Flow or Logic Apps? How one Microsoft MVP navigates customer requirements in government and private sector scenarios

June 20 2019

As Microsoft's business apps and cloud offerings converge, pros in the field often extend their areas of expertise to serve the diverse needs of customers. That was certainly the case for Microsoft MVP Ahmad Najjar, based in Oslo, Norway, who has added Microsoft Flow and LogicApps skills to his existing SharePoint expertise. He spoke with MSDW about his recent career development and experience with the Power Platform.

Najjar works as a senior consultant for Infoworker, where he does everything from project management to development, often in projects related to SharePoint Online and Office 365. Although he works with both the public and private sector, he has worked recently for Norwegian State Railways and Innovation Norway, helping to surface document approvals or train track purchase information.

"Mostly what I do is work with PowerShell and build up flows for that client, integrating a background system that throws a CSV file, which gets picked up by Flow, transforms the data, and surfaces it from a back end system into Office 365," he said.

Getting started in 2005, Najjar familiarized himself with ASP.NET and is "still a developer heart and soul." He discovered an abiding love of creating workflows and business processes which directed him toward using the Power Platform and presenting on it in 2015, first at Oslo's SharePoint Saturday. "I started speaking all around Europe, expanded,  and did more sessions in the US like Ignite. Now, I'll be speaking in the biggest European conference this year, SharePoint in Prague."

Deciding between Flow and Logic Apps

These days in the business apps and Azure community, there's some healthy debate about when to use Flow versus when to tackle a project with Logic Apps.

Logic Apps is like the big brother of Microsoft Flow, and it's good for integration. I like to get my hands dirty with what I do--it's a little different working with Logic Apps. Flow is like the abstract of Logic Apps, but Logic Apps does more sophisticated scenarios and more expanded volume. You can do Logic Apps with Visual Studio or combine it with PowerShell. Logic Apps has more of the depth and application life management cycle, while Flow is trying to get those [capabilities more broadly available].

Najjar sees Flow as the single fastest growing part of the business applications family, adding new connectors every week. Users are adopting it very quickly, too. It went from being a rare skill to commonplace in a matter of just a couple year, he said:

About Eamon McCarthy Earls

As the assistant editor of MSDynamicsWorld.com, Eamon helps to oversee editorial content on the site and supports site management and strategy. He can be reached at eearls@msdynamicsworld.com.

Before joining MSDynamicsWorld.com, Eamon was editor for SearchNetworking.com at TechTarget, where he covered networking technology, IoT, and cybersecurity. He is also the author of multiple books and previously contributed to publications such as the Boston Globe, Milford Daily News, and DefenceWeb.

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