On one of my recent projects, a client asked if it would be possible for the link to a task within a workflow notification email to open the task in “edit” mode instead of “display”. If you’re unfamiliar with SharePoint 2013 task processes built in SharePoint Designer, here’s what their process looked like prior to our change:
- Someone submits form
- Approval request sent to manager
- Manager clicks link in email to open task
- Manager clicks “Edit”
- Manager clicks “Approve”
They wanted to eliminate step 4 to make the process as easy as possible (one-click after opening link in email). Here’s what we ended up doing:
Perhaps one of the most useful automated processes out there is the ability to do approval processes. We fortunately have two tools on-prem or online that allows us to perform this action. Microsoft Flow offers some incredible connectivity between services (like approve a Tweet and post it, approve something from Google Docs and have it moved to SharePoint, etc.), but the approval process itself is very simple at this point and doesn’t offer some of the more robust features and customization options we get in SharePoint Designer 2013 approval processes.
I also will use both tools in the same business process occasionally, because they both have unique strengths.
But which do you use for approvals?
The quick answer to the question is: Use Flow for simple approvals, or approvals that involve multiple sites or external services. Use SPD for more complicated processes and customization options for approvals that involve a single site.
This tutorial works for any Microsoft-Flow connected social media platform, but we’ll specifically go through the steps for setting up a Twitter tweet and Facebook post submission system. We’ll be utilizing Microsoft Flow’s new “Approval” feature. Here’s our (and maybe your) scenario.
- We want to allow broader participation in social media content, while still maintaining a close grip on the quality and management of our platforms. This is more inclusive, increasing engagement and also giving you more eyes and ears throughout the organization while maintaining control
- Individuals will submit their ideas (can be via direct email to a list, a form, PowerApp, etc. – we’ll use a list)
- Social media manager or team will approve or reject submissions which will then be automatically posted to the applicable social media network if approved. See bottom of post for additional challenges to enhance this system.
Let’s get started!