Power Automate


Power Automate is an automation platform developed by Microsoft. It uses the concept of "connectors" to access various Microsoft and third party services, and pass information between them. Here are several training modules for Power Automate from Microsoft: https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/training/powerplatform/power-automate. Power Automate can be accessed at https://flow.microsoft.com/

Power Automate contains the following concepts:

  • Flow - an automation workflow that allows connections to various Microsoft and third party services.
  • Trigger - the step that begins a flow. Can be scheduled to run daily, or when an email is received to a certain inbox
  • Connector - the way the step within a flow is authenticated. For example, if you're checking email to a certain shared mailbox, someone with access to that mailbox will need to set up a connector. Multiple people can have connectors set up on a single flow step so that if one of them breaks, it can be changed to a different person's information.
  • Cloud Flow - a flow that is created on the web.
  • Desktop Flow - a flow that is created using the desktop application.

License Types

There are several different license types available in Power Automate. Everyone at Middlebury has access to the Office 365 License for Power Automate, which includes the following: 

There are additional licenses available for Premium Connectors and various types of Robotic Process Automation. More information can be found on Microsoft's site: https://powerautomate.microsoft.com/en-us/pricing/. Middlebury does not have additional add-on licenses available for assignment, but please contact the Helpdesk if you need this functionality for your work and we can discuss options for acquiring.

Best Practices

  • If a Power Automate Flow is used for a production task in your department, please ensure it is shared with a group of people and that you're not the only one who has access! Instructions for sharing a Cloud Flow can be found on this page: https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/power-automate/create-team-flows
  • ITS strongly encourages that all flows be shared with a group and not individuals. This can be done by creating a Microsoft Team (or using an existing Team) and sharing the Flow with the underlying group. This allows you to manage the access to the flow via membership in the group.
  • In addition to sharing Flows, you should also ensure that all underlying documents are also shared. For example, if you write certain data to a spreadsheet for a production Flow, then that spreadsheet should be located within the Team that the Flow is shared with.
  • It's also recommended to come up with a standard naming convention for all production and development flows, so that it's clear which are actually being used.
  • Regularaly check to make sure that all of the Connectors used in your flows are healthy and operational. It's possible for Flows to break (for example, if you change your Middlebury password) and need to be reauthenticated to work again.



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Article ID: 666
Wed 11/8/23 11:30 AM
Wed 11/8/23 11:35 AM