Tools like Zapier, IFTTT, Integromat, and more make it easy to connect data between apps and get work done automatically.
But sometimes they're not needed. It's increasingly common for software to have not just built-in integrations, but also full workflow builder tools. Slack, Calendly, and Airtable are all among the apps with new built-in workflow tools.
Have you found the built-in automation features enough to ditch dedicated automated workflow software? Or do you still use tools like Zapier to work faster?
I feel it's a combination of in-built automations and then using Zapier on top for the primary reason that every app might not have all the possible integrations I need.
That being said.. Automation - definitely a feature in 2020.
The Airtable update flow is kinda powerful. As the Zapier integration will only trigger on the first time it is updated and then not again, Airtable in built will trigger each time so a lot better in that regard / chink in armor of the Zap integration
My philosophy is go for the simplest route (with the least tools) possible until it either breaks or becomes too expensive to ignore.
Typically that means starting with zapier and then moving to integromat (and then i suspect @AutocodeHQ).
I do all my "glue" stuff in Zapier or Parabola or Integromat (less). Have not found the time or will to learn the internally offered tools like the Slack Workflow Builder. In the case of Paperform automatic exporter, I found it to be more limited than the Zapier offering.
Still yet to find anything that's as good to be honest... Middleware solves a problem that will honestly never go away. Ultimately as the market matures it makes sense for apps to build integrations/"automation" - But not all can/will
As much as I love Integromat (used to head growth there), I always opt for built-in automation to see if it does the job. It's just more efficient in terms of time and money both. So yeah, a lot more competition for Integromat/Zapier et all.
These automations are really powerful but it restricts you to the platform and the workflows that they have designed or has access to the API. Sometimes the automation we need may and may not be available on these platforms. For this reason alone I have created almost all the workflows (that I need) and automation myself and hosted them for my personal use.
And honestly, these workflows are not very tough to create you can build almost any automation by yourself. Although, it will be consuming more time of yours than what you will spend on these platforms but looking at the bigger picture this will be a whole lot more fruitful.
I think either having your own iPaaS or integrating with another is the key to operational excellence in the next 5 years. All SMBs will touch one while right now that number is less than 5%!
This is a major gripe for me starting with the fact that there's no consistency between apps, platforms, integration tools, etc. Some automations are much easier to set than others depending on the available APIs etc. The only 3rd party tool that I somewhat rely on is Zapier (mostly for work).
I always prefer built-in automations in Slack, Airtable, etc since they tend to be more robust but they are usually limited and slow from experience.
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