Before You Build: Business Central & Power Automate Flows

By - June 9, 2020

Microsoft Flow (now under the Microsoft Power Automate umbrella) is a powerful workflow tool that gives you the ability to extend and integrate applications in a way that previously required the assistance of an experienced developer.

It can be helpful to understand some of the pitfalls before attempting to create complex automation in your Dynamics 365 Business Central environment.

 

Microsoft limits Power Automate’s access to Business Central tables

Due to system performance concerns, the only Business Central tables currently available are those that Microsoft has published API’s for. To access tables that don’t appear on the list, custom APIs, or custom pages it would be helpful to seek the help of an experienced Business Central developer or reach out to your Microsoft Partner.

 

Business Central Power Automate Connectors are in Preview

Preview functionality in Power Automate means that these features are subject to change at anytime. Microsoft probably will not outright deprecate their Business Central connectors and they won’t remove connectors you are already using. However, they could adjust them in ways that impact how you build future Flows. It is always recommended to keep up to date on changes coming to Power Automate by viewing the product roadmap and utilizing a preview environment to test how new functionality will impact your system and your users.

 

Anyone with a license can access Power Automate

Power Automate does not have its own security model and because licensing is automatically included with your Dynamics 365 Business Central license this means that users have the ability to create and run Flows that interact with Business Central data as if they were manually interacting with it in the system. While the rise of citizen developers is great, there are issues around bulk updates of data and system performance. Ensuring Business Central security is set up properly, Power Automate licenses are removed when they aren’t needed, and that your users have the proper training in how to utilize Power Automate Flows can go a long way in preventing headaches.

Taylor Becktold is a senior associate on the Application Development and Integration team at RSM. Taylor is certified in Dynamics 365 Sales (formerly CRM) and specializes in Microsoft Power Automate, Power Apps, and the KingswaySoft + SSIS integration toolset.

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