Auto-ID column (we need to be more useful)

I have created a recipe (through a monday app) that looks like this.


When the recipe is added to a board the user needs to authorize the automation and from that point the user can configure the recipe. Input fields are:

  • Preceding text (optional) - like INV-
  • Starting number
  • minimum number of digits - to get something like INV-0001
  • a text column to store the ID in

A board using this will look like:


I want to ask you if this is the functionality you would like to see or that I am missing pieces.

We will put this monday app in our marketplace as soon as monday.com releases the functionality to share monday apps between accounts.

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Excellent, ill take a look at this and then i will give feedback.

Such a simple feature but HUGE painpoint for anyone trying to do agile planning in Monday. The lack of a good numbering system makes switching to Monday from Jira all the less favorable.

Does this then maintain the numbering sequence going forward without any further user intervention?

Each new item will get a new number as configured (preceding text and number) which will be placed in the configured column. No user intervention at all. If an existing item is deleted the number is not re-used (i.e. there will be a hole in the numbering).

If users are allowed to modify the columns of your board or the content they can still mess up your numbering. In this feature request Write once column I have asked for a write once column to make sure users can’t mess with column data generated by the app.

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Hi Bas, dit ziet er goed uit. Dit ga ik binnenkort zeker even uitproberen, als het werkt voeg ik dit aan onze boards toe. Thanks for the post!

That sounds exactly what we need. We never reuse numbers, once a project is in the system regardless of what happens with it, it remains so we have an audit trail.

The sooner Monday get their act together the better.

Excellent work Bas

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This is perfect. I am trying to get something like this for months. I just tried to make the recipe myself and am not seeing the “generate an auto-…” Is that something you custom programed?

Hi @jdavies-IDD

Yes, this is part of a monday app which holds more custom recipes. We, @PedroM and myself are developing this app and it is ready to go into large scale test mode. However, we are waiting for monday for the possibility to share monday apps between accounts. We will offer the app with the custom recipes for a very modest price though our store at https://excellent-bid.nl

Being honest, i think its perfect for advanced users to develop share or Sell their own apps in order to solve other user problems.

But, this does not exempt monday.com to officially implement the solution that I have requested, and for which I have been contacted to give my opinion on how the improved id column should work.

I don’t like this. At first, it may look like a good thing, being able to buy third party’s apps. More flexibility and all. But I’ve seen it happen to Jira. As soon as somebody builds an app, Jira magically loses all interest in implementing it. Some features have been requested for 15years, they look like nice small additions, but nope, you have to buy an app for that.
I’m concerned the same might happen to Monday. I don’t want to have to go shopping for this and that. I want to pay my subscription and get everything I need. I opted for Monday for the simplicity. If this is the direction Monday is going to go, I’ll probably switch to a different tool.

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See my post at https://community.monday.com/t/monday-app-with-automations-released/ for more details of our app that included the AutoID column feature.

I do understand some of the concerns raised here about 3rd party apps that have a costs associated with it. Please understand there are also costs involved in creating, maintaining and running these kind of apps. And off course you can always build it yourself :slight_smile:

Hey @cquad, Dipro from the team here. I really appreciate your frank feedback.

While we’re really excited about the apps that our community will create, I also wanted to stress that our dev team has not stopped releasing features that improve our core product. This means new and improved columns, views and reporting capabilities.

If you’re interested in seeing our roadmap for the future, I’d recommend reaching out to our team at support@monday.com so we can share more information on our future plans!

This looks really useful @basdebruin.

This may not be the best place to ask this question. However, I can’t see where else to post it at this time.

Setting a “Start Number” for use to generate the commencement of the sequence is really useful. However, I can’t see this number being incremented within the recipe.

Where does this number get stored? Is it somewhere in the account where this app is installed?

It seems that once the “Start Number” is set, it cannot be reset. Is that correct? If not, how can this number be reset?

Hi @snicho,

Thank you for your feedback. This is a good place to ask questions :slight_smile:. For people who purchases our apps we run a support forum on our own website, but I also read this community regularly.

The number is incremented when you create a new item and numbers will never be reused. So the recipe does not specify the increment it is always +1. If there is a need to configure the “step size” we can modify the recipe sentence, but our goal is to make it as simply as possible.

The number is stored in a database on the same server where the backend of the app is running, this is outside monday.com.

There is a methord for resetting the number scheme, just insert a new item with the name “RESET AUTOID” and the original (or modified) configuration from the recipe will start all over. This is very useful is you use the year in the preceding text (linke “INV-2020-xxx”). The item with “RESET AUTOID” can be safely removed from your board.

Hope this answers your questions.

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@basdebruin

Bas, have you considered the pros and cons of writing this value as a tags column instead of a text column?

Given that it is to be used as an index to track related items across multiple boards, having it as a tag would streamline the access to all items that have the same tag.

What do you think?

  • Stephen

Hi Stephen, @snicho

That might be a nice addon. For referencing related items across multiple boards I have another app that dos something similar. It relates an item (in a master board) to a group of items (in any number) of detailed boards. It is use for reporting from detailed to main, like a timeline or % of status (completion).

As I am currently redesigning everything to make use of custom triggers and webhooks I certainly can have a look at the pro and cons of a tag column.

Many thanks for the feedback,

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Hi @snicho

I had a good look at the tags column. What I could do is to include tags columns in the recipe sentence so it will look like this.

In my code I need to find out if the code needs to write text or tags, not really an issue.

There is some behaviour of tags you need to be aware of. It is documented in on the monday developers site ans says:
“The tags mutation allows you to create new tags or receive their data if they already exist. Private boards require separate tags so if you wish to use your tags in a private board use the ‘board_id’ argument. No need to send this argument for public boards.”

When I create a new tag (the AutoID) without specifying a board I can then insert that tag to the newly created item on a shareable board. However, this tag does not show up in another shareable boards when you try to add the tag manually. Therefore I am wondering if there is a real added value for using tags in this scenario.

Any thoughts?

@basdebruin

Hi Bas.

I can see the details about tags mutation on the developers site.

Do you know if a “public board” is a Main board or a Shareable board, or both? (It’s a little disconcerting that some documentation is inconsistent in the terminology or not explicit enough.)

I can still see that there is a benefit in using tags, but only where the tags persist across multiple boards.

But I also understand that implementing a condition like this within a recipe may not be possible, and would definitely have a negative impact on both UI and UX.

I did some more investigation into tags since my previous message. All I found was that the overall implementation of tag management appears to be problematic. Tags data does not appear to include the type of board that it is associated with, just the board id; so that’s another lookup that would be required before determining how that could be presented to a user.
Also for a tag that is used on multiple boards, I can’t see what happens when one of those boards is subsequently made private. I’m guessing that the tag then has two instances that are disconnected.
And there doesn’t appear to be any way of deleting tags across an account, although you can readily list them in a query.

While I had thought this might be a good use case for tags, it appears that the overall implementation and management of tags is problematic.

If the tag management included user control of the scope of the tag, then it might work well.

Maybe this idea needs to be shelved until that functionality is available?

  • Stephen

Hi Stephen,

Good discussion, hope monday is listening in :slight_smile: (@dipro?). As for your first question, I don’t think there is something like a “public” board. Boards are either:

  • main - accessible for everybody in your account (no invite needed). You can call this “public” if your world is your account :slight_smile:
  • private - accessible for team member on invite only
  • shareable - accessible for account members and guests on invite only

It is getting problematic because monday itself is talking about “public boards” and I don’t know what they mean with that. What I tested is to create a new tag in a shareable board (without using the board_id in the argument) and assigned this new tag (from code) to an item in that board. That tag will be colored grey. Then I tried (through the UI) to assign the newly created tag in a tag column in another shareable board. It dos not show up in the popup when you click the column. When typing a tag in that second board it turns blue. That make me think we got two tags with the same name. Surprisingly when you click on the tag after it is inserted (whether the grey one in first board - created by API call or the blue one in the second board - created in UI) both items will show up in the search.

That makes me believe that the search is actually done on tag name and not tag id.

So, I fully agree the tag implementation is a little unclear (to say the least).

@dipro, @Scott-monday.com, would love to hear your opinion on this.

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