Dynamic Drop-Down

edited 03/20/22 in Smartsheet Basics

Does anyone know if the options in a drop-down can be linked to a table?

I have a sheet that users can pick a "provider" from a drop down list. That provider is associated with a vlookup that helps to populate other columns in that sheet. However, the "provider" list is dynamic and changes when a new provider is added to the database. Right now, everytime that happens, I need to copy and paste the new list so that the drop-down contains the new name(s). Is there any way around that?


  • Andrée Starå
    Andrée Starå ✭✭✭✭✭✭

    Hi @RRIOS

    I hope you're well and safe!

    Unfortunately, it's not possible natively, but it's an excellent idea!

    Please submit an Enhancement Request when you have a moment.

    Here's a possible workaround or workarounds

    • Premium App, Data Shuttle

    I recently developed a solution for a client where the Dropdown lists are kept updated using the premium app, Data Shuttle. It's not real-time, but it could work for your need.

    Is that an option?

    I hope that helps!

    Be safe and have a fantastic weekend!


    Andrée Starå | Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

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    Andrée Starå | Workflow Consultant / CEO @ WORK BOLD

    W: www.workbold.com | E:[email protected] | P: +46 (0) - 72 - 510 99 35

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

    RRIOS ✭✭

    That might work; however, I'm not well versed in Data Shuttle. My organization does have the app available for use. Would you be able to help me explore it?

  • David Tutwiler
    David Tutwiler Overachievers Alumni

    I can also confirm that DataShuttle will work for this. We use it to update many dropdowns within our sheets. Andree is a terrific help and I'm sure he could help you guys out. If he's unavailable for any reason, I'd be happy to show you how we set it up.

  • dqsoutherland
    dqsoutherland ✭✭✭✭

    I second that Data Shuttle will work AND that Andree is an excellent resource. He help to set this up for our firm as well.

  • cdt
    cdt ✭✭

    Hi @Andrée Starå ,

    How did you do it in Data Shuttle?

  • For people curious about how to approach this using Data Shuttle, here's something that worked for me after experimenting with the stuff I was reading in these forms.

    You will need to create two automations, one Offload Automation and one Upload Automation:

    Start with the Offload Automation:

    1. In the Source step, start by selecting the sheet that contains the column values for which you looking to create a dynamic list.
    2. Then in the Target step, select "Smartsheet Attachment" followed by the same worksheet as step one. Choose whatever name you would like for the title, and choose CSV (Include headers if you want, you'll just have to remember they are present in the file)
    3. In the next step, apply Filters if needed. I just left this field blank.
    4. in the Mapping section, I removed all columns besides the one that was meant to populate the Dynamic Dropdown.
    5. Schedule the automation to run as frequently as you would like, this will determine how often your Dropdown is updated as new data comes in. Lastly, Name your automation.

    Now onto the Upload Automation:

    1. Start with the "Source Location" as "Smartsheet Attachment", select the same file that was used in the Offload Automation step above. Choose attachment based off "Most Recent". If you kept headers, check the box stating so (data still starts in row one) If you choose CSV in the Offloading step, the delimiter will be commas.
    2. In the Target section, select the smartsheet that you wish to have the Dynamic Dropdown in. Then select "Update dropdown choices for the selected column"
    3. Add Filters if needed.
    4. In the Mapping step, have the column with the desired dropdown options mapped into the the Target destinations dropdown column.
    5. In the next section, select Run on Attachment
    6. Add an expression if desired.
    7. Name your automation and test it out! The Upload automation wont run until the Offload automation has occurred so you might want to run it manually once for testing purposes.
  • Thank you for the above info. Do you know if there is a way the sort the data at the offload (or upload stage)? For example the single column I am offloading and the uploading as a dropdown is in a file that is sorted in a different way for ease of use

  • Joachim Mund
    Joachim Mund ✭✭✭✭✭✭

    you can also do this by using the smartsheet api e.g. with google apps script.

    Tha script can be triggered every minute and this will update the dropdown list.