Sharing workflow templates within your organization

You can create a standardized set of workflow templates specifically for your organization. Organization members can then use the templates when creating new workflows in the organizations repositories.

GitHub Actions is available with GitHub Free, GitHub Pro, GitHub Free for organizations, GitHub Team, GitHub Enterprise Cloud, and GitHub One. GitHub Actions is not available for private repositories owned by accounts using legacy per-repository plans. For more information, see "GitHub's products."

In this article

Workflow templates can be created by users with write access to the organization's .github repository. The templates can then be used by organization members who have permission to create workflows.

Workflow templates can be used to create new workflows in an organizations' public repositories; to use templates to create workflows in private repositories, the organization must be part of an enterprise or GitHub One plan.

Creating a workflow template

This procedure demonstrates how to create a workflow template and metadata file. The metadata file describes how the template is presented to users when they are creating a new workflow.

  1. If it doesn't already exist, create a new public repository named .github in your organization.

  2. Create a directory named workflow-templates.

  3. Create your new workflow file inside the workflow-templates directory. For example, this file named octo-organization-ci.yml demonstrates a basic workflow:

    name: Octo Organization CI
        branches: [ test-branch ]
        branches: [ test-branch ]
        runs-on: ubuntu-latest
        - uses: actions/checkout@v2
        - name: Run a one-line script
          run: echo Hello from Octo Organization
  4. Create a metadata file inside the workflow-templates directory. The metadata file must have the same name as the workflow file, but instead of the .yml extension, it must be appended with .properties.json. For example, this file named contains the metadata for a workflow file named octo-organization-ci.yml:

        "name": "Octo Organization Workflow",
        "description": "Octo Organization CI workflow template.",
        "iconName": "example-icon",
        "categories": [
        "filePatterns": [
    • name - Required. The name of the workflow template. This is displayed in the list of available templates.
    • description - Required. The description of the workflow template. This is displayed in the list of available templates.
    • iconName - Required. Defines an icon for the workflow's entry in the template list. The iconName must be an SVG icon of the same name, and must be stored in .github. For example, a SVG file named example-icon.svg is referenced as example-icon.
    • categories - Optional. Defines the language category of the workflow. When a user views the available templates, those templates that match the same language will feature more prominently. For information on the available language categories, see
    • filePatterns - Optional. Allows the template to be used if the user's repository has a file in its root directory that matches a defined regular expression.

To add another workflow template, add your files to the same workflow-templates directory. For example:

Workflow template files

Using a workflow template

This procedure demonstrates how a member of your organization can find and use a workflow template to create a new workflow. An organization's workflow templates can be used by anyone who is a member of the organization.

  1. On GitHub, navigate to the main page of the repository.
  2. Under your repository name, click Actions.
    Actions tab in the main repository navigation
  3. If your repository already has existing workflows: In the upper-left corner, click New workflow.
    Create a new workflow
  4. Your organization's workflow templates are located in their own section titled "Workflows created by organization name". Under the name of the template you'd like to use, click Set up this workflow.
    Set up this workflow

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