Top 10 Approval Workflow Apps in 2024

Top 10 Approval Workflow Apps in 2024

Portrait of Alan Chan's Author
Portrait of Alan Chan's Author

Alan Chan

April 12, 2024

4/12/24

Apr 12, 2024

4/12/24

8 min read

approval workflow
approval workflow
approval workflow
approval workflow

Organizations opt for every possible way that can boost their efficiency and productivity. They’re eager to complete each task and achieve every goal in the least time possible with excellent outcomes.

But what they often overlook is the root cause of delays—the traditional way of approvals.

They spend multiple days, weeks, and even months just to approve documents, requests, and tasks. Employees wait for the red and green signals from authorized persons to get started.

A significant amount of time is wasted even before something starts. And that’s what an approval workflow app cracks.

It’s high time that organizations should shift from the traditional to a digital, streamlined, and organized way of approvals. It reduces delays, improves decision-making, and takes efficiency to new heights.

But which approval workflow app is perfect for you?

We’ve shared some important factors to consider and a list of hand-picked top 10 approval apps.

Factors to Consider While Choosing an Approval Workflow App

Here are a few factors that make selecting the best approval workflow app easier:

Ease of use: Approval workflows might be confusing for new users depending on their complexity. Users should be able to create and customize workflows without the need for an IT guy.

Customization: Teams often need to create customized workflows according to their requirements. The approval apps should offer enough customization options, such as multiple reviewers, routing, approval stages, conditional branches, etc.

Notifications: Users should get instant alerts through push notifications and email. It keeps everyone updated.

Effective communication: Communication is the key to excellent results in an approval workflow. There could be comments, annotations, markers, etc.

Tracking: Both managers and employees should be able to track approvals. It keeps everyone updated about the progress. Most approval apps have a tracking feature to make it easier.

Analytics: Analytics helps teams to analyze the number of pending approvals, successful approvals, and other stats. It is better to have a dashboard to see a summary of approvals at a glance.

Integration: Teams should be able to integrate the approval workflows in different applications and online tools they use, such as messaging apps, cloud storage, etc.

Top 10 Approval Workflow Apps

We’ve analyzed many different approval workflow apps based on their features, drawbacks, use cases, pricing, and other factors. 

After careful consideration, we have hand-picked some incredible applications you can adopt in 2024.

1) Lark

Lark is a productivity superapp for teams. It is an all-in-one collaboration platform for workflow applications, messaging, video conferencing, cloud storage, email, etc.

It has a built-in tool, Approval, specially designed to create streamlined approval workflows for any purpose. Whether it be approvals for HR, Finance, administration, etc., it caters to every dimension.

Creating an approval workflow on Lark approval is a matter of a few minutes. It offers ready-made approval workflows for common processes to get started quickly. It is also possible to customize approval workflows based on special requirements and needs.

It makes the whole approval process hassle-free for employees as well as managers. 

Teams can design flexible approval processes by specifying the steps, approvers, methods, situations, etc. They can add multiple nodes, additional approvers, and different branches for various situations. They can also create groups for similar approvals and sort them as required to keep everything organized.

Employees can submit their approval requests from the Lark app. They can initiate the process by submitting the required information and documents. After submission, a notification is sent to the approvers, and employees can track the progress.

Lark Approval is a comprehensive approval workflow tool for simple as well as complex processes. It provides every feature and facility that teams and employees require.

Further reading: Lark Approvals—Easier Than You Think

Features:

  • Customized workflows for complex processes having different situations

  • Instant alerts for the employee and approvers

  • Dozens of ready-made templates to create workflows quickly

  • Allows approval request sharing, feedback, and comments for effective communications

  • A comprehensive data management page to manage, view, and export approvals using filters

  • Seamless integration with other Lark tools

Drawbacks:

  • Even though Lark Approval is easy to use, there is a learning curve for designing complex approvals

Pricing:

  • Starter: Free for up to 50 users

  • Pro: $12 per user per month (suitable for up to 500 members)

Enterprise: Customized options for large group collaboration with up to 50,000 users

2) ClickUp

ClickUp is also a project management tool with customizable approval workflows.

Organizations can easily create approval workflows for their day-to-day tasks and decision-making in no time. It gives templates that can be edited according to the needs. It offers mobile, desktop, and web applications so that users can use it anytime, anywhere.

The notable feature of ClickUp approval workflows is that they can be integrated with a wide range of third-party applications and tools, such as Slack.

Its Approval Matrix Whiteboard helps users visualize the complete approval process at a glance.

Features:

  • Notifications alerts for users to stay up to date

  • Customizable workflows and editable templates

  • Commenting and feedback options for a transparent approval process

Drawbacks:

  • Extreme customization can make the workflows complex

  • The mobile application has limited functionality and features for approval workflows

  • Free plan offers only 100MB of storage

Pricing:

  • Free

  • Unlimited: $7 per user per month

  • Business: $12 per user per month

3) Integrify

Integrify is workflow management and automation software. With this tool, you can create almost any type of workflow and automate its whole process to save time.

Its approval workflow design is just like drag-and-drop. You need to select suitable blocks, such as form, review, approval, etc. You can also design different levels in blocks for a complex approval process, such as departmental approval, CEO approval, and board-level approval.

It automatically routes the approval requests through the right people and helps teams in tracking all requests.

Features:

  • Drag-and-drop process builder to make everything easier

  • Offers Approval Matrix, which allows you to create a table for approval routing

  • Option to designate alternate approvers in case of illness, travel, etc.

  • Allows creation of workflows on an extremely large scale

Drawbacks:

  • It is too complex for new users.

  • The interface is a bit old-school and boring for most users

  • Re-entering data after copying is a headache

Pricing:

  • You have to fill out a form to request pricing

4) Kissflow

Kissflow offers no-code approval workflow software for seamless approvals and incredible results. It reduces errors in the process and improves accountability, efficiency, and speed.

You can design the complete approval workflow in its visual designer, which is intuitive and easy to use. The forms can be created with just drag-and-drop, and it is possible to customize everything.

Features:

  • Comprehensive dashboard to monitor and analyze approval processes

  • Gives role-based access to users to ensure security

  • Templates to save time on creating workflows

Drawbacks:

  • Not a suitable option for complex workflows due to limited customization

  • Limited integration capability with different applications

Pricing:

  • $1,500 per month

5) frevvo

frevvo is workflow automation software to customize workflows as you like. It has an everyday approval tool to make the process faster, error-free, and automated.

Its drag-and-drop designer creates any type of approval workflow. Users can use templates and customize them according to their needs.

Its notable feature is Visual Rule Builder. It allows users to set up dynamic behavior, such as conditional routing and optional sections, without any code.

Features:

  • Automatic form validation and calculations

  • Routes the approval requests and provides a digital signature option

  • Built-in reporting tool to make workflows more efficient

Drawbacks:

  • Limited integration options

  • Dynamic workflows are a bit difficult to implement

Pricing:

  • Offers customized quotes

6) Filestage

Filestage is a content review platform that makes approvals easier and quicker for content managers and teams. It is great for reviewing blog posts, web designs, images, videos, and other forms of content before getting it published.

The incredible feature of Filestage is its appealing and intuitive interface. It is not as boring as other approval workflow tools. It connects all reviewers and organizes approvals in one place.

Users can create workflows, share them with anyone, and leave feedback with annotations and comments. It also offers different versions of content and a hassle-free tracking process.

Features:

  • Its feedback and comment options bring everyone to one place for smoother approvals.

  • The annotation feature helps reviews explain the changes they need.

  • Version history keeps track of all changes made to the content

  • Secure platform with AES 256 encryption

Drawbacks:

  • It is only focused on marketing approvals. Not an ideal option for other types of workflows

  • Customization of workflows is very limited

Pricing:

  • Free for two projects and reviewer groups

  • Basic: $59 per month

  • Professional: $299 per month

7) WebProof

WebProof is a great option for creating workflows, especially for creative and graphics teams. It is comprehensive workflow software and a platform of proofing tools. You can design basic and customized approval workflows with automation, notification alerts, proofing processes, etc.

Users can upload files, such as documents and designs, and clients can comment and approve. For better communication and feedback, it has a commenting tool, drawing tool, highlighter, and various other options.

Its project overview is commendable. Users can have a summary of all workflows at a glance.

Features:

  • InDesign and Illustrator plugins to upload files directly

  • Can translate 60 languages to break language barriers and work with talented people all over the world

  • Instant page-by-page and project-by-project overview

  • Version history to keep an eye on the changes

Drawbacks:

  • More suitable for design teams; not a perfect option for typical approval workflows

  • No Android application (Only iOS)

Pricing:

  • Need to request pricing

8) Admation

For creative and marketing teams, Adamation is the perfect project and approval management software. It can help in online proofing and approval workflow.

Its approval tool can create simple as well as multi-leveled approvals for almost any task. To make the process faster, it has introduced Anybody Approve and Everybody Approve options.

It also makes the collection of feedback easier from different reviewers. The comments are mentioned along with annotations. Not only that, it keeps track of all revisions.

The innovative feature of the approval process is inbound and outbound approval checklists. It helps submitters request approvals with perfection and binds approvers to follow a certain set of rules to ensure compliance.

Features:

  • A complete dashboard to see the summary of all approvals

  • Approval path templates to save on creating approvals workflows and their routing

  • The audit trail of work makes auditing simpler and quicker

Drawbacks:

  • The interface looks a bit outdated

  • Not a suitable option for extremely customized and complex workflows

Pricing:

  • Need to request pricing

9) Jotform

Jotform is an online form builder. With this tool, you can create different types of forms by integrating condition logic, automated workflows, payment gateway, etc.

Aside from forms, Jotform allows you to create approval flows using its Approval builder. You only need to drag and drop the elements to create a professional-looking workflow in no time.

You can start from scratch, use existing templates, and customize complex flows. Its if/else conditioning is perfect for creating complex approval workflows.

Features:

  • Intuitive and easy-to-use interface

  • Allows to create multistep, parallel, and complex approval workflows

  • Automated email notifications for all approvers

  • Jotform Tables to track approval processes in a list

Drawbacks:

  • Very expensive

  • Multiple glitches

Pricing:

  • Starter: Free

  • Bonze: $34 per month

  • Silver: $39 per month

  • Gold: $99 per month

10) Planable

Planable is an all-in-one tool for social media collaboration and management. For content managers and marketers, it is the perfect option.

It has a built-in approval workflow system to approve and reject social media content. It allows teams to collaborate, give proper feedback, and improve the quality of their work.

It has four types of approval workflows: None, Optional, Required, and Multi-level. The last one is for complex approvals that involve more than two approvers.

Features:

  • The design and interface of the app is appealing and intuitive

  • Streamlined review process to collect feedback from reviewers

  • Option to lock content after approval to prevent further changes

Drawbacks:

  • No advanced options for reviewing, such as annotations, text, highlighters, etc.

  • Can’t create specific and customized workflows

Pricing:

  • Free

  • Basic: $11 per user

  • Pro: $22 per user

Minimize Delays Using Approval Workflow Apps

For efficient and effective collaboration, approval workflow apps are a must. By using them, teams can make their approval processes faster and hassle-free. They offer a unified platform to manage all approvals and minimize delays while adhering to internal policies and regulations.

Choosing the right approval workflow app is the next important thing. Consider the important factors we have mentioned, the team’s requirements, features, pricing, and other important aspects while choosing an app.

It’s time to shift to a digitized and automated version of approvals to save time for more important tasks.