- 16 Feb 2023
- 3 Minutes to read
Creating an Airtable automation
- Updated on 16 Feb 2023
- 3 Minutes to read
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To start creating an automation, click on “Automations” in the upper right corner of your screen. You can then start with our curated list of pre-built, suggested automation or create a custom automation from scratch.
Start with an automation template
We've created automation templates to create a simplified, guided process for installing and deploying common automations. Select from any of our available templates to get started - you can still customize each trigger and action within the template!
Create a custom automation
If you'd prefer to create an automation from scratch, select “Create a custom automation” to begin the setup process. You can rename the automation right away to make it easier to understand what it does.
Choose a trigger
All automations start with a trigger that will prompt subsequent actions, so next, you will need to click “Choose a trigger”.
Once clicked, the available triggers will display for you to choose from.
Click here to learn more about all available automation triggers.
Select your preferred table for this automation. If you chose the "When a record enters a view" trigger, then you will also need to choose a specific view. Preferably, this view would be one you created specifically for this automation.
If you picked the wrong trigger by accident, or would like to try another trigger type for your automation, you can change your trigger type by choosing another option from the "Trigger type" dropdown.
Test the trigger
Choose “Test this step” to fetch a test record and its values.
This testing is required. Do not skip this step!
When the test is complete, the results will be displayed including the values for the test record that triggered the automation. If you run into an issue during the testing process, then our Automation troubleshooting article may help.
An automation won't trigger for records that already match the conditions at the time the automation was created.
To view the values of the record, you can expand the section named “Field values”.
NOTEYou can think of a test as a snapshot of the way the information in the base looked when the testing step occurred. If you make changes to the base or the test record being used, then you'll want to test again in order to match the base's current state.
Add an action
When you have successfully tested the trigger, click on “Add action”.
Once clicked, the available actions will display for you to choose from.
Click here to learn more about all available automation actions.
In this example, we will choose to "send an email". After choosing this action, you will initially be able to add recipients, a subject line, and the message body.
The text in the body of the message can be a mix of static text and values from the triggering record. You can click the blue and white plus-sign to add values in from the triggering record. Additionally, you can access more values by clicking on the "Field values" drop-down arrow.
By clicking on the "Show more options" drop-down arrow, you will have the ability to customize four additional parts of the automatic email you send out, which includes "CC", "BCC", "From name", and "Reply to".
Test the action
Test the step to make sure it is successful. Again, testing each step of the automation process ensures that your automation will work as expected. Finding more information about a particular action's test is a similar process to the trigger test mentioned earlier. Click on the drop-down menu next to the test result to view the values being pulled from any records attached to your automation.
You may realize during testing that you need to make a change in the table by adding or modifying fields. If you do that, be sure to retest all of the steps so that your changes are correctly reflected in the configuration of the automation.
After successfully testing the action, you can click "Done" and move on to turning on your automation!
Edit the automation's description
You can edit an automation's description from that particular automation's setup window. The description of the automation will default to highlight the trigger and action steps you've chosen to use. To customize this description, open the Automations configuration window, choose the automation you would like to add a new description to, click on the drop-down, and choose the "Edit description" option. You can also simply double-click on the description to edit it.