How to Create a Workflow Template in SharePoint

Creating a workflow template in SharePoint can be easy and efficient. Follow a few steps to set up a structured and streamlined system for your organization. This article will help you.

  1. Understand why you need a workflow template in SharePoint. It’s a blueprint for automating tasks and standardizing processes. Creating a template saves time and effort by predefining steps for tasks or projects.
  2. Think about the specific needs of your organization. Identify key steps and decisions. This makes sure the template matches your team’s objectives.
  3. Use SharePoint to create your template. SharePoint has tools and features to define workflows using flowcharts. These visuals help with understanding and executing automated processes.
  4. Make your template simple and comprehensive. Don’t add too much complexity or extra steps. The template should be easy to follow for those not familiar with SharePoint or workflow automation.
  5. Involve key stakeholders in the design process. Ask team members who will use the workflow for input. This makes sure the template fits their needs. It also increases employee engagement and adoption.
  6. Review and update your workflow templates as needed. As your organization changes, revisit your workflows. Ensure they remain effective and aligned with current practices.

What is SharePoint and why use it for workflow templates

SharePoint is a powerful platform. It helps businesses to streamline processes and collaborate. It has many features, including creating workflow templates. These provide a blueprint for automating and standardizing tasks. This increases efficiency and productivity.

You can design custom workflows in SharePoint. This lets you align them with your organization’s needs. It saves time and ensures no steps are skipped.

SharePoint integrates with other Microsoft tools, such as Outlook and Excel. This helps communication and data sharing between platforms. It optimizes workflow management.

To maximize the benefits of creating workflow templates in SharePoint, Pro Tips are available. One tip is to review and update the templates often. This keeps them aligned with changing business needs. Proactively adapting workflows helps improve efficiency and effectiveness.

Understanding the basics of workflow templates in SharePoint

To understand the basics of workflow templates in SharePoint, dive into the benefits of using them. Discover how these templates streamline your processes and increase efficiency. Additionally, explore common use cases that demonstrate the versatility of workflow templates. This section will equip you with valuable insights to maximize your SharePoint workflow management.

The benefits of using workflow templates in SharePoint

Workflow templates in SharePoint are a great asset to any organization. They offer streamlined processes, enhancing productivity and efficiency. Here are some of the benefits:

  • No manual tasks: So staff can focus on other things.
  • Consistent processes: Reducing errors and inconsistencies.
  • Saved time: Automated tasks, deadlines tracked and notifications sent.
  • Team collaboration: Central location for document sharing and communication.
  • Customizable: Easily adjust templates to fit business needs.
  • Process optimization: Identify inefficiencies and make improvements.

Plus, integration with Microsoft tools such as Outlook and Teams further enhance the workflow process. However, remember to review and update your templates regularly, as requirements change.

Common use cases for workflow templates

Workflow templates are popular in SharePoint. They are pre-defined models that streamline and automate business processes. Companies in many industries use them to save time and reduce errors.

One example is document approval. Users can set up the steps that must be followed. This eliminates manual tracking and chasing after approvals.

Another use is onboarding new employees. HR has a structured process with tasks like IT setup and initial training. This helps new hires transition smoothly.

Workflow templates can also be used in incident management. They trigger a set of actions when an incident occurs. This helps to communicate quickly and resolve issues faster.

A global logistics company was able to use workflow templates to track goods from warehouse to warehouse. This SharePoint template included notifications and allowed real-time visibility into shipment progress.

Step-by-step guide to creating a workflow template in SharePoint

To create a workflow template in SharePoint, follow this step-by-step guide. Set up necessary permissions and access controls, define stages and steps of the workflow, and configure conditions and actions. Each sub-section will provide a solution for a specific aspect of creating a SharePoint workflow template.

Setting up the necessary permissions and access controls

To secure collaboration and data, it’s important to set up permissions and access controls in SharePoint. This ensures only authorized people can access and edit sensitive info. To configure permissions effectively, follow these 3 steps:

  1. Analyze your requirements: First, identify roles and responsibilities in your organization. See who should have read-only access, who needs editing privileges, and who should have admin control. This provides the basis for assigning proper permissions to users or groups.
  2. Create permission levels: SharePoint has pre-defined permission levels like Full Control, Edit, Read, and Limited Access. You can also define custom permission levels for your needs. Custom levels let you grant specific privileges, while restricting other actions. By customizing permission levels to individual roles, you maintain secure and efficient workflow.
  3. Assign permissions: After defining permission levels, assign them to users or groups in SharePoint. Assigning permissions at the site level gives you top-level control over resources. You can also assign permissions at list or doc library levels when needed.

Plus, consider extra security measures like enabling version control or Information Rights Management (IRM) when dealing with sensitive data. Pro Tip: Review and update permission settings regularly as organizational roles change or employees join/leave the company, to maintain proper access controls in SharePoint.

Defining the stages and steps of the workflow

Define the stages and steps of your workflow to create a clear path in SharePoint. Here’s a guide to help:

  1. Clarify the goals and objectives.
  2. Divide the process into stages.
  3. Pick the specific steps for each stage.
  4. Assign roles to individuals or teams.
  5. Connect steps to ensure tasks are done in the right order.
  6. Review and update the stages and steps often.

For extra value, try these tips:

  • Keep stages and steps simple and easily understood.
  • Label each stage and step clearly.
  • Set deadlines or timelines for each step.
  • Use SharePoint notifications and reminders.

These tips will help streamline your workflow by boosting organization, communication, and efficiency.

Configuring conditions and actions within the workflow

  1. Identify the need: Figure out which points need conditions checked. Like document approval based on hierarchy or notification criteria.

  2. Set up checks: Go to workflows section and create/edit one. Find the spot for the condition and add a check action.

  3. Define condition parameters: Use logical operators like “equals” and “not equals”. This ensures the action is triggered only when the conditions are met.

  4. Configure actions: Customize who gets notifications, or update fields in a document automatically based on criteria.

  5. Test and validate: Test with different scenarios before using the workflow. Ensure all conditions are configured and the actions are triggered.

  6. Monitor and optimize: Track performance in real-world usage. Make adjustments and optimizations as needed.

Plus, SharePoint has other features like parallel branching and looping – explore to customize further.

Pro Tip: Review your configured workflows with business processes regularly to ensure they meet requirements and maximize efficiency.

Testing and troubleshooting the workflow template

To ensure that your workflow template in SharePoint is functioning smoothly, it is crucial to test and troubleshoot it effectively. Verify the functionality of the workflow template and identify and resolve common issues and errors. This will ensure a seamless workflow experience and maximize the efficiency of your SharePoint system.

Verifying the functionality of the workflow template

  1. When checking the workflow template’s functionality, compatibility with different systems and platforms is key. Test it on various devices, browsers, and operating systems. Watch for any display problems on different screen sizes or resolutions.
  2. Check all automated tasks work correctly and efficiently. For example, notifications and emails must trigger when they should.
  3. Simulate user actions to test the template’s response. This could be incorrect data, missing fields, or unauthorized actions. Validate error handling to ensure a good user experience.
  4. Test usability too. Buttons, forms, and menus should be easy to use. Carry out usability tests with representative users to improve navigation, instructions, and user experience.
  5. A multinational company didn’t test their new workflow system thoroughly. This caused delays and extra costs. Highlighting the importance of verifying a workflow template before implementation.

Identifying and resolving common issues and errors

Identify cases where the workflow isn’t working properly. This could involve features or tasks not progressing. Pay attention to error messages, take action and troubleshoot. Keep an eye out for incomplete tasks. Investigate and provide solutions.

Check compatibility of software and tools. Incompatibility can cause errors and delays. Seek user feedback on their experience. Monitor the workflow performance regularly. Catch emerging issues before they escalate.

Customize variables for task deadlines, notifications, and approval processes. Use automated testing tools to identify common issues and errors efficiently. Save time and provide accurate results.

Best practices for creating effective workflow templates in SharePoint

To ensure efficient workflow templates in SharePoint, simplify and streamline the process. Incorporate automation and integration with other tools to enhance functionality.

Simplifying and streamlining the workflow process

Analyze existing processes. Take a look at current workflows to discover areas for simplification or automation. Identify pain points and decide on the best approach.

Standardize templates. Create standard templates that can be used across teams and departments. This ensures consistency and minimizes confusion.

Automate repetitive tasks. Find time-consuming, repetitive tasks and automate them with SharePoint features or third-party tools. This saves time and reduces human error.

Implement approval processes. Establish clear approval processes within your workflows in order to avoid delays. Everyone should know their responsibilities.

Regularly review & optimize. Review workflows to identify issues. Make changes based on feedback. Optimize for improved efficiency over time.

Include user-friendly interfaces, provide training sessions, leverage SharePoint integration, and monitor performance metrics to further enhance simplification.


A multinational company was having trouble with invoice approval. Multiple stakeholders from different departments caused significant delays and errors. By using a streamlined workflow template in SharePoint, they consolidated all invoice-related activities into one system. With specified approval stages, automated notifications, and real-time visibility, they cut approval times by 50% and diminished errors. This improved efficiency and improved vendor relationships due to prompt payments.

Incorporating automation and integration with other tools

Microsoft Flow helps users automate workflows between SharePoint and other applications – without writing code. You can set an email notification when a new item is added to a SharePoint list or document library. Also, Power Automate lets you connect SharePoint with external systems like Salesforce, Dynamics 365, or Twitter. PowerApps provides a drag-and-drop interface to create forms and apps that interact with SharePoint.

To make the best of these tools, here are the best practices:

  1. Analyze the workflow requirements and find areas to benefit from automation.
  2. Design simple workflows.
  3. Test workflows before deploying.
  4. Train and support end-users.
  5. Monitor and analyze performance.

Automation and integration in SharePoint workflows can bring time savings and improved collaboration. Following these best practices will help you to implement effective workflows that meet your organization’s needs.


Creating a workflow template in SharePoint is an awesome way to make processes smoother and boost efficiency. Here’s how to make one that fits your organization:

  1. Figure out the tasks, actions, and approvals for your workflow. Once you know what needs to be done, you can start using SharePoint’s user-friendly interface.
  2. SharePoint has pre-built templates you can use as a base. They save time by providing settings and options already configured. However, modify them to fit your needs.
  3. Go to the site where you want the workflow. Select “Add a workflow” then choose the template. Now you can customize tasks, due dates, and notification settings.
  4. For advanced customization, use Microsoft Flow. It allows you to connect with other systems and external data sources. Make your workflow even more automated and tailored to your organization.
  5. Test the template before rolling it out. This helps to avoid any potential issues or errors.

Pro Tip: Include key stakeholders when creating the template. Their input and feedback will make sure the template meets their needs and improves efficiency.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is SharePoint? A: SharePoint is a web-based collaboration platform developed by Microsoft that allows organizations to store, share, and manage documents and information.

Q: What is a workflow template in SharePoint? A: A workflow template in SharePoint is a predefined set of actions and steps that automate business processes. It helps users streamline their work and ensures consistent and efficient execution of tasks.

Q: How can I create a workflow template in SharePoint? A: To create a workflow template in SharePoint, you can use SharePoint Designer, a powerful tool provided by Microsoft. Open SharePoint Designer, navigate to your site, and click on “Workflows” in the left-hand menu. From there, you can create a new workflow and customize it according to your requirements.

Q: What are the key steps involved in creating a workflow template in SharePoint? A: The key steps involved in creating a workflow template in SharePoint are as follows: 1. Define your workflow’s objectives and key process steps. 2. Open SharePoint Designer and navigate to your site. 3. Click on “Workflows” and choose “List Workflow” or “Reusable Workflow” depending on your needs. 4. Configure the workflow settings, such as start options, permissions, and task assignments. 5. Add actions and conditions to your workflow using the available options in SharePoint Designer. 6. Test and publish your workflow template to make it available for users.

Q: Can I customize a workflow template in SharePoint after it is created? A: Yes, you can customize a workflow template in SharePoint even after it is created. SharePoint Designer provides a user-friendly interface to make modifications to your workflow template. You can add or remove actions, change conditions, update task assignments, or incorporate additional logic as per your evolving business requirements.

Q: Are there any limitations or considerations while creating a workflow template in SharePoint? A: Yes, there are a few limitations and considerations to keep in mind when creating a workflow template in SharePoint. Some important ones include: – Workflow templates created in earlier versions of SharePoint may not be fully compatible with newer versions. – SharePoint workflows require the Workflow Manager infrastructure to be properly configured. – Complex workflows may require additional coding or integration with other systems. – Testing and validation are crucial to ensuring the accuracy and effectiveness of your workflow template.

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