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Build simple approval UI for your workflow

By Astrid Herbst

Build the UI to be displayed to execute a user task (task performed by a person) within a workflow.


You will learn

  • To build a user task.
  • To implement a SAPUI5 application that has a page (called “view”).
  • To complete the workflow by approving or rejecting the task in My Inbox.

Step 1: Open SAP Web IDE Full-Stack
  1. In your Web browser, open the cockpit of SAP Cloud Platform.
  2. Choose Neo Trial.
  3. Select Services from the left-hand navigation.
  4. Search for the Workflow service. Then select it, and choose SAP Web IDE for Full-Stack Development.
Step 2: Creating a new SAPUI5 application

In the SAP Web IDE Full-Stack, create a new project using a template.
1. In the navigation area, choose the home icon.
2. Choose New Project from Template.
New Project
3. Choose SAPUI5 Application.
Choose SAPUI5 App
4. Choose Next.
5. Enter a name for the new workflow project, for example, BookUIApplication and a namespace, for example, BookUIApplication.
Enter Project Name
6. Choose Next.
7. Enter a name for the view, for example, ApproveBookView.
Add View Name
8. Choose Finish.
9. Choose Run.
Choose Run
The HTML page is still empty. You need to add the necessary UI controls for displaying the book details, like title and price.

Step 3: Create the form layout
  1. To use the form layout, enable the sap.ui.layout package in the project settings of SAP Web IDE:
    1. Choose Workspace | BookUIApplication.
    2. Right-click the BookUIApplication project, and choose Project Settings.
      Choose Project Settings
      Under SAPUI5, select the sap.ui.layout package, and then Save.
      Select Layout
  2. Open the newly created view using the layout editor:
    1. Choose Workspace | BookUIApplication | webapp | view | ApproveBookView.view.xml.
    2. Right-click and choose Open With | Layout Editor.
      Open Layout Editor
  3. To add a form to the page, choose Layout | Simple Form and drag it onto the editor canvas.
    Add Simple Form
  4. Select the Title element, and change the title text under Properties to ‘Book Details’.
    Change Title
  5. Similarly, select and change the Label 1 text to ‘Title’ and Label 2 to ‘Price’.
  6. Remove the second input control in the first row by selecting it and then pressing the delete key.
    Your page layout should now look like this:
    New Layout
Step 4: Add a data binding
  1. To bind the UI controls to data from the workflow context, use the Value field in the properties of the input control:
    1. Select the input control with the label Title, and enter ‘{/product}’.
    2. Select the input control with the label Price, and enter ‘{/price}’.
      Add Values
  2. To prevent the approver from changing the title or price, set the Editable property to false for both input elements.
  3. Choose Save.
Step 5: Initialize the data model

To make the workflow context available to the UI controls, you need to retrieve the task context data. To do this, call the Workflow REST API with the task ID of the currently shown task instance in My Inbox. My Inbox passes this data to our component using the startup parameters.

  1. Open the Component.js file under Workspace | BookUIApplication | webapp.
  2. Find the init function, and add the following code snippet to the file:
    // get task data
    var startupParameters = this.getComponentData().startupParameters;
    var taskModel = startupParameters.taskModel;
    var taskData = taskModel.getData();
    var taskId = taskData.InstanceID;
    // initialize model
    var contextModel = new sap.ui.model.json.JSONModel("/bpmworkflowruntime/rest/v1/task-instances/" + taskId + "/context");
    Add Code
  3. Choose Save.
  4. To deploy the project, select the project in the workspace and choose Deploy | Deploy to SAP Cloud Platform. On the following screen, choose Deploy.
    Deploy Project

    Note: If you open the application in the browser, you see a blank page because the UI only works when running inside the My Inbox application.

Step 6: Link the UI5 component to the user task

You can now refer to the deployed UI5 application from your approval task in the workflow:

  1. In the SAP Web IDE, open the workflow file and select the ApproveBook task.
  2. Under Details in the User Task Properties, find the properties for specifying the user interface.
  3. Choose Select.
    Choose Select
  4. Select the BookUIApplication project and the webapp component path.
  5. Choose OK.
    Choose User Interface
  6. Choose Save.
  7. To deploy the workflow file again, select it in the workspace and choose Deploy | Deploy to SAP Cloud Platform Workflow.
  8. To test the workflow, start a new instance from the Monitor Workflow application and open the task in My Inbox.
    You should see the following task details:
    Test Workflow
Step 7: Add Approve and Reject buttons

To add Approve and Reject buttons to actually complete the task, go back and edit the Component.js file again.

  1. Open the Component.js file under Workspace | BookUIApplication | webapp.
  2. Add the following functions to your component:
    • _fetchToken: Retrieves an XSRF token from the workflow service API. The token is used to authenticate when calling the POST method to complete the task.
    • _completeTask: Calls the workflow service API to complete the current task, and pass on the approval status (“true” or “false”) using the JSON payload to the workflow context.
    • _refreshTask: Tells My Inbox to remove the task on completion from the list.

    Right after the closing bracket of the init function, add the following code snippet to the file:

    	_completeTask: function(taskId, approvalStatus) {
    		var token = this._fetchToken();
    			url: "/bpmworkflowruntime/rest/v1/task-instances/" + taskId,
    			method: "PATCH",
    			contentType: "application/json",
    			async: false,
    			data: "{\"status\": \"COMPLETED\", \"context\": {\"approved\":\"" + approvalStatus + "\"}}",
    			headers: {
    				"X-CSRF-Token": token
    	, _fetchToken: function() {
    		var token;
    			url: "/bpmworkflowruntime/rest/v1/xsrf-token",
    			method: "GET",
    			async: false,
    			headers: {
    				"X-CSRF-Token": "Fetch"
    			success: function(result, xhr, data) {
    				token = data.getResponseHeader("X-CSRF-Token");
    		return token;
    	_refreshTask: function(taskId) {
    		this.getComponentData().startupParameters.inboxAPI.updateTask("NA", taskId);
    Add Codesnippet
  3. Add the Approve and Reject buttons to the My Inbox action footer by adding the following code to the body of the init function within the Component.js file:
    	    //add actions
                            action: "Approve",
                            label: "Approve"
                    }, function(button) {
                            this._completeTask(taskId, true);
                    }, this);
                            action: "Reject",
                            label: "Reject"
                    }, function(button) {
                            this._completeTask(taskId, false);
                    }, this);
    Add Actions

    When the user presses the buttons, the _completeTask function will be called.

  4. Choose Save.
Step 8: Completing the workflow
  1. Deploy the BookUIApplication project again. Select the project and choose Deploy | Deploy to SAP Cloud Platform. On the following screen, choose Deploy.
  2. Refresh My Inbox to check the updated UI for the task.

    Note: To see the new buttons, you may have to clean the browser cache or force a “hard reload”.

    Redeploy Project
  3. To complete the workflow, choose either Approve or Reject in the My Inbox app.
    The task should disappear from My Inbox, and the workflow instance should disappear from the Monitor Workflows instances list.

You defined and deployed a workflow using the SAP Web IDE. You started and monitored workflow instances with the Monitor Workflow app, and you saw user tasks in the My Inbox.
You have successfully completed the implementation of the first version of your Book Order workflow.

Check out the Workflow Developer Guide or explore the REST API.

Share your feedback on SAP Cloud Platform Workflow!

If you want to learn more about the integration of workflow into your user interfaces, check out this blog.

Updated 01/18/2018

Time to Complete

15 Min



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