Components of a Demand Management System

A Demand Management system is a request resolution system. The main components of a request resolution system are requests and workflows.

  • Request: The fundamental work unit in Demand Management. When you ask for help, you create a request. When you report a problem, you create a request. When something needs to happen, you create a request.

    Each request has an associated request type, such as the Bug request type or the Enhancement request type. The request type determines the basic features of the requests, such as the fields it includes, its participants, and the workflow it follows. Demand Management comes up with out-of-box request types that you can modify to meet your business needs.

    Request status is a summary indicator of the current state of a request. Request status is assigned automatically as the request moves through its workflow.

  • Workflow: After you create a request, it must follow a process to reach its conclusion. A workflow is the process that a request takes from beginning to end.

    Workflow steps are the events that are linked together to form a complete workflow. Demand Management uses the following four types of workflow steps.

    • Decisions. In decision workflow steps, a user or group must make a decision or take some action, such as approve a request or complete a task. A decision workflow step is manually updated to indicate that the resource made the decision or performed the action appropriate at that step.
    • Executions. In execution workflow steps, the system performs an action, and then updates the workflow step with the results. An execution can be as simple as calculating the value for a token or as complex as creating packages or updating Web pages. Execution workflow steps are automatically updated to reflect the outcome of the action.
    • Conditions. Condition workflows steps are logic steps, and can include AND/OR statements. Condition workflows steps are used for complex workflow processing, such as requiring that all inputs reach a workflow step before the process can continue to the next step.
    • Subworkflows. Subworkflow workflow steps are small, self-contained workflows used by the workflow associated with the request.

You interact with a request through the request details page. The details page displays all of the information about the request. This is where you make decisions and act on the request.

Figure 1-1 illustrates the workflow steps for a sample request.

Figure 1-1. Requests and workflows