Communication between UI Actions and Business Rules


This is a quick and dirty way to pass data from a UI action to a Business rule.

It’s just a proof of concept. Don’t use it. It might break at any point.

If you think you need to use this, you are probably dealing with a poor design. Review the process and why you want to do this.

I’ve used it only once in 10 years and I couldn’t sleep well until that script disappeared from the production instance.

The (weird) requirements

You have a UI action in the Problem form that updates its related incidents.

You have a Business rule in the Incident that adds a comment when the Incident is updated.

The comment will indicate if the update was either triggered by that UI Action or by something else.

In the UI Action (Problem)

Add a temporary property to the GlideRecord object.

Notice that there is no need to create a new field in the table.

You are modifying the object in runtime.

var incident = new GlideRecord('incident');
incident.addQuery('problem_id', current.sys_id);
while ( {
    incident.work_notes = 'Updating from the custom UI action';
    incident.dontDoThis = true; //Dirty workaround!!!
Code language: JavaScript (javascript)

In the Business Rule (Incident)

Check the temporary property in your business rule and add a different comment depending on the trigger.

(function executeRule(current, previous /*null when async*/ ) {
        current.comment = 'Updating from custom UI Action';
        current.comment = 'Updating from somewhere else';
})(current, previous);
Code language: JavaScript (javascript)

Updating the Incident using the UI Action in the Problem form

Updating the Incident directly in the Incident form


  1. This is a weird workaround and can be confusing for somebody else and even for your future self.
  2. Try other approaches if possible.
  3. If you ignore my warnings and implement it, at least comment the code and document it very clearly.