App idea: Working with formulas (automation recipes)

Well, its known to everybody that Monday.com doesnt allow formulas in their recipes.

  • Logical operations with formulas to change status and other options
  • Pain point: Logical operations cannot be used to automatize some operations.
  • Other things to consider: If cannot change any status, i cannot notify people, etc. so the formula itself is too limited like it is.

Basic Example:
Im storing in one board the last service kilometers of our vehicle fleet.
Vehicle users are allowed to update the actual kilometers (number column) of each vehicle.
With a formula column i was able to show a text message when we are 1000km closer to the next service. And thats all. I cannot do anymore.

For more information on this request:

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The output of a formula column (the value you will see on your screen) is calculated on the client side (ie your browser). The API, Apps and triggers all work on the backend side (ie the monday.com servers). A webserver (or any backend) is not aware of client side code and can’t “read” your screen. This is the basic principle behind client side coding and we need to be happy that a server don’t have access to client data (otherwise your bank account would be empty :slight_smile: long time ago.

Hence you will never be able to use the outcome of a formula in any type of automation. This is by design. The same is true for columns like Progress Tracker, and Auto Number.

Don’t shoot the messenger, it is just what it is :slight_smile:

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So, with that being said, its the bottom line? There is no workaround for this?

COLUMN NUMBER A = ACTUAL KILOMETERS OF SOME FLEET VEHICLE
COLUMN NUMBER B = OBJECTIVE VEHICLE KILOMETERS FOR A CERTAIN SERVICE
COLUMN OF FORMULA = B - A (HOW MANY KILOMETERS TO ARRIVE FOR THIS SERVICE)

NEEDED RECIPE:

WHEN A FORMULA / NUMBER (could be either of these two) IS GREATER / EQUAL / LESS THAN THIS FORMULA / NUMBER (could be any) THEN:

  • NOTIFY SOMEONE
  • CHANGE OF STATUS TO XXX

Hey,
You can still do this with an App.

There is a way to display the operators (EQUAL, …) in a dropdown list in your custom recipe.
Then you need to code your own methods in the App to check if the expression (let’s say A IS GREATER THAN B) is true or false.
Then you send the mutation queries to notify someone and change the status.

I think that was done or almost done in a monday.com Hackathon.
I suspect (but can’t remember for sure) you need to apply the recipe to both fields A and B.
If field A changes then check if its value is GREATER THAN B value.
If field B changes then check if its value is LOWER THAN A value.

Hope it helps.

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Hi @hlopezvc

I can’t speak for monday.com :slight_smile: but to my knowledge the output of a formula column can never be used in an automation. I think @LaurentConroux is referring to a great initiative from @rob called General Caster, see General Caster is here. Get rid of formula columns!

That said, the example you give does not need a formula output in the automation. The automation itself can be build to subtract A from B but this requires you build your own automation action, Probably easier to use the General Caster mentioned above.

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