work·​flow | \ ˈwərk-ˌflō How to pronounce workflow (audio) \
variants: or less commonly work flow

Definition of workflow

: the sequence of steps involved in moving from the beginning to the end of a working process improving office workflow … this new upgrade isn't revolutionary. But it does a fine job of streamlining workflow and getting the business done.— Sally Wiener Grotta The site automates and tracks workflow as well. For example, when a subcontractor fills out a request for information, it goes directly to the general contractor, who signs off on it. The request then travels to the architect, then back to the subcontractor.— Lawrence Stevens

Examples of workflow in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web There are questions about how to manage the workflow between telemedicine and in-person appointments and some procedures can’t be done by teleconference, like drawing blood or testing for the flu or COVID-19. James Barragán, Dallas News, "Dallas lawmaker wants to keep telemedicine growing in Texas after COVID-19 with ‘pay parity’ bill," 30 Nov. 2020 What is the tactical context of the job in the workflow of the organization? Isaac Cheifetz, Star Tribune, "It's time to put some sizzle in your job ad," 21 Nov. 2020 Child-care arrangements are also a concern for many working parents, while working from home presents an array of other distractions, says Marie Poulin, a workflow consultant. Allison Pohle, WSJ, "How to Be More Productive at Work And Manage Your Time Effectively," 15 Jan. 2021 Demo Duck is one of the rare production houses that has become even more productive in the wake of the pandemic thanks to its newly remote workflow. Sonaiya Kelley, Los Angeles Times, "How four independent production companies kept going during COVID-19," 28 Dec. 2020 The researchers worked closely with Stribling and other health staff to integrate the software into their workflow but didn’t have time to design a pretty user interface. Tom Simonite, Wired, "The Newest Weapon Against Covid-19: AI That Speed-Reads Faxes," 22 Dec. 2020 That leads to more crunch, as new hires replace those leaving, requiring training and workflow adjustments. Washington Post, "‘Battle for Middle-earth’ exposed the stresses of game development. They haven’t gone away.," 3 Dec. 2020 Sometimes the focus was on sharing productivity hacks or discussing workflow concerns in the highly collaborative system. Carla Fried, Quartz at Work, "A Chinese garment factory boosted production 10% by giving employees a voice," 18 Nov. 2020 Unilever said that if all goes well, the company will consider whether to shake up its workflow on a wider scale. Michelle Toh, CNN, "Unilever is testing a four-day work week in New Zealand," 1 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'workflow.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of workflow

1921, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about workflow

Time Traveler for workflow

Time Traveler

The first known use of workflow was in 1921

See more words from the same year

Statistics for workflow

Last Updated

15 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Workflow.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

More from Merriam-Webster on workflow

Nglish: Translation of workflow for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of workflow for Arabic Speakers

Comments on workflow

What made you want to look up workflow? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

February 2021 Words of the Day Quiz

  • squirrel in winter
  • Which is a synonym of perdure?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!