Position Database

Currently trying to build the role groundwork for every board that we use in Monday.com. The goal we want to achieve is having a main person assigned to a position within the company with 2 backups on that position. If someone is out of office or leaves the company we would want to switch over all automations, tasks, etc. where that position applies to the backup person. Let me know how we can make this possible!

Hi Ryan,

That’s an interesting concept.

I think one danger with monday.com is going in with the mindset of “this is what I want”. You might find a solution, but meathooking in functionality that isn’t necessarily supported by monday.com can create a complicated, bloated solution.

For instance, I could build exactly what you are looking for with Make (a third party integration tool), and it might be super easy for you to understand. However, that adds an additional piece of software. Even if I create that solution perfectly (which of course I would!), you might require maintenance of monday.com or Make iterate some breaking change to their API. You might experience an issue or constraint if somebody accidentally deletes a system column or modifies your data structure or data in a totally unexpected way, for instance.

A better approach is generally to think “what tools does monday.com provide me?” and look for solutions on that basis. Although monday.com is quite generalized, it has its specific way of working and its own idiosyncrasies, which take some getting used to.

Here are some pointers:

  1. The teams functionality is generally pretty useful. You can could create a monday.com “Team” for each role, which would help you to manage assignment and positions with a flexible “Team” of people, rather than to a specific person. You could then switch out the members of that team, rather than reassign people. https://support.monday.com/hc/en-us/articles/115005884405-All-about-teams
  2. I think that “out of office” is really a different situation to “someone left the company”. The former you could possibly manage just by training staff to look for the tasks of others. It might be enough to filter based on that person’s upcoming tasks and reassign them temporarily. In the latter scenario, you’d want to totally change all assignments of that person, regardless of due date. You could create some kind of automation that does this (monday.com doesn’t have something like this, although I think it’s possible you could get support to do it for you)—although my main recommendation here would be to use a board structure that made it easy to achieve this. For instance, keeping a few centralized databases rather than creating excess boards would be a good practice that would make manually reassigning all of someone’s tasks something that could be handled in ~5 minutes, in which case it probably wouldn’t be worth developing a complex automated process.
  3. There is no way that I know of to “switch all automations” that use a specific person to another person. However, you can have automations assigned based on existing user columns rather than specific users. i.e. “assign the user from X column” rather than “assign Tim Burrows”. Using these variable assignments can help to maintain your automations. In general, automation maintenance is a challenge in monday.com—consider using the descriptions with a helpful naming convention to help you find automations easily.

Hope that helps!

Thanks for the response and tips!

I tried to use some of the third-party tools we currently utilize such as Column Magic, General Caster, and VLookup. They all would work if I could figure out a way to change a column from one source of truth that changes all columns needed on all boards. These apps all require a column change on the current board to fire the integration. A date column changing to “Today” on every board would be sufficient for this requirement but I’m trying to figure out a way to do it in time and not just once a day, so we aren’t firing integrations unnecessarily.

I looked into “Make” before this post and that did seem to be a potential solution but like you said it is another third-party tool that costs that we’d prefer not to use. I also looked into the “Teams” solution, but I believe we are trying to save money by having board creators as users and guests on boards actually running through the workflows. I feel like we could do just about anything if we could use mirror columns in automations.

I believe the main component of this is wanting to create a scalable role system that we can use for tons of SOPs and workflows that we have created in Appsheet or just on a PDF. The bloating is definitely something I have considered and am trying to keep down. I can talk with the team to see if we should pivot to “Teams” or “Make” to ensure we can have a seamless scalable process.

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Glad I could help. :+1:

There is a lot to consider, but I didn’t mean to overwhelm you!

Please feel free to reach out here or via email (flyingravendesign@gmail.com) if you’d like to book a 30m session gratis. I’d be happy to use that for Q&A, planning, or to sit in on a team discussion.

Best of luck.