What is Microsoft Flow?

Author by Christian Urena

Microsoft Flow is a new workflow management tool for automating workflows across applications and services by connecting web services, files, and cloud-based data. It empowers users to create workflows to decrease time-consuming tasks or processes that automate approvals, send/receive notifications, synchronize files, or collect, organize and update data.


Microsoft Flow can bridge the gap between many scenarios by bringing together two or more cloud services with the creation of workflows. You can also create your own flows if you need to connect Microsoft services with non-Microsoft services, or vice-versa. There are many pre-built templates you can use if they satisfy current business needs. You will need to sign-in so that the pre-built templates can connect to the services you are trying to access. After access is granted, you can view all of the triggers, actions, and settings that make the flow function. Don’t be afraid to add, change, or delete actions to create your own flow! You can also create flows from scratch using various data sources such as SharePoint lists, Excel files, Azure SQL tables, and more.



In this example we’ll create our own Flow from scratch to approve or reject items in a SharePoint list and notify users with the outcome. You can use this example in any scenario that you may require an item to be approved or rejected. Here is the overall view of our Flow:



Step 1: We’ll pick the list where the item is created.


Step 2: Send an email requesting approval or rejection.


Step 3: We’ll establish our condition to email the requestor if the item was approved or rejected.


Step 4.1: If approved, send an approval email.


Step 4.2: If rejected, send a rejected email.


Microsoft Flow offers other approaches and functionality. You can create flows to carry out various steps/actions to different services, run on a schedule, require an approval, or even add a flow to an app. You can also use the mobile apps for iPhone and Android (beta release) to monitor and manage your flows. Office 365 is not required and you can have up to 25 flows in your account. Anyone with a work or school email address can sign up to use Microsoft Flow at no cost.


Helpful Links

Microsoft Flow Homepage: https://flow.microsoft.com/en-us/

Pre-Built Templates: https://flow.microsoft.com/en-us/templates/

Services: https://flow.microsoft.com/en-us/services/

Microsoft Flow iOS App: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/microsoft-flow/id1094928825?mt=8