I have a custom sharepoint list that requires approval from a specific group before an item is shown to everyone who has access to the list.

I received a request to have all items be automatically approved if they have not been approved or rejected after five days of the item's creation. My institution hosts the sharepoint site, but I have administrative access through Sharepoint designer.

Can anyone suggest a strategy for accomplishing this requirement?


You should bind a SharePoint Designer workflow with the list, make it to run on Item Creation and use Pause until Date or Pause for Duration action.. Make it to pause for 5 days then put a condition where you check either the Item is approved/rejected.. If not than approve it by updating the Approval field...

See this for all Actions available in SharePoint Designer Workflow
See this for all Conditions available in SharePoint Designer Workflow

If you can perform development, you can also write a Timer Job for this purpose... Make it to run each day in off hours and iterate through the list for whom the Approval/Rejection is not done and make the decision based on Created field...

Good Strategy: I will myself go for Timer Job as it will be more feasible for me as a developer! May not be your case...

  • This is great, thanks! One question: I already have a simple workflow that runs when a list item is created. The workflow emails an approver that the user selects when creating the item. That's the only function of the workflow. Would it be possible to add the functionality specified in your first suggestion? If so, should I add it in to the existing workflow or make it a separate workflow? Thanks so much! – DeeDee Mar 30 '13 at 0:18
  • Nevermind, I did some research and figured out the answer. It was safe to add additional steps onto the existing workflow. I don't have a staging instance to play around with so I was a little hesitant to muck around with my existing workflow. – DeeDee Mar 30 '13 at 1:22
  • Good to hear you solved your problem! Yes adding steps to existing workflow is fine... – Arsalan Adam Khatri Mar 30 '13 at 14:53

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