Using a Low Watermark to Trigger a Procurement Process
All organizations tend to have some level of seasonality. For End User IT teams that rely on manual methods for tracking inventory and stock counts, this typically means scrambling to order equipment when stock is low and a business unit announces a big hiring effort. Being able to set a low watermark for any particular type of equipment and an automated procurement process that triggers upon crossing that watermark can be the difference between having equipment for your new hire on day one or not.
How Does It Work?
The Begin block selects the subset of records that should trigger an evaluation of inventory to prevent running the workflow unnecessarily.
The API block calls into Oomnitza's asset module to count the number of items in inventory.
Once we have the count we can use the Conditional Threshold block, named Inventory Count Validation in this example, to conditionally determine whether we open a ticket with the Zendesk ticket block or simply end the workflow without taking action.
For any actions that fail, the API call or the conditional evaluation, we attach a notification block to message relevant parties for investigation and remediation.
The systems/services being acted upon
- Oomnitza (Enterprise Technology Management)
- Zendesk (ticketing)
Credentials required & how/where to obtain
- Oomnitza API
- Zendesk API
Additional Oomnitza field required/recommended
- Asset Type
Blocks and Configuration
- Select assets where the status field has been changed to any value other than 'inventory'
- Trigger on any asset edit
- Save the count of identified assets
- Call the Oomnitza /api/v3/assets endpoint, filtering on assets in inventory
- Conditional Threshold
- Compare count of inventoried assets of specific type to threshold
- Branch on result: open ticket if procurement required, no operation otherwise
- Create ticket and assign
- Failure notifications for process errors
Upon identifying a low watermark condition for an asset type, a ticket is created, assigned to the IT Asset Manager or Procurement team, and assigned an appropriate severity level.
As the check for watermark simply looks at the 'under water' condition, to prevent multiple tickets from being created for the same condition it could be useful to query the ticket system for an open procurement request of the type in question and to skip creation of additional tickets if an open request already exists.
Actions By Asset Type: It may be beneficial to identify specific actions by asset type. For example, monitors may be a commodity item and can simply be ordered off a fixed list. In such a case, an integration with your procurement system could automatically create a Purchase Order and notification to a VAR. Other asset types such as laptops, might require review prior to ordering. Creating a workflow for each asset type of interest is one option. Creating an attribute field such as 'watermark action' for each asset type might be another way to achieve a similar result.