Building an Azure FormFlow Bot – the Job Bot

The Bot framework is some amazing tech to play with. It has some real practical business applications, but you can also have some fun with it – which is what I’ve done.

There are many different types of bot, but I’ve chosen a Forms Bot as being the most applicable to the task. It uses FormFlow and I’ve chosen to use c#, but I could have also used the Node.js template.

The Job Bot.
hedon-bot-a-job-bot-seriously
So I designed this to be the first point of contact for recruiters that contact me about a job. The bot asks the questions I care about, and submits the answers to an Azure Logic App which is where the interest I will have in the job is calculated and then returned to the bot.
There is a lot of different channels that you can have the bot interact on, I’ve focussed solely on Web chat. I’ve then created a basic web page to host it in : job-bot.byers.me

Good points of the demo
So here’s the features of the demo that I’ll call out as being useful to you when creating your own bot;
– Defining the forms elements explicitly
– Making some form questions dependant on the answers of previous questions
– Calling out to an http web service to submit the answers to
– Referencing the environment variables in order to get the url for the web service

Bad points of the demo
The first couple of real world outings of the bot weren’t especially smooth. The recruiters were confused. They also couldn’t understand why after answering the questions they received such a low score. As a technology exercise, it’s been great but I’m not sure if I’m completely happy tormenting recruiters with it.

Source code
It’s all on GitHub, https://github.com/Gordonby/JobBot with the exception of the logic app. For that you’ll just want to create a Request/Response logic app or a function app etc.

Try it!
Try the bot here : job-bot.byers.me