Use tasks and task groups in the Workflows application to represent your organization’s workflows, steps to complete processes, and the users completing them. This article explains task types and how to create a task group for existing Task schemas to initiate a workflow.
Tasks and task groups are determined on the Task schema. Before creating a task group, ensure you have at least one Task schema.
Tasks and task groups explained
Tasks represent the jobs to do in a process or workflow. Each task has standard operational properties and custom fields that represent the parameters required to do the job.
A task group is a group of tasks representing an entire process or workflow. Tasks in a task group have the same execution type and are usually created at the same time.
How you complete a task depends on its execution type. If its associated Task schema supports the:
- Entry execution type: you need to execute the task and associate it with a new or existing notebook entry.
- Direct execution type: you can manually update its status in the task group. Tasks using this execution type are not executed into entries.
- Flowchart execution type: you must complete a sequence of tasks defined in the flowchart’s Task schema. To learn more about flowcharts, refer to Configuring flowchart Task schemas.
A task’s status lifecycle determines how it is defined as complete. Status lifecycles for tasks are:
- Entry - Entry execution type
- Entry review - Entry execution type
- Direct completion - Direct execution type
- Flowchart - Flowchart execution type
To learn more about status lifecycles and how to update tasks in each lifecycle, visit Executing and completing workflow tasks and Executing flowchart workflows tasks.
Create a task group
Create task groups to represent your workflows in the Workflows dashboard, the global create menu, or in structured tables. Use one of these task groups based on your organization’s workflow:
- Linear task groups for chains of tasks completed in sequential order
- Flowchart task groups for complex workflows with parallel, interwoven tasks
Linear task groups use Entry or Direct execution types, and flowcharts use the Flowchart execution type.
To create a task group:
- Click the Workflows icon in the left-side menu.
- Click the + icon at the top of the panel, then select the Task schema for your workflow:
- In the pop-up modal that displays, select the project folder for the task group and (optional) watchers, and complete the Tasks table.
- For each task, enter the task parameters and assignees, if applicable. Each row of the table is one task.
- For flowchart task groups, use the flowchart visualization window to make edits. You can add or remove Task schemas and modify the transitions between tasks, where permitted.
- Click Create.
To control which users receive notifications about task group status changes, add or remove watchers in the Metadata tab.
Tip: You can also create task groups from the global create menu or when viewing a project folder. To create task groups, click + in the Home menu or while viewing a project folder, then select the applicable Task schema under Workflow Tasks.
Create task groups from structured tables
You can create task groups from these structured tables:
- Inventory table
- Outputs table
- Plate Creation table
- Registration table
- Tasks table
To create a task group from a structured table:
- Click the Create workflow tasks icon at the top of the table.
- Select the Task schema from the drop-down menu.
- Complete the Tasks table.
- For each task, enter the task parameters and assignees, if applicable.
- If the task group has at least one field that accepts the type of entity or inventory item contained in the structured table, Benchling automatically adds the item to the first applicable field.
- Click Create.