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Product suggestion: Please give predictable order when choosing linked records

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18 - Pluto
18 - Pluto

When choosing a linked record in the linked record field, the records in the “list of records to choose from” often appear in an unpredictable order. This can be difficult & frustrating.

We really need our list of record choices to be in a predictable sort order, either based on:

(a) The record order of the FIRST VIEW of the linked table (when we’ve turned OFF the “limit record selection” view).


(b) The record order of the SELECTED VIEW (when we’ve turned ON the “limit record selection” view).

Having our “list of record choices” appearing in an unpredictable order makes it very difficult to work efficiently with Airtable.

Now you might be thinking — wait a second, this feature works for me!

Well, yes, it SOMETIMES works, but much of the time it DOESN’T work:

  1. If your records on the linked view are grouped & sorted, Airtable ignores the grouping but respects the sorting. So the record order doesn’t match your linked view.

  2. If your records on the linked view were previously sorted and now you’ve unsorted them, Airtable ignores the current sorting but goes back to the previous sorting. So the record order doesn’t match your linked view.

  3. If your records on the linked view have been manually sorted by you dragging-and-dropping, this really trips up Airtable and it now shows you the records in some completely random order — it’s not even the creation order of your records. So the record order doesn’t match your linked view.

The ONLY TIME it seems to match identically is if your records on the linked view are NOT grouped but ARE sorted.

This really needs to be consistent 100% of the time. The record order should always match the current record order of the view we’re pulling from.

This is one of those weird usability issues that exists throughout the product, and it would be great if Airtable spent some more time on cleaning up these little quirks.

Thanks! 🙂

1 Comment
11 - Venus
11 - Venus

Whilst searching for another issue, I bumped into this similar thread - and figured that it's worth noting that this particular issue has been addressed over the past year or two - although no doubt Scott's already aware of this.

Within Link Fields, we now have the ability to limit the records returned via a particular view within the Linked Table.


The record order of the View used within the "Limit record selection to a view" option will be applied to the Link Record Selection records;


Below shows the custom order.


You might have spotted an Tick Box column too, which I used to place particular records at the top of the list - this is overly useful for user forms for common selections.

Please don't ask me what MeowMeow Flavour is. 🐱