GitHub actions allow us to trigger automated steps after we launch GitHub interactions such as when we push, pull, submit a pull request, or write an issue.

For example, there are actions that will automatically trigger:

  • continuous integration (CI)
  • messages in response to issues or pull requests
  • rendering/compiling e.g. of rmarkdown, bookdown, blogdowns etc

GitHub actions follow the steps designated in a yaml file, which we place in the .github/workflows folder of the repo. We can add these yaml files to our repo either by clicking on a series of steps on, or using wrapper functions provided by the usethis package, depending on which actions you wish to include. We describe both ways here.