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Friday, October 9, 2009

Rich e-mail messages

You might have come to a problem, when you had to send an e-mail with Workbox and it was, well .... ugly.
Your only option to make it look better was to use HTML with styles and format entire message in the not-so-convenient textbox. We do not have any good Silverlight control that would allow you to create nice looking messages in the Workbox, but we have a workaround.

The workaround is to create a separate list, where you can use the SharePoint richtext box to define the message. For example - have a list with 2 fields - one would be the title, which would define what kind of message this is and another is a multi-line textbox field with rich content enabled. Then inside the designer just use lookup to make the workflow use this field value in the e-mail. This has also a great advantage that you can change e-mail message without redeploying workflow.

How about using lookups in such message?
You have two options - either you combine the message from few elements and insert lookup between them or you can use the "Replace multiple words" to replace a chosen tags with lookup values.

One thing to remember - text in Sharepoint textboxes is using SharePoint styles. Make sure to choose the font family and size to get the same styles in your message.


  1. That's a great idea! Though my preference is to build the HTML formatted email in an html editor, then just paste it into the workflow and add the lookups into the commented areas.

    Any word on when workbox will ignore whitespace in an html email?

  2. Hello

    This bug will be fixed in the new release - so within 2-3 weeks. Sorry that you have to wait so long.