Why are notifications triggering in an Automation Workflow when the condition isn't met?

Hello Community!

I've got a head-scratcher I'm hoping there's an easier answer to than the workaround I've developed.

I've created 5 automation workflows that each use the same triggering event. I did this for ease of management as trying to cram everything into a single automation quickly became unwieldly and difficult to navigate.

Each automation has a master condition that determines whether it runs after the triggering event occurs. If that master condition is true the sub conditions control which of the more nuanced approval verticals are run.

It's my understanding each automation, when triggered, will run the first 'true' condition it encounters. If a trigger occurs, but no conditions are true, nothing happens.

However, if any single vertical on any of the 5 automations I've set up triggers successfully, the alerts highlighted at the bottom trigger for all the other verticals on all the other automations that share the same triggering event, even when none of those other Master or Sub conditions were met.

So, for example, if the master and sub conditions were met on automation 1 and an 'approve' decision was entered the system is generating the downstream 'approval' notification for automation 1 as well as for automation's 2 - 5.

My current workaround is to add another condition below the decision branches to tell the automation (again) that it should only send the notification if the original condition for that vertical is met. This is tedious and seems redundant. The entire vertical, or even the entire automation, shouldn't run at all if the initial conditions aren't met.

Let me know if there's an easier way to manage this sort of condition-based workflow, especially for shared triggers. I'm eager to hear ideas.

Thank you!


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Best Answer

  • Genevieve P.
    Genevieve P. Employee Admin
    Answer ✓

    Hi @Dylan E.

    It looks like you're using Approval Request blocks. In this instance, you may see duplicate emails if you're using the same approval column for the different parts of the workflow.

    To prevent this, you could either use different approval values for your different paths, or add conditions after each approved or declined request (as it sounds like you have started doing).

    Here's more information: Approval workflow behavior

    Cheers,

    Genevieve

Answers

  • Genevieve P.
    Genevieve P. Employee Admin
    Answer ✓

    Hi @Dylan E.

    It looks like you're using Approval Request blocks. In this instance, you may see duplicate emails if you're using the same approval column for the different parts of the workflow.

    To prevent this, you could either use different approval values for your different paths, or add conditions after each approved or declined request (as it sounds like you have started doing).

    Here's more information: Approval workflow behavior

    Cheers,

    Genevieve

  • Thank you Genevieve! It's true many of my approval blocks write the decision back to the same column using the same value. It sounds like SmartSheet triggers the approval blocks in other automations if they share the approval column and value even though those other approval blocks weren't triggered by their respective automations/conditions.

    This isn't particularly intuitive or desirable behavior and seems to limit the usefulness of the approval block for more complex approval workflows but I appreciate the confirmation! I'll keep this in mind going forward.