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This update - v1.6 - is an update, primarily, to provide a new type of process which is capable of triggering multiple APIs in a back office through various stages of a process. This enables OpenProcess to not only be a process tracking and document management application but also a system capable of powering and monitoring integration to back office applications. 

Before we go into the detail on that, there are some updates which will benefit all users of OpenProcess and so these are listed first:

General Updates

  • The ability to change the visibility and delete a document that has been erroneously added to a process can now be done on completed processes.
  • General performance improvements
  • Improved handling, logging and performance on the import of account extracts for EDMS indexing purposes

Updates to the Search Processes function

Previously a person could filter by:

  • OneVu Account Reference / Back Office Extract Reference
  • Process Status
  • Process Type

There are three new fields on this screen which allow a person to find a process by:

  • Form Reference (if a process was triggered by a form)
  • Earliest start date (will find any processes after the date entered)
  • Latest start date (will find any processes before the date entered)

It is therefore possible to find any processes within a given range of dates as well as quickly find a process if the form reference is known. These are shown below:

Our own testing / project support teams have found these new functions very handy so we hope you agree. 

New Process Type Functionality

From v1.6 there is a new process type available IF a council has integration to Northgate Council Tax services in place.

The following illustrates this selection if both process types are available:

When a Revenues api process is selected the options available are very different and much simplified. The following shows the screen if I were to create a new process with this method for a Discounts and Exemptions form:

Basically the only thing that MUST be done is that it needs to have a name.

However, it is possible to also make it searchable (in Search processes) by a group of users. 

Automatic indexing of council tax forms to OpenProcess

The other function present in the screenshot above is the ability to add in the means to automatically index a document based upon a field of data provided by an online form. 

The value that can be entered is therefore (logically) restricted to a value provided by the online form. So in the following we can see it has been that when a Discounts and Exemptions form is received it should automatically be indexed against the Council Tax Account Number. In practice we will tell you how populate the JSON path to reference number section based upon the form in question. 

This therefore enables any process that is invoked to automatically have an account number associated with it without code/technical help.

Powerful Revs Process Analysis

Where a back office Council Tax process has been triggered a more detailed view is provided when reviewing the process in 'Search Processes'. The following illustrates the view when a process is being viewed in the normal process type:

This then shows the steps involved when it is an intelligent and dynamic process where each step involves back office integration:

We will explain the content presented for each step. Using the first step in the process as an example. 

Content What this is
Check Account Number The function that is being carried out in a step
Complete An indicator that the step has been completed
Integration Details (Success) An indicator that the integration has been successful or failed
(Api) http://servername:hidden/communication/getAccountDetail Illustrates the specific URL of the API invoked
(InfoFound a matching council tax account An information message to indicate the outcome of the step
Download Request A button to retrieve the request in XML format that was sent to the API
Download Response A button to retrieve the response given from the back office in XML format
Show Input Data Triggers a function to view/update the information that was used in the process step API call (see below)

To provide a large amount of flexibility and the means to correct things that fail if necessary, the 'Show Input Data' provides two functions. 

1) The ability to view the form data that was used to trigger an API

2) The ability to modify it prior to retrying an API that had previously failed

The following illustrates the account number and surname that were used when checking whether the account number were valid and the surname provided. A user can update the content of these, press save and retry if there was something obviously incorrect:

Continue Process 

Within this enhanced view it is also possible, if a process requires to be manually restarted, to do so. This is shown here for a Single Person Discount process below all of the process steps:

Once Continue Process is pressed, one needs to click the Refresh button at the top of the screen to then see updates happening. This screenshot also provides an insight into the powerful level of automation being achieved with this new capability.


Real-time back office Council Tax account search

OpenProcess has until now only had real time search capabilities into OneVu. However, without extracts, it is now possible to search a Council Tax system (Northgate right now) in real time.

This means that a user can index a process / filter results against a Council Tax account reference having actually searched the back office in real time to validate the details are correct. The following illustrates this:


This can then be used to filter processes found solely to be shown for the account searched upon:

The following are the release versioning details:

Release Date Version Number
28/11/2018 1.6

About the author

John is responsible for all product management at IEG4. 

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