Summary : SharePoint Designer 2013 Changes,New Features and Enhancements, New SPD 2013 Features – App Step, Loop,Dictionary Type Variables, Stages in Workflows, New Task Actions etc..
Microsoft has made some significant Changes in SharePoint 2013 Designer.Before you plan on modifying Sites or designing workflows these are some of the Changes that you must know about.
No Design View
The Design View (the one that use to show the design at bottom with Split View) is no longer available in SharePoint Designer 2013. Read more…
SharePoint Designer 2013 you have the option of choosing the platform on which you wish to build a workflow in the workflow creation dialog. You can select SharePoint 2010 Workflow or SharePoint 2013 workflow.
Workflows – There are two kind of Workflows that you can create in Designer.
List Workflow: Used to start a workflow developed for a specific list.
Site Workflow: Used to start a workflow developed for the site.
Lets look at what has been improved in terms of workflows in SharePoint 2013 designer.
Copy-paste Workflow steps –
This new feature is the ability to Copy-and-Paste within the text-based designer. This means now you can Ctrl-C and then Ctrl-V just in your workflow Step to copy conditions\actions etc. You can select multiple lines of actions, steps and conditional blocks, or multiple stages, then copy and paste them into the places where you need the logic.Read more…
Call External Web Service from Workflow
New Action “Call Web Service” Action has been introduced to get data from external or Internal web service. Watch Video
Loops in Workflow
SharePoint workflows now support much desired “Loops”. Loops are now a fully integrated action which you can use within all 2013 Workflows.
Dictionary Type Variables
New variables have been introduced that can hold an array of values. This is to combine with Loop actions to get a set of values from various sources like external web service etc. The following are the three actions specifically designed for the Dictionary variable type.
Three actions specifically designed for the Dictionary variable type.
Count Items in a Dictionary
Get an Item from a Dictionary
Remember you use to Create State machine workflows .. well you don’t need them anymore. SharePoint Designer 2013 has introduced Stages where you can design the workflow in such a way that it can jump to any stage(when needed) as a response to an Action in another stage. A “Go to a stage” Action has been added to support this.
A new Set of Actions called “Task Actions” has been added. Two Actions under this category has been added.
Assign a task – This Action is to assign a Task to a User that outputs a Variable an a TaskId. You can use the people picker to select the person or group to whom you are assigning the task.
Start a Task Process – This action allows you to assign multiple tasks to multiple users and then use the results in a task process.
New Visual Designer
This designer is included in SharePoint Designer if you have installed Visio. You can drag in the different shapes on the left representing the different actions to create your workflow. Once done simply Publish the workflow to your SharePoint site.Read more… Watch Video
Recalled Approval Workflow
– There are many real world process examples that require an initiator to recall a process when s/he finds that there is something wrong with the item or information s/he already submitted. Now you can do his using parallel step where you will create two in parallel – the normal approval process and the recall process.