Create an approval request for a SharePoint list

In this unit, you'll learn how to build a business-friendly scenario that uses approvals.

In this scenario, anyone who has access to the Microsoft SharePoint list can contribute tweets without knowing anything about Twitter. The social media team can then approve or reject those tweets. That team maintains control of the account and the content that goes out to customers.

Step one: Create a SharePoint list for tweets

You'll use a template that starts an approval process whenever a new item is created in a specific list. If the item is approved, a tweet is then posted to Twitter. For this unit, you'll change the process by adding steps that update a SharePoint list with the approval response, indicate whether the item was approved, and add any comments that the approver added to the proposed tweet.

First, let's create the SharePoint list.

  1. On your SharePoint site, create a SharePoint list named ContosoTweets.

  2. Open the list, and select Add column.

  3. Select + Add column to add the following columns:

    • Add a TweetContent column, and set the column type to Multiple lines of text. This will contain the content of the tweets for later approval. Select Save after each column you create.
    • Add a TweetDate column, and set the column type to Date and Time. Select More to find the Date and Time type.
    • Add an ApprovalStatus column, and set the column type to Yes/No. The approver can then select Yes or No to approve or reject the tweet.
    • Add an ApproverComments column, and set the column type to Single line of text. The approver can then add a comment about the approval status.

    Add columns

  4. Copy the URL of the SharePoint list. You'll use it when you create the flow.

Step two: Create an approval request flow

  1. Sign in to Microsoft Flow, and then select Approvals.

  2. Select Create approval flow, and then scroll down and select the Post list items to Twitter after approval template.

    Select template

  3. Make sure your account credentials for SharePoint, Approvals, and Twitter are correct, and then select Continue.

    Verify credentials

  4. Back in Microsoft Flow, in the When a new item is created action, enter the following values:

    • Site Address: Enter the URL of your team's SharePoint site.
    • List Name: Select ContosoTweets.

    Site Address and List Name

  5. In the Start an approval action, select Edit to show all the fields.

    Edit fields

  6. For Title, enter New tweet for, and then select Title in the dynamic content list.

    Title

  7. For Assigned to, enter and select either your name or a test user name.

    Assigned to

  8. For Details, remove the default items, and add TweetContent, TweetDate, and Created by DisplayName from the dynamic content list. Be sure to add the words on and by to make the content more readable.

    Details

  9. For Item Link, paste the URL of your SharePoint list, which you copied in the procedure in Step one. For Item Link Description, enter Contoso Tweet List.

    Item link

  10. In the Condition action, hover over the IF YES box, select the plus sign (+), and then select Add an action.

    Add an action

  11. Search for update item, select the SharePoint connector, and then select the SharePoint – Update item action.

    SharePoint update item

  12. For Site Address and List Name, enter the URL of the team's SharePoint site and ContosoTweets again. For ID, add ID from the dynamic content list. The ID field is used to match the actual tweet request in the SharePoint list.

    Site, list, and ID

  13. Select the Title field, and then, in the dynamic content list, search for title. Add the Title item from the When a new item is created action.

    New title

  14. Select ApprovalStatus, and set the value to Yes. Then select ApproverComments, and set the value to Comments from the dynamic content list.

    Status and comments

  15. Near the bottom of the IF NO, DO NOTHING box, select Add an action.

    Add a no action

  16. Repeat steps 11 through 14 to create a SharePoint – Update item action. Set the same values you set for the IF YES condition. The only difference is that you should set ApprovalStatus to No.

    ApprovalStatus = No

  17. Select the Post a tweet action, select Edit, and set Tweet text to TweetContent from the dynamic content list. This will create the actual tweet and then post it to Twitter when it's approved.

    Post and save

  18. Select Create flow.

Congratulations! You just created your first flow.

This is just one way that Microsoft Flow can empower your team to be more productive. Your team can contribute ideas, relevant news, or product guidance, but you still maintain control over what's tweeted out to customers.

In the next unit, you'll see what it looks like when an approver receives a new request for a proposed tweet.