What are the different types of PowerAutomate flows ?

Power Automate flows can be used to automate your business processes.

But with are so many different types of flows so which one should you choose?

When creating a Microsoft Power Automate flow, it is important to understand the different types of flows to decide on the best one to use for your scenario.

There are currently 5 different types of Power Automate Flows and they are:

1. Schedule Flow: A Scheduled Flow is a flow that would be set to run on a specific date and time.

For Example: If you want to create an email reminder flow that runs every Tuesday at 8:00 a.m., you can create a schedule flow to do just that.

2. Automated Flow: an automated flow is a flow that is started by a trigger.
It starts with “when” because it will only run when the specified conditions are met. 

An Automated Flow is used when you want a flow to run whenever specific conditions are met.

For Example: If you want to create a flow to send an email notification whenever a user creates a new item on a SharePoint list, you will create an Automated Flow with the “when an item is created” trigger and specify which SharePoint list.

3. Instant Flow: The Instant Flow is used when you need to start a flow by clicking on a button.

It is usually used with Power Apps applications to run immediately after an action is selected.

For Example: You want to create a Power Apps application to submit a form after a user clicks on a button. Once the user clicks on the button then the instant flow is triggered.

4. UI Flow: UI Flow is similar to Robotic Process Automation (RPA). It works by recording your actions e.g. Clicks, Keyboard Inputs for an application, and then automatically replicates it.

This flow type is best for automating repetitive tasks in basic applications.

There are two different types of UI Flow and they are the Desktop App and Web Apps. 

The Desktop app run on Windows desktop, while the Web App runs on web browsers such as Microsoft Edge, Chromium and Google Chrome.

For Example: You need to test a software application by posting 100 invoices.

You would start your UI Flow and create an invoice and then post the invoice.

Once the invoice is posted, then you can schedule the UI Flow to be run which would replicate the invoice creation and posting process 100 times.

5. Business Process Flow: The Business Process Flow is used to build flows that are similar to organizational business processes.

They can be used to guide the users on the right steps to take to complete the business process.

For example: a Business Process flow can be used to build a flow which guides new users on the New Employee Onboarding process.