I have a workflow and processes within a list to create a unique identifier for each list entry. This works but doesn't always fire correctly (at item creation).

Sequence1 (calculated column) =Text(Date,"yy"&"-") currently results in: 20-

Sequence2 (calculated column) =Text(Modified_ID, "000") currently results in 00#

Sequence3 (calculated column) =Concatenate([Sequence1],[Sequence2]) resulting in 20-00#

The workflow is set to trigger on new item creation and it's only function is to Set Field: Modified_ID to Current Item:"ID" supplying the ID number to the list in a form that can be used in a calculated column as it is used in Sequence2

I know that all of the calculated columns work, but the sequence works before the Modified ID is set and therefore I get 20-000 instead of 20-00#.

The Modified ID sometimes shows up in the list when the item is done being created, sometimes it takes me modifying the list item by opening it and saving it. Then after the Modified_ID appears it can take another modification for the Unique ID to work out to 20-00#.

I'd like it to work in series with Modified ID first

Sequence1 then Sequence 2

I'm working with SP2010 and SPD 2010 and the loss of infopath when we adopted MS Office 2016 has broken everything so I am slowly working around it. In case you're wondering I have no other developers on staff that I can ask/work with.

2 Answers 2


Calculated column formulas take effect immediately while a workflow instance takes time to fire and function. There is nothing we can do to change that.

You can refer to the Id column in the Sequence2 column formula though, I have tested at my end and it works just fine:

Sequence2= Text([ID], "000")

  • I'll have to try that. I was under the impression that ID couldn't be used in a calculated column? Thank you! I greatly appreciate the help. Commented Nov 12, 2020 at 18:48
  • I just ran a new calculated column with the formula. Our system will only allow it to work a single time and not when the new item is created. When I go back to look at the formula the square brackets around ID are gone. When I re-enter them it works on the files already in the system. Commented Nov 12, 2020 at 19:06
  • @DavidHollowood To answer your questions: 1. The ID column will not show in the referred column list for the calculated column, but it can be used. 2. The square brackets around the referred column will not remain after you finish configuring the formula, that’s the expect behavior, but it will function all right. 3. Calculated columns should work as soon as they are configured, it doesn’t need a “trigger”, so it doesn’t matter if the items are new created. You can just use one combined formula as following: =CONCATENATE((TEXT(TODAY(),"yy"&"-")),TEXT(ID,"000")) Commented Nov 13, 2020 at 2:09
  • Thank you,I'll have to give that a go. Commented Nov 13, 2020 at 19:56

I'll be using a workflow to create a list item in a duplicate list and then close and delete the new form in the original list. It's a bit of a bodge but it works!

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