Creating and Modifying Approval Routes

An approval route is a workflow that you set up to manage the approval of timesheets and expenses that have been submitted.

Although one approval route often applies to timesheets and expenses for more than one placement, you can create as many approval routes as you need. It is even possible for each placement to have its own method of approval, if necessary.

For example, you may have one client where the primary manager of a placement is required to authorise a timesheet.  You may have another client where timesheets must be printed, signed and sent to the agency.  These would require different approval routes.

When you set up an approval route, you are specifying the steps that are required for a timesheet to move from submitted status to approved status within RSM InTime.

It is recommended that you seek advice from the support team before altering or adding approval routes as they have a fundamental impact on how your system operates.

How do I view approval routes?

  1. Go to Configuration> General > Approval Routes
  2. The figure below shows the default Approval Routes used when creating a placement.  It can be seen that the Client Manager Approval route is used for the default approval route for timesheets and chargeable expenses.  The Agency Consultant Approval route is used for non-chargeable expenses.  Your agency will typically have been configured with these default approval routes.
  • Agency Consultant Approval (internal consultant approval)
    An item submitted on this approval route will be sent to the placement's consultant for approval.
  • Auto Approval
    This route means that timesheets and expenses are automatically approved. They do not need to be formally approved by anyone.
  • Client Manager Approval
    This primary manager of the placement will be asked to approve the items.

How do I view or modify an Approval Route?

  1. On the Approval Route page click on the approval route you wish to view or edit.  Then click Edit.
  2. You will then see the current approval route.  You can click on the blue Add Stage button to add an additional stage to the approval route.

    You are specifying the stages that must occur between when a timesheet or expense is submitted by the worker, to when it gets approved. You can add as many stages as you like.

  3. Timesheets and expenses travel down the approval route stages until they are either rejected or successfully reach the bottom to be marked as authorised. 
    Each approval stage is one of the following types (see below for an explanation of each type):
    1. Manual Approval

    2. Automatic Approval Rules

    3. Continue to next stage

    4. Reject item

  4. You can add as many additional approval stages as you need. When you have completed the approval route, click OK.


The timesheet is sent to a person to approve/reject. If they reject, the timesheet is passed to the On Reject action. If they don't approve the timesheet within the specified number of days it is passed to the On Timeout action.When you select Manual Approval, you can specify the role of the person who will approve the submitted timesheet or expense.

  1. Click the orange Manual Approval stage within the route and then click Add in the Approvers section.
  2. In the Type: field, select the role of the approver (for example, the Placement Manager, or Placement Consultant):

    Note: If you select By Name, you must enter the name of the approver. 

  3. Select OK to add the approver to the list of approvers. If you wish to change the approver you will need to add the new approver type and then remove the unwanted entry by clicking on the bin icon.
  4. If the approver should be sent an approval email on submission, tick the Email checkbox.  If the checkbox is not ticked, email notification will be disabled.  For example, you might want one approver to be notified of the timesheet or expense's submission by email, but you might not want additional approvers to be emailed.

  5. Underneath the approvers you can enter the Timeout parameters.  Enter the number of days for which the approval request is valid. For example, if you enter 2, the timesheet must be approved within two days of submission.  If the timesheet is not approved within 2 days, it will be automatically rejected.  Alternatively by ticking the Advanced checkbox, you can specify a timeout after the week end (Standard Week End Sunday). The example below displays timesheets to Timeout 1day, 11hrs and 30mins after the week end (11.30 am on a Tuesday) Expenses: Do not timeout.
  6. Click Close to close the window and confirm your selection.
  7. Once the above has been configured, you can add steps for when the timesheet expires. You will need to click On Timeout and choose what option you want, you can have any of the following options:

  8. If you choose to Reject item you will have the option give a rejection reason. You will be able to give a seperate reason for On Reject which allows you to inform the timesheet owner exactly what has happened.

  9. If you want to add another stage to the approval route, click on the Add Stage button again, or if you are happy with your approval route, click Save.

Automatic Approval Rules

Tests the timesheet using simple logic rules. If the timesheet fails the test it is passed to the On Fail action.The automatic approval route means that a timesheet will continue to the next approval stage if it conforms to a set of rules.

  1. Select Automatic Approval Rules
  2. Enter the rules in the Approve If field. For more information on rules, contact customer support.
  3. Optionally, you can add an On Fail stage by clicking Add. This enables you to set up one or more additional stages to the approval route if the first fails.

Continue to Next Stage

The current stage is skipped and the timesheet goes on to the next stage (if any).

Reject Item

The timesheet or expense is marked as rejected and sent back for correction by the worker.