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Overwriting changes with multiple users

edited 12/09/19 in Archived 2016 Posts

Does the product support multiple users in the same sheet at the same time and not overwriting each other? I think I just saw an example where two of us were in the sheet, one was updating some rows. I updated different rows. When I closed my sheet it of course auto-saved, I believe the other persons sheet lost their updates. 


  • J. Craig Williams
    J. Craig Williams ✭✭✭✭✭✭

    When two users are in the same sheet and editing, first person to save will save their changes. The other person will get an icon saying that someone else has changed something in the tab at the top. If the second person then refreshes without saving, their changes are lost. If they instead save their changes, then their new view of the sheet will have both the first person's changes and their own.


    If the changes were made in the same cell(s), the second persons changes will overwrite the first, but both will be shown in the version history.


    Does that make sense?

    Save your changes. Don't refresh unless you haven't made changes you want to save. Coordinate with others when working on the same sheet.



    1. meetings by phone - meeting minutes being updated by person listening in. Presenter can just periodically refresh to get the updated comments/meeting minutes in real time.

    2. collaboration meeting by phone - "hold on, let me update that. OK saved, now refresh"




  • Roger Koon
    Roger Koon ✭✭✭

    The smartsheetesque approach to this would save sheet edits when you click the refresh link on the popup notice about collaborative changes that have occurred on the sheet. The alternative is someone else losing their stuff, but at least it's in the Change Log. As it stands, we would lose the history of our intended changes, and that seems like a considerable problem. The closer Smartsheet can get to the way G-docs works, in terms of collaboration and versioning changes, the better. And, on that point, real-time collaboration would be preferred over post-save atomic level undo/redo (if a choice has to be made).

  • kroonr

    I agree with Roger, for all of its advantages, this issue with multiple users working in the same sheet potentially losing work is a real disadvantage. The need for users to have to keep an eye out for a notification and remember to save their work before refreshing lacks the controls we would expect from a collaborative tool. We are already looking for an alternative to Smartsheet.

  • WSebert
    edited 09/25/18

    I also agree with Roger.  "The closer Smartsheet can get to the way G-docs works, in terms of collaboration and versioning changes, the better."

    A meeting is not always necessary or even beneficial for collaborative work.  For example, we would like to transition our corrective action log from Excel into Smartsheet.  At any point in time there can be up to 5 individuals processing corrective action requests from each of our global plants.  If all of them are attempting to assign the next available CAR# on line 107, 4 of them will lose their information.  

    Unfortunately, while demonstrating the benefits of converting from Excel to Smartsheet to the group, our Plant Manager logged in and made changes to the same field I was working in.  I ended up losing the information I was presenting.  It is not truly a collaborative function if we are not able to work simultaneously in the same sheet and receive real time updates. This will likely be a make or break for our company's expanded use of Smartsheet. Very disappointing.

  • SteCoxy
    SteCoxy ✭✭✭✭✭✭

    Any ideas when this functionality is coming into play?

  • TChalklen

    I would like to add my voice to this request - we have recently introduced Smartsheet to the business and it will fulfil the role of a project management tool. However, our clever IT team spotted an opportunity to use this instead of a Google sheet and rolled out an onboarding solution - it is only now that we have identified that as different team members add new rows at the same time, data gets into a mess. 

    We can try and educate them to save every time they make a change or start a new row, make sure they refresh when notified and save before they refresh but for a team that is used to Google Docs and Google Sheets, it's making Smartsheet look like a bad decision. . . 


  • Eric Robinson

    Please add this functionality ASAP.

This discussion has been closed.