I have created a SharePoint 2013 On Adding workflow using VS2012.

If I login with an user that has site-level contribute permission, then the workflow is triggered normally as expected but if I login with a user who has contribute permission only on at list level, the workflow does not start and following error is thrown:

"HTTP 401 {"error":{"code":"-2147024891, System.UnauthorizedAccessException","Access denied. You do not have permission to perform this action"

How can I trigger the workflow for users who don't have site level contribute permissions?

  • Can you briefly explain around what you are tyring to achieve using the workflow. You probably need to grant the user access to more entities than just the list that you are talking about. Commented Sep 15, 2015 at 10:36
  • I write to history using WriteToHistory, create Workflow Task using SingleTask, get current user using LookupSPUser, get current workflow task using GetTaskListId and LookupSPListItem. Note:I already Grant the login user by contribute permission on WorkflowTaskList and WorkflowHistoryList
    – MGaber
    Commented Sep 15, 2015 at 11:26

1 Answer 1


Your users need the following permissions -

  1. Contribute to Workflow History - to get to the list , go to site url/WorkflowHistory/AllItems.aspx

  2. Read to Workflow Tasks

  3. Read to the Site
  4. Read to the List

To manage permissions, navigate to its list settings, go to "permissions for this list" and give the requisite permission to the target user. It is advised that you create a group with the above set of permissions, and add users to this group as required.

  • thank you Swayam Siddha for your reply, I tried your advice but I faced the same issue "the workflow does not trigger for users who don't have site level contribute permissions"
    – MGaber
    Commented Sep 16, 2015 at 11:48
  • Don't the users need Contribute access to the Workflow Tasks list as well? Commented Sep 23, 2015 at 18:04
  • Afaik, only approvers need contribute action Commented Sep 24, 2015 at 2:42
  • finally I found this link that solve all what I need
    – MGaber
    Commented Oct 11, 2015 at 17:25

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