AWS Step Functions Documentation

AWS Step Functions provides serverless orchestration for modern applications. Orchestration centrally manages a workflow by breaking it into multiple steps, adding flow logic, and tracking the inputs and outputs between the steps. As your applications execute, Step Functions maintains application state, tracking which workflow step your application is in, and stores an event log of data that is passed between application components.
Application development can be faster and more intuitive with Step Functions, because you can define and manage the workflow of your application independently from its business logic. Making changes to one does not affect the other. You can update and modify workflows in one place, without having to struggle with managing, monitoring and maintaining multiple point-to-point integrations.

Workflow configuration

Using AWS Step Functions, you define your workflows as state machines, which transform complex code into easier to understand statements and diagrams.

Built-in service primitives

AWS Step Functions provides ready-made steps for your workflow called states that implement basic service primitives for you, which means you can remove that logic from your application. With states, you can pass data to other states and microservices, handle exceptions, add timeouts, make decisions, execute multiple paths in parallel, and more.

AWS service integrations

Using AWS Step Functions service tasks, you can configure your Step Functions workflow to call other AWS services. This includes compute services (AWS Lambda, Amazon ECS, Amazon EKS, and AWS Fargate), database services (Amazon DynamoDB), messaging services (Amazon SNS and Amazon SQS), data processing and analytics services (Amazon Athena, AWS Batch, AWS Glue, Amazon EMR, and AWS Glue DataBrew), machine learning services (Amazon SageMaker), and APIs created by Amazon API Gateway.

Coordination of distributed components

AWS Step Functions allow you to coordinate any application that can make an HTTPS connection, regardless of where it is hosted—for example, on Amazon EC2 instances, mobile devices, or on-premises servers.

Component reuse

With AWS Step Functions, you can coordinate your existing Lambda functions and microservices into robust applications, and rewire them into new compositions.

Workflow abstraction

AWS Step Functions allows you to keep the logic of your application strictly separated from the implementation of your application. Through this separation of concerns, your workflows gain modularity, simplified maintenance, scalability, and code reuse.

State management

AWS Step Functions maintains the state of your application during execution, including tracking what step of execution it is in, and storing data that is moving between the steps of your workflow.

Built-in error handling

You can use AWS Step Functions to handle errors and exceptions with built-in try/catch and retry, whether the task takes seconds or months to complete. You can automatically retry failed or timed-out tasks, respond differently to different types of errors, and recover gracefully by falling back to designated cleanup and recovery code.

History of each execution

AWS Step Functions delivers real-time diagnostics and dashboards, integrates with Amazon CloudWatch and AWS CloudTrail, and logs every execution, including overall state, failed steps, inputs, and outputs.

High availability

AWS Step Functions has built-in fault tolerance and maintains service capacity across multiple Availability Zones in each region to protect applications against individual machine or data center failures. This helps ensure high availability for both the service itself and for the application workflow it operates.

Automatic scaling

AWS Step Functions scales the operations and underlying compute to run the steps of your application for you in response to changing workloads. Step Functions scales to help ensure the performance of your application workflow remains consistent as the frequency of requests increases.

High volume orchestration

AWS Step Functions adds Express Workflows. Express Workflows support event rates greater than 100,000 per second, enabling you to build high volume, short duration workflows. Express Workflows can coordinate AWS Lambda function invocations, AWS IoT Rules Engine actions, and Amazon EventBridge events from over a hundred AWS third-party SaaS event sources.

Additional Information

For additional information about service controls, security features and functionalities, including, as applicable, information about storing, retrieving, modifying, restricting, and deleting data, please see This additional information does not form part of the Documentation for purposes of the AWS Customer Agreement available at, or other agreement between you and AWS governing your use of AWS’s services.