Get Started with Flow Distribution

Learning Objectives

After completing this unit, you’ll be able to:
  • Describe what you should do before you distribute a flow.
  • List the various ways you can distribute a flow.
  • Build a simple screen flow.

You've toiled for days, maybe even weeks, and finally have a flow worth writing home about. Maybe it keeps users true to the official business process. Maybe it saves users from doing repetitive tasks. Maybe it automates something else entirely. One thing is certain: it saves your users time and your organization money. But at this point it's just a thing in Salesforce Setup that users don't have access to.

After you finish building and testing your flow, you have yet another decision to make: how to make the flow accessible to your users.

Flow lifecycle

How Do You Distribute Your Flow? Let Us Count the Ways

You can distribute flows in a number of ways, each of which comes with its own set of caveats and considerations to keep straight. For example, you can put a flow on a Lightning page, and you can put one in a utility bar. Some distribution methods are available only in Lightning Experience, others are ideal for Salesforce Classic. Here's a list of places where you can put a flow with a screen so users can get to it.

  • Lightning pages
  • Flow actions
  • Utility bar
  • Experience Builder page
  • Custom Lightning components
  • Visualforce pages
  • Web tabs
  • Custom buttons and links

And that's just for flows that have screens. The list grows quite a bit for autolaunched flows, bots, Apex actions, and the API.

In this module, we go through four major use cases for distributing your screen flows in Lightning Experience, and which method is recommended for each of them.

Build a Simple Flow

This module isn't about creating flows, but it's hard to show you the world of Flow Distribution without something to distribute. So let's create a flow that we can use in the other units of this module. It's purposefully very simple, with one screen element and one field on that screen. Trust us, these distribution methods work for simple and complex flows alike, so you can use them for your real flows, too.

  1. Create a flow.
    1. From Setup, enter Flows in the Quick Find box, then select Flows.
    2. Click New Flow to open the Flow Builder canvas.
    3. Select Screen Flow, click Next, then select Freeform.
  2. Add a Screen element to your flow.
    1. From the Toolbox, click Screen and drag it onto the canvas near the Start element.
    2. For Label, enter My Screen.
    3. Under Configure Footer, select Hide Previous and Hide Pause
    4. For Next or Finish Button, select Use the standard label.
  3. Add a Display Text field to your screen.
    1. From the Components tab under Display, click Display Text.
    2. For API Name in the Display Text properties pane, enter myText.
    3. In the textbox, enter Hello, World!
    4. Click Done to save the screen.
  4. Click the node at the bottom of Start and drag it to Screen.
  5. Save the flow. Name it Sample Flow.
  6. From the button bar in Flow Builder, click Activate. The flow is now active.

Make Sure Users Can Run the Flow

Before we get into the specifics of the different ways you can distribute your flow, make sure that your users can actually run it. By default, some distribution methods depend on the Run Flows permission. Add the Run Flows permission to a user profile or permission set for your org, and assign that permission set to the right users. To view the permissions assigned to a flow, click the Down arrow next to a flow on the Flows page in Setup, then click Edit Access. If Override default behavior and restrict access to enabled profiles or permission sets is selected for the flow, add the flow to a permissions set or profile, and assign it to the right users. For details about creating and assigning permission sets, see Permission Sets in Salesforce Help.


The Run Flows system permission lets users run active flows. Only admins with the Manage Flow user permission can run inactive flows.


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