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Task Table

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Note
Note: This article applies to Fuji and earlier releases. For more current information, see Task Table at http://docs.servicenow.com

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Overview

Task [task] is one of the core tables provided with the base system. It provides a series of standard fields used on each of the tables that extend it, such as the Incident [incident] and Problem [problem] tables. In addition, any table which extends task can take advantage of task-specific functionality for driving tasks.

Planned Task

The Planned Task Plugin provides the Planned Task [planned_task] table, which extends the Task [task] Table to provide more fields for tasks to measure duration and effort.

Creating a Task

Tasks are not created directly on the task table. Instead, tasks are created on task child tables. Clicking the New button on the Task record list will launch the Task Interceptor, which guides the user to the desired Task-extending table:

TaskInterceptor.png

Modifying the Task Interceptor

To modify the task interceptor:

  1. Navigate to System Definition > Interceptors (this module may need to be activated).
  2. Select the Task Interceptor.
  3. The Related List Answers specifies what choices are presented, and where the user will be redirected to once the choice is selected. Modify the list as desired.
  4. After making changes, test the interceptor by clicking Try It.
Note
Note: To disable the Task Interceptor, rename it to something other than task.do. This will disable it without deleting it.

TaskInterceptor2.png

Important Task Table Fields

The following table contains a list of important Task [task] fields:

Label Name Type Description
Active active boolean Determines whether the task is active. Useful for filtering out tasks which are complete. The business rule task reopener sets the active flag to True if the state is changed from Closed Skipped, Closed Incomplete, or Closed Complete to any other state.
Additional comments comments journal_input Allows comments to be put on a record. Each comment is inserted into the Activity field. For more information, see Journal Fields below.
Approval History approval_history journal Displays the history of approvals for the record. For more information, see Approvals below.
Assigned To assigned_to reference A reference to the User Table, to designate a user to complete the task. Has the reference qualifier role=itil, which allows only ITIL users to be assignable to tasks.

Both the Service Order and Project Task tables override this reference qualifier with a reference qualifier to filter based on Skills. This reference qualifier can be applied to other pages.

Created sys_created_on glide_date_time The date and time of the first submission for the task record.
Description description string A multi-line string field, used for a description of the record's content.
Escalation escalation integer An indicator of how long the task has been open. Escalations are dynamically populated using Service Level Agreements. As the task is open for longer, it moves from Normal to Moderate to High, and finally becomes Overdue. When viewed in the Record List, Field Styles will color code the field by state of escalation.
Number number string An identifying number for the task, which is used as the display value of the task. Numbers are generated automatically when the task is created. To modify the number generation, see Number Maintenance.
Opened opened_at glide_date_time The date and time when the task record is opened by a human for the first time.
Priority priority integer A choice list which signals how high a priority the task should be for the assignee. The value is calculated based on Impact and Urgency, by the business rule calculatePriority. When viewed in the Record List, Field Styles will color code the field by degree of priority.
Short Description short_description String A short description of the task. Used as a human-readable title for the record.
State state Integer A choice list for status of the task:
  • Pending
  • Open
  • Work in Progress
  • Closed Complete
  • Closed Incomplete
  • Closed Skipped
Sys ID sys_id GUID The Unique Record Identifier for all records.
Task Type sys_class_name sys_class_name A field which specifies the type of task, and adds a child class to extend the record. Dynamically populated when the record is created on the child table. For more information on extending tables, see Tables and Classes.
Time Worked time_worked timer A timer which measures how long a record is open in the form view. For more information, see Adding a Time Tracking Field.
Watch list watch_list glide_list A list of users who will receive email notifications when the record is updated. Note: the watch list will only receive notifications if Email Notifications are defined. For more information, see Configuring Watch Lists.
Work notes work_notes journal_input Allows comments to be put on a record, viewable only by itil users. Each comment is inserted into the Activity field. For more information, see Journal Fields, below.

Journal Fields

Journal fields work together to create a log of changes and comments as tasks are worked on.

Note
Note: Journal Fields only work on audited tables.


Fields of the type journal_input are multi-line text boxes which, upon save, add the comments into the Activity field with a notation. The following fields accept input into the journal:

  • Additional Comments: can be updated by any user.
  • Work Notes: can be updated by itil users.

These comments, as well as any changes to the record or email notifications sent out because of the record, will be displayed in the Activity formatter, which can be added to the form like a field:

ActivityFormatter.png

For more information, see Using Journal Fields

Driving Tasks

There are a number of different tools available to drive tasks to completion. These tools can be run on any table which extends task.

Approvals

Approvals can be generated to a list of Approvers, either manually or automatically, according to Approval Rules. Approvals can be incorporated into Workflows or can stand alone. For more information, see Approvals.

Approvals can be used on non-task tables.

Assignments

Assignment Rules can automatically assign tasks to users or groups, ensuring that tasks are handled by the most appropriate team members. For more information, see Defining Assignment Rules.

Service Levels

Service Level Agreements can track the amount of time that a task has been open, to ensure that tasks are completed within an allotted time. For more information, see Service Level Agreements.

Inactivity Monitors

Inactivity monitors ensure that tasks do not fall by the wayside by notifying users when tasks have been untouched for a predefined period of time. For more information, see Setting Inactivity Monitors.

Workflow

An administrator can specify a specific workflow process to apply to tasks that meet certain conditions. Once a task is created that meets the conditions, the workflow will apply an automated process to the task. The process is defined in the graphical workflow editor:

Routine Change.png

As the process takes place, it will update any field designated as a workflow field:

Image:Workflow_field.png

Workflows are not specific to the tasks, but there are task-specific Workflow Activities (such as Task Activities and Approval Activities). For more information, see Workflow Overview.

Modifying the Task Table

Modifications made to the task table will be applied to all child tables. Be sure that the changes being made should apply to all of the child tables. Adding fields is a low-impact change, because the field can be hidden on tables that do not need it; however, deleting fields may cause unwanted data loss if the field is being used across tables. Note, when adding choice list entries to a choice list on the Task table, ensure the entry value is unique.

Some parts of a field definition can be changed in such a way as to not apply to all child tables using Dictionary Overrides.