Power Automate is a tool by Microsoft to enable users to create and automate process and actions that saves a lot of time and efforts for repetitive tasks.
It helps you to create Automated, Instant, Scheduled, Business and UI Flows.
Power automate allows users to integrate with other apps and services by means of connectors. Connector links 2 apps together so that data can be moved/flow
Power Automate has 3 main components
Trigger is the starting point of the tool. Each process needs a trigger either event based on manual to run the setup/process workflow
Connectors is connection between 2 applications. It helps us to connect the 2 apps and pass/ allow the flows between two different application
in required format
Actions is the main key output of the whole workflow or process. Action can be anything and further used as trigger to run the other process
in business workflow or process manually
How to start with Power Automate?
- Click here to Sign up as shown in below image
- Click here to login as shown in below image
What is the capability?
Power automate is capable to perform multiple type of business workflow and operations. You can use Power Automate to automate workflows between your favorite applications and services, sync files, get notifications, collect data, and much more.
You can also create team flow and share it with your teams and provide role based access.
Below are some of the automation you can perform with power automate:
- Instantly respond to high-priority notifications or emails.
- Capture, track, and follow up with new sales leads.
- Copy all email attachments to your OneDrive for Business account.
- Collect data about your business, and share that information with your team.
- Automate approval workflows
Below are different types of flows that can be created as per the use case necessity.
|Flow type||Use case||Automation target|
|Automated flows||Create an automation that is triggered by an event such as arrival of an email from a specific person, or a mention of your company in social media.||Connectors for cloud or on-premises services connect your accounts and enable them to talk to each other.|
|Instant flows||Start an automation with a click of a button. You can automate for repetitive tasks from your Desktop or Mobile devices.||For example, instantly send a reminder to the team with a push of a button from your mobile device. Wide range of tasks such as requesting an approval, an action in Teams or SharePoint.|
|Scheduled flows||Schedule an automation such as daily data upload to SharePoint or a database.||Tasks that need to be automated on a schedule.|
|Business process flows||Ensure that everyone in your company follows the same process by defining a set of steps for people to follow.||Human processes such as customer service requests, approvals, IT development,…|
|UI flows||Record clicks and keyboard strokes from your Desktop and Web applications and automate the playback of manual steps on legacy software.||Desktop and Web applications that do not have APIs available for automation.|
What is the base technical skillset required to harness these tools?
Power automate doesn’t require any special skillset to get started. Anyone having knowledge and fair idea of what they wanted to do they can setup the
workflow quickly with the help of power automate.
Please Click Me go through the link which is guided training by
Microsoft of approx. 1 hour. It will help you understand the power automate quickly.
Sample Flow Creation: Button Click Email Trigger(Manual Flow)
Please follow the steps as shown in the images below to create a basic version of flow.
1. Select Pre-defined template and Click “Create Flow”
2. Click on Edit template to customize it.
3. Set up trigger and then add other basic settings.
4. Run the Flow by filling/adding required details and click “Run Flow”.
5. After running you can track the status on the Flow screen.
6. Final Output(as email in inbox).
Potential Areas where Power Automate can be used?
To start with we can take example of the Timesheet tool.
In timesheet tool if the user fills timesheet it actually goes to his/her manager for the approval. Power automate can connect to our timesheet
database and loop through the timesheets and send an email to that particular user after the manager approves/reject his/her timesheet.
Other than this there are many business areas at different levels where power automate can fit as it provides the flexibility to connect multiple
applications using connectors and can perform multiple type of operations and business workflow
How easy or difficult was it to use?
Power automate is used to create business workflow which can be created using existing templates by Microsoft or customized by you.
Creating these templates is not a complex task for anyone having proper understanding and requirements of what they want to do. With proper understanding they would be able to make use of power automate platform quickly.
Power automate earlier know as Microsoft flow is tool with moderate complexity. It doesn’t require any coding knowledge. It is just drag/drop and easy to use UI tool.
Power automate is just the SAAS version of the Microsoft Azure Logic apps service in the azure cloud. Anyone already worked with Logic app in azure can quickly adapt the power automate.
Next Steps: Power Virtual Agent and UI Automation
Below are some of the other areas in power automate which can be explored
Power automate also has the flexibility to create Robotic process automation with the help of Power virtual Agent. You can create a
bot frameworks with the help of power automate
Power automate can be used for automation testing of the UI applications with the selenium drivers and no extra coding/development involved.
Integrate with other Power platform application available.