Start a Workflow with a Workflow

There are multiple ways to start a Workflow with a Workflow. A Workflow started by another Workflow is often called a “Helper Workflow”, and it is a “subprocess”. The term subprocesses illustrates that a Workflow was started by another Workflow. This is often referred to as parent-child relationship, where the child is the one that is started.

Why start a Workflow with a Workflow?

Getting your Workflow’s to interact with each other helps coordinate and link different processes together. Teams can create Workflow’s for different business processes, then link them together in different ways.

When you build a new Workflow, you can call in help from these ready-to-go Workflows instead of re-adding actions to perform a common automation your team already has a Workflow for.

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This helps simplify Workflow management to save specific, repeated business processes as standalone Workflows, like a file upload workflow to upload items to your team’s cloud storage.

How to connect Workflows together

One of the most common ways to embed subprocesses directly inside Workflows is with inline actions. There are two types of inline actions, iterators, which means to start a Workflow multiple times, and blocks, which means to start a Workflow once.

After adding these actions, you have the choice to Build inline or to Use Workflow by name, ID, or field. When you build inline, you’re adding a series of steps directly to the Workflow. When you Use Workflow by name, ID, or field, you’re embedding an existing Workflow from your team inline.

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Add a Workflow and repeat it multiple times

You can start a Helper Workflow and run it multiple times, this is called an iterator, to create an iterator, add the Tables: Start Workflow for each row or Excel: Start process for each row action.

Iterators are the easiest way to quickly repeat tasks. Some common examples of iterative tasks are sending emails to a list of employees, generating unique files based off row data, adding rows from one table to another, or starting an instance off of each row.

See Use iterators to repeat actions multiple times to learn more.

Add a Workflow and start it once

You can start a Workflow once with the Workflow: Start another Workflow action. This is called a block.

Blocks make it easy to organize steps and make your processes more portable. Envision a process where a user picks between three options. And based on the choice, one of three paths of an automation start. Many dependencies and conditions must be configured to enable this. To make it easier to organize and edit while building, blocks are used to group parts of the process together.

See Organize processes with conditional blocks to learn more.

Access or review your Helper Workflows

When you reference another Workflow in an action, it’s added under the Helper Workflows section of your Workflow Settings page. At any time you can view, and navigate to, any associated Workflows.

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