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Wave Success Center by McKinsey

Submit for Approval

The approval process is an important part of the governance of many transformation programs. In order for an initiative to progress from one stage to the next, Wave often requires an approval decision from various stakeholders of the program such as a Workstream Lead, Sponsor, or Finance team.

A few important notes on approvals:

  • Not all programs require approvals for their initiatives, but most require at least one approval in their stage gate process

  • Some programs may require approvals between every implementation stage

  • Some approvals may require multiple stakeholders to review the initiative (e.g. Finance, Transformation Office, Sponsor, etc.)

  • Before learning how to submit initiatives for approval in Wave, make sure you are familiar with your program's stage gate approval process.

Step-by-step Instructions

1. Start by opening the initiative that you would like to submit to for approval for the next stage. Review your initiative to make sure that it contains all of the necessary information for submission to the next stage. 

TIP: In many cases, your program will include Approval Checklists in the "Help & Guides" tab on your dashboard or in your organization's SharePoint site. These checklists detail which fields must be filled out for each stage gate and are custom to your company.


2. On the Overview tab of the initiative, click on the Stage field and choose Submit for L1 (Identified) approval.

NOTE: When you submit an initiative for approval, an e-mail notification is sent to the appropriate approver/s at that particular stage. 


3. If you try to submit an initiative with a mandatory field(s) empty, Wave will provide you will an error message along the top of the card with details of what is needed to move along to the next stage.

In the example below, we are alerted that two key fields have not be completed: Description of initiative and What is the money step.

To reconcile an error, simply complete those fields that are missing and return to Step 2. 

NOTE: Initiatives cannot be edited during the Submitted for Approval stage.


4. When the approver for the initiative has reviewed the initiative and approved it, the initiative's stage gate will be automatically updated to the next stage and you will be able to once again edit the initiative.

In the event an approver rejects the initiative, the initiative will automatically move back to the previous stage.

In either event, you will receive an e-mail notification with the decision and also the approver's commentary as to why the initiative was either approved or rejected.



Have more questions about approvals in Wave? Check out our Approval FAQ Guide.  



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