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by: HubSpot Employee
HubSpot Employee

Workflow editing best practices (+ a review of the fundamentals)

Ever felt nervous about making edits to a workflow while it’s on? One of our top Customer Support Specialists recently created a tips video exclusively for Power Users reviewing his workflow editing best practices and common questions he sees from customers. 


Check out the video below or read the quick summary underneath to review the core concepts. If you like posts like this, be sure to let us know in the comments or upvote it!





What happens to contacts in a workflow (especially a nurturing workflow) if you make changes? Are they going to get the emails that they were slated to get originally? 

Edits to a workflow will affect currently enrolled contacts. So if they are sitting in a delay and you apply a change downstream, then the contact will execute the new action when it gets there.


When should you turn off the workflow when making edits vs making edits while it’s still on? 

Generally, we only need to turn a workflow off if we're making fundamental changes to enrollment criteria. All of the "add action" options can be inserted into an active workflow and, provided it's downstream from the contact's current WF position, when they get there it'll execute.


How would you test that a new workflow edit is going to work as intended if you don’t turn it off while you’re making edits? If you need to revert those edits, what’s going to happen to contacts if they are in the live workflow? 

We can't test them at this time. The "test" feature is reserved for contacts that aren't currently enrolled in a workflow, so if you want to test a change for all active contacts, you'd need to (1) turn the workflow off and unenroll a few test records, then test them to observe, or (2) clone the existing workflow, add your changes in the clone, then unenroll a record from the original workflow and "test" it in the new one. I know the team's working on more flexibility here but no updates on timing


If you change a delay that a contact is waiting in, will they be subject to the old or new time delay? 

They will be subject to the new delay. This can get funky if you change a delay while a contact is just completing their life in said delay. For example, if you save a change to a delay that updates it from 5 minutes to 1 hour, but there's a contact that reaches their last second in the original 5 minute delay right as you're saving that update, they will adhere to the original 5 minute delay.


Will people who went through all the steps get added to additional actions you add at the end?

They will, provided they're still being held by a delay and haven't completed the workflow!