Saving approvals as PDFs in Microsoft Teams

In this post we demo the ability to download approvals in Microsoft Teams as PDFs for filing, printing or transferring.

Introduction

Microsoft introduced the ability to save, print and transfer approvals as PDFs in late 2022. With this feature, approval creators are able to save a completed approval request to a PDF file and have the option to print it. At the time of writing, there was very little online about this feature, or what it looks like – so here it is in action!

Demo – save a PDF from approval

  • There are several ways to trigger a new approval, via Teams chat or channel message, the approvals app or via Power Automate to name a few. In my example, I created a Teams channel approval:

Note: There’s a brief delay after sending your approval before it appears within your activity feed, or the approvals app (approx. 5 minutes). Once it does, you are able to go ahead and approve/ reject it. You cannot save approvals as PDF whilst they are in the ‘requested’ state.

  • Once the approval has been completed, you can either view the details of the approval (if a channel message) or open the approval up from the approvals app in Teams.
Approval details via the Teams channel message.
Approval details via the Teams channel message.
Approval details via the approvals app.
Approval details via the approvals app.
  • Once your approval is open > press Save as PDF.
  • A PDF export of the approval window will download into the local downloads folder on your device. The output will look something like the below:

Current limitations

  • There is no way currently to change the download location of the PDF or change the behaviour. It would be nice it it was configurable to set it to save to a OneDrive location potentially.
  • There are no standard approval triggers related to this functionality in Power Automate. Again, for the same purpose as above, it would be good to be able to leverage this functionality via Power Automate to route the downloaded PDF to a OneDrive/ SharePoint location.