For my personal to do list I use Microsoft To-Do. One frustration that I had with To-Do was the inability to create To-Do items from emails. Thankfully there is a Flow connector for To-Do and that can be used to create items. However the documentation for the connector is pretty lacking and so below is a quick guide in how to join the two together.
A two-step Flow is required:
The ‘When an email is flagged’ trigger is pulled when an email is flagged for follow-up.
It does not seem to matter what type of flag is applied as the trigger does not contain an option to only fire on a particular type of flag.
The trigger watches a specific folder in your inbox. In the example above it is watching my main Inbox folder. You can include optional filters using the ‘Subject Filter’, ‘To’ etc. This is super useful if you have an email culture where people add phrases like [ACTION] or [INFORMATION] to the subject line.
The action will need configuring as it will not work out of the box. The bare minimum is to set the ‘Subject’ of the To-Do item and the ‘To-do List’ that will be used. Note that the ‘To-do List’ field is not marked as mandatory in the action. Allegedly (HIGNFY) the action will work without the ‘To-do List’ item being set to an actual list (or it would be mandatory right?) but does not work for me…
In this example I am using the Subject line of the flagged email. I have also included the body of the email as the ‘Body Content’ of the To-Do item. It’s worth noting that if your emails arrive as HTML then you need to set the ‘Body Content Type’ to HTML in the advanced options of the action. You could use the ‘Is HTML?’ value from Outlook to calculate whether the content is HTML. If you find that the odd Flow fails it might be due to the content limit of the item being exceeded.
I have also included a calculated due date for the To-do item. Ideally Flow would use the date from the Outlook flag but seemingly the value is not passed from Outlook. In this instance I have set the ‘Due date’ to 7-days from the creation of the item using the expression:
It can take upwards of 5 minutes for the Flow to fire but when it does you’ll have a new item in your To-Do:
Word of caution: The ‘Add a to-do’ action is a blunt instrument. It will create a new item if you change the flag, say from Today to Next Week. To-Do does not spot duplicates even when items like the subject clearly match.