Expected work

Expected work objects represent jobs that are scheduled to arrive at specific intervals. You can associate expected work objects with input devices so the input devices can monitor for those jobs to arrive. If they do not arrive when they are expected, the system alerts you.

You define expected work as jobs that are expected to arrive in a given time period. The input device counts the number of jobs that arrive and compares them to the expected number of jobs at specific intervals. You can refine the expected work object so it applies to specific types of jobs based on characteristics of the input file name. The input device parses the input file names to see if they match a regular expression and counts only the jobs that match.

  • If you use the lpr or lprafp command to submit a job to an LPD input device, the command renames the input file using a format that RICOH ProcessDirector cannot reliably parse. In this case, we recommend using only the Number of jobs expected property on expected work objects and leaving the File patterns property blank.

Expected work objects are particularly useful if your service level agreements (SLAs) with your customers rely on receiving jobs from them by a particular time.

For example, you have a customer who sends you three jobs every day. The SLA states that if the jobs arrive by 8:00 AM, they must be printed by 4:00 PM. You create an expected work object that instructs an input device to check the status at 8:00 AM each day and associate it with the appropriate input device. At 8:00 AM, the input device checks to see how many jobs have arrived:

  • If all three jobs have arrived, processing continues as usual.
  • If one or more of the jobs has not arrived, the Expected work status property of the input device is set to Late and an alert (Alert icon) icon appears to the right of the input device.
You can then use the Show expected work action on the input device to see more information about the work that has not arrived and try to resolve the problem.

You can define expected work objects to check for work at various time intervals based on the SLAs that you must meet. You can associate multiple expected work objects with an input device, so the same input device can monitor for jobs that arrive daily and for jobs that arrive monthly on the first of the month. You can also associate an expected work object with multiple input devices, if they all expect to receive jobs on the same schedule.