Help

Triggering document sending with another platform, and auto saving the document as an attachment

Topic Labels: Integrations
Solved
Jump to Solution
937 4
cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Yaron_Avramov
5 - Automation Enthusiast
5 - Automation Enthusiast

After using AirTable for a few years to manage some operations of our company, I want to also use it for invoicing.
As per our local regulations, this needs to be done via an approved platform. The platform that we are using integrates with Zapier and Make, so connecting between Airtable and the platform is very easy.

However, I'm trying to make things a bit more complicated, and would like to know if its possible:

1. Pushing a button / trigger for a record to call the automation and create the document.
2. Retrieving the document via URL / Location on Google Drive and saving it as an attachment for the record.

1 Solution

Accepted Solutions
ScottWorld
18 - Pluto
18 - Pluto

Yes, this is extremely easy with Make.

For #1, see this thread.

For #2, it is extremely similar to this thread. That thread discusses Dropbox, but if you need help with Google Drive, create a new post in those forums, which is where all of the Make experts are hanging out.

You mentioned Zapier, but I would never recommend using it. The main problems that I have with Zapier are best described by discussing the main advantages that Make has over Zapier:

1. Make has none of the limitations that Zapier has. Just as one example out of dozens of examples, Zapier only allows 3 conditional branches, whereas Make allows unlimited conditional branches. Also, Make has a purely visual drag-and-drop environment that makes it much easier to visualize entire automations.

2. Make is SIGNIFICANTLY more powerful than Zapier. Probably a million times more powerful. Lol. For example, Make has an entire library of hundreds of functions & tools built into the platform that let you manipulate your data in ways that Zapier doesn't allow at all. Make also lets you manipulate groups of records in Airtable, which Zapier doesn’t allow.

3. Make is SIGNIFICANTLY cheaper than Zapier, even though it is way more powerful than Zapier.

4. Make has much better tech support than Zapier.

However, the one downside to Make is that there can be a bit of a learning curve with Make, which is why I created this basic navigation video for Make, along with providing the link to Make’s free training courses. There are also many Make experts hanging out there who can answer other Make questions.

p.s. If you have a budget for your project and you’d like to hire an expert Airtable consultant to help you create this, please feel free to contact me through my website: Airtable consulting — ScottWorld 

 

See Solution in Thread

4 Replies 4
ScottWorld
18 - Pluto
18 - Pluto

Yes, this is extremely easy with Make.

For #1, see this thread.

For #2, it is extremely similar to this thread. That thread discusses Dropbox, but if you need help with Google Drive, create a new post in those forums, which is where all of the Make experts are hanging out.

You mentioned Zapier, but I would never recommend using it. The main problems that I have with Zapier are best described by discussing the main advantages that Make has over Zapier:

1. Make has none of the limitations that Zapier has. Just as one example out of dozens of examples, Zapier only allows 3 conditional branches, whereas Make allows unlimited conditional branches. Also, Make has a purely visual drag-and-drop environment that makes it much easier to visualize entire automations.

2. Make is SIGNIFICANTLY more powerful than Zapier. Probably a million times more powerful. Lol. For example, Make has an entire library of hundreds of functions & tools built into the platform that let you manipulate your data in ways that Zapier doesn't allow at all. Make also lets you manipulate groups of records in Airtable, which Zapier doesn’t allow.

3. Make is SIGNIFICANTLY cheaper than Zapier, even though it is way more powerful than Zapier.

4. Make has much better tech support than Zapier.

However, the one downside to Make is that there can be a bit of a learning curve with Make, which is why I created this basic navigation video for Make, along with providing the link to Make’s free training courses. There are also many Make experts hanging out there who can answer other Make questions.

p.s. If you have a budget for your project and you’d like to hire an expert Airtable consultant to help you create this, please feel free to contact me through my website: Airtable consulting — ScottWorld 

 

Yaron_Avramov
5 - Automation Enthusiast
5 - Automation Enthusiast

Thank you very much, that worked perfectly and was very simple to do in Make.

I do have one more issue now. The file that is saved is a php file that contains a link to the pdf and not the pdf itself. So, while I can view the file in the attached file field in AirTable, I get a sort of web view of the pdf file. Is there a way to get AirTable to download the pdf file itself? Any other service I can use to get the file to AirTable from the php link?

While you can copy the attachment into Airtable, I might suggest keeping them in Google Drive and storing URLs in Airtable for a few reasons:

  • URLs to attachments stored in Airtable expire after 2 hours, meaning you'll need to provide a share view link/access to your base or send a copy via email to share, rather than pass the link around
  • Potential for crossing of the SSoT (single source of truth) for documents if they live in two places
  • Google Drive will offer more scalable file storage space for less
  • You can write to/upload files in Google Drive directly via rest API whereas Airtable requires an existing URL (such as to a file stored in Google Drive) to upload/update a file in Airtable
  • You can retrieve the contents of a file as text (such as when looking for a specific URL in a PHP file)

In case you're interested in an Airtable scripting approach to create a document in another system and retrieve the URL via a simple button click in Airtable, please feel free to reach out to me.

@Yaron_Avramov To download an actual file in Make, use the HTTP "Get A File" module. Give it the URL of the file, and it will download it for you as a binary (aka "an actual file"). Then, you can use that binary in other modules that need a binary file instead of a URL, such as the Outlook "Send A Message" module.