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SharePoint Designer 2013 Go-To Actions for Workflows Offer Highly Useful Features

This blog post continues our commentary on a video authored by Asif Rehmani, SharePoint MVP and MCT, SharePoint Designer 2013 Workflow Enhancements.

This video demonstrates how to use the “Assign the Task” “go-to action” that is included with SharePoint Designer 2013. Specifically, once this out of the box action has been selected, the user is provided with a form that is used to record:

  • the name of the participant selected via a Look Up procedure
  • a title for the planned task that the participant will perform
  • a Description of the planned task
  • and a date by which the task must be performed

As well, the form offers options that can be set for:

  • the task
  • eMail messaging related to the task
  • and, “Outcome Options”

The task option demonstrated in this video appears to us to stem from an “If, then” logic loop. In fact, the task option instructs the workflow management application to wait until the task is completed before proceeding further on the process. The email option permits the user to send an email to the designated task participant(s) and includes a message body editor. A nifty feature of the message editor is a variable that is included to identify the user who has assigned the task to the participant(s). This variable can be populated from a specific data source (in the case of our example, “Workflow Context”), a specific field from the data source (“Initiator”), and, finally, even configured as to how to return the specified information (in the case of our example, as “Display Name”).

We think that by providing the user with a more extensive set of options that can be selected with no more than a click of a mouse (or in the case of Windows 8 and a touch monitor, a tap on a screen) Microsoft has increased the likelihood that average users will likely be successful with SharePoint Designer 2013 as more of the syntactical chore has been removed from the possibility of human error.

The Outcome Options included with this go-to action provide the SharePoint Designer 2013 user with a method of setting the:

  • Task Content Type (in this case, SharePoint 2013 Workflow, but presumably selections are also provided for SharePoint 2010 Workflow, or Project Server 2013 Workflow)
  • Outcome Field
  • and, finally, a Default Outcome

Once again, with these out of the box options we think users can be more confident of likely success as they plan on implementing the go-to actions included with this SharePoint 2013 version of SharePoint Designer. We continue our commentary on this video in the next post to this blog.

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