Customize the Content of Your Alerts and Requests

Applies to

  • Pro
  • Business
  • Enterprise

Make it easy for people to understand alerts and requests by including customized messages and placeholders. You can also limit the information you send so the recipient is seeing only the information they need. 

To use dynamic placeholders in a change-based workflow, you must set the Trigger block to Run workflow: When triggered

You can set workflows to run weekly, daily, or at specific times in the day. See Save Time and Work Faster With Automated Workflows for more information on creating a workflow.

  • To start a new workflow, select Automation at the top of the sheet and then select New Workflow, or select Manage Workflows to customize an existing workflow. 

Customizing a message in a workflow

  • Select Customize message and type your message in the fields that appear. You can use curly brackets to create placeholders— for example, {{Task Name}}— to further customize the message.

    The body of the Custom Message is limited to 2,000 characters. When you select message only, a custom message is required. Otherwise, the message body is optional.

To use placeholders in a change-based workflow, you must set the Trigger block to Run workflow: When triggered

Selecting what’s included in an alert or request 

  • Under Message includes, select what you want to include with the alert. 

You can send a link to the sheet and all included fields, a link to the sheet and only selected fields, or just the message. Including everything can be helpful if you’re working with people who don’t use Smartsheet.

Tips for working with placeholders

Adding placeholders -- field names between curly brackets --  to your messages may result in separate alerts for each row when you would have previously sent a single, consolidated alert with several rows. 

This happens because Smartsheet must add the unique cell data for the placeholder to the alert message for each row.

Keep the following in mind as you work with placeholders:

  • When using placeholders with Approval Requests, Smartsheet generates a separate notification for every row
  • When using placeholders with Alert or Update Request actions in change-based workflows, placeholders generate separate notifications if six or fewer rows are triggered simultaneously. If seven or more rows are triggered at once, the custom subject and body are removed.
  • When using the message-only alert type, any simultaneously triggered rows will be combined into a single notification.
  • Placeholders will not apply to the subject of time-based Alert actions.
  • Placeholders will not apply to time-based Update Request actions.
  • Placeholders cannot be used when the Run workflow: setting is Hourly, Daily, or Weekly.