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Button - to change value in the target field? (e.g. push button and change date to NOW() in a date field

Topic Labels: Automations
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Is there any way to create an automation or something that would allow me to push a button in AirTable and it would change the content /value of another field?

Example:
Field 1 - Record title.
Field 2 - Button called. e.g. “Reset Date” (button field) - this button would initiate change in Field 3
Field 3 - Date field (with a manually selected date) - This field date will be changed to “Now()”

I want to refresh the date in Field 3 to “now”.

But I want the Field 3 to remain a static field with manually selected date. I want to update the date manually (without having to use the calendar widget in the date field)

Is there a way t create a button to trigger that? I looked at Batch Update app and Automations, none of which seem to be able to be triggered with a Button.

I see scripts as an option for Buttons. Is script the only way to get what I am looking for?

Last option is Integromat or course and they have the mobile app which can trigger flows by pushing button there.

9 Replies 9

Strangely, the Airtable team has decided that buttons can not trigger automations, which is extremely odd & frustrating, since the most obvious use case for an automation is to be able to trigger it via a button. :man_shrugging:t2:

Every other database app I’ve worked with has always allowed users to trigger its native built-in automations with buttons, without turning to additional languages such as JavaScript.

The best you can do for now is to simply use a checkbox field instead of a button field, and then when you check the checkbox, your automation can run.

However, if you want to stick with buttons instead of checkboxes, your options are very limited.

For now, the only thing you can do is run a JavaScript script (via the scripting app) with a button, but that comes with its own set of problems because it always opens up the scripting app every time it runs, and it requires you to know JavaScript.

Probably the best non-coding, non-JavaScript solution that we have at this point is to click on an Airtable button which represents a URL webhook for Integromat, which will then run an Integromat automation. However — the problem here is that it will open a new web page that confirms you pressed the button, which is a bummer!

I am a professional Airtable consultant and a Registered Integromat Partner, and the Integromat link contains my personal referral code.

Please submit this “button triggering automations” idea as a feature request to support@airtable.com, and maybe they will address this issue for us.

Well that it is strange decision. Buttons would be of great use or automations. Is a nice worded email better than submitting here? … to Product Suggestions - Airtable Community Forum

Great suggestion with the checkbox, it’s a decent work-around. Gimmicky but at least workable.

Buttons that can’t run automations or update other fields eliminate my use for AirTable. The only interactive item in a shared view without logging in are the buttons. I’m using this as shipping / order manifest that syncs with QuickBooks via Zapier. Everything works great but my warehouse can’t mark the order as shipped. I don’t want them using the full / restricted view via login. A simple go to the link see whats open and needs to go out and mark as done once it has.

Airtable now supports webhooks, so you can now trigger an automation with a button by triggering an Airtable webhook.

Not quite yet. Airtable webhook automations require the payload to be in “post” format, but a button field can only submit data in “get” format. Thus, you cannot pass the webhook any identifying data from a button field.

When I want a button field in a shared view to make changes to an Airtable base, I use a prefilled form url. The button field calculates the prefill for the form. (You can use the prefilled forms or ready-made-formulas apps to calculate the formula.) The user clicks the button, which opens a form. The user submits the form. (Depending on the use case, sometimes the user enters other data in the form, but not always.) Then, an automation takes over using the data submitted in the form.

Oh damn, I forgot about that! Thanks for clarifying! I’ve only used webhooks with Integromat so far, which is why I got confused.

Anyways, @Jesse_Elkin, you can always do what I do with my clients, which is just have the button trigger an Integromat webhook, and then have all of your automations over there.

Thank you guys very much. Seems like a lot more work than necessary just to mark an order as shipped. I can see how this solution would work in some cases but it’s excessive to have it pop up a new window and click another button, then close the window and see if it updated the field to the word shipped. Doing that every time doesn’t save time unfortunately. Back to Google spreadsheet with a drop down for now.

I would just use a checkbox field. It’s better than clicking a button anyways, because you have visual proof that it was checked, and a timestamp when it was checked.