Promote a catalog item through the Workflow

When you have made the final edits to an item, you can promote it in the workflow so that it can be Reviewed and Approved. Promoting the item, unlocks the item automatically for the next user to review/approve. Once it has gone through the final workflow state, it will be available to be published to the live catalog.


  • Admins/Approvers: Keep items moving through the workflow. When an item is stuck in the workbox or in “Admins to Remove Versions” or “Admins to Delete”, it WILL leave an item unavailable for editing to other users. Check your workbox like you check your email.
  • All other general users, promote/demote everything in your workbox eventually.  As long as it is locked by you, it cannot be accessed by other users or approved to be published. Pushing the item to another workflow state automatically unlocks it for the next user.
  • The workbox is a graphical representation of the workflow steps that an item needs to go through before it can be published and show on the website. It is not the editor – just a list of the items that you are responsible for. You can go to the editor FROM the workbox.
  • Editors will only see the first draft level, while the Administrators will see all levels of the workbox.
  • If you have something locked, it will only be in YOUR workbox. No one else’s unless it is unlocked - then it will be visible in user workboxes who have similar access roles.
  • There is only one version of each item allowed in workflow – this is so there will not be confusion between multiple versions of an item in the workflow simultaneously. 
  • Versions must be in an approved state (unseen from workbox) to be eventually published. Nothing can be displayed on the live site until it is approved and published.
  • Users temporarily lose permission to access an item when it’s been promoted in the workflow beyond their assigned workflow role or it is locked by another user. If locked by another user, once approved through the workflow, the item is available to other users and can be locked/edited for further edits if needed.  This new version created when it is locked again, will then be sent through the workflow to be approved and replace the previous version when published.
  • The Yellow Warning Bar  will display what version will be published and whether you have access to this item currently or not. It will also display the user's name if locked by someone else.
  • The Workflow box within the Review tab will display what workflow state an item is in if it is not accessible to you.

Boxes in the Workbox

Every Institution's approval process is different and workboxes may be named or structured differently. The workflow below is just an example of the default workflow that may be present. 

After locking an item to edit, a new version of the item will be created. This item will now be accessible from your Draft workbox for editing and promoting through workflow. All users have a Draft workbox. But not all users will see the entire workflow as shown below. What role you are assigned in managing the content of the catalog determines what workboxes you see and have access to (Editor, Reviewer, Approver, Administrator). 

The amount of items you have in each box will appear next to the title of the box (Example: Draft - (2 items)). Click the top of the workbox to expand and reveal the items within.

NOTE: Always keep track of the items in your workbox! If you have an item locked for editing it will prevent anyone else from accessing the item. Additionally, all items in the workflow have to either be approved or removed before a rollover to the new year can occur or the catalog can be published with all changes present. 

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Common Types of Boxes

Draft: All users have a draft box. This contains all items the user is currently working on. Basic Editors will only see this box in the workbox.

Pending Review: Before an item is sent for final approval, many workflows require a reviewer to review changes that have been made. Any items that need to be reviewed are sent to this box. Additionally the reviewer can send the item back to the editor if more changes need to be made. Only administrators and reviewers can see items in this workbox.

Pending Final Approval: Once changes have been reviewed (if the workflow requires an item to be reviewed) the item can be sent to this box for final approval. Only approvers and administrators can access this level of workflow. The new version of the item can now be approved and then published to replace the previous version present on the live catalog. NOTE: Until an item is approved it cannot be published.

Admins to Delete from Catalog: This workbox is for items that need to be completely deleted from the catalog or handbook. A user can  "lock and edit" an item and send it to the administrators for them to delete. This box is only seen by administrators. Only administrators can delete an item, see Deleting Items.

Admins to Remove Versions: If an item is incorrectly edited, was accidentally locked for editing, or no longer needs the changes that have been made to it, a user may want the version they created to be removed. Items sent to this workbox can only be seen by an administrator. Only administrators can remove a version of an item, see Removing Versions/Deleting Items from the CatalogNOTE: Admins, please check that there is a previous version of the item to be published before removal (Will be stated in the yellow warning bar once you have clicked on the link from the workbox). Removing the only version will completely remove the content from the catalog and there is NO easy way of restoring this content.

Using Buttons in the Workbox

Once an item has been locked for editing, a new version of the item is created and will appear in your Draft workbox. In addition to the items you are working on, items that have been sent to you (if you are a reviewer, approver or administrator) will also appear in your workflow, in their respective workbox.

The following are actions you can take in an item within the workbox. All workflow related buttons can also be accessed in the Review tab or My Toolbar, if you have set it up (see Customizing My Toolbar).

Each time an item is promoted through the workflow, the user is prompted to add a comment if they choose to. These comments will appear in the "More" dropdown next to the item in the workbox. The most recent comment/workflow action entered will display directly on the workflow item after "Comments".

workbox items More

Use "batch" buttons at the bottom of the workbox for mass actions. You can also use checkboxes to select certain items to utilize the "Selected" batch buttons. 

NOTE: Use caution when using the "ALL" batch buttons.  Once an action is taken, it is not reversible.

Batch buttons

Accessing an Item in the Workbox:

There are a couple of ways an item can be accessed for further edits from the workbox. Clicking on the item link within the workbox or selecting the Open button will both open the item within the Content Editor where further edits can be made. Once edits are made, Save and close the window.

workbox items Open

Open Content


In addition to the Preview button under the Publish tab, an item in the workbox can be previewed using the Preview button located under each item. A new window will open in the browser displaying how the item will appear once it has been published to the live site.

workbox items Preview

Viewing Changes made between Versions:

Changes made to an item can be viewed using the Diff button in the workbox or the Compare button within the Versions tab of the ribbon in the Content Editor. A popup will open displaying changes between two versions.  This is viewable in One Column or Two Columns. If there are more than two versions of the item you are viewing, you can select which versions to compare with the dropdowns at the top of the window.

workbox items Diff

Compare Versions

Sending an Item to be Reviewed:

If you are finished editing an item and it needs to be reviewed before it can be approved, the "Send to Reviewer" button will be the only workflow button to promote an item for a general user. This insures that the item is reviewed before it is sent to the approver.

workbox items Reviewer

Sending an Item to be Approved:

Once changes to an item have been completed or the item has been reviewed, it should be promoted to the approver using the "Send to Approver" button.

workbox items Approver

Sending an Item to be Deleted:

It is recommended that when a general user comes across something that they would like to request be deleted entirely from the catalog, they lock/edit the item so that a version is available within their Draft workbox.  They can then send this item to the "Admins to Delete from Catalog" workbox which requests an admin to delete the item completely from the catalog.  Users are encouraged to leave a comment during this demotion, so the admin has the explanation behind the deletion request. If an item needs to be deleted, select the "Admins please delete from catalog" button to send the item to the "Admins to Delete from Catalog" workbox. Only administrators can delete items. 

If you are an Administrator and need to delete an item you do NOT need to send it to the "Admins to Delete from Catalog" workbox. You can delete the items with the "Delete" button in the Home tab or by right clicking the item and selecting Delete. For more information see Deleting Items

To delete an item from this workbox, select the link and once the item opens in the Content Editor, click the Delete button in the Home tab.

workbox items Delete

Removing a Version:

Only Administrators can remove a version of an item. If you wish to request an administrator to remove the version you created, select the "Admins please remove this version" button for this item within the Workbox. 

NOTE: Admins, please check to make sure there is another version of the item available before you remove any version of that item (See Removing Versions). If you delete the only available version, the content will be removed from this item and cannot be easily retrieved. Instead of removing the last version of an item, delete the item itself from the catalog if you wish for the whole item to be removed.

To remove a version from this workbox, select the link and once the item opens in the Content Editor, click the Remove button within the Versions tab.

workbox items Remove

Send back to Editor in Draft:

If an item is sent to the reviewer or approver, but changes still need to be made, it can be sent back to the editor with a comment. Comments can be viewed under the "More" drop down.

workbox items Return

Approving Catalog Items

To approve items, click the “Approve” button within the workbox on an individual item:

workbox items Approve

Please note: An Approve button is available to Admins in the Draft Workbox, but is only available in the Pending Final Approval workbox for all other users.

You may also approve directly from the Content Editor with the item selected in the Content Tree by clicking on the “Approve” button within the Review tab:



Or by clicking on the Approve button within the Home tab and the dropdown portion of the Edit button:



Once the item is approved, it will leave the workflow and be queued to publish to the live site during the next publish.

Approving a Cloned Item

When a shared content item is locked and a new version of the item is created, the clones will also appear in the workflow. When approving or moving clones through workflow ONLY the SHARED CONTENT item should be promoted or approved. The clones will be promoted and approved with it automatically. If the clone is approved or moved through workflow independently, the link will be broken and the item will need to be recloned.

For more information on clones see Editing/Creating Cloned Catalog Items.

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