Drupal 8 Workflow Notifications with Rules Part 3

In previous posts I’ve covered enabling and editing a Workflow and then sending an email when a new content moderation state has been saved.

In this post we will complete the loop by sending emails when a content moderation state has been updated.

In this example an editor will publish the node and the rule will email the node creator to tell them it has been published.

Head to the Rules admin page /admin/config/workflow/rules and click Add reaction rule

This time we want to choose After updating content moderation state from the React on event select.

Adding a rules event for updating content moderation state

This time round we will need two conditions.

  1. Check the unchanged moderation state
  2. Check the new moderation state

Click the Add condition button and then choose Data comparison from the select.

For the data to compare value you can either use the data selection or enter


Then for the data value enter review

This is the moderation state the node was in before it was saved.

Now click save.

Moderation state unchanged data comparison condition

Add another data comparison condition then this time enter the following

Data to compare value


Data value


New moderation state data comparison condition

Next we need to fetch the entity so we can use it’s values in our email.

Back on the edit page for this rule click Add action and choose Fetch entity by id from the select.

For Entity type enter node and for the Identifier value enter


Then click save.

Now we can send an email to the node creator.
Click Add action and choose Send email.

In the Send to field use direct input and enter


This is a token that gets replaced with the users email address.

For subject we can just enter something appropriate such as Published Notification

For the message we will use the direct input mode an a token that provides the entity title

Your content {{entity_fetched.title.value}} has been published.

Email action

Save that and then save the rule.

As is often the case with Drupal it’s worth clearing your cache before testing.

Rules is still in it’s infancy for Drupal 8 but I feel it provides enough functionality and is well enough supported that it can be included in production site.

14 thoughts on “Drupal 8 Workflow Notifications with Rules Part 3”

  1. Hi Ian, thank you for your tutorial. One last rule is missing for my setup and I can`t get it. How can I inform the author via a reaction rule, if the last revision he made is deletet and the content stays on his published state?

    Maybe this isn`t possible with rules, but its worth a question to a pro 😉

  2. Hi Kay,

    Not sure off the top of my head. Hopefully I’ll have a bit of time later in the week to see if it can be done.



  3. Hi Kay,

    I’ve been looking at the rules and I don’t think this is possible at the moment.

    There are two reactions that I looked at but neither were triggered when I deleted a revision

    After deleting content
    After deleting content moderation state

    It would probably be possible to write some custom code using hook_entity_revision_delete

    Hope that confirms your thoughts.


  4. The rule executes but the email is never delivered and I get an undefined error in the logs. I have tired hard coding the email address and that does not work either… I am not doing something right any help would be appreciated.

    Issues with Undefined Property on rule execution

    Drupal 8.6.14
    Rules 8.x-3.0-alpha4

  5. I’ve just done a test on Drupal 8.7.0 and I could get the email address when the rule fired.

    A few things to try.

    Set Logging and errors to All messages, with backtrace information. This could help pinpoint where it is failing.

    In the Actions make sure you are fetching the entity before the action trying to send the email.

    As a debugging step add an action of Show a message on the site. For the message value add the following

    Email {{entity_fetched.uid.entity.mail.value}}

    This should output the email address in a status message.

    And always clear the cache when the rule is updated.

    Are you able to get other emails sent from the site?

  6. Is it possible to make this Rule conditional on properties of the fetched entity? For example, only notify authors of “page” content, not “article” content? It looks to me like the fetched entity is not available at the time the conditions are evaluated.

  7. I’ve managed to add a condition so the rule only fires when the content type is page.

    I added a new condition of Data Comparison

    For the Data selector I used @node.node_route_context:node.type.target_id

    The Operator value is ==

    And the Data value is page

    Hope that helps you Ben

  8. That does help, thank you! But what if the address I want to send email to is contained in a field of the node? It doesn’t look like I can use the “entity has field” condition because the entity is not loaded yet. Should I be using a different event such as “Before saving a content item”? Thanks again.

  9. It could be worth trying a different event, I was focused on workflow and moderation states.

    The other thing is to add more conditions such as Entity has field, this should provide you with data you can use in your actions.

  10. Right, but as I said, “Entity has field” doesn’t work if the entity hasn’t been loaded yet, and it looks like all conditions are evaluated *before* any actions such as loading entities. I’ll let you know if I have any luck with the other events. Thanks again.

  11. I hope I’m on the right lines here. I tried a rule on the Event: After updating content.

    My condition is Entity has field and the field name is field_email_notification

    As a test I can output a message of Email {{ node.field_email_notification.value }}

    Is that any use?

  12. thanks for the great post! i would point out that i do not think {{entity_fetched.uid.entity.mail.value}} anymore as it i get a debug error failed to send mail. it seems that token is no longer working. can you test it yourself and let me know if it still works for you? many thanks. cheers

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