Microsoft Flow – extremely flexible email merge without any hardcoded mapping

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Imagine an Email Merge process that doesn't require any mapping per se. A process that is as easy as composing an email. Look no further! The pros of this workflow are: uses a single SharePoint list that can be easily reused for another Email Merge need; use the same SharePoint list to send email merges with a few or lot of fields; preserves all custom html formatting of an email; doesn't use paid connectors and premium Power Automate license; no need for data mapping - you just compose an email using special tags; can have as many columns and as many tags as you would like. Please note, as this workflow is quite complicated logically, I would encourage you to make my example fully work on your side first, then apply its concept to your business needs second. PREREQUISITES: 1) Let's create a SharePoint list. Rename its Title column to…

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Microsoft Flow – parse email and extract information

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If you have a 3rd party system that sends standardized notifications and you would like to automatically process those notifications, then this Flow can be helpful. The flow below parses a predefined email, extracts information for you to take further actions with it. Those actions can be: saving data into a SharePoint List; forwarding part of an email to another system; removing all formatting and so on. The flow is pretty simple and consists of these steps: 1) Trigger - When a new email arrives. 2) Action - Html to text - convert email body from HTML to plain text. 3) Action - Initialize variable - store a carriage return value in it. Peek code view: { "inputs": { "variables": [ { "name": "CRLF", "type": "String", "value": "\n" } ] } } 4) Action - Compose - split output from #2 into an array. Expression: split( trim( uriComponentToString( replace( uriComponent(…

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Microsoft Flow – archive SharePoint List data into a single Excel file

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This post is about a quite simple task to achieve - archiving SharePoint List data into a single Excel file that is stored in a Document Library. I think it is important to go through this process to show the basics and have it as a prerequisite for a more complicated process - archiving data into multiple excel files. There are several reasons why one would archive data into Excel: excel file is easy to move or share; it is very fast to work with (no paging, no 5000 item limit view threshold). Let's create a SharePoint List with different types of columns (single line text, date, number, choice): Then we add a few test items: After that we create a Document Library and put an Excel file into it: That Excel file should have a table in it and the same columns as our SharePoint List. The formatting of…

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Microsoft Flow – 2 methods to not use Apply to Each action when only a single filtered item is expected

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In this post I will show you 2 methods when using Apply to each Flow action is not necessary. By not using them you make your Flows look cleaner, less complicated. Please note, these methods are mostly good when only a single item is expected after filtering an array. I created a SharePoint List with two text columns - Title and Color. Both columns are required. Title values are set to be unique (!). When using Get Items action, an array of items is returned regardless if it's a single item in it or not. The moment you try to use a Condition action on its result, the system will insert an Apply to Each action to go through every single possible item. Again, it's redundant when by design a single item is returned after filtering. In my test flow I'm using a very simple Filter Query on purpose - Title…

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SharePoint – use Microsoft Flow to enforce uniqueness of a combination of two or more columns

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In SharePoint there is an out-of-the-box way to enforce uniqueness of fields. Let’s say you have a SharePoint list with events and dates and by design you would like to allow any combination of events per day as long as they don’t have the same name and date/time at once. According to the requirements, this is not allowed: Team Lunch – 12/29/2018 12:00 PM (same name and date/time) Team Lunch – 12/29/2018 12:00 PM (same name and date/time) And these combinations are allowed: Team Lunch – 12/29/2018 12:00 PM (same name, different date/time) Team Lunch – 12/29/2018 2:00 PM (same name, different date/time) OR Team Lunch – 12/29/2018 12:00 PM (different name, same date/time) Vendor meeting – 12/29/2018 12:00 PM (different name, same date/time) If you make both Event and Date fields unique then you won’t be able to achieve that. Would be great if we could create and use a…

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Microsoft Flow – populate a multi choice field in SharePoint

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How to populate a multi choice field in SharePoint is a frequent question on Microsoft Flow forum. Officially, at the time of this post there is no confirmation that such functionality exists. So I started testing possible ways of doing it and eventually came up with a solution that works and kind of makes sense. If the Trial and Error part is no interest for you, then feel free to scroll down to the Solution. TRIAL AND ERROR 1) I created a Color Choices SharePoint list with Colors being a multi choice column. Choices are Red, Blue, Yellow, Pink, Green, and Orange. Then from the list itself I submitted the 1st item with Red and Yellow values. The goal was to see how data would look like from the Flow perspective. To do that a simple Flow was created that works on selected item and gets data from it. The result was:…

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