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Generate Multiple Infopath forms to start review process

    Question

  • Just started working in MOSS 2010 and InfoPath 2010.

    Automating (as much as possible) the employee review process.  Using InfoPath form in a SharePoint Library using Forms Services to serve the browser capable form as the review tool.  Need to place data into the form based upon the employee position.

    I have successfully created a Proof of Concept piece based in WSS 3.0 that pulls from information in lists.  The lists are: Employee info (Name, Manager, Position, Office, Location, Date Hired...), Organization Competencies (4 competencies all employees reviewed upon, static info but I put it in a list in case they ever want to change it),  Position Competencies ( 4 of 9 available based upon employee position, e.g. staff get 1-4, engineers get 3-6, Managers get 5-8), Standardized Goals (Reviewer choses from a list of 8 or creates their own).

    In the Proof of Concept it works very well, HR staff opens new form, selects employee from a drop down.  Employee info is brought into form.  General Competencies come into form as they are static. Position info brings in Position competencies. Managers can choose form the Standardized goals when they fill out the review.  Great!!

    There are over 200 employees.  Seems like a waste of time to have a staff member open a form, select the employee and save the form 200 times.  

    Would like to run through a SQL data connection to the employee database and "For Each" create the form, pull the data, and save it to the library automatically, like a workflow.

    Any hints?  Thanks in advance.  Matt

    Tuesday, June 29, 2010 2:27 PM

Answers

  • You can do pretty much anything with code if you know how, but I try to keep all of my solutions codeless.  If you're a SharePOint developer who knows how to develop using the Windows Workflow Foundation in Visual Studio, then you can do this probably.
    SharePoint Architect || Microsoft MVP || My Blog
    • Marked as answer by Matt Carlson Thursday, July 01, 2010 4:20 PM
    Thursday, July 01, 2010 12:42 AM

All replies

  • To do a "for each" workflow like that, you'd have to create a custom workflow in Visual Studio (custom code).

    You mentioned using SharePoint lists all the way until the end where you mentioned a SQL data connection.  ARe you saying now that the data is in SQL?  I am a little confused, because the whole scenario you explained was referencing SharePoint lists.

    so the part I'm confused about is you want this automated without a user doing anything, but if a user doesn't need to do anything, then that means the data is already associated somewhere in some database.  If that's the case, then what does the form do for you if the data is already associated everywhere?


    SharePoint Architect || Microsoft MVP || My Blog
    Wednesday, June 30, 2010 3:33 AM
  • Clayton,

    First, thanks for your answer.  Now let me see if I can clear up my language...

    In the Proof of Concept I used SharePoint lists to imitate a connection to a SQL database that will be used in the real application.

    What I would like to do is create customized review forms for managers to use to review thier employees.  The segment of the process I described is getting the information on the employee and employee's position.  Based upon the position there are different competencies the employee must be reviewed upon.  By automating this process I hope to populate a library with forms for the managers.  Basically using the form template for every employee but the information on the template will be different depending upon the position of the employee. 

    Once the manager comes to the library, I hope to filter the results they see by their user info and show only the forms for employees they need to review.  When the manager opens a form, all the proper areas and competencies for that particular employee are shown.  At that point he can start the review process by rating each employee on a 1-5 scale on each of the pre-populated competencies.

    In short (too late) HR prepares forms for managers.  Managers put ratings in the pre-populated form.  In real time this will be done accessing a SQL connection to a People-Trak database with employee and competency information.

    You mentioned a custom workflow in Visual Studio.  Am I to understand that that can do the for each against the SQL dataconnection and populate the library as described above?

    Thansk for your help and patience.

    Matt

    Wednesday, June 30, 2010 4:36 PM
  • You can do pretty much anything with code if you know how, but I try to keep all of my solutions codeless.  If you're a SharePOint developer who knows how to develop using the Windows Workflow Foundation in Visual Studio, then you can do this probably.
    SharePoint Architect || Microsoft MVP || My Blog
    • Marked as answer by Matt Carlson Thursday, July 01, 2010 4:20 PM
    Thursday, July 01, 2010 12:42 AM
  • I agree with you on the codeless solutions.  Helps with upgrading and if it can be simple make it simple.

    After our discussions I am wondering why the HR person has to be involved at all.  I may be able to convince the client that the Manager can initiate the form and everything will fill in properly.  If they don't trust that thte data is correct then the HR person is needed to check each form anyway, so automating it may not be the best solution.

    Thanks again for your input and info on the possible VS solution.

    Thursday, July 01, 2010 4:20 PM