document category by looking at their names.

Note: In Fabasoft Folio, the name of a business object also contains its document number serving as a unique reference number, e.g. for external communications.

You can specify a pre-defined process for a document category. It can be defined whether the standard process should be initialized and started when a business object referencing this document category is created.

Access DefinitionsPermanent link for this heading

Certain business applications require a fine-grained security concept that is tied to a business object’s life cycle. Therefore, Fabasoft Folio allows you to specify the ACL assigned to a business object based on its processing state and document category to give you as much control as needed to implement the most complex security concepts.

Access Definitions allow you to map predefined ACLs to processing states, and are used for determining a business object’s ACL when it is created or when its processing state changes.

This, for example, allows you to enforce that suspended business objects cannot be edited until they are reactivated.

If a custom access definition is assigned to a document category, the business objects of that specific document category are assigned the ACLs defined in the custom access definition instead of the default ACLs.

This feature allows you to enforce that users only receive access to business objects of a certain document category. Moreover, you can tailor your security concept to the particular life cycle of specific document categories.

RemarksPermanent link for this heading

Business objects also allow you to add textual remarks. Once appended, remarks can no longer be edited for transparency and compliance reasons.

You can also add references to other objects to your remarks.

In addition to this, electronic signatures, such as approvals, are automatically logged as remarks.

For each remark, either appended manually or automatically, the user adding the remark or triggering the event causing the remark (e.g. approving a business object) and the date and time the remark was added is logged.

DocumentsPermanent link for this heading

Fabasoft Folio considers documents to be envelopes for content that also store additional metadata (for instance, date of receipt or addressees), and distinguishes between two types of documents:

  • An Incoming is a document containing content that has been received from an external source.
  • An Outgoing is a document containing content that will potentially be sent to external entities.

A document is comprised of metadata, and a list of attached contents. The first attached content automatically becomes the so-called main content. However, it is possible to explicitly change the main content.

Registering Contents to a DocumentPermanent link for this heading

In short, registering content to a document refers to declaring the content to be a legitimate part of the document. This is also commonly referred to as “attaching” content to a document, since all content registered to a document is added to its list of Contents.

At any one time, content can only be registered to a single document. However, it is permissible to move content from one document to another, thereby implicitly triggering a reregistration of the content.

Figure 61: Registering an incoming to a case

AddresseesPermanent link for this heading

A list of addressees can be defined for a document:

  • For an incoming, it is used for documenting the sender of the content assigned to the incoming.
  • For an outgoing, the addressee list is used for specifying the recipients of the outgoing.
  • Records and cases also allow you to define addressees. When a child object is created, the addressees are initialized with the values of the parent’s addressees. For example, if you create an outgoing, the addressees are initialized with the values defined in the case the outgoing is registered to.

If an e-mail (e.g. a Microsoft Outlook Mail Object) is registered to a document, the addressee information is extracted from the e-mail, and used for automatically populating the addressee.

Document OverviewPermanent link for this heading

The document overview consists of three panes:

  • the header pane showing the document’s name, and date and time of the last change
  • the task pane on the left-hand side, showing a list of menu items that can be invoked on the document
  • the PDF overview on the right-hand side, displaying an embedded PDF containing the individual contents attached to the document

Document content can be explicitly excluded from the PDF overview.

Figure 62: Document overview

Versions Permanent link for this heading

If a document is changed by different users, a new version is created automatically before another user’s changes are saved to the document. However, if the same user changes a document subsequently, no automatic version of the document is created.

Moreover, if a document’s main content is changed by different users, an automatic version is created for the content not the document. You can also create a version of a document manually at any time.

For further information on working with versions refer to chapter “Versioning”.

Records and CasesPermanent link for this heading

Records are used for bundling cases, incomings and outgoings logically belonging to the same procedure with a long time frame (e.g. a program comprised of multiple projects). Simply put, a record is a folder of documents and cases sharing the same context that also stores additional metadata describing this context.

Cases are used for bundling the incomings and outgoings logically belonging to the same procedure, which typically is restricted to a short time frame (e.g. a project or a campaign). In simple terms, a case is a folder of documents sharing the same context that also stores additional metadata describing this context.

Content and documents can be registered to a case by dragging them directly onto the case. You create relationships between business objects (i.e. records, cases, documents, and content).

Working with records and cases is similar to working with documents.

AuditingPermanent link for this heading

Fabasoft Folio supports precise and extensive auditing for business documents.

  • Detailed information on who accesses business documents, when and how.
  • The auditing of read accesses can be switched on and off.
  • The auditing information is collected on a separate database for analysis.

Using audit logs, it is possible to record access to properties, calls to actions or applications and the review of access rights.

Audit-proof archivingPermanent link for this heading

Fabasoft Folio supports the integration of revision-safe archives via Fabasoft iArchive. This enables the transfer of digital records from Fabasoft Folio into audit-proof archives. An expiry date can be defined for documents - the system then sorts out the file or sends a reminder after the retention period expires.

There is no change in the user interface reflecting the access to archived content.

Moving high volume content from the content repository to an online archive results in a significant reduction of storage costs because content repository storage is more expensive than online archive storage.

Fabasoft Folio allows the archiving of business objects to an online archive based on configurable rules which can be based on business requirements.

Fabasoft Folio integrates EMC Centera and NetApp SnapLock as third party products for archiving.

Fabasoft Folio provides variable archiving possibilities. It is possible to completely archive contents and business objects including all of their versions, as well as to archive single versions, or only a copy of a certain version. Objects can be loaded or restored from the archive. The default search of Fabasoft Folio also searches for objects in the archive.

Figure 63: Archived objects need to be restored before they can be edited again

Legal HoldPermanent link for this heading

A legal hold allows you to preserve all relevant objects when litigation is reasonably anticipated. Usually, a legal hold is issued as a result of current or anticipated litigation, audit, government investigation or similar matter to avoid evidence spoliation. Objects on legal hold cannot be deleted until the legal hold is removed again.

Moreover, a retention date can be defined preventing objects from being deleted before this date (editing of objects is still allowed).

In case of a legal hold, objects cannot be deleted even though the retention date may be reached.

Using EMC Centera or NetApp SnapLock, retention periods defined in Fabasoft Folio are also automatically used for objects within these archives.

Figure 64: Legal hold