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Creating a Workflow on a List Using SharePoint Designer 2010

Providing Line of Business (LoB) users with workflows for business processes is a powerful way for IT organizations to hasten user adoption of computing on a SharePoint platform. In a video tutorial titled “Creating a Workflow on a List Using SharePoint Designer 2010, Asif Rehmani demonstrates how to build this type of workflow on a calendar list in SharePoint 2010.

The objective of thus workflow is to automate otherwise manual actions which would likely be triggered when specific types of events are added to a shared calendar.

The first step is to set the status of the workflow to “Starting.” “Starting” is not an out of the box option for Workflow Status. The options include “Cancelled”, “Approved” or “Rejected”. But SharePoint Designer 2010 provides us, as Asif explains, with the option of typing in our own value, in this case “Starting.”

The first action to be taken in the workflow is “Send an eMail.” When a new event is added to the calendar, an email will be sent, automatically, to each member of the team site, notifying them of the new event.

“Send an eMail” is an out of the box “Actions” option with SharePoint Designer 2010. Once the action has been added to the workflow, the next step is select the users who will receive the email. By clicking on the book icon on the right of the “To:” form box in the “Define E-mail Message” Dialog, we can select the group of team members who will be recipients of the email message.

Asif Rehmani demonstrates how to use the “String Builder Box” in SharePoint Designer 2010 to automatically add text for the subject line as events are added. He provides a preface for the string –“New event added – “. He then adds a dynamic value by using the “Lookup for String” dialog to set the “Data source:” as the “Current Item” and the “Field from source:” option to “Title”.

The body of the email message includes static text, “New event has been created. Please take note:” A dynamic value follows this text, which is the URL for the event. The “Add or Change” Lookup feature is used to set the “Data source:” as “Current Item”. The “Field from source:” is set as “Encoded absolute URL field”

The text box provided for the email messages is a rich text box. Fonts, sizes, colors and styles can all be set, as required, and displayed as long as the type for the email message is set to “HTML”.

The next step is to create conditional statement for the workflow. The “Condition” button in the ribbon is used to select the type of condition to add to the workflow. The condition selected for this example is “If current item field equals value”. This conditional action is configured by defining the specific field to be reviewed by the workflow process prior to taking an action. The field we want is “Category”, meaning the category of the new calendar item.

Asif Rehmani selects “Holiday” as the category. The conditional action to be taken is to create a new item in the “Announcements” list. The new announcement will include the name (the “Title”) of the calendar event, which will be a holiday. The “then” statement of our conditional process is to “Create List Item.”

In the next post to this blog we’ll wrap up our narrative on this video tutorial.

Ira Michael Blonder

© Rehmani Consulting, Inc. & Ira Michael Blonder, 2013 All Rights Reserved