I'm new to SharePoint designer, and I've created approval workflows that come pre-packaged with SP. However, my company is requesting to have a more complicated workflow in place. I need a workflow that inputs time-off/vacation requests into a SP calendar based on the approval process. Then, if the time-off gets approved, a calendar entry gets automatically inserted for that requestor, and they are notified via email concerning the results. Is there anyone that can offer me some guidance as to how to do this? Does anyone offer specialized consulting for this type of project?

1 Answer 1


If I understand your requirements correctly, this is a simple multi-stage workflow. First you will need a list ("Vacation Requests") in which the user can add their requests to. Fields such as start date, end date, etc can be entered by the user here.

Next, create an approval workflow that will 'kick-off' when an item is added. This workflow will send an approval email to whomever you choose, notifying them of the vacation request. If you need examples of creating an approval workflow, there are multiple examples of this by performing a google search.

The last part (and this is the 'multi-stage' aspect of this requirement) is to make an entry in a DIFFERENT list which contains the information the user entered. This is the calendar list that holds that actual, approved vacation. You can pull the data from the original request, and create a new list item in this new list using these values. The entry will be entered as an approved vacation request. Of course, you would only add the item in this list if the request was approved.

  • The vacation request that I created is an info-path form. Currently, once they submit the form it gets saved to a doc. library. I guess I'll need to find a way to have those fields mapped to the final list you mention, where the values get populated directly on to the calendar. It sounds simple, but I'm sure the implementation will be a lot harder...
    – gpapas
    Sep 11, 2014 at 17:07
  • do you have to have item-level permissions for every item so that users don't see/edit/delete other people's requests? or do users not even see their own requests (like they have "Add only" permissions?) ... Also if it is a doc library, do we force users to pick unique file names every time? THis is such a basic usage of sharepoint but im having a hard time understanding how to make it work in the real world with concerns like those i just mentioned. google led me here.
    – TCC
    Jul 30, 2015 at 21:14
  • There is a setting in every list/library named "Item-level permissions" that has options for "read all items" or "Read items that were created by the user". Choosing the second option allows you to limit who can see the list items - only the user that created them, or everyone. If you actually need permissions to be set on every list item, that is more complicated and usually not required. As for doclibs, unique filenames are a requirement for SharePoint - workflow or not.
    – Kolten
    Jul 31, 2015 at 22:17

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