The lean workflow automation framework for machines with heart.

a hand drawn robot

Joeflow is a free workflow automation framework designed to bring simplicity to complex workflows. Joeflow written in Python based on the world famous Django web framework.

Here is a little sample of what a workflow or process written with joeflow may look like:

digraph { graph [rankdir=LR] node [fillcolor=white fontname="sans-serif" shape=rect style=filled] checkout [color=black fontcolor=black style="filled, rounded"] "has email" [color=black fontcolor=black style=filled] ship [color=black fontcolor=black style="filled, rounded"] end [color=black fontcolor=black style=filled peripheries=2] "send tracking code" [color=black fontcolor=black style=filled] checkout -> ship ship -> "has email" "has email" -> "send tracking code" "has email" -> end [color="#888888"] "send tracking code" -> end }

from django.core.mail import send_mail
from jowflow.models import Workflow
from joeflow import tasks

class ShippingWorkflow(Workflow):

    # model fields to store the state
    email = models.EmailField(blank=True)
    shipping_address = models.TextField()
    tracking_code = models.TextField()

    # tasks (nodes)
    checkout = tasks.StartView(fields=["shipping_address", "email"])

    ship = tasks.UpdateView(fields=["tracking_code"])

    def has_email(self, task):
            return [self.send_tracking_code]

    def send_tracking_code(self):
            subject="Your tracking code",

    def end(self):

    # edges
    edges = [
        (checkout, ship),
        (ship, has_email),
        (has_email, send_tracking_code),
        (has_email, end),
        (send_tracking_code, end),

Design Principles

Common sense is better than convention

Joeflow does not follow any academic modeling notation developed by a poor PhD student who actually never worked a day in their life. Businesses are already complex which is why Joeflow is rather simple. There are only two types of tasks – human & machine – as well as edges to connect them. It’s so simple a toddler (or your CEO) could design a workflow.

Lean Automation (breaking the rules)

Things don’t always go according to plan especially when humans are involved. Even the best workflow can’t cover all possible edge cases. Joeflow embraces that fact. It allows uses to interrupt a workflow at any given point and modify it’s current state. All while tracking all changes. This allows developers to automate the main cases and users handle manually exceptions. This allows you businesses to ship prototypes and MVPs of workflows. Improvements can be shipped in multiple iterations without disrupting the business.


Joeflow is build with all users in mind. Managers should be able to develop better workflows. Users should able to interact with the tasks every single day. And developers should be able to rapidly develop and test new features.


Joeflow is open source and collaboratively developed by industry leaders in automation and digital innovation.

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