How to Create a New App Connection — Workato for Beginners

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Workato allows you to automate business processes by connecting different business applications together. For these automations to work, it requires the flow of information across these applications through the creation of Connections.


What are app connections?

Connections are a secure way to give Workato access to data in different business applications. To better understand what Connections are, let’s take a look at this ticket escalation project below.

Example of app connections in a ticket escalation project

The recipe above is triggered when there is a new case in Salesforce. Following the trigger, the recipe then searches for the related issue in Jira.


New case in Salesforce > Search for related issue in Jira

If no prior issues are found in Jira, a new issue is automatically created.  If the issue already exists, it is updated with the new information.


Situation 1: No prior issue found in Jira > New issue created in Jira

Situation 2: Issue exists in Jira > Existing issue updated with new information

Finally, it notifies an ops team about the escalated issue using PagerDuty.

The recipe above requires access to information from 3 different business applications, including:

By creating connections with the business applications above, it allows Workato to securely access the data required for the automation to work.

How to create a new app connection

Before trying to create a connection, ensure that you have the Create Connections privilege.

Select the application that you want to create a connection for

To create a new app connection, on your project page,  go to the arrow next to the Create Recipe button, and click Create Connection.

create new app connection

In your project page, click ‘Create Connection’

Select the application that you want to create a connection for. As I will be using the same ticket escalation example mentioned above, I need to create a new Jira connection for this project. 

create new app connection jira

Create a new Jira connection


Configuring your connection

Naming your connection

First, give your new app connection a unique and meaningful name. This allows people from your team to easily identify the connection should they want to use it for their own recipe. 

I will be naming my connection, Product team Jira account. This way my team knows this is the right connection for our team to access as we build automations.

Choosing the right location for your connection

To ensure that only the team working on the ticket escalation project has access to this connection, I will be creating this connection inside the ‘ticket escalation’ project, and under the ‘connections’ folder.


Related: How to use Role-Based Access Control for collaboration governance in Workato

Authenticating your app connection

The final step is to authenticate your application. With authentication, you are granting Workato the permission to access data from the application, which in turn provides your team access to the data of your business application. 

Depending on the app’s authentication method, Workato typically follows the same method. This may include:

  • OAuth 2.0
  • OAuth 1.0 (and variations)
  • Basic authentication (username and password)
  • API token or secret

Best practices when authenticating your connection

Regardless of the authentication method, here are some best practices to follow when creating connections:

  • Follow the security policies of your business,
  • Use a service account when connecting, not a personal account — This ensures that recipes are not dependent on a human user. If someone were to leave the company, recipes are able to run as usual.

In our case, since we use an API token to authenticate to Jira, I can go ahead and set the Auth Type to ‘API Token’ and configure the settings below: 

With that, I am able to connect to my Jira account and access the data there. 

Authenticating Jira API token

Authenticating with API Token

How to use your new connection in your recipe

Now that you have created your new connection, you can use it in any recipe within your stipulated project

In the recipe editor, navigate to the first step that requires your selected app’s connection.  In this case, it would be step 2, the Search issue in Jira action.

selecting new app connection

Step 2: Search issue in Jira

To select your new connection, navigate to the Connections tab > Switch connection

selecting your new app connection

Connection tab > Switch connection

You should see your newly created connection under the list of active connections to choose from.

With that, I have successfully changed the Test Jira connection to my newly made Product team Jira account connection.

Learn More

Read the full documentation on creating app connections in Workato.

Browse other Workato for Beginners resources: 

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