Workflows and Content Type Hubs–Whats the story?

Recently I have received a lot of misinformation on associating workflows to content types managed via Content Type (CT) Hub.

It is true that workflows do not get published along with the content type from the hub. That means, if you have associated a workflow to a content type and publish the content type, only the content type is published and not the workflow.

So how do I approach this problem if I want to associate my workflow with the published content type?

The key thing here is installing your workflow in the hub and in all the subscriber site collections.

  • Create a workflow and associate it with your content type in the hub.
  • Before publishing this content type, export the reusable workflow and import it in all the subscriber site collections or deploy your workflow to the farm if it is a farm solution
  • Activate your workflow feature
  • Now, your workflow is available in the hub as well as all the subscriber site collections.
  • Publish the content type. The workflow association will be published.

To test this:

In the subscriber site collection:

  • Add the published content type to a document library (or list)
  • Go to the library’s Workflow Settings Page
  • Select the published content type and click on Add Workflow
  • It should navigate you to the Workflow Settings page of that content type
  • Notice your workflow associated with the published content type available to choose in the Workflow Template choices.
  • The association still exists even if you republish the content type.

Some good links to bookmark re. workflows:

SharePoint 2010 Workflow Resource Center

Building Effective Workflows using SharePoint Server 2010

SharePoint Server 2010 Workflow Administration

It will be great if you can leave any comments if you are using workflows with the content types published from the hub. Love to hear your experiences.