In my org

There are 15 fields of type "Hierarchy" on the User object. Out of these, one is the standard Manager field, and the rest 14 custom.

I have an approval process where I need to select one of these hierarchy fields from the "Automatically assign to Approver(s)" field using the "Related User" selection (screenshot). However, my required field is not available for selection, and only 10 fields appear in the dropdown, in alphabetical order, which are a mix of 3 standard fields and 7 custom hierarchy fields on User.

Approval Process Step Related User dropdown


Where are the other 7 custom hierarchy fields on User and why are they not selectable? I have checked and they all have the same FLS. Only difference is that they were created much later than the other custom hierarchy fields.

Is the having 10 entries in the dropdown a Salesforce limit, and am I not getting the next fields because this is excluding the limit? Is this a bug? Anyone else has encountered this behavior, and perhaps knows of a logical explanation?

From this help link I see only the following information, but nothing to solve my problem.

Who can approve requests?

Any of the following can approve or reject a request.
A user or queue that the approval request submitter chooses.
A queue specified by the administrator.
A user listed in the Manager standard field on the submitter’s user detail page.
A user listed in a custom hierarchy field on the submitter’s user detail page.
Any combination of users and related users (users listed in a standard or custom field on the submitted record) specified by the administrator.
  • you sure 7 hierarchy fields from the user object are displaying there? That dropdown is based on user lookups for the object the approval process is on (and User object can't have approval processes). The User hierarchy fields would be used in a different screen (edit Approver Field and Record Editability). See this question. Aug 4, 2021 at 23:12
  • That's it! I was completely in the wrong direction, as we have exactly similarly named lookup fields on the object undergoing approval process and hierarchy fields on the user object. Then what I understand is, I can only ever choose ONE hierarchy field (Standard or Custom) from the User object in the Approval Field and Record Editability screen, and that one stays available for the radio "Automatically assign using the User field selected earlier" in all the approval steps. You can add your comment as an answer, so I could mark it solved. Aug 5, 2021 at 6:56

1 Answer 1


Your screenshot is showing all the lookups to the User object on the object the approval process is on. You only have the following options:

  • Let the submitter choose the approver manually
  • Automatically assign using the user field selected earlier
  • Automatically assign to queue
  • Automatically assign to approver(s) (select a user, or use user lookup on object)

What you're referring to, custom Hierarchy fields on the User object, is only selectable once per approval process for use in assignment.

You can see this idea asking to Allow for multiple Hierarchical Approval users per Approval Process, but it's not currently possible.

In your screenshot, Manager was selected but you should be able to select any one of your hierarchy fields on the User object (standard or custom). You can change this by clicking "Edit" on your approval process and selecting Approver Field and Record Editability. The Next Automated Approver Determined By dropdown will contain your hierarchy fields.

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