Tuesday, January 18, 2011

SharePoint Designer 2010 Action: Start Approval Process

The “start approval process” is a brand new workflow activity available in SPS 2010.

The Start Approval Process action behaves like a pre-built workflow—the logic is already defined in the action. The action has several different phases built into it that defines task behaviors, task process behaviors, logging to the History Log, e-mail notifications, and completion conditions. Although the action comes with pre-built logic, it still needs information from you—such as the users (the reviewers), the order in which the tasks are to be routed to the participants—serial or parallel, the default is serial, and the due dates for task completion.

You can customize the predefined logic within the activity by clicking on the ‘approval hyperlink’ (as shown below).

A quick example:

The out-of-the-box approval workflow includes the following settings in his association form: End on first rejection & End on document change.

WF1

As far as I know, you can’t set these settings by default in this activity. If you want to apply this behavior to your own build workflow you can, for example, customize your initiation / association form with two extra checkboxes and pass the values to the workflow or you just can remove the condition so that they’re ‘checked’ by default. The screenshots below give you an idea of how to (remove the ‘if clauses’ way) enable this behavior.

WF2

You can find the behavior of the End on first rejection in the ‘change the behavior of a single task’ section.

WF3

First, move up the logic within the condition. Then you can remove the condition.

WF4

You can find the behavior of the End on document change in the ‘change the behavior of the overall task process’ section.

WF5

First, move up the logic within the condition. Then you can remove the condition.

WF6

That’s it.

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