Starting your Workflow

Document created by Champion on May 11, 2014Last modified by on Jul 11, 2016
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This 'how to' can be recreated in either Nintex Workflow for SharePoint 2016, Nintex Workflow 2013 or Nintex Workflow 2010.

There are a few ways to start a workflow. You can set a workflow to start manually, on a condition (list workflows), or automatically when an item is created. I'm going to walk you through each of these methods. You can also start a workflow from another workflow by using the Start Workflow action.


Starting a Workflow Automatically (SharePoint Lists and Libraries)


To start a workflow automatically, you need to be in the Workflow Designer. Click on the Workflow Settings button in the Ribbon. The Workflow Settings dialog will open and this is where you can make your changes.


There is a field called Start when items are created. Select the drop down arrow and select Yes.



Once you have saved the settings and published the workflow, the workflow will start automatically when a user adds an item into the SharePoint list or library the workflow is associated with.


Trigger a workflow to start by using a Conditional Start

You can also configure to start a workflow if certain conditions are met.

List Workflows

  • Conditions can be set when an item is created, or
  • When an item is modified.


Library Workflows

  • Conditions can only be set when an item is modified.


List Workflows

For example, you may require the workflow to run when a user alters an item in a list.



To set a conditional start on a workflow, click on the Workflow Settings button in the Workflow Designer. In the Workflow Settings screen, you will see a Workflow Options section, and you will notice the Start when items are created and Start when items are modified section. This is where we can set a conditional start.


Use the drop down arrow to select Conditional in either the Start when items are created or Start when items are modified field. This will depend on what conditions you are after. A conditions button will appear to the right of the menu, click on it.



Use the Conditional Startup Options dialog to set a conditional start to your workflow. You can even add more than one condition. Once you have completed the workflow settings, publish the workflow and the workflow will be ready to use. 



Starting a Workflow Manually

You can also start a workflow manually. This gives you greater control over when a workflow should run.

Start a Site Workflow Manually

In the Workflow Designer, click on Workflow Settings in the Ribbon. Ensure the Start Manually check box is checked. Publish the workflow.


Now, to manually start the site workflow, navigate to the SharePoint site. In the Quick Launch menu, click on Site Contents. At the top, click on Site Workflows, and then select the site workflow you want to start.


Any workflows associated with the SharePoint Site will appear. Click on the Site Workflow you want to start. In the Start Workflow screen, click on Start to initiate the workflow. The workflow will then run.

site_wf2.png           start_workflow.png

Start a List or Library Workflow Manually

Create a list or library workflow and publish it to your site. In the SharePoint list or library, add a new item (the workflow will not have started). To start it manually, click on the ellipsis (…) next to the item and select Workflows. Any workflows associated with the SharePoint list will appear. Click on the workflow you want to run. A visual image of the workflow will be displayed. Click on the Start button to begin the workflow. 



Start a workflow using the Start Workflow action

You may want to initiate a site workflow or another workflow in the current list or library, from the current workflow. Workflows will only be included in the Start Workflow action if they have been published in the list or library where the current workflow is operating. When designing a site workflow, only published site workflows will be available. 


To use the Start workflow action, drag the action onto the workflow canvas and select the workflow you want to start from the drop down menu.



Done here? Move on to the next tutorial>> Find out more about your workflow history and how they're running!

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