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Directed Web Access in configuring assignments for external users

Updated on March 29, 2022

When you enable the Directed Web Access (DWA) in your application, anyone who accesses the Internet, an intranet, or email can process an assignment. When you use this feature, you extend the reach of your application to employees throughout the enterprise, trusted customers and suppliers, and anyone else from whom you want to obtain information.

For example, you can configure your application to send an email with a DWA link to someone who has complained, which they can click, and then answer a feedback question on whether they are satisfied with the resolution of a complaint. Users might not be customers, so they might not have login credentials to access the website and application.

Assignments define the parts of case processing that require human judgment, expertise, and data entry from trained users of the application. Assignments that you send to outside parties are external assignments. External assignments improve accountability, eliminate the need for phone calls, and give visibility to the responsiveness of the parties.

To send an external assignment to users, the application includes a specially formatted URL in the text of an email. When the email recipient clicks the URL, a web browser session opens and submits a once-only identifier and password to the Pega Platform server.

After authenticating these values, Pega Platform sends an assignment to the user's browser. When the user completes and submits the assignment, the requestor connection ends. The external user cannot repeat the assignment or reuse the URL or password because the session is authenticated for one time only.

For security reasons, the URL for an external assignment must be static, which means that it cannot be generated or altered by JavaScript or other processing at run time. Because of this restriction, the flow action cannot use AJAX, dynamic select, or SmartPrompt, which require multiple server interactions.

External assignments are instances of the Assign-External class, or of its subclass. The standard activity Work-.External creates these assignments.

The following run-time events describe the way that users interact with external assignments:

  1. A case reaches an external assignment in the life cycle.
  2. Your application sends an email to the user who is identified in the routing settings for the external assignment.
  3. The user clicks the URL in the email message, which sends a token to your application for authentication.
  4. The web browser of the user displays the form for the assignment.
  5. The user completes the assignment by entering values in the fields on the form and submitting the form.
  6. The session ends and the case moves to the next step in the life cycle.
  7. Your application updates the count of web invocations that are used in reports for license compliance.
  • Configuring Directed Web Access

    Configure the Directed Web Access (DWA) capability to support external assignments in a case. By collecting information from stakeholders who are outside of your organization, you can extend the scope of your application and provide necessary details for case processing.

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