Grant role to user in Snowflake

Learn how to grant a role to a user or a role to another role in Snowflake using simple SQL commands.

Stephen Allwright
Stephen Allwright

Let's start by outlining the general syntax for granting a role to a user or another role in Snowflake:

grant role <name> to { role <parent_role_name> | user <user_name> }

Grant role to a user in Snowflake

Granting a role to a user enables the user to undertake all the operations and privileges that are permitted by the role.

Here is an example where we grant the role engineer to user1 :

grant role engineer to user user1

Grant role to a role in Snowflake

It’s also possible to grant a role to another role, which creates a “role hierarchy” between the two.

For example, if you have a main sysadmin role and want to grant a newly created role to that role, then you could do that like so:

grant role engineer to role sysadmin;

This example would make the role sysadmin the “parent” to the role engineer in this role to role hierarchy.

Snowflake privileges, roles, and users

Let's now introduce the concept of privileges. A Snowflake privilege is an action that a role can undertake, which is then in-turn granted to a user.

A way to visualise these relationships is:

Privilege -> Role -> User

There are many different types of privileges that a role can receive, but the key ones to know are:

  • SELECT: Makes it possible to run select commands
  • UPDATE: Makes it possible to run update commands
  • TRUNCATE: Makes it possible run a truncate table command
  • CREATE: Make it possible to run a create table or create view command
  • INSERT: Make it possible to run an insert command

Editing tables

Create table in Snowflake
Create or replace table in Snowflake
Drop table in Snowflake
Delete table in Snowflake


Snowflake grant role documentation
Snowflake access control privileges


Stephen Allwright Twitter

I'm a Data Scientist currently working for Oda, an online grocery retailer, in Oslo, Norway. These posts are my way of sharing some of the tips and tricks I've picked up along the way.