I continually get frustrated because there are so many great blogs and tidbits of information out there that I want to keep up on, but there isn’t enough hours in the day. On social media I often see great blogs posted by colleagues and friends, or in my day to day while looking for solutions, I will come across other blogs on my own. The problem is that during the day I simply don’t have enough time to read all of them. So I simply leave my tabs open to come back later during lunch or a break. Except that never seems to happen as something always comes up. I usually have plenty of time to read them in the evening once everyone is settled down at home, but I always forget what I was looking at. I have tried emailing them home, but they get lost within all the other emails I received. I set rules, but even if I come back to them, I like to take notes and emails aren’t the best place to do that. So after reading Tracy Van Der Schyff’s blog on moving notes to Planner and Teams I had a thought. What about going the other way?

Premise

When I come across a blog, white paper or video that I want to review but don’t have time to read\watch I want a quick an easy way to set things up for later. The first solution I have come up with is send an email and then use Flow to create a page in my OneNote book. Why this? It takes 2 seconds to create the email, add the subject and copy in the URL of where to go. Flow creates a page for me where I have the URL, but also a place to leave any notes that I want to write while reviewing.

Updating a OneNote Book from Outlook

The process is actually pretty straight forward. There is just one problem. This only works with OneNote for Business. There are currently no connectors for OneNote Personal.

First login to your Flow web creator. There are different ways to start your flow. You can take a similar one and modify it, but I chose to start based on the connector that will start the flow.

  • Click on the Connectors link at the top of the screen.

Updating a OneNote Book from Outlook - Connector Menu

  • Click on the Outlook.com connector (or your email connector of choice).
  • Select the trigger: “When a new email arrives
  • You will be prompted for the username and password for your email box.
  • Once entered, you will be allowed to select the mailbox to monitor.
  • In my case I then chose for the trigger to only kick off if the subject contained ‘Read later:”

Updating a OneNote Book from Outlook - Set Email Trigger

  • Next you need to add another action to the Flow. This time we will add a OneNote for Business action.
  • Select the “OneNote (Business) – Create page in a section
  • Click on the drop-down for the Notebook Key (you can’t type in the name. Have to use the drop down).

Updating a OneNote Book from Outlook - Connect To Notebook

  • Once you select the book, it will load the sections so you can choose the one you want.
  • You will then need to build your content. This is pretty straight forward as OneNote uses HTML for the page content. so you can use the format:

     

Updating a OneNote Book from Outlook - Configure OneNote Page Action

  • Give your flow a name and save.

So let’s test with a page concerning the Flow to On-Prem gateway.

Updating a OneNote Book from Outlook - Testing Email to OneNote Updating a OneNote Book from Outlook - One Note Result

 

Worked pretty good, but we could clean it up a bit. Let’s remove the Read Later: from the page name.

  • Edit the flow you just created
  • Delete the dynamic content variable: Body.
  • Click Add dynamic content and select the Expression tab.
  • Enter the following formula: last(split(triggerBody()?[‘Subject’],’: ‘))
    • This will split the string on ‘: ” and create an array of two items [“Read later”, Subject].
    • Then the Last grabs the second or last item in the two item array.

Updating a OneNote Book from Outlook - Cleaning Up the Subject

 

  • Save your changes and let’s test again.

Updating a OneNote Book from Outlook - Testing Email to OneNote Cleaner Run Updating a OneNote Book from Outlook - Cleaner Version In OneNote

 

Thanks for reading!!