Better Notifications


#1

In my testing of Airtable for use as a project management tool for my design firm, I have been very disappointed by the Notification options. It appears there are basically three events that trigger notifications:

  1. If someone @mentions you in the comments field.
  2. If you manually subscribe to notifications for a single record, you’ll receive notifications ONLY if/when someone comments.
  3. If a collaborator field is included in a table, you are notified when you are added to a record.

I think that’s it. And that’s not nearly enough to be useful.


Some basic notification features I would love:

A. In addition to subscribing to updates on “comments”, I’d like to be able to manually subscribe/unsubscribe (both at the record and table level) to receive notifications of ANY changes/additions to ANY fields in a selected record (or selected table).

B. If a user is selected in a collaborator field, he/she should receive notifications any time anything changes on that record.

C. “Creators” should be notified any time structural changes are made to the Base (tables added/deleted, fields added/changed/deleted, etc).


#2

A. & C. Slack notifications have this covered really well - if your team doesn’t have Slack, why not give it a whirl purely for testing the notifications. They’re pretty awesome! In fact even if your team uses something else for project management, Slack can help with notifications. Our team is using Slack notifications to keep up with new Atlassian JIRA tickets.

For Airtable, All activity in the base is selected in this screenshot.

B. Not sure I agree with spamming users who are listed in a collaborator field type for all changes to those records. I see cases where this would be useful like when the field is carrying project task assignees or stakeholders, and cases where notifying on every change is spam, eg someone who is consulted once or twice, or a secondary support person. More granularity on the option of notifications when users are listed in Collaborator type fields would be helpful.


#3

Thanks for the tip about Slack. We’ve considered adding it for that exact reason, but currently not sure how well it would work to add ANOTHER communication channel to the mix. We’ll see.

And I certainly agree that the user should have more granular control over what notifications they receive (and when and how they receive them), whether they’re using Slack or not. =)


#4

I second that feature request. My problem is that notifications are almost invisible unsless I click on the bell. I’d like to be able monitor every changes to row, table or base. Simple better notifications settings would be perfect. I use slack but I don’t want to spam my channels with Airtable. I also use AT as project management and I love it but I need more notifications especially (1) in browser tab.


#6

I’ve honestly found the Slack notifications rather useless and spammy so far, as I would rather there be a ‘New record visible in a view’ as opposed to just updates to those fields. This would generate notifications for new records (low quantity) vs. updates to all records there (high quantity). Unfortunately I have to use Zapier to do this now.


#7

You can already set up Slack notifications to only show new records visible in a view:


#8

This is showing all updates to those records, and not just new records. For example, I only want to see new Feature Request records posted one time to a #feature-request channel in Slack, not every single update to records in this view. BIG DIFFERENCE!

image

Basically, I would like a 4th option here called “New records visible in a view”.


#9

Yes that is the same problem I had with the slack notifications. The 4th option „new records visible in a view“ would solve it.
@David I use IFTTT to be up to date of my views. Its easier to config than zapier and it has a ios/android app.


#10

Also find that notifications make Airtable unusable, and is a major reason for not upgrading.

Currently, this pogo-workflow is a surprisingly poor UX for such a good tool:

  • I have to notice that the bell icon is updated, and click to open the popup of notifications.
  • These don’t provide any useful information, so I have to click on each one in turn
  • Look in the popup to see what’s changed
  • Close the popup
  • Click on the bell icon, and click on the next notification
  • Repeat for every notification.

Would love to see a feed view, like Asana’s Inbox, or Slack, where we can see all the notifications (in full detail) in a single, full-screen feed.
a) it should be possible to see enough information about the notification, such that you may not need to click further
b) if you need to take action, you could click to edit the record in a popup, then once you close the popup, you can already see the next notification item in full.