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How can I activate a workflow?

So far, no Internet post or Community post has been helpful.

2 answers

Hi Phil -

Workflows become active when they are a part of a workflow scheme that is being used by a project.

If you go to one your project's settings page, you will see the workflow scheme that the project is currently using:

Annotation 2022-05-10 143031.png

In my example, (marked by red lines) this project is using the Workflow Scheme "CJA: Software Simplified Workflow Scheme".  This scheme has one workflow assigned to it, "Software Simplified Workflow for Project CJA".


If you have created a workflow and are wondering how to activate it for your project, go to the settings page for the project you want to use your new workflow and click on the workflow scheme.  ("CJA: Software Simplified Workflow Scheme" in my example above)  You will be redirected to a screen that looks like this:

Annotation 2.png

Click on "add workflow", followed by "add existing" - on the window that pops up, select the workflow you want to use, and the issue types that you want to follow this workflow in projects that are using this scheme.

Hope this helps!

While I'm struggling to navigate and then remember how I navigated, can you please answer this question: Why is it that when I click (as I recall) Add Workflow, and I need to enter a workflow name, the name drop-down shows people in my organization rather than workflow names?  This morning I at least arrived at the Assign button, but not the Associate button.

I'm taking a step back, in that I do not want to activate my workflow until I've added automation (a rule), but I don't see a place to do that.  I guess I'll post a separate question for that.

You don't add automation rules to workflows specifically, you add them through the administration ->System -> Automation Rules menu.


As to why your workflow name field suggesting users, I'm not sure, but you should be able to just type the name you want to assign to the new workflow.

Just to be safe though, is this the screen and "name drop-down" you're talking about?

Annotation 2.png

Actually, mine has weird suggestions too, including names and statuses.  Don't stress about it, just name your workflow :)


Annotation 2.png

Yes, that's the one.  I detoured many times from that screen because I couldn't imagine I'd have to copy the exact name of my workflow and type it in, and ignore the user names.

what? wait, don't copy the name of an existing workflow - this is for creating a new workflow

If you have already created the workflow, you just need to follow the steps at the bottom of my explanation above - starting with "if you have created a workflow and are wondering how to activate it..." 

I believe the mistake here was that you clicked "add workflow" from the "Workflows" menu instead of the "Workflow Schemes" menu

I will carefully retrace my steps and see what unfurls.  Would that the path were simpler, but then, where would the challenge lie?

Like padraik likes this

In answer to the statement above:

"If you have created a workflow and are wondering how to activate it for your project, go to the settings page for the project you want to use your new workflow and click on the workflow scheme. ", the screenshot below is the left panel (please remind me of the Jira term for the panel) for [My project] > Project Settings (in the left panel).  Did I miss something?  

Project Settings navigation pane.jpg

Also, as I mentioned yesterday, although I want to know how to activate the workflow, I want also to add a rule.  A comment above says that is done on the project level.  Does it that mean the workflow has to be active, or inactive, or does it not matter?

It doesn't matter (although if you're automating on a specific transition, that transition needs to exist) - and it's not on a project level, you do it from system admin

Where do I find system admin, please?

The gear in the top right of your window - beside your profile


Annotation 2.png

In trying to create a rule for a specific transition in an inactive workflow, the "from" status can't be typed in (it's not in the dropdown, of course) because it already exists.  I conclude that I have to activate the workflow to create the rule.  I'll do this, even though it means that in order to continue to develop the workflow later, I'll need to make a copy and work on the copy, then swap them out later.  Please confirm.

I wonder--does Work Management offer a freer environment for creating workflows and rules?  I assume any workflow I create in WM (I created some simple ones months ago) can be assigned.

I managed to assign, associate and import my workflow, which made it active.  I then tried to create a rule, but for my purpose, I saw no condition that I need (yet).  I think I need a post action, with no rule, for my first purpose: to populate a user field with the value of the transitioner.  My second purpose is to only allow the transition if the user belongs to a group.  Since I don't want this to happen via error, I think I need to create a subtask for every one of these type of transitions, instead of using statuses, with the appropriate group as the "owner" of the subtask.  Is that do-able, and if so, how might I accomplish this?

After searching the Internet in vain for assigning a subtask to a group, I saw a hint that maybe a subtask can be assigned to a Team.  a) Can that be done, and b) Does a subtask have to have an assignee to exist?

I'm still learning Smart Values myself, which is what you'll need to use in your automation.

I would suggest posting this as a new question to attract people who have more experience with automation and smart values.

Would you mind marking our thread here as an accepted answer so that it can help others looking for information on how to activate a workflow?

To summarize, I have 4 questions:

1) Can I populate a user field with the value of the transitioner, and how?  Post action?

2) Is the only way to assure that one group will see a transition to automatically create a subtask containing that transition, and somehow have one group (or Team?) notified about that subtask, and somehow have only that group or team able to perform transitions in the subtask?

In answer to your suggestion, I don't see a link to Accept as Answer.

It should be a green button at the very top of this thread we're replying to

Annotation 2.png

Yes; that's what's missing.  I can vote, but I don't know what that does.  I did click "This was helpful" at the bottom of the page.

0 votes

Hi Phil!

A workflow is activated when it's added to a workflow scheme and that workflow scheme is being used in a project.

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