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This documentation supports the 21.05 version of BMC Digital Workplace Advanced. 
To view an earlier version, select the version from the Product Version menu.

Workflow designer elements overview

This topic provides an overview of all elements used in the workflow designer, which is used for building processes that are a part of a service request definition (SRD). The workflow designer uses basic BPMN 2.0 fundamentals Open link for building processes in BMC Helix Digital Workplace Catalog.

Basic terms and concepts

This topic uses the following terms:

  • Process is a logical sequence of actions that are required to satisfy a business need. Both system and human interaction can be involved in executing actions in a process. A process starts with the Start event, which is triggered when the end user submits a request in BMC Helix Digital Workplace. The process ends with the End event or Error End event when all actions in the process are executed, and the request is closed.  
  • Workflow is a graphical representation of a process. 
  • Sub-process is a part of a bigger process. Subprocesses are graphically represented by Call Activity (called process) and Sub-Process (structural subprocess) elements. Any subprocess starts with the Start event, and ends up with the End event or Error End event.
  • Design time is the time when a workflow is being designed in the workflow designer.
  • Runtime means the time when a process described by a workflow is being executed. 

Basic elements

The following table lists basic elements by categories available in the workflow designer:

Process workflow designer palette groupsElementIconDescriptionReference topics

Indicates the start of a process or subprocess. By default, the Start event is available on the palette when you start drawing a workflow. It is required for any workflow.

If a workflow contains a Sub-process or a Call activity event, the event must start with the Start event.

Designing a simple workflow


Indicates the end of a process or a subprocess (Sub-Process or Call Activity). A process can have multiple End events in a process (for example, in a process with gateways, or with error events).
Error Boundary 

Captures errors and exceptions within a process and identifies the path that should be executed after a business error or exception is captured. Handling errors in processes
Error End

Indicates that a process or a subprocess represented by Sub-Process or Call Activity event ends up with an error.

The Timer event can be attached only to the Receive Task.

This event interrupts a wait step represented by the Receive Task, and indicates how to continue a workflow after the wait step times out.

Setting up a timer for a Receive Task
Annotation Annotation text

Provides additional information for anyone reading the process diagram.Annotation example
Activities Call activity

Calls for an external workflow. This external workflow is a subprocess (or child process) that can call for one or more other processes, for example, a request approval process.

Calling external workflows

Is a generic element used for calling an external activity of any connector that is enabled in the BMC Integration Service and configured for use with BMC Helix Digital Workplace Catalog.

Setting up workflow to open a JIRA issue through a BMC Integration Service connector
iPaaS Jitterbit

Enables integration of BMC Helix Digital Workplace Catalog with third-party applications through BMC Helix iPaaS, powered by Jitterbit. 

Integrating BMC Helix Innovation Studio applications with third-party applications by using BMC Helix iPaaS, powered by Jitterbit Open link

Receive Task

Suspends the process until the the external system sends a response back to BMC Helix Digital Workplace Catalog. The Receive Task element waits for the response in the form of a signal. This signal can contain signal parameters to pass into a process.

The external system (such as BMC Helix ITSM, Atrium Orchestrator, or Active Directory) must be configured to return a message packaged in the same name as the Signal Parameter expected by the Receive Task.

Waiting for a response

Indicates a type of a subprocess that describes a detailed sequence of actions in a workflow. This subprocess cannot be called from multiple processes, and belongs only to the included process. It is used to hide or show additional levels of process details.

When the Sub-Process element is collapsed, a plus sign (plus) appears against the bottom line of the rectangle. When the Sub-Process element is expanded, the rounded rectangle expands to show all workflow actions and sequence flows.

Embedding sub-process workflows

Branches the sequence flow to execute multiple activities concurrently.

When a parallel gateway is used as a join gateway to streamline multiple sequence flows into one, the join gateway waits until all the threads are complete before proceeding with the next step in the sequence.

Control of workflow with gateways

Branches the sequence flow to define the workflow execution paths. For a given instance of a process, only one path can be taken based on the conditions placed on the sequence flows coming out of the gateway.

Approval request Create Approval Stub Entry

Although this element is available for selection on the palette, it cannot be used directly. This element is a part of an out-of-the-box Approval Process that can be called (by using the Call Activity element) from a process.

Workflow to request approval
String utilsIndex Of

Returns the first index within a search string in a specified text.Index Of
Last Index Of

Returns the last index within a search string in a specified text.Last Index Of

Inserts a string in specified text.Insert

Retrieves a string from a specified Json.



Counts character length of a specified text.Length

Counts how many times a string appears in a specified text.


Json Parser

Retrieves a string from a specified Json.Json Parser

 Replaces all occurrences of a string within another string.Replace
Replace All

Replaces every substring of text that matches a given regular expression with a given replacement.

Replace All

To Lower Case

Converts an input text string to lowercase text.

To Lower Case

To Upper Case

Converts an input text string to uppercase text.

To Upper Case

Epoch To String

Converts the epoch/UNIX timestamp to a formatted date.Epoch To String
ExpressionsCompute Value

Is used to build an expression and use its output in multiple actions.Compute Value
Digital Workplace CatalogBuild Input Set

Creates custom parameters to send to an activity.

Building a custom input map in a workflow

Send In App Notification

Sends out In App notifications to BMC Helix Digital Workplace Catalog.

Designing a workflow to send notification

Send Email

Sends an email to a defined email address.

Note: The Send Email element works in runtime only if the SMTP settings are configured for BMC Helix Digital Workplace Catalog.

Set Service Request Status

Updates the status shown to end users in the requesting user's activity timeline in the BMC Helix Digital Workplace end user console.

Setting the service request status

Track External Activity

Records that an external activity is ongoing, or checks the status of that activity.

Track External Activity can be used with connectors that have an external activity that can be tracked. You can use it with service connectors such as BMC Helix Platform, Remedy, AWS Marketplace, and AWS Service Catalog.

My Stuff Remove Service

Removes a provisioned service asset from the My Stuff page when executed in a process. For more details about service actions, see Managing service actions.

Designing a workflow to remove a service request from the My Stuff page
Create Activity Log For Service Request

Automatically posts comments to service requests (for native BMC Helix Digital Workplace Catalog services and bundles, and imported SRDs). Under different names, this element can be used several times and in any place in a workflow.

Designing a workflow to create a request activity log
Update Service Request

Allows you to set the summary of a service request that can override the default summary of the request.

Specify values for the following properties in this element:

  • Request Id—ID of the service request that you want to modify.
  • Summary—Text that you want to add in the summary. If you keep this property blank, the system ignores the property.

Add External Activity Attachments

When the system calls this action, the specified attachments are sent to a remote connector during the com.bmc.dsm.catalog:addActivityAttachments call.

Important: You cannot send questionnaire attachments to custom process actions. For example, the attachments that you provide through the remote connector framework.

Specify values for the following properties in this element:

  • Internal Connection—The connection associated with the external activity.
  • External Activity Type—Type of the external activity.
  • External Activity ID—The ID of the external activity.
  • Author Login ID—The login name of the author of the attachments. For example, a requester.
  • Attachment IDs—The IDs of the attachments to add to the external activity as specified by attachment questions in the questionnaire.

Connector elements

Available connector elements can be used to build your workflow. These elements are available on the palette, and are grouped together in sections under connector tiles.


A workflow with connector elements works only if the corresponding connectors are added and configured. For more details about configuring connectors, see Service connector capabilities.

The following table describes the out-of-the-box BMC Helix Digital Workplace Catalog connector categories that might be available on the palette:

Connector sectionConnector nameAdditional information


Active Directory connectorMicrosoft Active Directory connector


Amazon Web Services Marketplace connectorAWS Marketplace connector


Azure connector Microsoft Azure connector


BMC Client Management connectorBMC Client Management connectors


BMC Client Management connector for mobile clientsBMC Client Management connectors


Flexera connectorNot applicable
INNOVATION SUITEBMC Helix Platform connectorBMC Helix Platform connector


Microsoft Office 365 connectorMicrosoft Office 365 connector


Remedy Action Request System connectorHelix ITSM connector


Web service REST connector REST connector
TSOTrueSight Orchestration connectorTrueSight Orchestration (TSO) connector


Citrix XenApp connector Citrix Xen App and Citrix Xen Desktop connectors


Citrix XenDesktop connectorCitrix Xen App and Citrix Xen Desktop connectors

XEN Mobile

Citrix XenMobile connectorNot applicable

Required licensing

SaaS subscribers who use BMC Helix ITSM or BMC Helix Virtual Agent Basic service are entitled to this feature.

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