What is the best way to set up an approval matrix for multiple approvers across multiple departments?

For example, I am working on a sheet for employee travel requests. So the employee will fill out a form with their demographic info and input the cost of the travel broken down (airfare, transportation, hotel, ect). I then want the sheet to trigger to be sent for approval to the corresponding manager depending on which department is input on the form. After the manager approves, it must go to a financial analyst (there are only 3 to choose from), and after the analyst approves, it must go to the executive director (again, only 3 to choose from), to provide final approval.


  • Ric T
    Ric T ✭✭✭✭✭✭

    Hi @MandyKrez,

    My suggestion would be to:

    1. Create the Travel Request Form with a mandatory drop-down field of the employee's department. In the same sheet, include columns like "Department Manager Approval", "Financial Analyst Approval", and "Executive Director Approval" with either Yes/No values as dropdowns, or a checkbox column. These columns will not be in the form, just on the backend for your team.
    2. Use an automation Approval Request where the trigger would look like the following:
    3. When rows are added or changed; when row X changes to Any Value, request an approval to Y
    4. Add conditions before the Approval Request so you can funnel through where the approval goes to. (e.g. if the employee is in X department, then send to that specific person, you'll have three options here).
    5. If approved, then build that automation and have another approval request to the next line.

    You may need to add condition paths to simplify the process. A quick sketch of the approval tree before building the automation may be helpful.

    p.s. if you have a Business or Enterprise license, you may be able to use Approval Workflow via Resource Management, it may be more than what you need at this stage but is an option.