Exclude blank fields from automation



I set up an order form that contains all the items available to have their own column and as mandatory fields the user enters their name, email, managers name & email. This allows the user to complete 1 form only. They can order 1 item per category. Generally out of 10 products, staff only need 2 which means i have alot of blank columns per row and when the email is sent off for approval, it looks really messy including all of these columns with no value.

How can i exclude these columns from my approval process or can you think of a work around?



  • Andrée Starå
    Andrée Starå ✭✭✭✭✭✭

    Hi @Laura G

    I hope you're well and safe!

    You could add one or multiple helper columns where you'd combine the information that isn't empty and have that show in the approval instead.

    Make sense?

    Would that work/help?

    I hope that helps!

    Be safe, and have a fantastic week!


    Andrée Starå | Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

    Did my post(s) help or answer your question or solve your problem? Please support the Community by marking it Insightful/Vote Up, Awesome, or/and as the accepted answer. It will make it easier for others to find a solution or help to answer!


    Andrée Starå | Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

    W: www.workbold.com | E:andree@workbold.com | P: +46 (0) - 72 - 510 99 35

    Feel free to contact me for help with Smartsheet, integrations, general workflow advice, or anything else.

  • Laura G
    Laura G ✭✭

    Hi Andree

    Although [JOIN] collates all of the fields into 1 cell, my helper column doesn't show what the column names the answers are referring to.

    This is the approval email example

    Any other suggestions by any chance?

    Thanks so much

  • Genevieve P.
    Genevieve P. Employee Admin

    Hi @Laura G

    There is no automatic way to remove blank fields from an alert or approval request. The JOIN formula will only take cell contents, as you've found.

    If you want to Join the text together but also add in column names, I would personally use a large Nested IF statement, for example:

    =IF([Hi-Vis Shirt]@row <> ''", "Hi- Vis Shirt: " + [Hi-Vis Shirt]@row + CHAR(10), IF([Embroidery]@row <> ''", "Embroidery: " + [Embroidery]@row + CHAR(10), IF([Embroidery Text]@row <> ''", "Embroidery Text: " + [Embroidery Text]@row + CHAR(10)

    And so on, does that make sense?