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I keep missing all my call backs! AirTable! Do better! (Dates and automations)

Topic Labels: Automations
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Hey guys,

Pardon the crazy title - I love AirTable but I am really confused as to why I can’t get an email reminder for my call backs every morning.

Let me explain - I have a table called ‘Tasks’ where I can put in call backs and set the date and time for when I want the call back to happen - I then have a View called ‘Today’s Tasks’ - I’ve created an automation which takes every task from Today’s Tasks and emails it to me in the morning - so I know who I have to follow up - makes sense right?

Here’s the problem though - for some reason my automated email sends me tasks from… yesterday! Like wut?

Here’s one example I got this morning:
Shared with CloudApp

Notice Andrew Carter’s call back date is the 12th October but it gets sent on the 13th (one day late). I just went and ran the automation manually and when I do I get the correct details of people:
Shared with CloudApp

I just want th epeople in “Today’s Tasks” - TODAY - to be emailed to me every morning… and I just don’t understand why this is so difficult… I’m trying to figure out if the issue is that the Today’s Date is in a different time zone than my timezone… who knows.

But where would you look to fix this incredible annoying issue?

Any input much appreciated!
P.S. I did ask this question before but it’s like dead silence when I did so trying again lol… anyone?

16 Replies 16

Please post the automation configuration.

Yeah, sounds like a timezone thing

Perhaps you could try using a formula field to identify today’s tasks and using that field for your automation instead? You’d at least be able to see which records matched your conditions and troubleshoot it you know what I mean?

Yeh the weird thing is when I have stuff in Today’s tasks and use a formula field to concot stuff it’s one day behind isn’t’ that weird or you reckon it’s because it’s midnight definitely a weird timezone issue:

Notice the difference?
Shared with CloudApp

Also here’s the formula… Image 2022-10-17 at 4.50.54 pm

so what do I do?

Hey sure here’s a screenshot but I guess a video would make more sense? Image 2022-10-17 at 4.51.27 pm

Btw it’s saying every morning at 7:00am I could swear I set it up for 6:30am… I think it’s lik epicked up that I’m in a different timzeon (recently went from QLD to NSW…)

But you can see all the wrong times and my ranting in the video below lol:

This is so important and yet it seems it misses by a day which has screwed up my opportunity pipeline like… how hard can it be to send an email on the day of what stuff is in there in that view at the time it sends - and how does this timezone stuff work anyway?

Yeah feels like a timezone thing. If I were you I’d play around with the settings highlighted to see if it helps
Screenshot 2022-10-17 at 4.26.55 PM

And if that didn’t help I would try out the SET_TIMEZONE() formula mentioned here
Screenshot 2022-10-17 at 4.25.27 PM

Yeh good point… would be good to be able to set international timezone of whole base but I’m guessing that’s not possible right?

I don’t think so I’m afraid

I believe the whole base by default is set in the timezone dictated by your computer (your local time).

Where this DOES NOT apply is within the DATETIME_FORMAT() function, which operates in UTC unless SET_TIMEZONE() is called.

In other words, you can expect that the time listed in the “Date” column will be different from the time returned from DATETIME_FORMAT() unless you include the timezone within the function.

If you toggle “Use the same Timezone (GMT) for all collaborators” then you will not need to include the timezone in DT_FORMAT() function.

Also, Airtable automations run based on GMT time. Make sure you account for this when you are setting the time in the automation.

I think scheduled automations display the time in local time when you are configuring them, but they are probably stored internally ad GMT time.

Yeh honestly the whole thing is giving me a headache - I don’t know what GMT time is but as a quick solution I just made Today be… Tomorrow or Yesterday or whatever so that in the morning I get today’s tasks… as long as they come through in the morning but then later in the day they dissapear so… band aid solution I will review other responses too but that works for me :slightly_smiling_face:

Yes I’ll toggle that and see how it works all though i’ve done band aid by making today tomorrow… or yesterday I don’t remember… at least the email in the mornning is accurate before they disspaer due to some random time zone issue lol

GMT is the timezone Greenwich Mean Time. It corresponds to UTC or Coordinated Universal Time. In Airtable, today is the day it is at GMT.

For most people in Europe or the Americas GMT “today” is close enough to the actual day that the time zone difference doesn’t matter. However, in Australia the time zone difference is much bigger, leading to things being off by a day.

Yep, this is my exact issue - and I assume there’s no way to tell AirTable I’m not in Greenwich right?

Thank your for that note!

Use the SET_TIMEZONE() function whenever you are using DATETIME_FORMAT(), OR make sure that “Use the same time zone…” is toggled on for any Date: Include Time fields that you have.