Use automators

You can choose how your workflow statuses update using Automators.

Erin Jamison avatar
Written by Erin Jamison
Updated over a week ago

Automators allow you to adjust settings that update your workflows, tasks and work statuses automatically. There are two types of automation in Karbon, Global Automators and Tasklist Automators. Global Automators helps your practice with automation that applies to every work item, such as marking work items complete when all tasks are done. Tasklist Automators allow you to apply ‘if this, then that’ rules to task sections in your work items and templates. In this article, you will learn how to use both!


Global Automators

To make the most out of Automators, it's important to have a good understanding of workflow statuses. You can control the Global Automators from Settings > Workflow > select the Automators tab. We recommend firms start with these settings and then make adjustments as desired:

Video Overview of Global Automators

Note: you will need to be an Admin user to adjust these Automators and other Settings. Keep in mind, any changes you make to your status settings will immediately go into effect across your whole team.

Available global automators include:

  • Choose what status a planned work item will be in when it reaches its start date

  • Choose what default status an email will be given when it is assigned to someone

  • Choose what default status a note will be given when it is assigned to someone

  • Choose whether the start date for a work item will update when its status is manually changed from Planned to In Progress

  • Choose what status a new task will be given

  • Choose whether a work item will have its status update to In Progress when the first task within that work item is marked Completed

  • Choose to update the status of work when 5 client task reminders have been sent to the client and are still incomplete

  • Choose whether a work item will have its status marked Completed when all tasks within that work item are marked Completed

Best Practice Tip: Often times when a work item hits its start date, it's not always 'In Progress'. Consider using the status, 'Ready to Start' and apply this to When Planned work reaches its start date, update its status to 'Ready to Start'. This will help identify work items that are truly 'In Progress' vs. an alternate status like 'Ready to Start'.

If an automator has triggered an item, an activity will display on that work item. For example, if a work item's status is updated automatically, the details of this will display on the work item's Timeline.

Tasklist Automators

Tasklist Automators allow you to apply ‘if this, then that’ rules to task sections in your work items and templates. The status of tasks or a work item can be set to automatically update based on what happens to other tasks.

Video Overview of Tasklist Automators

Add, edit or delete a tasklist automator

The Tasklist Automators are added to the section level of your list of tasks. They can also be added to Client Task sections, and you can add multiple rules within one section.

The process for adding an Automator here is the same, whether you are adding it to a work item or a template. From the task section options menu, choose Add Automator.

The Automator you create will 'listen' for the activity that happens. When the event that you set happens, the rule will trigger.

Your options for creating rules from the drop-down menus include:


  • All tasks in this section

  • All tasks in the section above

  • All sections & tasks above this section

  • The work (Note: custom workflow statuses will appear if you choose this option)

  • All tasks in a specific section

Have the status

  • Planned

  • Ready to Start

  • In Progress

  • Completed

Change the Status, Due Date or Assignee of

  • All tasks in this section (Note: this is not available if you have set the when input to 'All tasks in this section')

  • The work


  • Status: All your primary statuses will appear here. All primary and custom statuses will appear when you are changing the work.

  • Due Date: So many days after the Automator is triggered

  • Assignee of your choice

Once you have set the Automator, it will appear at the top of that task section.

Once you have created your Automator, you can click on it to edit or delete it.

Triggering of tasklist automators

When a tasklist Automator has triggered, it will appear with a 'strikethrough' - with a horizontal line through their center.

If there are still tasklist Automators within that section, they will remain without a strikethrough.

Reset Automator

If an automator has triggered and you want to go back and reset the automator. Simply click on the automator that is struck through that you want to reset and click 'Reset'. You can't reset automators that will instantly retrigger, so in some cases you may have to go back and untick tasks before you are able to reset that automator, to make sure the automator doesn't automatically retrigger.

For example: Your client has marked a client task as complete, and the automation on the next internal section has changed the status of the tasks in the section to 'Ready to start' even though you need more information from the client. Untick the client task, then click on the automator and click 'Reset' and then you can add a comment to the client task asking for more information and have the client mark the task as complete again when they have provided it.

Valid and Invalid Automators

In some circumstances, a Tasklist Automator can become invalid. This is indicated by the color of the Automator, once you have created it.

A valid Automator appears grey and will trigger without any issues.

If your Automator displays a warning in orange, it indicates that the scenario is not ideal but will still work.

Example: The Automator will assign a section of tasks to a job role, rather than to an individual team member

If you are unsure why the warning is displayed, open the Automator to reveal the cause of the warning and a suggested solution.

A red warning indicates that an Automator is invalid, and will not work.

Example: If you move a section of tasks to the top, containing an Automator to change the assignee when the tasks above move into the status of 'Completed', it renders that Automator impossible.

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