I want to create a three-state workflow in SP (I do not have SP designer). I want to trigger the start of the workflow only when a field changes to a specific value but the workflow is starting as soon as a new item is created. Is that how all three-state workflows work? Is there a way to trigger the start of the workflow only when certain criterion is met?

  • Go to list settings -> workflow settings and select the workflow. What do you see there? Oct 4, 2019 at 18:27
  • Not sure what you mean? I see my workflow - three state. The tickbox is checked on "Creating a new item will start the workflow". I guess that's the default option in SP...no way around it other than manually starting a workflow which I dont want to do Oct 4, 2019 at 18:43

2 Answers 2


Using SharePoint Designer, there is a way to wait workflow based on condition. Suppose we have a column named "IsSubmitted" and default value for this column is False. We want to move forward if the Value is True. So if we change the value to True, then the workflow will execute the next steps.

See below screenshot about the workflow

enter image description here

If the answer helpful, please upvote and mark as accepted.


Three state workflows do not have the option to be started on item updation. They can only be started manually or on item creation.

You can either write a custom workflow to achieve your requirements or (havn't tried this just suggesting but then you need designer for this) - create a custom workflow till your field changes and once it does, invoke the three state workflow in this workflow.

Yes, the three state workflow will get triggered as soon as item is created. It only means that the workflow has been started and will go into initial stage only when the column value you have given in workflow settings' initial stage is met. The workflow will not do anything if it does not go into initial stage

  • thanks, but there's no way to create a custom workflow if you don't have designer or some other add-on, correct? Oct 4, 2019 at 18:54
  • Is the field which you are waiting for and the choice field used in the 3 state workflow the same? Oct 4, 2019 at 18:56
  • Yes they are, but that shouldnt matter Oct 4, 2019 at 18:57
  • Why don't you set initial stage value to the specific value when you want to run the workflow? Oct 4, 2019 at 18:58
  • that part is fine. the issue is that the workflow starts when an item is created. no matter what value a field is. I'm just trying to confirm that is true as I've been trying different things for hours without success. I'm not worried about the value of the field but rather the start of the workflow which I want triggered when a field = X. But from what I see that's not possible Oct 4, 2019 at 19:00

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