What is Timer?
Timer is a built-in app by Automate.io. You can use it to perform some of the below-mentioned actions.
- Make the Bot wait for a specified duration (a max of 31 days).
- Make the Bot wait until a specified date/time.
- Fetch the current date/time in your specified time zone.
- Make the Bot perform an action(s) every hour/day/week/month.
You can use Timer in different situations or use cases depending on your requirements. The most common reason to use Timer is to make the Bot wait for a specified duration before performing a certain action.
Where do I find OR How do I use Timer in my Bot?
You can find Timer while you are creating a Bot. You can use the Timer app as a trigger or an action. Please do not get confused amongst these, you can refer to the below screenshots and read more about the same in the below sections.
⚡️ Every Hour
Description: Triggers the Bot every hour. Alternatively, you can make the Bot trigger on weekends too by selecting (Yes/No) in the drop-down field available.
⚡️ Every Day
Description: Triggers the Bot every day at the specified time of the day. Alternatively, you can make the Bot trigger on weekends too by selecting (Yes/No) in the drop-down field available as well as specify the time zone of your choice.
⚡️ Every Week
Description: Triggers the Bot every week on the specified day of the week. Alternatively, you can specify the time of the day as well as the time zone of your choice.
⚡️ Every Month
Description: Triggers the Bot every month on the specified day of the month. Alternatively, you can specify the time of the day as well as the time zone of your choice.
⚡️ Custom Duration
Description: Triggers the Bot based on the specified duration. For example, you can specify the duration to be ‘2d 5h’ which means the Bot will trigger every 2 days and 5 hours, or ‘3hours 20mins’ which means the Bot will trigger every 3 hours and 20 minutes. Note: the run time may not be exact. It can vary by a maximum of 5 minutes.
Description: Makes the Bot wait for a specified duration. You need to specify the duration as ‘2d 5h’ which means the Bot will wait for 2 days and 5 hours before performing the subsequent actions.
✅ Wait Until
Description: Makes the Bot wait until the specified date/time. You need to specify the date/time in the standard format (14-Feb-2018 20:30:50) so the Bot can understand it as expected.
✅ Get Current Date/Time
Description: Fetches the current date/time. The current date/time here means the date/time when this action is being run by the Bot.
Some use cases where the Timer app can help
💡 While using a trigger where we get incomplete data
Let's take HubSpot CRM for example where a new contact is being added and the Bot is getting triggered by it. However, you are adding some data in the contact record after it is created. During this period, the Bot can get triggered already and give us the details with which the contact was created, not the details which were added post creating the contact.
In such cases, we can specify the trigger to be New Contact in HubSpot CRM, action 1 as 'Wait' for 5m, action 2 to be Search Contact in HubSpot CRM.
This way, the Bot will wait for 5 minutes and will search for the same contact, and this time - it will fetch all the contact information available.
💡 Specific reminder to be sent to someone via an email or any other app's message notification
Let's say you want to remind someone about a specific task every Monday at a specified time. Using the Timer app, you can set up a Bot to achieve this use case. Have a look at the below Bot set up for reference.
I have used Slack messages to remind someone of something. You can use the same example with different actions like below.
- Sending a message to someone in Microsoft Teams.
- Adding a card on someone's Trello list or board.
- Emailing someone about something.
- Tweet something.
- Add a task in Todoist or TSheets.
- POST data to a webhook URL.