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evalindag
Helper III
Helper III

Send filtered items from Sharepoint list to unique emails (multiple person column)

Hi everybody

 

I need help with building a flow which sends an unique email to each user everyday and includes which items are his responsibility. The person column is a multiple person column.

 

See here below a table of demo data. So for person 1 he should get all the items which he is assigned to and I only want the email to include the items which have status: "New" (see the tables below the demo data, they show what each user should get in their email)

 

TitleStatusTypeResponsible People
Req-1PendingType 1person1@mail.com, person2@mail.com
Req-2NewType 1person1@mail.com, person2@mail.com
Req-3NewType 2person2@mail.com, person3@mail.com
Req-4PendingType 3person2@mail.com, 
Req-5NewType 2person1@mail.com, person2@mail.com
    
    
person1@mail.com :
Req-2NewType1
Req-5NewType2
    
person2@mail.com :
Req-2NewType 1
Req-3NewType 2
Req-5NewType 2
    
person3@mail.com :
Req-3NewType 2

 

Best regards 

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

Accepted Solutions
eliotcole
Super User
Super User

Hi, @evalindag 

 

I've used the following method to get this done, running at midnight every night on a schedule.

 

This flow has 'parallel branches', but that's not a requirement, I just do it for neatness and to save time on longer flow runs.

 

Filter Items, Select Unique Responsible People, Filter By Person

First up, here's the flow:

0 - Flow.jpg

I'll continue to edit in my explanation of this into this answer (so if you need more, please wait) ... I just have to not allow the login to expire whilst I'm writing the answer! 😅

Get items

This approach requires that your Get items action on the list has a Filter set:

1 - Get items.jpg

To set that Filter follow these steps:

  1. Set the left side to 'Status' using a 'Custom value' if needs be.
  2. Set the condition to 'Equals' to ensure it matches exactly the right side.
  3. In the the right side type "New" to ensure that it will only match that.

Don't type the quotes when you enter these values.

 

To double check this, you can tap the double arrows you'll see that it reads like this:

Status eq 'New'

If not, make sure that it does.

 

Initialize responsiblePersonVAR

This is a String variable which is optional, I used it so that the flow is more understandable when looked at.

2 - Initialize responsiblePersonVAR.jpg

You can remove it, and either replace the Set responsiblePersonVAR step with a Compose action or just call items('Apply_to_each') when ever you need the value.

 

Select rp

This is the magic bit, and uses a little bit of special sauce to get *only* the field that you want to check for matches.

3 - Select rp.jpg
From
xpath(xml(json(concat('{ "r": { "i": ', string(outputs('Get_items')?['body/value']), ' } }'))), '//ResponsiblePeople_x0023_Claims')
Map
xpath(item(), 'string(/)')

Those From & Map expressions are fanned out and explained in the below spoiler:

Spoiler

This hopefully allows you to see the logic of the expression a little more:

From
xpath(
    xml(
        json(
            concat(
                '{ "r": { "i": ', 
                string(
                    outputs('Get_items')?['body/value']
                ), 
                ' } }'
            )
        )
    ), 
    '//ResponsiblePeople_x0023_Claims'
)
Map
xpath(
    item(), 
    'string(/)'
)

From the inside-out, you may be able to see:

  1. string() - This converts the Get items action into a string of text.
  2. concat() - This adds each of the three items detailed inside it into one long string of text.
    You'll note that the first and last items here are essentially creating a JSON object with the Get items value in the middle.
  3. json() - This converts the string of text into usable JSON which can be worked with.
  4. xml() - This converts the internal JSON into usable XML data.
  5. xpath() - This is selects only items in the 'ResponsiblePeople_x0023_Claims' field of the XML data. 

The xpath() function is an extremely powerful manipulation one, which executes commands on XML data that Power Automate flow actions or expression functions otherwise couldn't do.

So now you have a list of probably repeated values ... what next?

 

Initialize onlyUniquesArrVAR

This is an Array variable which runs a union() function inside its input:

4 - Initialize onlyUniquesArrVAR.jpg
union(
    body('Select_rp'), 
    body('Select_rp')
)

That union() function is basically comparing the array of Responsible People items to iteself, and where there are repeats, it removes them.

 

Condition to cancel if no-one's assigned

This is an entirely optional step, so I won't detail it at all. Essentially it is just a condition against the amount of items inside the onlyUniquesArrVAR variable. If there are zero, it will run a Terminate action which will halt the flow.

 

To count the items inside the array, just use the length() expression in this spoiler:

Spoiler
length(
	variables('onlyUniquesArrVAR')
)

 

Apply to each

This essentially loops through each of the unique Responsible People found in the onlyUniquesArrVAR array:

6 - Apply to each.jpg

Here you can see where I have set the responsiblePersonVAR variable simply with the current Responsible person.

 

After that, there is a slightly complicated Filter array, only in that you can't actually select the 'ResponsiblePeople#Claims' column from the available options. 😅 So just paste in the below text in that left box and select the responsiblePersonVAR variable on the right with 'contains' in the middle.

 

This will then check each item in the original Get items action. Each one has a mini-array that contains everyone that is a Responsible person for that item. The contains part in the middle checks each of them for the value that you have defined in right hand side box!

 

That last part is just my processing logic, you will likely have an email there, or something.

 

If you wish to do more with the responsible person, then you just have to use this expression to get their email address:

last(
    split(
        variables('responsiblePersonVAR'), 
        '|'
    )
)

As an example, I used that inside a Get user profile (V2) action to then have much more usable data on the user, like their name, email adress, and more:

7 - Get user profile (V2).jpg

This is good because it also works with any external/guest users that you may have.

View solution in original post

4 REPLIES 4
eliotcole
Super User
Super User

Hi, @evalindag 

 

I've used the following method to get this done, running at midnight every night on a schedule.

 

This flow has 'parallel branches', but that's not a requirement, I just do it for neatness and to save time on longer flow runs.

 

Filter Items, Select Unique Responsible People, Filter By Person

First up, here's the flow:

0 - Flow.jpg

I'll continue to edit in my explanation of this into this answer (so if you need more, please wait) ... I just have to not allow the login to expire whilst I'm writing the answer! 😅

Get items

This approach requires that your Get items action on the list has a Filter set:

1 - Get items.jpg

To set that Filter follow these steps:

  1. Set the left side to 'Status' using a 'Custom value' if needs be.
  2. Set the condition to 'Equals' to ensure it matches exactly the right side.
  3. In the the right side type "New" to ensure that it will only match that.

Don't type the quotes when you enter these values.

 

To double check this, you can tap the double arrows you'll see that it reads like this:

Status eq 'New'

If not, make sure that it does.

 

Initialize responsiblePersonVAR

This is a String variable which is optional, I used it so that the flow is more understandable when looked at.

2 - Initialize responsiblePersonVAR.jpg

You can remove it, and either replace the Set responsiblePersonVAR step with a Compose action or just call items('Apply_to_each') when ever you need the value.

 

Select rp

This is the magic bit, and uses a little bit of special sauce to get *only* the field that you want to check for matches.

3 - Select rp.jpg
From
xpath(xml(json(concat('{ "r": { "i": ', string(outputs('Get_items')?['body/value']), ' } }'))), '//ResponsiblePeople_x0023_Claims')
Map
xpath(item(), 'string(/)')

Those From & Map expressions are fanned out and explained in the below spoiler:

Spoiler

This hopefully allows you to see the logic of the expression a little more:

From
xpath(
    xml(
        json(
            concat(
                '{ "r": { "i": ', 
                string(
                    outputs('Get_items')?['body/value']
                ), 
                ' } }'
            )
        )
    ), 
    '//ResponsiblePeople_x0023_Claims'
)
Map
xpath(
    item(), 
    'string(/)'
)

From the inside-out, you may be able to see:

  1. string() - This converts the Get items action into a string of text.
  2. concat() - This adds each of the three items detailed inside it into one long string of text.
    You'll note that the first and last items here are essentially creating a JSON object with the Get items value in the middle.
  3. json() - This converts the string of text into usable JSON which can be worked with.
  4. xml() - This converts the internal JSON into usable XML data.
  5. xpath() - This is selects only items in the 'ResponsiblePeople_x0023_Claims' field of the XML data. 

The xpath() function is an extremely powerful manipulation one, which executes commands on XML data that Power Automate flow actions or expression functions otherwise couldn't do.

So now you have a list of probably repeated values ... what next?

 

Initialize onlyUniquesArrVAR

This is an Array variable which runs a union() function inside its input:

4 - Initialize onlyUniquesArrVAR.jpg
union(
    body('Select_rp'), 
    body('Select_rp')
)

That union() function is basically comparing the array of Responsible People items to iteself, and where there are repeats, it removes them.

 

Condition to cancel if no-one's assigned

This is an entirely optional step, so I won't detail it at all. Essentially it is just a condition against the amount of items inside the onlyUniquesArrVAR variable. If there are zero, it will run a Terminate action which will halt the flow.

 

To count the items inside the array, just use the length() expression in this spoiler:

Spoiler
length(
	variables('onlyUniquesArrVAR')
)

 

Apply to each

This essentially loops through each of the unique Responsible People found in the onlyUniquesArrVAR array:

6 - Apply to each.jpg

Here you can see where I have set the responsiblePersonVAR variable simply with the current Responsible person.

 

After that, there is a slightly complicated Filter array, only in that you can't actually select the 'ResponsiblePeople#Claims' column from the available options. 😅 So just paste in the below text in that left box and select the responsiblePersonVAR variable on the right with 'contains' in the middle.

 

This will then check each item in the original Get items action. Each one has a mini-array that contains everyone that is a Responsible person for that item. The contains part in the middle checks each of them for the value that you have defined in right hand side box!

 

That last part is just my processing logic, you will likely have an email there, or something.

 

If you wish to do more with the responsible person, then you just have to use this expression to get their email address:

last(
    split(
        variables('responsiblePersonVAR'), 
        '|'
    )
)

As an example, I used that inside a Get user profile (V2) action to then have much more usable data on the user, like their name, email adress, and more:

7 - Get user profile (V2).jpg

This is good because it also works with any external/guest users that you may have.

evalindag
Helper III
Helper III

Hi @eliotcole 


Thank you thank you thank you!! 

Worked like a charm! 

Thank you so much for taking the time and creating such an detailed solution 😀

 

Best regards

Eva

 

Hi @eliotcole 

I'm new to Power Automate and this looks perfect for what I am trying to achieve. Can you just tell me what the "r" and "i" in Concat relate to please?

Thank you in advance

 

Hi, @Sweetcheeks, it's really just JSON key/value structuring. Each JSON object has key/value pairs which contain the data within.

 

So this would be a made up user information object:

[
	{
		"userId": "sweetcheeks",
		"userName": "SweetCheeks",
		"profileLink": "someURI"
	},
	{
		"userId": "eliotcole",
		"userName": "Eliot Cole",
		"profileLink": "someURI"
	}
]

Basically, in my solution, the r and i are symbolic at best, I can't remember exactly, but if I were to guess they probably stand for 'root' and 'item'.

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