The ‘Access Contract Review’ process allows users to request help with contracts and documents, ask legal questions and other support queries which are then directed to subject matter experts.
The process was originally built on SharePoint Server 2013 using an InfoPath form coupled with SharePoint Designer workflows which managed the business process. When it was reviewed in terms of suitability for migration to Microsoft 365, the application architecture presented some difficulties. Although InfoPath and SharePoint Designer workflows were still officially supported by Microsoft, they would be replaced by PowerApps and Flow, representing the “spiritual successors” to both of these products. SHL turned to Intelogy to investigate the suitability of redeveloping the business application using these new technologies, as well as incorporating new business requirements.
The workflow itself was relatively straightforward sending requests for review to different mailboxes depending on business logic in the form. During the discovery phase, Intelogy uncovered the need for a modern ‘app’ which would provide a simple and intuitive user experience and, unlike its predecessor, be available on any tablet or web device. Due to the broad user base and the need to drive adoption, Intelogy recommended to build an application that wouldn’t require in-depth user training.
In addition to submitting requests, the new solution needed to automate routing notifications to the right department for review and response. The system would need to support different types of requests for multiple departments and possess a feature to edit existing requests once submitted. Additionally, SHL’s users requested a feature to group requests together to prevent re-entering the same data multiple times.
As SHL was looking to modernise their legacy on-premises solutions step by step to the solution needed to be future-proofed to allow further departments to be added in subsequent phases. They could then look at additional enhancements, such as making the solution available as a mobile application.
Due to SHL’s demerger from Gartner, there was a critical need for a rapid solution to be migrated off the shared on-premise SharePoint 2013 environment and accelerated application development.
After having established a full understanding of SHL’s current ‘Access Contract Review’ system, Intelogy was able to clearly identify the user pain points and shortfalls of the system. Since the solution had to be future proofed, Microsoft Power Platform was identified as the ideal solution to meet the requirements of this project.
Intelogy used the following components to provide the improved and modernised solution:
PowerApps was used to create a single application to allow users to send requests to multiple departments within the business. In addition, the application enabled users to enter key information once, then add one or more requests beneath it as required. The user interface was modern, simple and convenient in order to deliver a great user experience. In addition, the app allowed users to modify their existing requests and search for prior requests.
Flow was used to automatically route the requests to relevant departments based on specific information entered by the user in the PowerApp. Notifications would automatically be sent out if an existing request changed so departments could stay on top of additional or forgotten information. Flow also provided the means to run a scheduled automated archival process, removing requests from the system once they had been closed for a set timeframe.
SharePoint was used to create lists of requests for each department, providing the data storage behind the PowerApp. It provided the means to manage permissions to the solution based on preference. As the data is stored within SharePoint lists, users are able to access this data in other Microsoft 365 services such as Power BI to create their own more advanced reports (such as combining request data across all departments).
SHL enjoyed a successful launch of the new Access Contract Review system and have seen great user adoption. There has been positive feedback from the user base and the project sponsor. The solution was easy to use and intuitive for both the end users requesting support and those who were managing and responding to requests.
Timesaving is one of the key benefits for the users due to the ability to add further questions and support requests that are grouped together. The onboarding of additional departments into the new solution has helped streamline the underlying business process and further modernise their internal processes in a consistent manner.
“The project team were great in guiding us through design phase and helping figure out what we wanted and provided great alternatives for aspects which either were rather costly or not practical. The project team was also very good at communication throughout the whole of the project.”
– Emmy Hackett, General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer and Data Protection Officer, SHL