How Smartsheet automations can save you time so you can focus on more value-added activities

Automations
Automations

One of the many reasons why Smartsheet is fast becoming the collaborative solution tool of choice is its ability to automate workflows.   Automating repetitive, manual tasks in a process or project will save your teams valuable time but also ensure accountability at all times. Key benefits are:

  • Drive awareness of critical changes in your sheet with alerts
  • Remind collaborators of important dates
  • Send weekly reminders, alerts or update requests
  • Request approvals from stakeholders

So how do they work?

Automated workflows consist of three components which can be set once you have created and named your workflow within a sheet

Trigger

This is where you select what needs to happen to kick off the automation.  For example, this could be when a new row is added to the sheet, when a column is changed or when a date is reached.

Condition

This is where you can get more specific with your criteria and filter the information which will trigger the automation and be able to exclude items (NB. you don’t always need to use this step).   For example, this could be when a column is checked or unchecked, when a date has passed or when a value goes under or over a certain threshold. 

Action 

What response do you want from the automation?  Options include alerting someone, requesting an update, moving or copying a row, locking or unlocking a row.  If you have many columns of data in a sheet, you can filter which key bits of information are shown in an automation to make it easy to manage – this can be found in advanced options. 

Example

You work in the supply chain department for a retailer and are responsible for ordering stock.  You have a sheet which captures all lines you are responsible for.  This sheet has 3 key columns for each line. 

  1. In-stock quantity 
  2. A minimum in-stock quantity
  3. Above or below minimum in-stock quantity (based on a formula of 1 & 2)

You can set up a simple automation that alerts you when the stock drops below the minimum required level so you can re-order.   

You could also set up another alert based on whether products on order have been received or not. This could be an update request automation to the supplier sent using Slack or Microsoft Teams if they don’t use Smartsheet.

To view automations in action, view here: https://youtu.be/nLqJAOTQoVE

Multi-step automations

These are automations with more than one layer.  They are great for 

  • Streamlining multi-step approval processes
  • Archive or transition tasks with move and copy row workflows
  • Customize what information is shared in notifications

Example 

You work for a company with more than one sector and you have an enquiries process for new business.   A potential new client completes the enquiry form and selects a sector they are interested in.  

You can set up an automation to automatically send the enquiry to the appropriate department to ensure a prompt response.

You could also set up a multi layered approval process for the enquiry, requesting approval from various levels of management in order for the enquiry to progress.

To view multi-step automations, view here: https://youtu.be/d6Ao5Ge4VlE

In a nutshell, Smartsheet can automate the simplest of tasks or something slightly more complex in just a few clicks saving you time and money.

If you would like to learn more why not join one of our Smartsheet training courses, or contact us via completing this form and we’ll get straight back to you.

https://app.smartsheet.com/b/form/77d6320ac1b54b76992186035f61bfca
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