How to put your feet up with Microsoft Flow (before Armageddon)

12/09/2019

Sooner or later, the human race will be vanquished by machines who hate our guts. But until that happens, we may as well use their intelligence to make our lives a smidgen easier. Microsoft Flow, which allows users to automate processes which interact with data from different sources, gives you that power, moving the workforce away from grunt work and into more strategic, value-adding roles.

Within Flow, there is an extensive list of templates to take advantage of, but for those extra special processes that you never want to do again, they’ve also got you covered. Watch Microsoft’s video below to find out how to create a custom flow and cut out the middleman for good:

 

Triggering the flow

When you’re looking at your list of flows, start by clicking ‘create new flow’. When creating a flow, the first thing you need is a starting point – in other words, what happens to trigger the flow.

Use the search box to find the event you want to use as a trigger. If you’re interested in collecting tweets about your company, search Twitter.

This will show you available triggers for Twitter. If you haven’t signed into Twitter, you’ll be asked to connect. Sign in with your normal account information – Microsoft Flow will remember your connection so you don’t have to sign in in the future. Next, use the search box to choose the term you want to search Twitter for.

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Introducing actions

Now that you have a trigger, you’ll need to add one or more actions.  Essentially, you need to tell flow what you want to happen next. Use the search box to find an action, like collecting the tweets you find in an Excel file. Then search for Excel and select ‘insert a row’. Just like Twitter, you’ll have to connect to Excel, although Excel is a little different because it connects via cloud file service. You can either connect via a service you’ve already set up or set up a new connection using any of the cloud file services flow supports.

Once you’ve connected to Excel, fill out the settings by doing the following:

  1. Pick the file from the list of Excel files you want to access through your cloud files service.
  2. Select which table in the Excel file you want to save the date into. Make sure you click ‘add table’ in the Excel file before you save it. If you don’t, it won’t show up.
  3. Pass the right data into the Excel file and you need to tell it what to collect. Each token represents a different piece of data you could collect from Twitter. Click the ones you want – for example, ‘tweeted by’ and ‘tweet text’.

Adding the finishing touches

Then when the flow runs, the information will be collected and sent to the Excel sheet. One you've named the flow, all the tweets about your hashtag will be saved to the Excel file you choose. Et voilà! Consider your feet well and truly up!

Find out how you take advantage of Microsoft Flow by calling one of our friendly team of experts on 020 7065 6861 or by filling out the form below ↓