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Reading Outlook Emails and Email attachments with Alteryx

Alteryx
Alteryx
Created

Question

Can I read Outlook emails and attachments with Alteryx?

Answer

As our users are looking at automating their processes within Alteryx, the type of files they want to be able to read varies from your regular data file types. I was asked a few times if we could read outlook emails and/or attachments with Alteryx.

 

Reading Emails

One way to accomplish this is by linking the Outlook folder (s) to an Access database table (s) and then to read the Access database with Alteryx, since it is a link, the table(s) in the Access database will be updated with all the emails that are being moved into that Outlook folder.

 

This Link walks you step by step on how to link an Outlook folder to an Access database table http://www.fmsinc.com/microsoftaccess/email/linked/index.htm

 

Once the Access table(s) is linked to the Outlook folder(s) you are ready to read it into Alteryx. Go to Alteryx and bring an Input tool and browse to the Access database file. Most likely the table tab won’t be populated, go to the SQL Editor tab and write the query as shown below, where Training is the name of your table in Access, then click OK.

 

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Upon workflow execution, you will retrieve all this information from your Outlook emails

 

 

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Reading Email Attachments

A rule can be created in Outlook to automatically download attachments to a specified computer folder where Alteryx can pick them up. There is a good article that walks through the setting of this Outlook Rule.

 

Notice that the script is where the folder to download is specified, specific line is saveFolder = "c:\temp\"   

As always, do a small test first with a controlled outlook folder. Once this rule is set, you would simply point to the file(s) with an Alteryx Input Data tool.

Comments
12 - Quasar
12 - Quasar
Good suggestion. Another approach is to setup a Sharepoint list that can receive incoming e-mails. Then you can connect straight to that list with Alteryx.
7 - Meteor

Hello

What if it's not an attachement but a Link to Download ?

The attachement is served in an external server and I have to click to downlaod it.

 

Thanks

8 - Asteroid

Hey @MargaritaW and @dataMack

Thanks for this post!

Is it possible to extend this solution to set up something that can read the EMAIL BODY which has GRID REPORT i.e a traditional tabular grid and make use of information that is being communicated. I ask this because unfortunately some of our data partners doesn't have the infrastructure/sophistication to send as files or FTP it. But its very crucial that we make use of this data for daily reporting.

 

Any thought would be greatly appreciated as the solution that am looking for will save lot of man hours and increase accuracy.  

5 - Atom

@Raghu_s

 

This might not be a very elegant solution, but you could save emails as a html page and use RegEx to parse out data, like in this training video.

 

https://community.alteryx.com/t5/Live-Training/Live-Training-Parsing-with-Regular-Expressions/td-p/4...

 

 

 

 

I am trying to use the Email OutlookInputTool. But this currently has limited options for choosing the Exchange Server Version. The mailbox I am accessing uses 14.3.XXX.XXXX which doesn't suit the exchange versions in my input tool. Do you have any suggestions?

Sr. Community Content Manager
Sr. Community Content Manager
5 - Atom

where should I place the SqL query. Not sure if this is related to Alteryx version, but I donot see any place to right SqL query.