Is your business trying to improve efficiency and increase automation for common processes? If so, creating workflows is a critical piece of the puzzle. Workflows can streamline daily tasks, saving time and reducing errors by creating and performing a series of automated steps.
This article teaches users of Microsoft Dynamics 365 (we will focus on Dynamics 365 Business Central) how to create workflows using Microsoft Flow, an application connector and workflow engine that’s part of the Microsoft Office 365 suite.
What is Microsoft Flow?
Microsoft Flow is a cloud-based solution that allows users to create and run workflows between multiple applications. When you open the Flow interface for the first time, you can view a list of connectors that allow you to link between different internal and external applications. Microsoft Flow connects with the entire Microsoft 365 stack but also with many other business solutions, including SharePoint, Salesforce, Twitter, SQL Server, Dropbox, and much more. The Microsoft Flow connector with Dynamics 365 Business Central is particularly helpful to many organizations.
Flow Connector Templates
When you select the Flow connector for a particular software solution, you see all of the existing templates for that connector. These templates are pre-built workflows that are commonly used with each solution. Users can also create a Flow from scratch, but for many situations, it might be fastest to start with a template and then tinker with it to create the exact functionality you need.
Examples of Flow templates for Dynamics 365 Business Central include:
- Low stock warning
- Data-based alerts
- Request approvals for tasks and items such as:
- Edit Dynamics 365 Business Central customer (for example, a change to a credit limit)
- Purchase order or purchase invoice
- Sales order or sales quote
Using Microsoft Flow with D365BC
Flow can automate many of the common repetitive tasks in Dynamics 365 Business Central. Let’s use the popular example of a Purchase Invoice Approval:
Select the template “Purchase Invoice Approval” and open the pre-built workflow steps. The Flow will automatically send emails and facilitate approval or rejection of the Purchase Invoice. Approval or rejection will each lead to a different workflow outcome and appropriate users will be automatically notified.
Microsoft Flow makes it easy to open a pre-built Flow template, then edit conditions, add multiple conditions to each step, change the text within emails, and much more.
Once you’ve created a workflow, you can initiate it from within Dynamics 365 Business Central. After a workflow has been run, you can access Microsoft Flow, click on the particular workflow, and see visualizations showing how often it’s been run, the success or failure rate, and more.
How is Flow different from the workflow engine within Dynamics 365 Business Central?
Flow isn’t contained within Business Central, so it can work outside of it. This allows you to create and access workflows from any of the applications that might be included in your daily tasks. You can also install the Flow app on your phone, which gives you push notifications for the Flows you create.
By contrast, if you’re creating a similar process using Dynamics 365 Business Central’s built-in workflow engine, users must log into Business Central to see what’s happening and interact with each workflow. This built-in engine works well for users that are constantly accessing Business Central, but Flow offers a slightly different access point that may be more convenient for many users.
Ready to automate your day?
Western Computer has more than 30 years of experience helping customers use technology to solve their business challenges. Our solutions experts can help you automate your processes and streamline your day from start to finish.
If you’d like to see Microsoft Flow and Dynamics 365 Business Central in action, check out our on-demand webinar – Using Microsoft Flow Integrated with D365 Business Central. For more information about or help getting started, contact us.
About the AuthorMore Content by Maher Malki