User Management and GDPR


All our sheets have an assigned column which we use to assign a task to an account user. Some users have left the company and as the systems admin and licensed user, I have deleted their user accounts. They were not shared into any groups and were all unlicensed users. We have a business level account with Smartsheet.

We are reviewing our cyber security and in ensuring our systems are GDPR compliant, I am concerned with an issue that I can't seem to work around. In all the sheets and for all the active users, when they go to assign a person to a task, they see every person's name and email address since we installed Smartsheet. I have tried the recommendation of deleting them from My Smartsheet Contacts, which changed nothing to the drop down lists. I have checked that they are not shared into the workspace or sheets. In some cases, they were never assigned to anything on some sheets, yet the search engine on the drop down list brings up the names.

I have put in a request to the Smartsheet Product Enhancement section but as most users have commented here, it seems to be a 'black hole'. I have also asked about an issue with changing users default email, which is not possible in the user management section unless I delete the user and add them back with the new email. We also have a new hire who has the same first name as a previous employee whose account was deleted, and the email address is the same. Smartsheet recognised the changed last name and accepted the email, but now when I am filtering work list reports, the previous user and the new hire both show up under the filter drop down list.

I can add the new hire's name to the drop down list in the report, but this does not resolve the issue to only show that one person's assigned tasks. I cannot delete the old tasks for the previous employee as this is project related history which we need to refer back to. If I created a random user account to assign all the user accounts we delete, this would be a lengthy manual process that just creates a big mess in data quality.

These system admin tasks are basic functionality and are usually a check box or an option to default an email, and if the systems admin deletes a user, the email should disappear from the system. I've used a number of platforms for decades and am very surprised that Smartsheet has not put these in.

In the hopes that someone may know a workaround for removing users from the drop down list and keep our GDPR practice compliant, I appreciate assistance with this.


  • Genevieve P.

    Hi @Michelle Maas

    Contacts in a Contact List column are different than users who are a part of your plan/account. To remove names or email addresses from the dropdown list of options in a column, they would need to be removed from all the other cells in the column and from the Edit Column Properties.

    It sounds like you still want to keep the removed users in the cells in order to report on historical data, which means that they will be kept as an option in the dropdown list.

    Thanks for letting the Product team know about your feedback! We appreciate every submission.



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