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Apply to each for Approvals: send out many approvals in parallel

 

Although apply to each has a setting for changing between parallel and sequential mode it does not seem to work with approvals.

I think it is a key function of flows to be able to send out many approvals - confirmation for meny individuals.

However approval (or send email with options and send approval mail actions) seem to process such a scenario in a sequential manner. (sending out the approval mail just afer answering the previous..)

 

See also:

https://powerusers.microsoft.com/t5/I-Found-A-Bug/Apply-for-each-Parallel-for-approvals/m-p/57357#M1...

Status: Completed

This has been completed. You can read more here: https://flow.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/gateway-ha-increased-apply-to-each/

Comments
Level: Powered On

This might help. It helped me solve my issue. I wanted to have an approval go to 2 people at the same time and then wait until both people approved to move to the next step. This allows me to send 2 seperate approval emails at the same time and wait for both of their responses.

 

https://powerusers.microsoft.com/t5/Building-Flows/Approval-Process-multiple-approvals-required/m-p/...

Level 8

Thank you, I know this. There is also a "whitepaper" formatted nice description of this.

This unfortunately works only for a small and a-priori known number of approvals.

You can't send out a large number of approvals to a list of peope, e.g. to everybody in a group.

(I' was also thinking on sending this out via Forms, but Forms connector does not support yet to create a form, just to harvest replies. I guess there is already an idea also for that...) 

Besides, this shortcoming really contradicts the marketed features (parallel/sequential switch) of the Apply for Each loop.

CJH
Level: Powered On

I think this feature would be really useful- I've got exactly the same challenge with one of my flows where a list of approvers is generated outside flows and I need to send approvals to everyone on the list at the same time. Plus, I need users to be able to see what the replies are from approvers as they come in.

 

Given that the number of approvers could be 20 or more (and could change frequently), it just doesn't seem feasible to use parallel flows to do this.

 

Adding the ability to Apply To Each in parallel would be ideal.

Level 8

Any update here?

Level: Powered On

I also need this functionality! The approver task should be sent out in parallel and then wait for the first reply. Smiley Happy

 

The problem I have is that I always have two approvers (one main approver and one for backup in case the first approver is sick or on holiday). If the main approver is sick or on holiday the approver task will never come to the backup approver since the main approver is not able to provide the first response. 

Anonymous
Not applicable

I've been looking for a way to do this for a week. Having to add parallel paths for each approval of the circa 20 employees is very labour intensive. The dream is to be able so select a list of people to send to in the "Assinged to" section.

Level 8
Level: Power Up

I have been able to get up to five parallel approvals in a workflow. The key is that this workflow needs to point to a document that is is a SharePoint Library. Versioning, traceability, and co-authoring would be managed by SharePoint. I tried to list the details below using a snapshot of three approvers, but I have successfully expanded this to five max so far. 

 

If you attach this workflow to a list, you can create list items with the attachment containig the path to the SharePoint item. Multiple list items of 5 reviewers would be connected to the same document in the SharePoint library.

 

 

 

 

Start
Inline image 1
In Microsoft Flow, when you are creating the flow from scratch, select SharePoint as the starting trigger, and the initial trigger "When an item is created". I could only get three of the workflows in but you get the idea. (SharePoint -> When an item is created -> Do Until)
I created my first workflow, then created a parallel branch up to five times. When I try to go beyond five, it copies workflow data from one of the ones I created. 
Expanded Do Until Loop
Inline image 2
The Do Until code is @or(equals(body('Start_an_approval')?['response'], 'Approve'), empty(triggerBody()?['Reviewer_x0020_One'])). It is workflow definition languages that is loosely based on Azure Logic Apps. I am learning C# first, then coming at this from the other end to master it, but in the meantime this code says keep sending approvals to the person I define until "Reviewer One" approves the request. The request will loop an infinite number of times for up to thirty days before Microsoft Flow ends the workflow execution or the reviewer approves the approval request and breaks out of the workflow loop.
Start an Approval
Inline image 3
Everyone from the assigned list is selected by default. 
Condition Logic
Inline image 5
This Condition says that if the approval response is anything but "Approve", update the list item to show empty field or "Rejected" and send a revision email to the author of the document revision request. If the response is "Approve" do nothing and the logic above will break the person out of the workflow to the next step.
 
I cannot add the list details but the column values are: Title (text), Due Date (date), Reviewer One (people lookup), Reviewer One Status (text), Reviewer Two, Reviewer Two status etc...up to Reviewer Five.
 
The workflow will update the Reviewer Status with Reject or Approve based on Reviewer action to the approval notice they receive. 
KLD
Level: Power Up
Power Automate Staff
Status changed to: Completed

This has been completed. You can read more here: https://flow.microsoft.com/en-us/blog/gateway-ha-increased-apply-to-each/