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Random function

Sarah Noble
edited 12/09/19 in Archived 2016 Posts

I'm looking for functionality that would enable a field to be completed with a random selection from a list.  Is this something that exists within Smartsheet?  I cannot seem to locate any formula code to accomplish this.  In excel we would use a random integer nested in a VLOOKUP function that would generate a random number and then fill in a field with text from the lookup table. 


Am I aiming too high here? Thanks. Sarah


  • Greg Gates
    Greg Gates ✭✭✭✭✭

    Unfortunately, it doesn't look like there's a way to do it right now. At least not automatically. You could create a column where you paste a random number in (from somewhere like Random.org) and then map the contents of that column to whatever you want randomized, but I don't think you can do it entirely within Smartsheet. Might be a good feature request!

  • Kennedy Stomps

    Sarah-- We are working on a new version of our formula engine that would empower same-sheet VLOOKUP functions, which would definitely resolve this issue! We'll post in the Community when this is available, I'm hearing that it may be relatively soon.

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



    How many selections are you talking about?

    You could use the Created (Date) system column as your "seed".


    =Created23 - DATEONLY(Created23)


    for row 23 will give you a number (to 5 digits) that can be used to get your selections.

    As Kennedy hinted, a sheet-level LOOKUP is coming.

    Together, they should be able to give you what you want.




  • Kennedy Stomps

    And to confirm-- sheet-level LOOKUP is now available! If you're still looking for a solution, you can find more information on implementing this in your sheets in our Formula article

  • Avery

    any update on how to create random entries from a defined vlookup table? I read Kennedy's linked reference but didn't find the info I was looking for.

  • Guille G

    Avery did you have any luck? I tried following Craig's advice but proven unsuccessful randomizing from a given list!

This discussion has been closed.