Power Automate is the next big thing in the Microsoft Office toolkit that can help with automating manual and repetitive tasks. The very service helps you create an automated workflow between apps and services of your choice to sync files, get notifications, get desired data, and more! There are many things you can do with Power Automate:
- automate business processes,
- move your business data between systems according to your schedule,
- automate tasks on your local computer like computing data on your Excel sheet,
- send automatic reminders of tasks,
- connect to more than 1000 data sources or any publicly available API
Although anyone from a basic business entrepreneur to an IT professional can create automated processes, those industries can highly benefit from Power Automate. They are:
You don’t need to be an expert or a developer to create Power Automate flows. But, how do you successfully create flows in Power Automate? The process of power automation can be difficult and is explained below in the following detailed steps:
Open Microsoft Power Automate:
Microsoft Office may suggest Flows from several applications, but the infallible place to start is “flow.microsoft.com.” Or you can also go to your Office.com dashboard and select Power Automate.
Once you open the Power Automate on your screen, sign in with your Microsoft Office login and password.
Select My flows from the navigation bar on the left:
This list will be empty for now. Do not worry. We are going to create a new one shortly.
Select New, and then select Flow:
Select New Flow from the drop-down menu and select “Automated Cloud Flow” from “Build your own from Blank.” This will create a new flow unique to your requirements. Name your Flow. Suppose you want to block your calendar for a set amount of dates with a subject line telling you the reason. You can create a flow that monitors files uploaded to a folder in your library. When creating flows, they appear in “My Flows.” Hence different people will see their flows when signed into the portal. There are different kinds of flows you can create:
- Automated Flow: this will trigger when an event occurs. There are a lot of triggers to select from.
- Instant Flow: This can be triggered manually from the mobile app or click “Run” in Flow.
- Scheduled Flow: This will trigger on a schedule and be set on repeat.
- UI Flow: This can be triggered on Windows and Web applications.
- Business Process Flow: Normally triggered with Dynamics 365 or the Power App.
Setting a trigger or schedule:
Triggers can be set instantly or manually. These can even be on schedule or automatically when some event occurs. Search for the connector and then select the app icon. For our case, write “calendar.” Then the corresponding actions will appear. Choose the trigger that best suits you.
Setting Up Variables:
Now, variables need to be entered that can be changed once you start the Flow. This can be done by adding an input after the Flow has started. Click on “Manually trigger a Flow.” Then click on “Add an input.” It will help if you put in a subject to why you want to block your calendar. Hence, it would help to put in text input as your subject. It provides you with 2 boxes. Fill those with the appropriate names. Next, we need to set up the variable of how long we are blocking our calendars. We need to add another input, but it will be numerical this time.
Choosing an Action:
When you choose the Next step button, it will give us a huge list of connectors and actions that can be used with the variables we have created. We want to book time in the calendar, so searching for the calendar gives us a list of Microsoft’s calendars. Now we need to decide what our Flow will do. We have decided on the “Subject,””Reason,””Minutes,” and thus, this will lead us to the “Create the event” action.
Testing your Flow:
Okay, you are done making your first Flow. You have to make sure that it works now. Go to the bottom of your page and click on “Save.” Once done, go to “My Flows” and find it. Click “Run” in the bar, fill in all the variables–Subject, Reason, Minutes. Once done, click Run Flow and then see if everything worked!
If it worked, you have successfully learned how to create your Flow! Power Automate is your buddy now! If not, you can always sign up for Power Automate training with us!