I am working on a workflow definition for a client (SDL Tridion 2011 SP1 HR#2). This workflow involves an automatic activity that publishes the component to Testing/Staging website. The client has raised a concern as to what happens if this automatic publish activity fails due to any reasons (temporary db failure, network issues etc.).

Under normal circumstances we have a manual review activity after this automated activity. In case the publish fails:

  1. The reviewer would have nothing to review.
  2. How do we notify the author of this failure (if we capture the publish event and send an email in case of failure, and the author manually publishes the affected item, would the workflow continue as normal?)

This is my first workflow implementation and hence I am just thinking out loud here. Any ideas or suggestions are more than welcome.

1 Answer 1


In the ideal scenario you should be able to suspend the publish activity after you publish the item and resume it when you know that the item was successfully published. Unfortunately it is just possible since Tridion 2013.

I this scenario you would need to notify both the Reviewer and the Author once the is an exception during publishing, you can use the Save event (Event System) for Publish Transaction so that you know when the item is either successful or failed. If the item is failed you should notify the author/reviewer and IT (for trouble shooting) so that the reviewer can reject the activity and send it back to the author then the author can execute the publish activity once the publishing issue is fixed and publish the item again.

I would recommend to keep all the publishing/edition operations within workflow so that the item state and workflow status is properly managed.

  • In case of a publish failure, when the reviewer rejects the activity and the author re-executes the publish activity how would the reviewer be notified of this action? Also does it mean that it is NOT the Automatic Publish Activity code that sends the success notification to the reviewer and rather it is the event handler of Save Publish Transaction event that does so? Commented Jan 13, 2014 at 8:48

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