Shortcut Monday: Using Drafts and Siri Shortcuts to Send an Email
Shortcut Monday is a series highlighting Shortcuts that I use on a regular basis. If you haven’t downloaded the Shortcuts app yet, you can do so for free here.
The following is a shortcut that I use to email our apartment complex for maintenance requests. The basic skeleton of the shortcut is how I’ve set up several different email Siri Shortcuts.
The first question asks whether or not I would like to type the email in Drafts. I could just ask for a prompt within Shortcuts, but I prefer writing in Drafts so I have access to some of the formatting and the email will also be stored and archived for reference. The reason that I ask if I need to type it in Drafts is that I found that sometimes I had already typed the email in Drafts and copied the text before opening the Shortcut. So, if I already have the text of the email on my clipboard, then I just choose no.
If I do need to type in Drafts then choosing yes will open up the Drafts app. From there I will type out my email in Markdown formatting. Once I am finished typing the email I need to copy the text and return to the Shortcuts app to complete the workflow. I created an action in Drafts that will copy the text of the Draft and open Siri Shortcuts. Since I use it so much in other workflows, I set a keyboard shortcut to it as well for when I’m on my iPad.
Once I return to the Shortcuts app, I am prompted for the subject of my email. For all my email workflows I have the prompt for the subject last. By default, I have “Maintenance Request for CURRENT DATE (format SHORT)”. I could change this if I would like, but most of the time I keep the default there. Also, here is a reference to all the different date formats used in Siri Shortcuts.
The next step of the workflow grabs the clipboard (the text I typed in Drafts) and converts it to Rich Text for the email.
The last step opens the compose window with the To, Cc, Subject, and Body already filled in.
While I do not use the default Apple Mail app for my email, I actually find that it works most consistent when sending an email through Shortcuts. Part of this is that if I switch from Spark at any time in the future, I don’t want to change all my workflows that are dependent on Spark. This will always work.
While this simple Shortcut is for a maintenance request, it could easily be changed for your own purposes for an email that you have to send often.