Retool Workflows editor

Learn about the Workflow editor and start building apps.



Retool Workflows is currently in public beta. Sign up to get started β†’

The Workflow editor is the interface you use to build workflows. It is made up of five primary areas:

  • Canvas - Arrange blocks to build your workflow
  • Toolbar - Add blocks, navigate the canvas, and run workflows
  • Left panel - Visualize and browse blocks, functions, and run history
  • Bottom panel - View run logs and toggle environments

The Workflow editor



You can return to the start of your workflow by clicking Go to Start.

The canvas is the main area of the editor and is where you build workflows. You add blocks to the canvas that perform specific actions. You can move blocks around using drag-and-drop to position them anywhere on the canvas.

The canvas

Pan and zoom


Click the Fit all button in the toolbar to automatically change the zoom level to show all blocks in the visible area.

The canvas has no size constraints and you can add as many blocks as you need. You can pan around the canvas by holding Space or clicking the Pan button in the toolbar, then click-and-drag with the cursor.

You can also zoom in and out of the canvas to show more content in the visible area. Zooming out automatically collapses any existing blocks to show only their name. You can add or click on blocks at any zoom level to expand and make changes.

There are multiple ways to adjust the zoom:

  • Use the Zoom controls in the toolbar
  • Ctrl + / -
  • Ctrl + Mouse scroll up or down
  • Pinch-to-zoom with a trackpad

You can quickly return the zoom level to 100% by double-clicking on any area of the canvas or selecting 100% from the Zoom controls in the toolbar. You can also double-click a block to expand it and zoom to 100%.


The toolbar at the top of the editor contains various options for interacting with your workflow.


Navigation controls

The Select and Pan controls allow you to select blocks and interact with them, or pan around the canvas to navigate freely. You can also expand or collapse all blocks in your workflow by clicking the Expand all and Collapse all buttons in the toolbar, and control the level of zoom.

Workflow name

The title area contains the workflow's name. You can click this to rename it.

Add blocks

Click + to add a block to the workflow, then select the block type. Move the cursor to an area of the canvas and click to place the new block.

Enable and deploy controls

Workflows are disabled by default. You must enable and deploy a workflow using these controls for it to run automatically.


You can manually run a workflow at any time by clicking Run. When you run a workflow, it displays the current run log.

Left panel

The left panel has two modes:

  • Visually explore the workflow and configure functions.
  • View its run history and access logs.

Left panel

You can toggle between either mode using the buttons on the left of the editor, or hide the left panel entirely.


The Outline section displays a list of all blocks in the workflow. You can click on each block to show it in the canvas. As with blocks on the canvas, blocks in the Outline section include an icon that reflects their function.


The Functions section is where you configure Function blocksβ€”reusable blocks that can be called by other blocks. Function blocks don't appear on the canvas due to their purpose and are managed in this area of the panel.

Run history and logs

The Run History section displays run logs for a workflow and whether they ran successfully. You can click on any entry to view the run log, should you need to debug a failed workflow.

Run logs

Status bar

The status bar provides access to workflow logs and environment selection.

The run log appears automatically whenever you run a workflow manually or select a previous run log from the Run History section. You can also click Logs to show or hide the currently selected log.

Workflows can run using data sources set up in different environments, such as production and staging. You can select the environment in which a workflow runs from the environment select input on the right of the status bar area.

Multiple environments are available to Retool organizations on paid plans and you must configure environment settings for each resource.

Set user permissions

Administrators for Retool organizations on either the Business or Enterprise plan can configure user permissions to restrict workflow access or functionality.

You configure workflow permissions in the same way as app and resource permissions.

Configure workflow permissions

When configured, the Workflow editor displays a warning to restricted users that describes the access level they have.

Users with Use access can view and run workflows only, but cannot view the block contents.

Use access to a workflow

Users with Edit access can edit workflows as long as they have access to all the resources used by the workflow. Edits include changes to the workflow and resource queries. Resources to which the user lacks access include a warning. This level of access allows users to view block contents.

Edit access to a workflow but no access to a resource

Users with Own access have full control over workflows.

Set folder permissions

You can set permissions on workflows folders to restrict how users organize workflows.

  • Users with Use access to a workflows folder can view the folder, but must have at least Use access to its individual workflows to view and run them.
  • Users with Edit access to a workflows folder can also rename and delete it, but must have at least Edit access to edit the workflows it contains.
  • Users who have access to Edit all workflows can also create folders.

Workflow folder permission example

To create workflows within a folder, users must have access to Edit all workflows or at least Edit access to the folder.

To move a workflow to a folder, users must have at least Edit access to the individual workflow and at least Edit access to the destination folder. New workflows inherit the permission settings of the folder by default.