SharePoint Online – The workflow could not update the item error

While using OOTB workflows with SharePoint Online you might face the below error.

The workflow could not update the item, possibly because one or more columns for the item require a different type of information.

This might occur because of the default workflow template being corrupt. The real reason is unknown though and the following steps will enable you to fix the above error.

  • Browse to the affected SharePoint site.
  • Click Site Actions, and then click Site Settings.
  • If the affected site is a sub-site instead of a top-level site, in the Site Collection Administration section, click Go to Top Level Site Settings.
  • Click Site Collection Features.
  • Deactivate the Workflow feature.
  • In SharePoint Designer, open the root of the site collection.
  • Go to Workflows.
  • Remove the Workflow in question (for example, Approval – SharePoint 2010).
  • In SharePoint, in Site Collection Features, reactivate the Workflow feature.
  • Confirm that the workflows are functioning as expected.

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