by Fred Pukay

What are permissions?

Learn more about creating private Goals, setting permissions and roles on Goals, and granting permissions to groups here! Click a link below to read about your topic of interest. 

Creating a Private Goal

Users can create private Goals by changing Permission settings. From either Goal create or the edit view, expand Permissions Settings, click Permission Settings, and select one of the following Privacy Settings:


A user's manager is added as an editor by default to all Goals, public and private. 

Goal Permission Setting and Roles

Openness and transparency promote communication and fluid information sharing, but not all departments can share their Goals publicly. For example, legal and financial departments may have confidential data related to their Goals that should not be shared with people outside of their team.

Goal permissions allow the user to assign roles to other people who may be touching their Goal. 

These roles are:

  • Owner: This role is in charge of a Goal. Goal completion is tracked in their BetterWorks account, and counts toward their overall progress.
  • Editor: This role can make any changes to a Goal the owner can make, but Goal completion is not tracked in their account.
  • Participant (private Goals only): This role can contribute milestones to a private Goal, as well as view some Goal information and any downstream Goals contributing to the private Goal.

Managing Permissions on Public Goals.

Sometimes users need help to maintain a Goal. This Goal may be owned by a single person, but a larger group of people or a team may be heavily involved in it.

This is a perfect scenario for the new BetterWorks permission settings.

  1. From the Goal list page, click on the "..." addition actions button on the Goal select Quick Edit.
  2. Scroll down in the pop-out window, expand Permissions Settings, and select Permission Settings.
  3. Click the Change button along side Roles.Screen_Shot_2018-01-16_at_1.41.44_PM.png
  4. Enter the names of team members or groups who should be able to view, edit, or own this Goal, and click Add.
  5. Optionally, click the blue role next to any person's or group's name to change their permission settings.

    Editors have the same powers and privileges as owners; they can do anything from editing the Goal’s name to scoring the Goal. For more information on editor roles, read Goal permission settings and roles.
  6. When permissions are set, click Save.

Managing Permissions on Private Goals

Unlike public Goals, private Goals have nuanced permissions. These permissions make it easy to share private Goals with a team or department, allowing collaboration without exposing vulnerable data.

For private Goals, there are additional permission types. Public Goals have “owners” and “editors,” but the default role for a private Goal is “participant.”

Participants can view the Goal, the milestones contributing progress, and most of the Goal’s basic data. They can also view any of the Goals downstream that contribute to their Goal. Participants are free to contribute milestones of their own, but they cannot edit or delete the Goal.

Managing Permissions on Contributing Goals

BetterWorks permissions follow the “waterfall” design that is common across most modern platforms. This means that any permissions coming from “upstream” will be inherited “downstream.”

If a user is an editor of the top company bookings Goal, she will also be an editor for any downstream Goals (in this example, the user could be a sales manager, and the downstream Goals could be three direct reports' territory revenue Goals). Likewise, a user creating a new public Goal will have his manager included as an editor on that Goal by default. 

Granting Permission to a Group

Teams with sensitive information can easily limit Goal access to their respective team members. Simply add the group or team to the private Goal just like you would add an individual.

This means that an entire group can use the full suite of BetterWorks features (from aligning and connecting Goals to @mentioning group members in comments and conversations), while still protecting sensitive information.

This option is especially useful for groups that cannot share some data publicly due to legal constraints; for example, Financial or Legal departments. 


Can I set any Goal to private?

No. If a Goal contributes to a public Goal, it cannot be made private. 

How do I view a list of users with access rights to my Goal?

On the Goal detail page, click Actions [...] > Quit Edit > Permission Settings > Permission Settings. The Visibility and Permissions window opens. Use this list to view, add, or remove users from the access list.

How do I know if a Goal has restricted access?

Goals with restricted access have a lock icon next to the Goal name. If you do not have access to view a Goal, you will not be able to see any information about the Goal and need to request access.   

How do I remove editors from a Goal?

Remove editors by clicking on the trash can next to the respective editor’s name. If an editor can’t be removed from a Goal, the trash can is replaced by a lock icon.

The user’s manager will be added as an editor by default on public Goals. If the user’s Goal is connected upwards to other Goals, the editors on those Goals will also be able to edit the user’s Goal. If the Goal creator becomes an editor, they can be removed from the Goal just like any other editor.


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