When creating workflows, Admins can configure specific workflow tasks to be optional. The ability to skip tasks is useful when a document has been through a workflow more than once and you do not want to repeat completed tasks.

The Workflow Initiator (user who starts the workflow) makes the decision to include or exclude optional tasks, either when the workflow is started or when adding participants to a role associated with optional tasks in an in-progress workflow. To skip an optional task, the Workflow Initiator simply does not assign any users to the associated role.

Excluding an optional task from a workflow excludes that task’s role. If a role has both optional and required tasks associated with it, optional tasks cannot be excluded.

Configuring Optional Workflow Tasks

When configuring a Workflow Task step, you can select the Allow task to be optional checkbox to make the step optional.

Workflow validation does not check if a role associated with an optional task is also associated with any required tasks, even though excluding an optional task means excluding that role. Validation also does not check if you’ve made the only role possible for the Workflow Initiator to assign optional. However, a Workflow Initiator attempting to make these tasks optional will get an error message.

When a user starts a workflow, all task checkboxes (including optional tasks) are selected by default. If you want optional task checkboxes to be unselected by default, you can turn on the Workflow Initiators opt-in to assign optional-task roles option in Admin > Settings > General Settings.

Adding Participants to Unselected Optional Tasks

When users initiate the Add Participants action, the participant groups for optional tasks that were not assigned at the start of the workflow appear in the Add Workflow Participants dialog.

The user updating the active workflow can then assign users and groups to the empty optional task participant groups. Users can add participants in this way as long as the other parallel tasks have not yet been completed and the workflow has not proceeded beyond the tasks relevant to those participant groups.


  • If the workflow start step only includes a single user control, Vault will ignore the Allow tasks to be optional setting.
  • In order for the Add Participant to Unselected Optional Tasks feature to work, all parallel workflow task steps must be followed immediately by the same join step.