Simple checklist within fields


#1

This would go a long way in letting many of us move completely away from Trello, Asana, Etc. into Airtable. I know there are workarounds (link to another table’s list containing the tasks), but that quickly becomes overly cumbersome. Would love to have simple checklist as a field option!


Checklist guidance
#2

I agree. I’ve been linking to a “task” table but it’s become cumbersome


#3

YES! I am so happy to see that I am not the only person who has requested this. 95% of my tasks have some sort of 2+ step process. In order to make sure I do each step, a checklist is vital. Right now, since switching to AirTable I’ve moved all of my checklists to Evernote, then link to them from the AirTable record. It’s cumbersome and not ideal. When I used both Asana, Trello, and other proj mgmt systems they all had this feature… it was key for me. Lack of this feature was almost a deal-breaker for me when I switched to AirTable because checklists in tasks were integrated into the majority of what my team and I do every day. It also helps with QC to have the checklist within AirTable - if my team member assigned to a record checks all of the boxes, they are then held accountable for completing each step. Without that checklist where they have to check the box, they more frequently forget steps.


#4

I’ve written a couple of blog posts which may help you with this subject - one with Airtable creating subtasks automatically and the other linking to Process Street which is a great app for standardising processes with repeatable tasks (and integrates well with Airtable):

Using Airtable / Zapier to create checklists:

http://software.kirknessassociates.com/blog_files/3071ed2bbea12791bdd3eab57ff09fcd-20.html

Using Airtable and Process Street:

http://software.kirknessassociates.com/blog_files/11a79a74e2d3f3672f5d0c40fa251ff4-24.html


#5

+1 on ditching Trello and similar apps once this is implemented!


#6

+1 would love switch from Trello to Airtable, check list and more sophisticated formatting are keeping me!


#7

I’ve already commented on this once but I thought I would add some comments further…

Personally, I would vote against adding a special task list field type to Airtable (or any other relational database for that matter) as it is too inflexible and generally bad practice. For me, the correct way to implement this in a database is to use a tasks table as @Hashim_Warren says above. The problem is that Airtable’s UI implementation makes this cumbersome (it’s a bit better in Expanded view).

A better solution, and one that would be far more general purpose would be for Airtable to implement a better solution in their UI for using child tables - and importantly, to also enforce referential integrity properly - for example, to make sure that one to many relationships are enforced no matter how a record is entered and provide for Cascade Delete to remove child records when the ‘parent’ is deleted.

This isn’t top of my priority list but it’s up there - having said that Airtable is a great product to use!


#8

also @Hashim_Warren provide an example of how’d you’d structure the main and “task” tables. I have one done but it can’t be optimal. My main table has a one-to-many relationship to the task table. The main table checklist column displays no tasks if all are complete and vice-versa displays all tasks if none are complete. Please tell me this isn’t the best way to do this currently.


#9

Hi Adam

What you’ve done sounds correct to me - are you able to provide screen shots of each table to confirm?


#10

Sorry I don’t feel comfortable doing that. Thank you for reaching out Julian. I appreciate it very much. I’m going to try to use a third table for now and see how that goes.


#11

No problem!

If you do get stuck then create a copy of your base and randomise the data with some copy and pasting (or delete it and enter a few records) and I’ll take a look.


#12

This feature request is not for a special task list field type, but for the ability to put a simple checklist in a field. Subtasks should be handled using relational mechanisms as you note, but that is a “heavyweight” solution for a simple checklist: think instead a rich text field that allows checkboxes and/or tables with a list of things to be done within a single assigned task, and maybe some notes for each step. The checklist is just text as far as Airtable is concerned. The value to this is that I don’t have to clutter my task list to track the task list items, I don’t have to keep the checklist in a separate document as I currently do, and I don’t have to write ad hoc notes to track work done on standard multi-part tasks.


#13

Hi David

OK - I’ll go with you on this - even as far as a simple checklist field type - after all it’s really just a different UI for a multi select field. (In fact it could simply be an option for a multi select field).

What I would really like, though, is a better UI for one to many relationships so that using them is more intuitive.


#14

Julian-
I’m with you on the need for an intuitive UI for one-to-many relationships…thanks for upvoting my feature request (Split-screen master-detail record view).

I also like your idea about a checklist format for a multi-select list, but this doesn’t replace the need for a simple checklist within fields, because I want different records in the same table to have different checklists.

Also, for the benefit of anyone from Airtable that might review this, I want to reiterate that a rich-text table would be awesome, because I could have additional information for each checklist item (e.g., brief notes for each). I have a bunch of real-world use cases. For example, test steps within a testcase record (with step number, checkmark, expected results, actual results for each step). Each testcase is either done or not done, but the tester needs to track the steps. Similar idea for administrative tasks: the task is either done or not done, but some tasks have several small steps I want to check off and make notes on.


#15

I agree with this thread. Right now I’m considering migrating over to AirTable from Wunderlist. Except Wunderlist has drop dead simple sub tasks. I get the fact that a column type for subtask is extremely un-elegant.

But there needs to be a solution. I’m fine if under the covers the cell (or column) becomes backed by a shadow table. But this is a stupid-simple requirement for me to migrate over from wunderlist. I’m disappointed this isn’t here.


#16

Please oh please create a simpler and nice looking way to create checklist items. This is imperative to project workflow. Honestly the only thing keeping me from fully going Airtable rather than Trello. I have used the cumbersome link to checklist and it is horrible for so many reasons.

1.Everything you place in the linked checklist tab ends up in reverse order on the checklist column, so you have to go back in and flip them all back around. This has to be done from the Expand Record box…they don’t talk to each other after they are created. Which means I now have to maintain 2 checklists for each record.
2. If you hide checked items on the tab, it does not fall off the column.
3. If you want to check the item off from the column it takes 5 clicks…2 of which are unnecessary. Wish you could click the box on the Expand Record screen.
4. Checklists in the column or in the expand record screen are not formatted well, rendering them useless.

There are probably more, but that is enough to make me not want to use this.


#17

What works well for us is creating a multiselect field. We then start with all of the items in the multiselect selected and then remove them as they are completed. Works well actually. We just have a row at the top of the table that we use as a template and duplicate it so we don’t have to select all of the items for each new item.


#18

@Torey_Maerz - that’s a great idea for tables that require the same checklist for every record! Thanks for sharing.

However, it still doesn’t solve some people’s problem if they want to have a unique checklist for each record. Your solution could be extended to having all the possible checklist items they want in the multi-select field, and then adding the ones they need to use. But I imagine for some people, this would end up being an infinitely growing list of multi-select options.

Still, thanks for the suggestion - I may use this for a couple issue’s I’ve been trying to get around!


#19

This would be EXTREMELY helpful. Totally agree. Ready to switch over completely from Trello/Asana


#20

I think that maybe airtable is not designed for this kinda thing. I look at it more as an overview, project mgmt deal and not task mgmt. I’m going to look into integrating with process street. the only suggestion i have is to list out your tasks in a table, then link to another field (projects) and then group the tasks via project. that way you’ll be able to see your tasks under each project and also you can click the header in the due field (is this the right word) and then you can see the percentage of the tasks that have been done.

I hope this helps.