I am using a pre-workflow to move a document from source library to target library after the pre-workflow does certain actions. Once the document enters the new library I want it to automatically start the main workflow in the target library. This operation is happening through System Account. Is this possible? If yes, how can I make it work?

All workflows are already set to start when created and/or changed. I created the workflows in SharePoint 2010 using Nintex but I dont think this is more related to Workflow framework and not Nintex specifically.

Scenario: Source: Source Document Library Workflow: Pre-Workflow --> It will move the document from Source Document Library to Target Document Library

Target: Target Document Library Workflow: Main Workflow--> This should start automatically once any document is getting created or updated by Pre-Workflow Execution Policy: On Creation/Update of Document in Target Document Library

Thanks, Rakesh

2 Answers 2


It may be because the item was created by the System Account, through the "pre-workflow", and according to numerous references, System Accounts cannot trigger workflows. Use an impersonation step to impersonate a specific user, and see if that helps.

  • Thanks Mike, I am sure it is because of that because otherwise it works fine with all other users. Can you provide some references for the same? Also do you know how to introduce the impersonation step in Nintex Workflow? I realize that this is a 3rd party tool so I am also going to ask this question in Nintex forum but just in case you know.
    – RNL
    Commented Mar 31, 2016 at 15:05
  • No I don't. support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/947284 pertains to 2007, but it also pertains to 2010 workflows. It's just one of those somewhat known gotchas of SharePoint.
    – Mike
    Commented Mar 31, 2016 at 15:47
  • I see, Thanks Mike. Let me see what I get from Nintex Community.
    – RNL
    Commented Mar 31, 2016 at 16:47

It's a know issue/limitation/bug/feature... SharePoint workflows set to start automatically will not get started when the item is created by System Account.

I've seen this happen in Sharepoint 2007/2010/2013.

Anyway, you can try to move the document as another user, with some kind of Impersonate User. Or you can create a Event Receiver to start the workflow into the destination list.

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