Create item with number columns will automatically set number to nothing and is considered as a value

In a board, when you create a new item, and when this item contains a column with numbers, by default this column remains empty, however, the value of the empty field is still considered as a numeric value, maybe = 0.
This has a very bad side effect, because it will trigger an automate that will check the value of this column.

I tried to force a value in this field after the item was created, via an automate, but Monday will always trigger the automate checking the value of that column during the creation of the entry and the result of the automate is then wrong.
There is no way to overrule this automates that considers an empty cells (number) as to be equal 0.

Can you please:

  • tell that an empty field = NULL but does not equal 0 (zero)

This would be great, thanks

hi @Christophe

Not 100% sure I do understand your issue. When you create a new item that contains a number column and you query that number column through the API (e.g. API Playground) you will see null as the value.

  "data": {
    "items": [
        "column_values": [
            "id": "numbers87",
            "value": null,
            "text": "",
            "type": "numeric"
  "account_id": 999999

Curious to understand where you see the value 0.

Hello @basdebruin
Thank you for your fast answer. You are right, I don’t see anywhere the value 0 unless I assign it manually or via an automate, however, it seems that a number column with no value is considered by the system as a numeric value and triggers for example an automate that checks if the value in that field is less than 50 (for example).

I have created a small test board with this type of situation and made a short video here attached, you will see what I exactly mean.

I hope it helps.

hi @Christophe

I see… so the system stores it ok (null) but the automation decides null is less then 50. That is bad and I would consider to ask support to solve that. When I do this in an app I will certainly “ignore” null values (as it should :slight_smile:)

Indeed, I would also not consider a Null value to be equal to 0 or at least bigger or smaller than a numeric value.

I’d like to report this as a bug, but I am getting lost with Monday web site, I can’t manage to find where to register a bug report, and when I follow Support, I come back to my account and workspace!

Well for now, its time to sleep for me.


One thing that might help… You can set column values on new items by setting the item default values on the board.


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Hello @JCorrell

This is indeed a work around, by the way I was looking for this type of feature, knowing it exists, but searching in the wrong place (directly in the column settings), so thanks a lot :slight_smile:
However, as mentioned above, the fact that the system stores the empty value as Null but considers that it equals a numeric value is still wrong :slight_smile:

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Similar I believe to your situation. I am trying to add a number value to column automatically when an item is created and matches a particular condition. The automation is simple enough but it does not work ie.

When an item is created and only if [condition/column] [contains only these labels] set [number/column] to [number].

Cannot understand why this doesn’t work. I’ve raised a query with Monday yesterday and I am still waiting for response atm. I am not complaining about that but I cannot understand why this should be complicated. Your analysis is very interesting and I am not sure if pertinent but cannot find issue raised by any one else.

Figured out how to add an estimated time value to a number column automatically. Possibly using the status change - the trigger when adding an item. I thought that the item creation was the trigger!

When [status/column] changes to [condition] and only if [dropdown-labels] [drop down/products] set [estimated/number column] to [value]