SharePoint Workflow Retirement


The trending topic for SharePoint Community is that Microsoft SharePoint Designer-based workflows are going to be retired this year. What will impact the customers who are heavily dependent on SharePoint Workflows, and what are the alternatives?
SharePoint Workflow Retirement
This all started when Microsoft announced that they are going to retire the SharePoint 2010 workflow in this year, from 2020, 1st August. All the companies who depend on the SharePoint workflow for their business application started panicking, as Microsoft has another announcement on SharePoint 2013 workflow too. So what is the actual scenario here?
The question is which version of SharePoint you are using?
If the answer is SharePoint On-premises (2016 or 2019), then you don’t have to be worried right now as you have enough time till 2026. But if you are using SharePoint Online, then this bad news is for you. From the 1st of November, 2020 Microsoft start to remove the ability to run or create SharePoint 2010 workflows from existing tenants. SharePoint 2013 workflows will be turned off by default for new tenants. From the 1st August 2020, SharePoint 2010 workflows will be turned off for the new tenants.
Here is a visual content for understanding the SharePoint 2010 and 2013 workflow end of life in a nutshell,
SharePoint Workflow Retirement


So the immediate impact is on SharePoint 2010 workflows and on the following built-in workflows:
  • Approvals
  • Collect Feedback
  • Collect Signatures
  • Classic pages publishing Approval
  • Three-state
And for existing tenants, SharePoint 2013 workflows are going to remain supported. So you can relax if you have only SharePoint 2013 workflows. For the new tenant, that is not an option. Starting this November, new tenants won’t get the SharePoint 2013. There is a catch, as you can request Microsoft to provide a PowerShell script that will let you activate the SharePoint 2013-based workflow engine for new environments.


Regarding this deprecation and retirement, the community has created a voice, hoping that the dates will be delayed which will provide more time to complete the migration. It’s true that the clients were not properly warned about the Workflows retirement. And there are a lot of SharePoint Online tenants who are running thousands SharePoint 2010 Workflows and have no direct path of quick replacement. And all 2010 workflows can’t be replaced with the 2013 workflow engine or Power Automate (MS Flow) because of features differences.
But in the end, it is going to happen. If you are using SharePoint 20210 workflow and SharePoint Online tenant, you have to migrate eventually. So let’s start planning for migrating your 2010 workflows in Power Automation (MS Flow) or SharePoint 2013 workflow.
  • Announcement on Workflow Retirement:
  • MS Support Update:
  • Migration Guidance: