Sheet Summary

Sheet Summary enables you and your team to spend less time tracking down key information, ramping up on projects, and reporting on critical metrics so you can execute and make better decisions, faster.

When mission-critical information is hard to maintain directly in your sheets, Sheet Summary provides a standard, robust way to organize and report on that information. Located in the right panel, you can customize sheet summary fields and include text, symbols, images, links, and high level formulas aggregating data across your sheet.

Define Your Work With Sheet Summary

Sheet summary provides a standard location to define, organize, and report on custom project, business, and summary level information. Explore the context of your sheet summary from the right panel alongside your sheet data.

Sheet Summary pane open on the right side with icon highlighted


Access the sheet summary

Click the Summary icon Sheet Summary Icon in the right panel to expand the sheet summary panel.

Summary fields provide you with space to enter various summary level information.

Create new sheet summary fields

With your sheet summary open:

  1. Click the Add Field button at the bottom of the sheet summary.
  2. Choose the appropriate field type for the information you want to display. Use the Summary Field Types table below to help with selecting the fields you want.
  3. Type a name for your field and select OK. A new, blank field will appear on the sheet summary.
  4. Make other desired changes (add new fields, edit properties, add data to a field) and click the Save button in the top toolbar of your sheet.

To preserve your changes to the sheet summary, you must save your sheet. More information can be found in the Save and Refresh Sheets article.

Now your sheet summary is all set up! You can come back to it at any time to change the structure, change summary field properties, apply formatting to summary fields, and add data to them.

Summary field types

Field type Description
Text/Number Text descriptions or numbers (for example: project summary, overall budget)
Contact List Display someone from your available contacts (for example: the project manager or a point of contact)
Date An important date (for example: the start or finish date of a project)
Dropdown List Choose a dropdown option from a custom list (for example: department name, project type, project status)
Checkbox A checkbox that can be checked or unchecked
Symbols Collections of visual icons (for example: harvey balls, stars, signal bars)

Sheet Summary maximums

Sheet Summary supports the following:

  • Up to 200 fields (does not count against sheet columns)
  • Field Names up to 50 characters
  • Field values equal to cell sizes
  • Up to 500 drop down options

Adjust formatting, field properties, and add links or images to fields

New summary fields can contain data, hyperlinks, images, and more. 

To adjust the formatting in new and existing summary fields click the Menu icon next to the title of a summary field to adjust formatting and settings (for example: number and currency formatting or lock properties).

Sheet Summary Field menu accessed via the More icon


Take Full Advantage of Sheet Summary: Tips and Best Practices

Take advantage of sheet summary to display overall project metrics, tag sheets with custom metadata for better search, and more.

Depict key project details using formulas or symbol columns

One of the many uses for sheet summary is depicting sheet health—an example being project health if on a project plan. You can accomplish this and even update it automatically by placing a formula in a Sheet Summary field.

Insert a formula in a summary field, referencing data from the grid or another summary field, to calculate key information automatically.

You can select grid cells and cell ranges by clicking and dragging in the grid to quickly build a formula—cells referenced in a formula will be highlighted while building the formula.

When referencing... Use this syntax Example formula
...other summary fields (same sheet) [Field name]# =SUM([Budget 2016]#, [Budget 2017]#)
...cells in a grid (same sheet) [Column name]<row number> =SUM(Expenses1:Expenses3)
...cells in a grid (from another sheet) {cross-sheet reference name} =COUNT({Warehouse B Inventory})

Make search easier by categorizing sheets

You can create sheet summary fields that contain key values that can be easily searched. A few examples of this include:

  • Label the department that a sheet pertains to using a Dropdown List field or Text/Number field.
  • Add keywords to a Text/Number field that can be searched for. For example: construction, electrical, engineering 

Check out Searching in Smartsheet for details on the search functionality.

Create a legend to explain how symbols are used

Build a legend in the sheet summary to describe the meaning of each icon or symbol on your sheet.
To create a legend:

  1. Add a Text/Number field at the top of your sheet summary with a description of the legend.
  2. Add Symbol fields to the sheet summary, one for each symbol. In the name of the field, type the purpose of the symbol. Make sure to select the group of symbols being used on the sheet for each individual field.
  3. In each Symbol field, set the icon that matches your description.

Sheet Summary Legend

Batch Copy to Standardize Sheet Summaries Across Sheets

Maintain consistency with your metadata and portfolio data by copying the sheet summary structure, formulas, and other content to up to 20 existing sheets at once.

Copy the sheet summary

In the sheet summary that contains the fields you want to copy: 

  1. Click the menu icon Menu icon on the right side of the sheet summary.
  2. Select Copy summary to other sheets.
  3. Select up to 20 sheets to copy to. You can choose to copy only the field names or include any values and formulas in the fields.

    Select sheets for batch copy
  4. Click Copy.

Copying sheet summary to other sheets is a permanent process and cannot be undone. You'll receive a prompt before beginning the batch copy process if data could potentially be overridden.

That’s it! Your sheet summary has been copied.