Automating your Account with Workflow Automation (BETA)

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A Workflow Automation is an if/then statement that makes automatic changes in your Copper account. When the conditions of the if/then statement are met, a workflow automation rule can create or update a person, company, opportunity, project, or task record automatically.

 

In this module, we'll tackle the following:

Understand Workflow Automation

Create a Workflow Automation Rule

Create a Formula

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Understand Workflow Automation

A workflow automation rule is an if/then statement: If these trigger conditions are met, then take this action. Admins can create workflow automation rules; company users cannot create them. Workflow Automation rules can only be created in the web app, but they can execute when a record is created or updated in the web app, mobile app, chrome extension, using the API and on importing.

Let's explore creating a trigger and an action in more detail.

Workflow Automation Rule Trigger

There are four decisions you have to make about a workflow automation trigger:

  1. What record is triggering the action?
  2. What happens to that record to trigger the action?
  3. What conditions must be met on the record to trigger the action?
  4. How must these conditions relate to each other in order to trigger the action?

Workflow Automation Rule Action

There are four decisions you need to make about a workflow automation rule action:

  1. Is this creating or updating a record?
  2. What type of record is being affected?
  3. What fields are being populated by the action?
  4. What is being populated in the field?

Note: You can create one or more people, companies, opportunities, projects and/or tasks in a single workflow automation rule action.

Note: Updates made to a person, company, opportunity, project or task via a workflow automation rule will not trigger another workflow automation rule to run.

Create a Workflow Automation Rule

To create a workflow automation rule, you'll first create your trigger, then create your action(s). Just follow the steps below:

  1. Sign into your Copper account, and click 'Settings.'
  2. Under 'Customize Copper,' click 'Workflow Automation (Beta).'
  3. Choose the time zone you want your workflows to be based on.
  4. Click the blue 'Add New' button.
  5. Enter your workflow automation rule's name in the 'Name' box.
  6. Choose whether the trigger will be based on a lead, person, company, opportunity or project record:
    Screen_Shot_2019-02-15_at_11_09_25_AM.png
  7. Choose whether the record is created or updated in order for the action to occur. TriggerUpdate.png
    • Let's examine each of these trigger event options:
      • Is created - Action can only occur when record is initially created
      • Is created or updated - Action can occur when record is initially created, or when record already exists in Copper and a change is made to it
      • Is created or updated to match - Action can occur 1) Any time this type of record is created or 2) When fields on an existing record are changed from not matching the conditions to matching the conditions
  8. Select a trigger condition. TriggerField.png
    • Trigger conditions might include the following:
      • A field value is equal or not equal to x
      • The record is created before, after or on x date
      • The record is updated before, after or on x date
      • A person or opportunity is converted from a lead
  9. Choose your operator. TriggerFieldAction.png
    • The operators displayed to you are dependent on the field type. Our operators are defined as follows:
      • Equals - The value in the field is equal to whatever you write in or select
      • Not equals - The value in the field is not whatever you write in or select
      • In - The value in the field is one of the multiple options you select
      • Contains - The value in the field includes what you write in
      • Greater - More than the value in the field
      • Less - Less than the value in the field
  10. Choose the field value or event that must be true for the workflow automation rule to take action. You'll make a selection from a menu if the field is a drop-down; or you'll write in the value if it's not a drop-down:TriggerFieldValue.png
  11. Choose how the conditions in your trigger relate to one another:TriggerConditionRelationship.png
    • These options are defined as follows:
      • All of the conditions are met (AND) - Every condition you choose must be true for the action to occur
      • Any of the conditions are met (OR) - At least one of the conditions you choose must be true for the action to occur
      • Custom Logic - Combine 'and' and 'or' in a list of conditions to make the action occur. For example, if you have 6 total conditions, you could say (1 and 2 and 3) or (4 and 5 and 6). This write-in field recognizes numbers, parenthesis 'and,' and 'or.' Parenthesis are optional. If you enter any other value, you'll see an error message when saving the Workflow Automation Rule.
  12. Move to the 'Action' box and choose whether you want this action to create or update a record:ActionUpdate.png
    1. Create - You can create a new person, company, opportunity, project or task.
    2. Update - You can update the record referenced in the trigger.
  13. Choose the record you want to create or update via the action:
    Screen_Shot_2019-02-15_at_11_09_44_AM.png
  14. Choose a field on the record that should be populated as a result of the action:ActionAction.png
  15. Choose whether this field should have a 'Standard' update, where you write in or choose the value; or if it should be updated via 'Use a Formula.' ActionOperator.png
  16. If you selected 'Standard' in step 15, write in or choose the value to populate the field when the action occurs. If you selected 'Use a Formula,' move on to the next section of this module to learn about formulas in Workflow Automation Rules.
  17. Continue adding actions until you're done. Just click the blue 'Add Action' button.
    • You can include just one update action (to prevent competing updates) in a single workflow automation rule.
    • You can include as many creation actions as you want in a single workflow automation rule.
  18. Click 'Save' to complete the workflow automation rule.

Create a Formula

While ‘Standard’ lets you set a finite value in a field, ‘Use a Formula’ lets you add an equation that produces a field value.

What is a formula?

Formulas have 2-3 components: Functions, literals and/or variables.

A function tells the formula what action to take. An example of a function is 'SUM,' which would take the action of totaling all numbers in the formula.

A literal represents a value we know. For example, '1' and '2' are literals. We know the value of 1 is 1, and the value of 2 is 2.  SUM('1' + '2') is a formula in which SUM is the function adding 1 and 2 together.

A variable represents the value in a default or custom field. In this case, you're specifically referencing a default or custom field on the record mentioned in the trigger of the workflow automation rule. This could represent a finite number of possible values (in the case of a drop-down menu) or an infinite number of possible values (in the case of a write-in field like a text field or a numeric field). To continue with the previous example, a formula that contains a variable might be SUM(monetary_value + 50). If you scroll down to the table on default field variable names for opportunities, you'll see that 'monetary_value' represents the 'Value' field on an Opportunity.

What functions can be used with Workflow Automation?

To make formulas digestible, we've divided them into three types: Strings, Numerical, and Dates. Let's take a look at each type.

Strings

Function Example Formula Output
Concat* CONCAT('ABC',123,'DEF') ABC123DEF‌
Upper Case UPPER('abc') ABC‌
Lower Case LOWER('ABC') abc‌

* CONCAT takes all the separate values inside parenthesis and populates them as a single string in the field. Each value must be separated by a comma (,). Strings need to be enclosed by quotation marks (either " or '). Any unquoted string will be treated as variable or functions. 

For example:

If you want to change the description of an opportunity to include the opportunity name next to the word Onboarding, under 'Actions' you would choose 'Name' field, select 'Use a Formula' and type in:

CONCAT(name, ": Onboarding")

If name = Google Opportunity, the description would be:

“Google Opportunity: Onboarding”   

Numerical

Function
Example Formula Output
Sum SUM(1,10,5) 16
Average AVG(1,10,5) 5
Round ROUND(10.6) 11.5
Using + -  * / 10 + monetary_value * 100 / 2‌ 260 (if monetary value is 5)

Dates

Function Example Formula Output
Current Date/Timestamp CURRENTDATE() 2018-10-23 04:52:45 AM +00:00‌
Add to a Date DATEADD(CURRENTDATE(),10) 2018-11-02 04:58:19 AM +00:00‌
Days DAYS(CURRENTDATE(),DATEADD(CURRENTDATE(),10)) 10

Logic

Type  Example Formula Output
 IF, ISBLANK* IF(ISBLANK(monetary_value), 0, monetary_value) + 10

 0 (if monetary_value is empty)

 110 (if monetary_value is 100)

*IF and ISBLANK should only be used in conjunction as shown above. The IF/ISBLANK function allows you to specify a default if the value is empty.

How to use variables to reference default and custom fields in formulas

cf_ is the prefix to reference custom field values. For example cf_<field_key>.

If you wanted to change the description of an opportunity to include a custom field that indicates the sales region West or East, and custom text, under 'Actions' you would select the 'Description' field from the drop-down, choose 'Use a Formula,'and type in:

CONCAT(cf_sales_region, " - MM")

If Sales Region = West, the description of the opportunity would be:

“West - MM”

The 'sales_region' portion of the formula is known as a variable name. It represents the field in the formula's language. To find the field key for a custom field, follow the steps below:

  1. Sign into your Copper account, and click 'Field Settings.'
  2. Choose the 'Edit Custom Fields' option to the right of the list of records.
  3. Click the pencil icon to the right of the list of records.
  4. Locate the 'Field Key' section, and enter the text you want to use to reference this field in workflow automation rules going forward.
  5. Click 'Save.'

Plain Text Option

  • Variable Names ending in "_id" and some other fields, a numeric code is returned
    • ex. assignee_id returns "24601"
  • The Plain Text Option will enable you the return the text, instead of a numeric code
    • ex. assignee_full_name returns "Jean Valjean"
  • Custom fields will be supported in future release

Variable names for default fields are already created and listed below:

 Lead Field Name  Variable Name Plain Text Option
 Owner  assignee_id

 assignee_first_name
 assignee_last_name
 assignee_full_name

 Source  customer_source_id  customer_source_name
 Created  date_created  
 Last Contacted  date_last_contacted  
 Modified  date_modified  
 Description  details  
 First Name   first_name  
 Name   full_name  
 ID   id  
 Last Name  last_name  
 Middle Name  middle_name  
 Value  monetary_value  
 Prefix  prefix  
 Status  status  
 Suffix  suffix  
 Tags  tags  
 Title  title  
 Address  address  
 Address/Street  address.street  
 Address/City  address.city  
 Address/State  address.state  
 Address/Country  address.country  
 Address/Zip Code  address.postal_code  
 Custom Fields (See Notes)  cf_<field_key>  

Note: Phone numbers, social media accounts, websites, company name (company id is okay), and custom connect fields on person records are not supported by formulas.

Note: Turn off all affected workflow automation rules before making changes to field settings. Review all your workflows after the changes are made.

Person Field Name Variable Name Plain Text Option
Owner assignee_id assignee_first_name
assignee_last_name
assignee_full_name
Company company_id company_name
Contact Type contact_type_id contact_type_name
Created date_created  
Last Contacted date_last_contacted  
Lead Created date_lead_created  
Modified date_modified  
Description details  
ID id  
First Name first_name  
Name full_name  
Converted from Lead? is_converted  
Last Name last_name  
Middle Name middle_name  
Prefix prefix  
Suffix suffix  
Title title  
Tags tags  
Address address  
Address/Street address.street  
Address/City address.city  
Address/State address.state  
Address/Country address.country  
Address/Zip Code address.postal_code  
Custom Fields (See Notes) cf_<field_key>  

Note: Phone numbers, social media accounts, websites, company name (company id is okay), and custom connect fields on person records are not supported by formulas.

Note: Turn off all affected workflow automation rules before making changes to field settings. Review all your workflows after the changes are made.

Company Field Name Variable Name Plain Tex Option
Owner assignee_id

assignee_first_name
assignee_last_name
assignee_full_name

Contact Type contact_type_id contact_type_name
Created date_created  
Modified date_modified  
Description details  
Email Domain email_domain  
ID id  
Name name  
Tags tags  
Address address  
Address/Street address.street  
Address/City address.city  
Address/State address.state  
Address/Country address.country  
Address/Zip Code address.postal_code  
Custom Fields (See  Notes) cf_<field_key>  

Note: Phone numbers, social media accounts, websites, and custom connect fields on company records are not supported by formulas.

Note: Turn off all affected workflow automation rules before making changes to field settings. Review all your workflows after the changes are made.

Project Field Name Variable Name  Plain Text Option
  Owner   assignee_id  assignee_first_name
 assignee_last_name
 assignee_full_name
  Created   date_created  
  Modified   date_modified  
  Description   details  
  ID   id  
  Name   name  
  Status   status   status_name
  Tags   tags  
  Custom Fields (See  Notes)   cf_<field_key>  

Note: Turn off all affected workflow automation rules before making changes to field settings. Review all your workflows after the changes are made.

 

Opportunity Field Name Variable Name Plain Text Option
Owner assignee_id

assignee_first_name
assignee_last_name
assignee_full_name

Close Date close_date  
Company company_id company_name
Source customer_source_id customer_source_name
Created date_created  
Last Contacted date_last_contacted  
Lead Created date_lead_created  
Modified date_modified  
Date Stage Changed date_stage_changed  
Description details  
Interactions interaction_count  
Converted from Lead? is_converted  
Loss Reason loss_reason_id loss_reason_name
Value monetary_value  
Name name  
Pipeline pipeline_id pipeline_name
Pipeline Stage (see Notes) pipeline_stage_id pipeline_stage_name
Primary Contact  primary_contact_id

primary_contact_first_name
primary_contact_middle_name
primary_contact_last_name

primary_contact_full_name
primary_contact_prefix
primary_contact_suffix

Priority   priority priority_name
Status status status_name
Tags tags  
Win Percentage win_probability  
Custom Fields (see Notes) cf_<field_key>  

** If you are trying to create an Opportunity as an Action from a Person Trigger, the formula variable for the Primary Contact on the new Opportunity would be "id".

** If you are trying to create a workflow to move an Opportunity to a different Stage, you will have to add Pipeline to your Action 1 first, then Stage. After you pick a Pipeline, the Stages will load. The image below shows workflow - when a custom text field called "Custom opportunity field" is filled in on an opportunity with the words "MOVE," the opportunity will move to Pipeline "Business Development" and Stage "Schedule meeting." We recommend creating an extra text field to hold a timestamp so you know when Workflow Automation last updated a record for auditing purposes. See how I have added a custom field called workflowEngineTimestamp below with a formula (for the formula, search this page for "timestamp"). Please zoom in if you cannot see the image below:

 

Note: Custom connect fields are not supported on any records in formulas.

Note: Turn off all affected workflow automation rules before making changes to field settings. Review all your workflows after the changes are made.

 

Task Field Name Variable Name  Plain Text Option
  Owner   assignee_id  assignee_first_name
 assignee_last_name
 assignee_full_name
  Created   date_created  
  Modified   date_modified  
  Completed Date     completed_date  
  Due Date   due_date  
  Reminder Date   reminder_date  
  Description   details  
  ID   id  
  Name   name  
  Status   status  status_name
  Activity Type   activity_type  activity_type_name 
  Priority     priority  priority_name
  Tags   tags  
  Custom Fields (See  Notes)   cf_<field_key>  

 

Note: Workflows rules cannot be triggered by other workflow rules. This is to prevent potential infinite loops.

Note: Some fields do not count as an update for the Update trigger, as they are derived calculations on the back end and not fields that are directly updated. The Check Once a Day trigger should be used for these instead. These fields include, Inactive Days, Stage Duration, Days in Stage, and Interaction Count

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