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How to send a notification to a selected recipient

edited 12/09/19 in Archived 2015 Posts

How do I get SS to send a notification to a contact whose name has just been selected from the list and entered in a webform? 

Like, when column [supervisor] is set with a particular name, please notify [selected supervisor] of this change.


  • Stephanie Taylor
    Stephanie Taylor ✭✭✭✭✭✭

    Is your column set as a contact list?

  • I've tried with a contact list and with a dropdown list, neither gives me the option to send a notificartion when selected.

  • I am desperate for this same feature.  I want to migrate our company PTO (vacation) calendar from SharePoint to Smartsheet.  When an employee enters a request for time off, I want an immediate alert to go to his/her supervisor to approve/deny the request. Can we get Alerts to be sent to named supervisor in X column?

  • Travis
    Travis Employee

    When you add a name to a field in a web form it is formatted as text - not as a contact, even if its added to a Contact List field. There is not a way to link entered names to a contact. This means there isn’t a function that email the user who was entered in the web form. However, there are a couple workarounds you might consider using. 


    Rather than selecting or entering a name, have the user enter or select the email address of the supervisor and use Zapier to email the entered email address. Zapier is an online tool that uses our API to perform automated actions. You could set up a ‘Zap’ which sends the contents of the row to an entered email address when a row is added to your sheet (new web form entry). 


    You could also create a report for each supervisor that shows all the rows assigned to them. Reports are always up to date with the latest information from your sheets, are editable, and can be set to be emailed to a user on a recurring basis. 



    Here is information on creating reports: http://help.smartsheet.com/customer/portal/articles/522214-creating-reports

  • Webforms will pull other dropdown lists, if the functionality were built to pull Contacts same as any other Dropdown list, issue would be solved

  • Bob Payton - can you elaborate on this? 


    I have been asked to set up a SmartSheet to submit specific items for approval.  There could be 20 people entering items to this sheet.


    I can have the notifications sent to the "approver" every time a new item is added. (there is only one of those)


    What I would like to do is to send an email back to the person who entered the specific item when the "approver" marks the item approved.  Each person get notification only when their own items is marked approved.


    I don't want all 20 people who would be entering issues to get everyone's approval.. that will be email overload.


    Any ideas?


    Thank you

  • Teresa - I was trying to solve a similar problem where I wanted certain people notified when they were selected in a web form. I found the best solution was to do as Travis suggested - create a report for each user that would be selected in the web form. This report pulls in all the rows they are assigned to so they see a single view of all their tasks from multiple sheets. The report stays up to date and you can edit the data right from the report. You can even filter to only show items that have not been completed. My active users make it a habit to check the report while my less active users have the report set to send to the automatically once a week. 

  • Teresa Meyer - my problem stems from the line being populted from a web form (so that we have availability to all employees,not just Smartsheet users).  If you have regular USERS updating line items, you could have the "Approver" be a Contact List, then a Reminder could be sent to that dynamic listing (might need a due date or other date column to trigger the reminder). [also, if SS is monitoring this thread, why don't System dates (created, modified) count as Dates for reminder triggers?].  I agree with Sasha that Reports are great to aggrigate action items from multiple SS, but Alerts are not available from Reports to automatically trigger, and the Scheduling of an e-mail turns the report into a PDF, so now you have to go back into SS.  Seems every corner we turn there is just one link missing to make this work!

  • We can't use dates as triggers because this application will not be a date revolving tool.  I will investigate the report angle thanks.  I agree with you.. seems like every corner turned we still come up short to make this work!

  • Travis
    Travis Employee

    Bob - reminders can only be set on Date column - not system columns (such as Created/Modified Date). You could add a Date column to your sheet and reference the corresponding System Column which will display the date and can be used with reminders. If your Created (Date) column is called Created, then use this formula in a Date column (row 1):




    Couple things to note. You cannot add formulas to a Date column associated with dependencies (Start and End Date for example).  Reminders are only sent if they are scheduled at least one day in the future. This means, if you use the formula above for reminders, you will want to add additional days to the result. If you want to add one day (send reminder 1 day after the row was created), use this:



    =Created1 + 1

  • @bob, @teresa, @sashaR :

    I have used @travis's suggestion, and it is working well: set up Zapier (it's free for 3 scenarios which Zapier call 'Zaps')

    I set the dropdown to say "please choose your manager's email from this list"

    I set Zapier to email that person

    It was easy, but sad that the SS product needed an external fix

  • Tim Meeks
    Tim Meeks ✭✭✭✭✭✭



    Thanks for the info. However, Zaps only appear to work with Outlook/Office 365 and not Outlook Exchange or OWA.

    The Zapier support site mentions allowing excahnge to work by whitelisting the Zapier IP address, however, I'm at a state agency and that will never happen or will take months to get approved.




This discussion has been closed.