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Create an alert that will show what item (s) has been altered in a list

So I have a collaborative challenge between 2 departments at work.  Today, they have begun by posting a LARGE spreadsheet into SharePoint.  HR creates this spreadsheet, and financial accesses it.


The problem is, that it is hard for financial staff to identify what has changes.


What I am envisioning is converting this spreadsheet into a list, and then creating some alerts to that list.  This would at least advise staff when any change was made to the list (not made by that staff person).  This is basic out of the box workflow I realize.


What they are requesting goes a step further.  Is it possible to have the alert not only notify that the list has been changed, but also show what rows/fields have been changed? 


I am curious if there is a way to do this leveraging Nintex?  We have Enterprise On Premise installed here.


I will review some of my training materials and play with the program, but don't have any immediate thoughts as to how I would achieve this.   I appreciate any thoughts, direction, or experience any of you might have that relate to this need.




Tracy W. Gaynor

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Nintex Newbie

Re: Create an alert that will show what item (s) has been altered in a list

I also let them use a list instead spreadsheet, you can use the Sharepoint view in spreadsheet mode.

Then create a workflow that starts on each modified item, so you can notify the the that has changed.

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Re: Create an alert that will show what item (s) has been altered in a list

I agree with Fernando. To have a hope of managing this you have to shift from a spreadsheet to a list.

That said, I'd personally be looking at the process before jumping onto a solution for this. Assuming you don't have the time, or the experience, for this then consider the following:

  • Get both HR and Finance together to make sure everyone is on the same page. Assess their experience with SharePoint.
  • Let them know that Quick Edit (formerly Datasheet) view is powerful but comes with risks. If someone edits in error it impacts the entire process. They'll likely accept this risk if they're using a spreadsheet to support the process currently - that said, educate. Quick Edit is as powerful as it risky.
  • If your governance allows it you could adjust permission levels for the lift to  prevent them from deleting records and using workflow to manage that.
  • The central challenge you've got is to determine who needs to see what changes. Are there different roles with the process needing to see different types of challenge? Or is it a case of anyone on the team needs to know if any records have been changed? The later is easier to deal with.
  • Let's assume the easier scenario (based on your description). For that, Fernando's suggestion of creating a workflow that starts on modify is worth exploring. On modify you can have the workflow send a notification to a team, or individual, email.
  • However, you also said that the financial team wants to know what has changed. Does this mean they need to know all changes? The easiest approach is to turn on version history, and when the Send Notification action runs on modify have it include a link to the item and then get them to check version history. That way they'll see every change made to the record - all fields edited. A bit of training, along with text instructions in the email, could take care of this.

That meets your requirement. But the whole scenario has the feel of warranting a deeper dig. I get the feeling when you start showing them this they'll have more questions. However, as a quick-win this has possibilities.

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Nintex Newbie

Re: Create an alert that will show what item (s) has been altered in a list

Hi Tracy.

Agreed with Carmien that you should look at the process first. I second taking advantage of Version History feature due to the level of details of changes made to an item in a list.

Just want to add my 2 cents regarding some of Nintex's technical capability to assist you with what you are trying to achieve here.

Assuming Nintex Workflow 2013, the following workflow actions should be useful:

-Query Excel Service can help you transfer your data from excel sheet to your SharePoint list

-All Collection related workflow actions

-Set Item Permission can help you with governance

-Send Notifications can take care of all the email notifications



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