Microsoft Flow has become a favorite app of people wanting to improve their communication and work flow but there was one glaring fault. When you sent emails they from Flow they could only be in simple text. You could not give your email the emphasis and impact you wanted.
Microsoft has just added a rich text feature to Microsoft Flow, along with several other features, to give you more control of what your emails look like. The new feature adds an HTML text editor to Flow giving you the ability to create HTML emails directly in Flow.
The new editor allows you to change fonts, vary the font colors, highlight text with color, and create lists. Additionally, you can italicize, underline, and make your fonts bold.
Why is this so important?
Being able to emphasize points using different colors, fonts, and features lets you communicate your message more clearly. It eliminates the reader from guessing what points are the most critical in your message, because you can make sure they see exactly what you consider important. It gives you the ability to add visual emotion to your emails.
At this time, you cannot build tables in your emails, but Microsoft promises this feature will be released in the future.
The rich text editor is now only available in the email connector for Flow, but it will be added to connectors for OneNote, Microsoft Teams, and for posting stories directly to Medium and WordPress sites. Anyone who uses Microsoft products in their office will appreciate the ability to get more work done through Flow instead of bouncing out to Medium and or their WordPress sites just to post a story to get control of the look and feel.
Microsoft also announced new connectors for Microsoft Flow on the same day they announced the new rich text feature. The new connectors include the following:
- Imprezian360 – A suite of applications which works with Quickbooks Desktop Editions to add sales leads management, order management, and inventory features.
- Soft1 – This connector allows Microsoft Flow to communicate with Soft1 ERP systems. (Enterprise Resource Planning systems.)
- Zahara – The paperless system for invoices and purchase order in the Zahara Purchase Management Platform.
- Encodian – Which adds document management and PDF creation systems to Office 365 and other applications.
These connectors expand the ability of Flow to work in more corporations. As Microsoft continues to add connectors the importance of the rich text feature expands. Many applications allow for creating HTML content for improved appearance which Flow has not offered in the past.
What else does the rich text editor add for you? It gives you the ability to create HTML links in your emails. This was a major shortcoming in the past. We constantly send links to clients and co-workers, so they can review content for projects. You can select whether the links will open in the current window or open a new window, which is usually preferred.
Flow has received wide acceptance in the corporate and educational worlds where these features are very important. Teachers routinely contact parents with information on their students which require emphasis and may link to online student reports. Being able to create these messages directly in Flow instead of switching back to Outlook increases efficiency.
The corporate world appreciates the linking ability, too. Corporations have both their public websites and their intranet sites which they routinely link to. The new feature allows users to quickly link to internet sites, or internal pages on the company’s private intranet.
Imagine the quality of content you will be able to create on the fly with the new editor. You can create messages with the power to convince instead of just to inform. With the addition of tables in the near future, you will be able to convey almost any message you wish inside of Microsoft Flow.
Just imagine, you are working in Dynamics 365 Enterprise Sales, you receive an important notification about a client in Flow. Without leaving what you are in the middle of doing, you can type up a full-featured message in Flow and send it off in seconds instead of moving to a different application.
Start thinking of all the places this will become valuable. You may have connectors already setup for your WordPress site, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, and SharePoint. You could receive a notification from any of these connectors or need to post content to any of these platforms. With the rich text HTML editor, you will be able to create messages these platforms will understand. While the Flow rich text feature does not work universally at this time, it is good to see Microsoft expanding its capability to prepare for the future.
Keep watching for future announcements of when Microsoft extends the rich text feature to include tables and other connectors along with other new features.